Apple iPhone, finally in Indonesia

Until this time, the iPhone is not sold in Indonesia, officially, at least. The units that could be bought from shops and online sellers are black market units without any warranty.

As in other country, Apple want to distribute the phone through operators, something never happened here to phone of that class. The only phone I ever seen got subsidized is low end devices, not high end.

The operator in Indonesia is Telkomsel. According to the press release, the pricing is as follow, in a year including plans.

Plans iPhone 3G 8G iPhone 3G 16G

Pre-paid (full price) 9’605k 11’205k

Plan 1 4’455k (+12 × 354k) = 8’703k 5’921k (+12 × 354k) = 10’169k

Plan 2 3’844k (+12 × 488k) = 9’700k 5’301k (+12 × 488k) = 11’157k

Plan 3 2’622k (+12 × 733k) = 11’418k 4’079k (+12 × 733k) = 12’875k

Government tax not included and national bank’s exchange rate at yesterday’s market closing is IDR 11’990 per USD 1.

That means it cost US$ 935 for unlocked iPhone 3G 16G. As an illustration, here in Indonesia, that much money is enough to buy a new motorbike (IINM) which is in all way, a lot more useful as an asset compared to a phone even if it has that all-holiness Apple sign on it’s back.

By the way, the data plan is limited to 500 GB. Yes, tariffs sucks here.

A site, Agustinus.net also made a table, describing the nett price of the iPhone per plans. Telkomsel also gave bonus of free talk time and SMS, but these are confirmed to be valid only to other numbers of the same operators.

From reaction in various online forums, the operator is really throwing freezing water into the enthusiasm. Many quickly backs up and even say that’s it, lets starts talking about Blackberry Bold.

Most importantly, the shock. The price is terribly high. The monthly rate, even the cheapest plan is more than twice the monthly price for Blackberry Internet Service (which by the way, is becoming trend in the recent year). The IDR 733k plans… we’re still not used to getting contracts that expensive, and it’s better used to pay for boarding house rents.

But market are weird. The launching is on March 20. Telkomsel said they already have 17k peoples in the queue list, but how many will stay to buy it ? And most importantly, how will the market change in the next months, especially the second hand price for unlocked devices.

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