back to article iPhone 3G to lure pre-payers to contracts - survey

One in five Brits would like to buy a 3G iPhone, but more would put down their hard-earned if O2's tariffs were less pricey. So claims market watcher GfK NOP on the back of an online survey carried out over the past weekend. It talked to 750 people, and the results were "weighted to give a nationally representative sample of …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    What a lot of rot.

    "One in five Brits would like to buy a 3G iPhone, but more would put down their hard-earned if O2's tariffs were less pricey."

    Who pays these morons? Why are you reporting it? Thats one of the biggest piles of cock Ive ever read on the Reg.

    Here, make a story out of this, hold the front page.

    "75 % of brits want a Ferarri, but only if they start selling them for 5p."

    Honestly, stop feeding these pseudo hacks and their ridiculous surveys will go away.

  2. Mike Sullivan

    Only 750... Population of the UK is ???

    750 is hardley a representitive sample of the uk... what is the population 50 million ? lies damn lies and statistics...

    PS My wife has a statistics degree... what does that tell you...

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    stats lies and more stats

    750 people extrapolated to represent a population of 60 million even if it is 'weighted' can hardly be accurate.

    1 in 5 people ??? I can find at least 10 people around me who don't even know there is another version of the iphone, or what the first one was all about.. most think it was some kind of iPod.

    This lack of basic scientific method is what allows the government to day most poeple are in favour of ID cards.

  4. MarmiteToast

    @Mike Sullivan

    ... that you don't talk about statistics with your wife very much?

  5. John Robson Silver badge

    Umm, right

    "O2 and Apple have addressed most of the barriers which held back mass-market take-up of the original iPhone, so we expect the iPhone 3G to sell well," said GfK director Anders Nielsen.

    Yes, except supply it would seem. Which is rather critical.

  6. joe K
    IT Angle

    What's wrong with stats?

    @ Mike and Jeremy

    GfK NOP is a top 5 global market research company. I'm sure they've been in the business long enough to have reliable data weighting models for the UK. You must have skipped your statistics classes, or maybe its just not your forte. Sample size 1000 is typical for most market research projects, and for populations the size of the UK you're looking at around 3% margin of error only, which is acceptable in cases like this.

    The British Polling council summarise it pretty well on their website :

    "How can you possibly tell what millions of people think by asking just 1,000 or 2,000 respondents?

    In much the same way that a chef can judge a large vat of soup by tasting just one spoonful. Providing that the soup has been well stirred, so that the spoonful is properly "representative", one spoonful is sufficient. Polls operate on the same principle: achieving representative samples is broadly akin to stirring the soup. A non-scientific survey is like an unstirred vat of soup. A chef could drink a large amount from the top of the vat, and still obtain a misleading view if some of the ingredients have sunk to the bottom. Just as the trick in checking soup is to stir well, rather than to drink lots, so the essence of a scientific poll is to secure a representative sample, rather than a vast one "

  7. Giles Jones Gold badge

    Different is

    This time the phone is subsidised and last time you handed over £269 or so.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    A title is required.

    "what is the population 50 million ?"

    More like 64 million.

    Anyway, I investigated the PAYG iPhone deal when it was announced and any ideas regarding getting one were taken out behind the bins and shot when I found out the cost. And this is before taking into account the O2 angle (bunch of charlatans)

    Maybe I should book myself a long weekend in Ghent or Bruges and take advantage of the apparently-sane Belgian legal system which prevents vendor locking :-) On the other hand, do I want an iPhone that badly? Nah.

  9. Mark C


    Based on my survey (sample of 1 = Mike Sullivan) I can now reveal that 100% of men have a wife with a statistics degree.

    Which is about as useful\accurate as this reprint of marketing propoganda is.

    <-- get's 66% of coat and leaves

  10. joe K
    Thumb Up

    Still @ Jeremy

    Still amused by the sheer arrogance of your clueless statement "This lack of basic scientific method ...."

