Japanese Apple iPhone sales could be hurt if handsets can no longer be bundled with data plans

Japanese Apple iPhone sales could be hurt if handsets can no longer be bundled with data plans
In Japan, the government is looking into ending the practice of bundling the cost of a new smartphone with the monthly price of data service. According to a report from Reuters, the goal is to force wireless providers in the country to lower the prices of their monthly data plans. Citing a source in the country's telecom ministry, the report says that the Japanese government see the pricing of these bundles as a barrier that makes it too expensive for some consumers to afford wireless service.

Ending the practice of bundling phones and wireless data plans could curtail sales of the Apple iPhone in Japan. The government wants carriers like SoftBank Group Corp., NTT Docomo Inc. and KDDI Corp. to sell phones separately from wireless data. This would result in consumers looking for cheaper handsets to buy, ruling out the iPhone for many in Japan. Currently, Apple's iconic smartphone owns a 50% market share in the country.

A phone and data service bundle can cost 10,000 Yen (equivalent to $90.51 USD) a month. Last month, antitrust regulators in the country accused Apple of gaming the system in an attempt to get an advantage over Samsung's smartphone lineup in Japan. Apple allegedly forced carriers in the market to offer discounts on iPhone models while telling them to charge higher monthly fees for data. The Japanese FTC said at the time, "Obliging carriers to offer subsidies (for iPhones) could have prevented the carriers from offering lower monthly charges and restricted competition."

source: Reuters

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9 Comments

1. BLUEBLASTER

Posts: 946; Member since: Feb 23, 2014

I hope they do the same here in the UK. EE, Vodaphone and Tesco mobile are charging outrageous prices per month. Anything 5GB and above is ludicrous. Tesco Mobile being the worst with there 3 year contracts.

5. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

Then use 3, they had an amazing service and the data prices are pretty good too. Also, the UK already has separated plans since mobile phone prices aren't subsidized. They just tag them on to the monthly price if you get a phone with a plan instead of sim only. You can get 15GB from three for like 15 pounds, in Canada it is 3GB for 60 dollars.

2. kennybenny

Posts: 226; Member since: Apr 10, 2017

Wish the Government of Canada would do the same..... We have the highest cell phone plan costs in the world! You would have to pay $85 for 2 + 2 GB bonus "deal" BYOP plan on Rogers in Ontario.

6. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

The canadian regulators are mentally retarded. They banned 3 year contract and the carriers flipped them off by increasing prices on 2 year plans (and colluding) to make stupid family bundles. The regulators then decided to bend over in front of the carriers and just take it.

9. blastertoad

Posts: 50; Member since: Jul 17, 2018

The Canadian public voted for 2 year plans. Our plans include financing of a device, so when we cam from financing $500 phones in 2013 over 3 years, to financing $1000 phones in 2018 over 2 years then yes the monthly financing cost has to absorb that. You can not blame the providers for that. Also keep in mind we have a small population demanding coverage across the 2nd largest country by landmass. And we have pretty damn good LTE coverage and speeds considering distance and terrain. The price of your plan has to cover a lot of infrastructure and development. Just saying we have high price when not factoring cost of delivery makes a very weak argument.

8. kanagadeepan

Posts: 1278; Member since: Jan 24, 2012

In India, for Rs349/- (or 4.99USD) incl 18% GST, we are getting unlimited calls, text and 1.5GB per DAY for 84 days. Yes, its on 4G. Speed varies by location (from bad 3Mbps to good 150Mbps) or congestion / traffic or handset (CA support) used. All thanks to Jio, the T-Mobile of India... Yes, we don't have the useless subsidized phones, where phone price added with tariff plans. There is no actual need for one, as well. Here yesterday xiaomi launched new sub-brand with still cheaper priced flagship phone using SD845 (Poco F1 -- 6GB RAM + 64GB storage + SD slot) for just 299$. OP6 is currently the costliest budget flagship phone in India, whereas its cheapest budget flagship phone in rest of the world...

3. NarutoKage14

Posts: 1348; Member since: Aug 31, 2016

Intentionally or not, Apple used to enjoy a similar subsidy in the US.

4. mixedfish

Posts: 1567; Member since: Nov 17, 2013

The fools would finally realise what their monthly payments are really going towards. Would they feel the same if you told them outright that they just paid $2k for the same $1k phone.

7. AfterShock

Posts: 4147; Member since: Nov 02, 2012

Wonder how the EU commissions would see this behaviour.

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