iPhone for Business

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If you are a business with an “AT&T”:http://www.wireless.att.com/businesscenter/iPhone3G/index.jsp?bref=IB0003j3709y2141 account, you can buy the iPhone 3G via their “Premier”:http://www.wireless.att.com/businesscenter/premier/index.jsp portal support system. You just have to make sure you are eligible and the company pays your wireless bills. And you get an 8% discount on top of everything if you have five or more CRUs.

They have a different rate plan system which i can almost “understand”:http://www.wireless.att.com/businesscenter/iPhone3G/index.jsp

# Enterprise data plan. $45. I’m not clear on the exact difference, but if they mirror Blackberry, then this means you can access Exchange. They require Exchanger Server 2003 SP2 or 2007.
# Unlimited text messaging. $20. This is now debundled (and very expensive!), but there is a $15 for 1500 texts ($0.10 per text) and 200 for $5.

On the “voice”:http://www.wireless.att.com/businesscenter/plans/voice.jsp side, they mirror the FamilyTalk plans, but basically they have a Business Pooled Nation plan (what kind of name is that) where you can share minutes with all what they call Corporate Responsibility Users (CRUs). That means folks for whom the bill is paid for by the company and the agreement is with the company.

These plans are up to $155 for 3000 minutes/users. Now these are all shared and they rollover, so it is a great way to manage a big minute pool effectively. And of course all mobile-to-mobile are free, US long distance is included. The smallest bucket is $45 for 450 minutes, so you’d have to really analyze if this works better than a FamilyTalk plan if you’ve got users with big variances in usage.

With non-iPhone’s the FamilyTalk charge is $10 per “additional user”:http://www.bellsouth.com/consumer/wireless/wireless_familytalk.html to add to your plan. However, with iPhone’s, they don’t provide that kind of discount. It is hard to tell with the bundling, but they only allow three lines per iPhone and essentially, the data can’t be bundled or “shared”:http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=1584127&tstart=105. So the math is:

$60 FamilyTalk plan + $30 data + $30 data = $120

And if you have phones which are say Blackberry, you can add them as bundles too.

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