    Classic, what's next.....

  11. Jolyon Ralph
    Dead Vulture

    You know what...

    Sometimes, just sometimes, it would be nice if, on receipt of these press releases filled with meaningless guff statistics, El Reg would just press the Delete button rather than feeling the urge to stick it up here as a news story.

  12. Richard

    May not be statistically significant but ...

    It supports my own personal theory that O2 and/or Apple are deliberately restricting access to a Pay&Go version to force those people who believe they must have the iPhone 3G NOW!!! (AGPS + 3G + v2.0 OS make it an attractive pull) to buy it on a long term contract (not even just 12 months!!) and hence milk the marketing for all its currently worth.

    Combine this possible strategy with a limited supply (plus bit of a spending downturn 8-) and there is plenty of scope for consumer backlash where people (like me) will just ignore the launch and wait for PAYG version closer to Xmas anyway.

    I'm feeling let down by Apple the same way I did when the G4 CUBE was announced ... I wanted one (and would have been a new Apple user then) but the price was too high ... however a few years later I got my hands on one for a very cheap price and love its design 8-) So I'll probably wait or buckle and get an iPod Touch v2.0 just for WiFi use ... the whole iphone/touch platform does look very good and the SDK is really good.

  13. Matt White

    Love to know what the methodology was...

    Especially to eliminate the selection bias of an online survey, compared to say, a phone survey.

  14. Anonymous Coward

    I was in the market for a PAYG iPhone.....

    ...but now I cant be arsed.

    I'm sure O2 don't need a marketing company to tell them this (and I bet I'm fairly representative of a fair few people).

    This user wont be getting an iPhone from them until somebody pulls their head out of their arse and offers realistic pricing and time frames for the PAYG iPhone.

    If I get bored (and the chances are I will) I'll be perusing ebay for a phone from countries without rip off pricing models.

  15. Alexis Vallance

    Not for me

    I'm on Pay As You Go, and I use about £8 a month. I'm usually near a landline, at work or home, to make calls, so it's mostly texts.

    I'd never use 750 minutes a month or 125 texts on contract. If it was £99 for a phone and £10 a month for 120 minutes / 50 texts it would be great.

    That's why I bought an iPod Touch. The iPhone but without the phone bit!

  16. Watashi

    Facts vs propaganda

    OK, there are two types of surveys - the ones companies use to understand the market and the ones used to puff up thier new product. Can you guess which one Apple were paying their money for?

    Surveys are extremely easy to manipulate; for example, an on-line survey will naturally include a much higher percentage of technophiles than a phone survey. A survey that sends out 10000 emails and counts only the first 1000 will get an even higher percentage of technophiles than would be found in the population.

    If the survey was a pop-up window on iTunes website, and it offered the chance of winning an iPhone, then I'd suggest that the only people who would fill in the survey would be those who wanted an iPhone.

    I want to see a link to a description of the way the survey group was selected before I believe this.

  17. Anonymous Hero

    Where's the Linux angle on this?

    Usually we should have two or three freetards chipping in and being totally OT and irrelevant by now....?

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    re: I was in the market for a PAYG iPhone.....

    Unfortunately, due to the very low level of stock that Apple is supplying O2, O2 had to postpone plans for PAYG.

    The company makes far more profit on contracts and with the pitifully small stock (believe me the 'few dozen units per store' that O2 claims is balderdash – it’s a lot worse than that), it doesn’t make financial sense for it to offer PAYG when so many (more profitable) customers want iPhones.

    If Apple had supplied O2 and CW with the amount of units each company wanted, PAYG would be on offer – you’re blaming the wrong company.

    Sucks for would-be PAYG customers – but it’s amazed me how many disgruntled would-be PAYG owners on forums, are acting like they’re premier customers and that their £10 per month could make or break O2.

  19. Mike Crawshaw
    Thumb Down

    Part of the 84% that doesn't want one...

