Apple iPhone sales may fluctuate year over year, but one trend has been consistent — most of the company’s iPhone sales are taking place outside Apple’s own stores with as much as 80 percent of transactions occurring in carrier stores and other authorized retailers.
According to sources familiar with the new retail program, retail staff will be trained on the plans with staff recommending AT&T’s mid-tier $60 pre-paid plan that offers 2.5GB of data and unlimited talk and text. Apple will stock AT&T GoPhone pre-paid activation kits and SIM cards.
Apple also will offer T-Mobile pre-paid plans using the existing stock of T-Mobile SIM cards. Apple will make T-Mobile’s $50/month (1GB LTE data) and $70/month (5GB LTE data) unlimited data plans available to customers. Customers who sign up for a plan are required to activate their phone at the time of purchase and must return the handset directly to Apple.
Apple is expected to begin offering the pre-paid and month-to-month plans in its U.S. stores before the end of the month. Now that Angela Ahrentds is officially at the helm of Apple’s retail operations, we can expect similar policy and products changes to occur more frequently in the future.