By Chris Nicholls
SYDNEY: Vodafone has finally revealed its pricing plans for the iPhone, three days after rival Optus and only two days before launch, and is charging more for the device than Optus.
The prices appeared briefly on the Vodafone website before being taken down and show that like Optus, Vodafone is offering the device on a range of iPhone-specific plans, but unlike Optus, is not offering the phone free on affordable plans.
Vodafone’s cheapest iPhone cap plan with data downloads starts at $69 and charges customers $189 for the 8 GB model or $309 for the 16 GB model.
The $69 cap includes $310 of calls and text messages, but only includes 250 MB a month data download.
Customers who wish to get the iPhone free must step up to the maximum $169 plan, which includes $1,200 of calls and text messaging, and ups the download limit to one gigabyte.
Vodafone will also offer the iPhone on its usual range of cap plans, starting from $29, but the cheaper caps to do not appear to include a data allowance.
The plans do not compare favourably with rival Optus, which announced last week that its customers could get an iPhone 3G for $0 on a $79 cap, which included 750 MB of data downloads.
Those who wish to spend less on the contract but pay a monthly handset repayment fee can purchase the iPhone through Optus on contracts from as little as $39 a month.
Vodafone also announced a range of business caps, which match the consumer cap plans dollar for dollar in calls, text messages and downloads, as well as cheaper “Business Cap Contracts”.
The business cap contracts will offer the iPhone on plans starting from $49 and charge $242 for the eight gigabyte model. The 16 GB model on that plan will cost $290.
A copy of the full announcement and plans taken from the Vodafone website prior to their removal is available here.
Erratum: This story originally stated Vodafone would offer a 250 GB monthly download limit on its $69 plan. The correct amount is 250 MB per month. Apologies for any inconvenience caused.