The Apple iPhone 5 is set to be announced next week (Wednesday, September 12) and the WSJ reports that it will be LTE-capable. While we are excited that we might also be experiencing super-fast 100Mbps mobile internet speeds, we’re also worried how much it will cost.
So we’re basing this speculation on existing plans and data that we currently have with the telcos. For one, only Smart has commercial offering for LTE so we’ll stick with its pricing plan at the moment.
Smart LTE Plan 3500
This plan is Php3,500 per month for 10GB. Free device worth Php8,000. Extra 1GB of bandwidth costs Php450.
Smart iPhone 4S Prepaid Kit
Retail price of a 16GB iPhone 4S is roughly Php33k with Smart. So we can swap the LTE dongle with an iPhone 5 and do the math — iPhone 5 LTE is Php25k at Plan 3500 with 10GB and Php450 per extra GB.
Smart iPhone 4S UnliData Plan 2000
The iPhone 4S is currently free at UnliData Plan 2000. The best case scenario is we can also get the iPhone 5 LTE with Smart at UnliData Plan 2000 with 1.5GB of bandwidth a month.
Our guess is that the plan will be somewhere in between the 1.5GB (Php2k) to the 10GB a month (Php3.5k). Smart will either stick with its Fair Use Policy of 1.5GB/month for all Unli Data Plans or it will create a special data plan for the iPhone 5 LTE.
Smart will insist that majority of consumers will not be able to use up the 1.5GB for Unli Data allocation so that’s the baseline. However, the other argument (and we’ve seen this in the LTE Plan 3500) is that “why offer LTE speeds of up to 100Mbps when I can consume it in less than an hour?
To counter that argument, the telco might offer mobile LTE plans that’s based on the existing UnliData plans and the existing Plan 3500 LTE plan.
Here’s are the probable scenarios:
iPhone 5 Unli LTE Plan 2500: 2.5GB bandwidth per month, 150 free minutes, 200 free SMS, free iPhone 5 @ Php2,500 MSF
iPhone 5 Unli LTE Plan 3000: 5GB bandwidth per month, 200 free minutes, 240 free SMS, free iPhone 5 @ Php3,000 MSF
iPhone 5 Unli LTE Plan 3500: 10GB bandwidth per month, 400 free minutes, 300 free SMS, free iPhone 5 @ Php3,500 MSF
Then again, we will revert back to the best likely scenario — iPhone 5 LTE free at UnliData Plan 2000 with 1.5GB/month for only Php2,000. We don’t think it can get any better than this.
P.S. We don’t have any data on Globe’s LTE pricing so we’ll just have to wait until they launch later this month.
Updated: Globe has now announced their Tattoo Black service which includes LTE subscription plans that goes up to 42Mbps. The monthly service fee is Php2,499 for unlimited bandwidth. We’ll re-compute our original pricing above.