Ted Simon Says

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Unlocking a Better Deal for Consumers?

T-Mobile iPhone Unlocked 12-8-12.jpg

I came across a very interesting Quartz blog post on T-Mobile’s move to unlock iPhones. T-Mobile will start selling iPhones at full price, but consumers will not be required to lock into a two-year deal as they currently must do with other carriers. The author's pov: this shift in the competitive pricing model landscape could transform how Apple does business here in the US.

It made me stop for just a marketing minute to think about the implications.

The theory: increased transparency will result in better consumer understanding of the true costs and value of options, thereby leading to greater diversity and choice for consumers. This would strike both the handsets themselves as well as pricing models. Apple's premium price point vs. Android handsets would become more apparent to consumers. That could dramatically shift the Apple v. Android battlefield, not to mention carrier battles on the service plan front. To make his case, the author points to India's mobile market where fierce competition drives data plans as low as $2 per month. Yes, you read that right...two dollars. 

As a die-hard consumerist, I'd love to see market forces break down the oligarchical market of telco and create more, better choices for people. More product options and innovation at lower prices. More service plan alternatives at lower prices. I don't know about you, but I'd love to have a phone service data plan better suited to my needs and use than the one I currently have to utilize.

This might make it tougher for certain companies to maintain their stranglehold on market share, but IMO it would be better for the consumer. What do you think?