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Telcos iPhone 5 Tug’O-War

Telcos iPhone 5 Tug’O-War

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Optus today announced it will offer the iPhone 5, the thinnest and lightest ever, to customers in Australia beginning Friday, September 21.

 “Vodafone will be offering the new iPhone 5 from September 21.” the telco confirmed, adding: “iPhone 5 is fully compatible on our current network and the new Vodafone 4G network rolling out from early 2013.”

And not to be left behind Australia’s biggest telco, Telstra, confirmed i5 will be making an appearance the same day as its competitors:

“Great news. The iPhone 5 will be available to customers in Aus from 21 Sept.” the telco tweeted earlier today.

After a lot of hype and commotion, the iPhone 5 was revealed by Apple earlier today, is thinner at 7.6mm, lighter than the 4S, made entirely from glass and aluminium, has a nifty 8MP camera and an A6 processor.

However, i5 certainly appears to lack the wow factor it so desperately needs, as Samsung Galaxy S III and even HTC already have similar devices with the same or better technology already available, and 4″ 4G Motorola Razr M 4G was unveiled last week.

“Not much new with it really apart from bigger screen and better camera?” one underwhelmed Apple fan told SmartHouse.

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The Twittersphere was similarly unimpressed, at least some anyway.

 “R people seriously surprised that the iphone5 is slimmer/lighter/faster? When hasn’t technology done that? Lemme know when they get keyboards,” one Twitter user wrote.

However, others were estatic about the new Apple: “I’m getting the iPhone 5” one Apple fanboy tweeted.

And unlike the new iPad, which claimed to be 4G in Australia and was really only fast 3G, i5 use the same 4G LTE 1800MHz spectrum offered by Telstra, Optus and Virgin Mobile. (Phew).

None of the telcos have come out with pricing plans yet, however, all four will be hoping for their fair share of the Apple pie. 

A Telstra spokesperson confirmed no plan details are available at this time, but said it will be letting people know in the near future.

“Its clear there is huge appetite for Apple products, so we expect a lot of interest…and already getting a lot of interest from consumers” just hours out from its announcement.

However, the spokesperson refused to comment if the seemingly over hyped Apple hero smartphone will be the biggest selling handset of the year.

Telstra CEO David Thodey, however, alluded to the new iPhone release at a recent earnings call, saying he expects it to boost  the telco’s already booming mobile business.

A Vodafone spokesperson says plans for the iPhone 5 may be released in the next 24 hours and confirmed it was working with Apple on pricing details, and expects consumer demand to be strong.

Optus was reluctant to comment on the device prior to its announcement but a spokesperson said “iPhones continue to be a popular device for our customers.

“i5 will be available in the US on plans starting at US$199 for 16GB, $299 for 32GB in two year deals.
Analysts are predicting Apple may sell as many as 8 million handsets on the first three days of sale.

A straw poll we conducted among several iPhone 4/4S users revealed not one was planning to upgrade at the moment, due to plan restrictions and/or lack of interest.

However, this may change in another six months as existing plans expire and users get fed up of their current device.

 A poll conducted by the SMH among 16000 consumers revealed general apathy towards the new iPhone which appears to be lacking the X factor it predecessors held.

But its far from cheap to buy outright, in Australia anyway.

Apple’s iPhone 5 will be sold here for $799 for the 16GB model, $899 for the 32GB and $999 for the 64GB model, in either white and silver or black and slate.

Apple said customers could pre-order from this Friday from Apple Store.

Ovum analysts today warned Apple needs to “do much more than the widely expected hardware revamp of the iPhone to lead in the smartphone market.”