Monday, May 14, 2007


Well, the actual sales brief sheet to AT&T Employees was leaked over at The Boy Genius Report, and it puts some interesting things out there.

The document pretty much tells AT&T employees that they aren't allowed to speculate on pricing or the release date (other than sometime in June), or talk about anything outside of what is being mentioned on both AT&T's iPhone website or over at Apple's iPhone website. They are, however, reminded sternly that the iPhone is going to be available on a first-come-first-served basis. They aren't going to be allowed to take pre-orders, or call lists for customers who are interested in purchasing one.

I know there are two camps in retail management about the idea of pre-orders, with it pretty much even up as to whom is on what side. There are those who feel that pre-orders and call lists are unfair, and there are those (like me) who feel that they are a necessity. I used to manage a video store for a major chain (not that ugly blue & gold one), and upper management never seemed to like that I would take names and phone numbers, and call customers when certain rentals came in. It's not like they would have a permanent hold on the item, but because they had the foresight to ask if we could let them know when it came in, I gave them the courtesy of doing so. They had 30 minutes if I spoke with them or got an answering machine, to come pick it up. If they didn't, back into population it went. I honestly don't see why some kind of similar system couldn't be worked out by AT&T for their iPhone sales.

However, if one thinks about the point that is made in the document that there is to be no speculation over the price points ($499 & $599), there might be something interesting there. By encouraging their employees to do that, there's a high chance that it means they'll be lowering the cost of the phone based on the service contract for X amount of time. Because when they announce that on the iPhone's release date, it'll help reduce the sticker shock that some people are going through right now when they hear about it. Cell service providers do this all the time with other cellphones, why not with the iPhone? Think about it, would they want a single sale of $500...or a single sale of $395 + a 2 yr service contract? They could possibly pull down another $1900 from someone for the service contract. So yea...expect the price to go down on the phone...also expect the service contract to make your wallet cry "UNCLE!".

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