Apple Having Trouble Signing New Carriers Because of iPhone Subsidy and Minimum Purchase Requirements

ApplelogoApple is missing the opportunity to reach 2.8 billion wireless customers because of their stringent requirements around minimum purchases of iPhones and price subsidies, according to a report from Bloomberg.

In order to carry the iPhone, Apple has strict requirements for carriers. One such requirement relates to minimum purchase agreements, which regional U.S. postpaid carrier Cricket has had some trouble meeting this year.

Some smaller carriers, especially those in emerging markets, have difficulties paying the pricey subsidies that Apple's $600 iPhones require. The rumors about a cheaper, plastic iPhone could address some of these issues, especially for those countries where subsidies are nearly unheard of and customers routinely pay for their phones up front.

For smaller wireless-service providers, teaming up with Apple can be a double-edged sword. U.S. Cellular signed on last week to offer the phone after agreeing to sell $1.2 billion worth of handsets over three years. The company had long said that the handset costs too much; yet, not having the iPhone was costing it customers. Telefonica Czech Republic dropped the iPhone because it couldn’t afford the subsidy.


Apple is rumored to be designing a lower-cost iPhone with a colored plastic shell, with one analyst expecting the device to be released this fall. This correlates somewhat with hints about future products that Apple CEO Tim Cook gave during his Q2 2013 earnings call last month.

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Top Rated Comments

Stella Avatar
144 months ago
In other news, Tiffany & Co. is missing out on 200 billion consumers who cannot afford their high priced gold, silver and diamond jewelry.

Apple is not a luxury brand.
Score: 30 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Shrink Avatar
144 months ago
Apple is not a luxury brand.

Really!?

In the field of phones, laptops, tablets,etc., if Apple isn't a luxury brand, who is?:confused:
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
bbeagle Avatar
144 months ago
In other news, Tiffany & Co. is missing out on 200 billion consumers who cannot afford their high priced gold, silver and diamond jewelry.
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
lazard Avatar
144 months ago
Really!?

In the field of phones, laptops, tablets,etc., if Apple isn't a luxury brand, who is?:confused:

if you can buy it at Walmart, it's not a luxury brand.
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
GoCubsGo Avatar
144 months ago
Requiring a minimum purchase seems silly to me. Having the iPhone set up with an exclusive carrier made since until the 2nd iPhone was released. After that, it is just a douche move by a major corporation. Apple should really drop the minimum purchase requirement and allow the iPhone on all carriers as long as the current hardware supports said carrier. What would the harm be in doing that?
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Stella Avatar
144 months ago
Really!?

In the field of phones, laptops, tablets,etc., if Apple isn't a luxury brand, who is?:confused:
iPhones are priced consistently with other high end phones.

Apple computers inners are made of standard components. Its laptops are based around the same price as gaming laptops ( but without the graphics - and less hard disc space ).

In 2013 Apple is a consumer brand. Not a luxury brand.

Does there need to be a luxury brand?
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)