Should Bad 3G Be More Accessible?

from the fine-line... dept

Recently, we noted that early reviews of various 3G services were noting that, just like almost every other wireless technology, it didn’t really live up to the hype. Here’s yet another story saying that 3G services really aren’t as good as everyone had hyped — which shouldn’t come as much of a surprise to anyone following the wireless industry. However, this newer article then goes on to recommend that the prices of 3G services be made much, much cheaper. While it is true that the pricing on most 3G services these days is positively ridiculous, this brings to mind the old joke about people complaining about a restaurant that serves terrible soup… in such small portions. If the service isn’t that good, why even worry that it’s too expensive? While it is entirely possible (never put it past the carriers to be this clueless) that the current pricing is a misguided attempt at maximizing revenue from early adopters — another interpretation could be that 3G services are priced so badly to limit the number of users while the network gets some real world stress testing. Sure, in an ideal world, it would be great to have a perfect network, and throw open the doors to everyone, but in the meantime, getting the network out to early adopters, and letting improvements be made probably makes sense for the carriers. The real suckers, though, are those who are paying the $80/month to beta test weak services. There certainly are plenty of improvements that carriers can make in offering 3G services, but rushing them into it isn’t going to make the service any better.

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Comments on “Should Bad 3G Be More Accessible?”

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Steve Mueller (user link) says:


If the service isn’t that good, why even worry that it’s too expensive?

Remember that they didn’t say the service wasn’t good; they said it didn’t live up to the hype. That could just mean the hype was ridiculous (as most hype often is). Even the article you cited didn’t say the service was really bad; the author mainly had hardware and coverage problems.

Even if it really isn’t that good, that doesn’t necessarily imply that it’s useless. I’d seriously consider a $20-per-month unlimited plan even for slow data access. I won’t pay $80 per month even for gigabit speed (unless I could share that access with all the computers on my home network).

After all, some access (even bad) is better than none if the price is reasonable. I’d rather drive a Yugo than walk….

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