Really High iPhone Costs in New Zealand

For those of you who tend to think U.S. prices for any broadband service are higher than anywhere else, consider what New Zealand customers will be paying for a 3G iPhone with a one-gigabyte data plan: $185 U.S. dollars a month.

That comes with 600 minutes of talk time and 600 text messages.

Buyers of the least-expensive data plan (costing about U.S. $59) will have to pay $406 to buy an 8 GByte iPhone or $517 U.S. to get a 16 Gbyte model.

AT&T's best pricing plans are reserved for mobile customers switching from other providers. Existing AT&T customers who are not currently eligible for an upgrade discount can purchase iPhone 3G for $399 for the 8 GB model or $499 for the 16 GB model. Both options require a new two-year service agreement. But the $30 a month data plan includes unlimited usage.

In the future, AT&T will offer a no-contract-required option for $599 (8GB) or $699 (16GB).

Users switching from other mobile providers can get an iPhone for either $199 (8 GB model) or $299 (16 GB model), with the monthly data plan of $30. U.S. users on any mobile provider's plan can qualify for the lower device prices if they buy before July 11, 2008.

For U.S. users not already customers of AT&T mobile services, or not eligible for an upgrade, both device and data plan prices are reasonable, compared to other plans offered in other countries.
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