Why I Can’t Afford an Apple iPhone

The Apple iPhone is one of the leading smart phones in the mobile phone market today. It seems like everybody owns one.

I can’t get by a day without reading about the latest iPhone applications or read how some blogger is using their iPhone.

Each time I see the word iPhone, I go to YouTube and start looking at iPhone reviews. Just wishing, just longing for one.

And then I will go to the Maxis website to look at their iPhone plans, and continue wishing, continue longing…

The Figures

I looked at several options.

  1. First of all, I had to decide which model of iPhone I wanted. It came down to two choices, the iPhone 3GS 16GB or the iPhone 3GS 32GB.
  2. Next, I had to choose from one of the Maxis rate plans. The best choices for me were:
    – A supplementary phone line with iData 1 plan (250MB usage per month)
    – A supplementary phone line with iData 2 plan(500MB usage per month). The iPhone is slightly cheaper if you lock for 2 years.
    – A Hotlink prepaid account that comes with 500MB free data per month for 12 months.
  3. I estimated that the phone would last for 3 years (before I was compelled to upgrade) so I calculated the cost over 3 years.
  4. I put the numbers in a spreadsheet, which looks like this:
iPhone Comparison Chart for Maxis Plans
iPhone Comparison Chart for Maxis Plans

To summarize (in case you are not a numbers type of person):

  1. The difference between an iPhone 3GS 16GB and 32GB is RM500.
  2. You have to pay an extra RM100 to reduce lock-in period from 2 years to 1 year.
  3. Over 3 years, you pay RM220 extra to get 500MB bandwidth per month, which is a fair deal.
  4. The iValue plans cost the most, but would not suit me since I won’t be making calls

Why Do I Want One?

Looking at the thousands that I have to spend, the next question I asked myself was, why do I really want one?

My answers were:

  1. App Store applications look really interesting (especially the games!)
  2. I can use it while I’m waiting, or when I’m travelling
  3. GPS
  4. Camera
  5. It’s got cool factor

The Next Best Thing

The next natural step for me, was to take a look at the iPod Touch. The iPod Touch can also run App Store applications like the iPhone.

The obvious benefit for me was I didn’t have to sign up for any new phone lines or data plans. I could happily remain as a Yellow Fellow.

With a price difference of RM3550 (the 3 year cost of owning an iPhone 3GS 32GB versus an iPod Touch 32GB), what extra value does the iPhone provide?

  1. It has phone, texting and MMS functions
  2. GPS
  3. Compass
  4. Camera
  5. Free OS Updates
  6. Slightly faster performance

BUT, the features I really wanted were:

  1. App Store applications (the iPod Touch can do this)
  2. Mobility (ditto)
  3. GPS (I already have a semi-useful GPS)
  4. Camera (I already have several digital cameras)

The Killer Question

It is already quite obvious by now, that I don’t really need an Apple iPhone. The iPod Touch will meet my requirements quite nicely.

Which leads me to one last question.

Will I have time to use it?

Taking a serious look at my current life style, I really don’t have time to spend on another device.

The last thing I need is another gadget to divide my time and attention.

Final Decision

And so it is with a sad and heavy heart that I have to pass on the Apple iPhone and the Apple iPod Touch.

At the most, I could get the cheapest iPod Touch 8GB just for fun. But probably not.

With the facts staring at me, it’s hard to justify spending the money.

Perhaps things will change in the future. I will see if I can justify spending on an Apple Tablet.

One last thing. I hope no one will misunderstand me. I don’t mean that the iPhone or iPod Touch are not good devices to buy. I want one sooo much!

It’s just that in MY situation, at this point of time, I can’t afford one.

11 thoughts on “Why I Can’t Afford an Apple iPhone”

  1. don’t feel bad, I’m on disability and food stamps. I have to pay electric, Internet, crappy Net 10 cell phone and rent. I have food to buy plus I have to pay for washing my clothes. I have to buy hygiene products to. all that takes huge chunks out of my money and it’s hard to save money plus I eat a lot. I can’t afford an IPhone or the Samsung Galaxy s7 edge phone. I see everyone with IPhones but I know I could never afford one. I don’t have a job. I get a government check every month that barely covers my expenses. I want a IPhone so bad but unless I win the lottery or come into a lot of money, that dream is out of reach. I have to stick with a crappy Net 10 phone that sucks because that’s all I can afford. I’m going to try and save money but It will be very difficult.

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