    I'm on PAYG, with O2. I top up (usually) £30 a month, from which I have up to £10 change at the end of the month. I regularly use 600+ mins, and in the region of 800-1k SMS (I send long text messages that count as 2+ each. I refuse to use "gr8 m8 cu l8r" etc as these are abominations in the eyes of Me.)

    So, as a reasonable user that O2 make profit from, I'm probably the type they would like to switch to contract. But no.

    * the Shininess Factor is not something I care about. Currently using a Nokia 6111 that's about 2 years old.

    * don't care about the free internets, I stare at screens enough through the day without doing the same whilst on the move.

    * it would work out costing me more. £35/month base, plus the additional for the volume of texts I send over 125 - at least £6 - so that's a tenner a month more than I spend at present.

    * 18-month lock-in to a contract? I think not.

    I think "84% of PAYG Users Don't Want An iPhone on O2 Contract" would have made a better headline...!

  20. muzchap

    @ Joe K

    Hey Joe K,

    Here's a scientifc statistic for you - Number of cocks making posts = 1 (you!)

    Since when does a sample of 750 represent 64million? Was this survey carried out in an Apple Store by an 02 Salesmen? Question is, we dont know. Statisically speaking, statistics are bollocks anyway, everything is always shaped to get the result required and people like GfK NOP are the BIGGEST CULPRITS..


    I'm a big cheese, I want to know how popular my brand is - do I speak to my internal guys, look at sales demographics, interpet regional trends - oh no, that's FAR too time consuming - I hire GfK NOP - they come in, tell me everything is wonderful, product placement is high, people are 'buzzing' yada yada and then hand me a big fat bill.

    Emperors Clothes syndrome...

    So jog off back to your mates at GfK NOP - 750 representation and that analogy of soup is laughable - if stirred correctly - is this some kind of suggestion regarding compartmentalization of ethnic minorities? Honestly, you people make me sick you bunch of leeching tossers - its morons supporting companies like this that are causing this countries demise. I guess - it only takes 750 wankers to bring the country down, according to your stats - well oversubscribed there then aren't we!!!

  21. Jonathan Tate

    I thought competition was supposed to work in our favor...

    Come on, Microsoft. Where's Aero Mobile? Windows CE 5 is proven and more than capable. Just give us a graphics accelerated thumb friendly front end and a web browser that shames Safari already.

    I swear, I miss when companies went overkill to outdo their competition. I'm just so sick of this "the least we can do" approach that most are taking now (see Nintendo and their slightly-faster-Gamecube-with-accelerometers).

    Mine's the depressed looking one saddened by the lack of willingness to compete.

  22. kerlmann

    @Muzchap - that made me laugh!!

    Muzchap, you need to CALM DOWN a bit, fella... and while you're there, how about we start dealing in some real evidence here rather than your own bizarre rhetoric....

    Fact: GfK NOP did this study off their own backs (for PR purposes you might say). The results would not have been published by the agency if they had done the research on behalf of either O2 or Apple as it wouldn't be GfK's intellectual property. And before you ask, I work in O2's marketing department, so I'm pretty confident in this statement.

    Fact: 750 is a perfectly respectable sample size, regardless of the entire population 'universe'. Your own logic on this might sound right to you, but it's cobblers. There comes a point where surveying more and more people has no discernable impact on the outcome. You'd need to understand stats to appreciate what I'm talking about here. A sample of 750 out of 64 million is infinitely more reliable than a sample of 30 out of 100.

    Fact: The soup analogy is absolutely spot on. You my friend are not.

    Fact: No corporate 'big cheese' as you put it would stay in his/her job long if (s)he just employed agencies to tell him/her what he wants to hear. The research agency wouldn't last long either, nor would they put their name to research that was fudged to tell the right story.

    Market research / polling is a totally respectable industry - it's the (ab)users of the data that give it a bad rep.

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