As Apple iPhone 3G becomes available for sale in India today, the data plans pricing has been revealed by Airtel and Vodafone for subscribers.
The Airtel iPhone 3G data plans reveal that the phone can only be used with an Airtel connection. Customers enjoy free 500 MB of data download / month for 12 months and charges beyond this usage will be Rs 0.30/50 Kb. After the expiry of 12 months, customer can opt for a plan of his choice from the different plans available on offer. They also remind that if you unlock iphones before the expiry of 12 months, all warranties and benefits are void.
Vodafone pricing plans are starting at Rs 799, with local call at Rs 0.60 per min and STD calls at Rs 1/min, SMS local for Rs 1, National for Rs 2 and International for Rs 5, with Rs 249 free minutes and iPhone data browsing charges of 5p/10kb with free data usage of 250MB per month.
Or Vodafone lets you simply top your existing plan with a data plan starting Rs 499, with iPhone data browsing charges of 5p/10kb with free data usage of 250MB per month. Prepaid users can pay Rs 100 and get iPhone data browsing charges of 5p/10kb with no free data usage.
Compare this with iPhone pricing plans in US on AT&T. The iPhone is available in 8GB – Black and 16GB – Black / White for estimated prices of Rs 31000 ($704) for 8GB iPhone and Rs 36100 ($820) for 16GB iPhone!
Its not cheap to own an Apple iPhone 3G in India and I dont see long queues lining up as the price is a limiting factor. Also note that 3G services are not yet activated in India. It will be interesting if Nokia N96 will win the race.