AT&T and Apple are trying to grow the iPhone, that much is obvious. Apple Corporate is already looking for new ways to expand the iPhone's market share, and making the iPhone cheaper and more accessible is probably the easiest way to start. It comes as little surprise than that BusinessWeek claims at AT&T is looking at offering a variety of cheaper service plans, in addition to possibly cutting the cost of their existing packages.
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According to BusinessWeek, iPhone owners could see a $10 monthly drop in the cost of the limited data access plan by late May. The price of an iPhone itself might be dropping soon as well; touchscreen component prices have gone down by 30%+ in the last year. This could herald the coming of a variety of cheaper iPhone and iPhone-like devices. Some analysts estimate that the up-front iPhone cost will drop by an even 100 dollars. $99 iPhones will be a cinch to market.
AT&T is also looking into low-cost, but more limited data plans in order to nab customers who really want a smartphone, but are still turned off by the cost. The folks with a lot of money already have their iPhones. Apple and AT&T know they need to appeal to the budget-minded consumer if they want to grow their brand further before smartphones reach their limit of expansion.
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So what kind of inexpensive data plans can we look forward to seeing in the future? BusinessWeek says we could see data plans as low as $20 per month, which could put the iPhone in close to the same cost bracket as a normal mobile phone. Whatever Apple has planned, we'll know before too long. Late May is when you can expect to start seeing AT&T come out with the first of their new iPhone deals.