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Apple's SIM Card Plan Ditched?

micro-sim-cardPreviously, it had been rumored that Apple was trying to design its own SIM card for iPhone users, to give them a chance to use the device and be able to bypass carrier contracts at the same time.  But now, some carriers are saying they would forgo subsidizing the costs of the phone if Apple were to follow up on those plans.

According to The Sunday Telegraph, Apple has decided to scrap the plan after carriers threatened to continue subsidizing the costs of phone.  Currently, mobile operators pay Apple the full cost of the phone, which they then pass on to the consumer for free, provided they sign up for 24-month contracts.

Apple had been planning on excluding carriers, like Vodafone and O2, from the sales process, in an attempt to try and build a better relationship with customers.  Apple had been trying to create an integrated SIM card which would allow customers to buy the phone outright.

Said a senior source at a mobile operator: “Apple has long been trying to build closer and closer relationships and cut out the operators.  But this time they have been sent back to the drawing board with their tails between their legs.”  Ouch.

In sort of a “consolation prize” though, Apple is still moving forward with the new SIM card in iPads.  The report is that Apple is planning to bring out the new integrated-SIM versions of the iPad prior to Christmas or early on in the new year.  The reason Apple is able to move forward with the iPad instead of the iPhone on this is because the iPad isn’t subsidized by mobile carriers.

The Sunday Telegraph continued saying that a new version of the iPad would be released within a few weeks and would be comparable the current model.  One change though is that the “lock” button on the right-hand side would be switched to a “mute” button such as the one on the iPhone. 

Follow this article’s author, Matthew Tilmann on Twitter

(Image courtesy of iphonetopic.com)

 

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Intuit and Mophie Team Up For Complete Credit Card Solution

Intuit Complete Credit Card Solution
(Image courtesy of Wired)

If you’ve been looking for a better way to accept credit cards with your iPhone, Intuit and Mophie have teamed up and may just have the perfect solution for you — assuming you’re still rockin’ an older iPhone 3G or 3GS, that is (for now).

Wired is reporting that financial software giant Intuit has teamed with iPhone accessory maker Mophie to create the Complete Credit Card Solution, a 0 hardware solution that fits onto your handset and works with Intuit’s GoPayment app (available from the App Store, which integrates tightly with Quickbooks) to accept credit card payments. The mobile payment system is expected to go on sale at Apple stores before the end of this month.

The beauty of Intuit and Mophie’s solution is that it includes everything you need: The hardware attachment to actually swipe cards, the iOS payment app and of course, the merchant account operated by Intuit, which will run you .95 per month regardless of how much (or how little) you use it on top of transaction fees that range from 1.7 to 3.7 percent plus 30 to 40 cents per transaction. Wired notes that the fees are comparable to a regular merchant account which doesn’t allow mobile payments.

Unfortunately, the hardware doesn’t yet work with the newest iPhone 4, since Mophie didn’t get any advance notice about the new handset’s radical redesign prior to it being announced in June. But the company is working on it, and for now will offer the hardware for the iPhone 3G and 3GS.

“Something that’s important to Apple, because this is going to be sold in their stores, is they wanted it to be incredibly easy to communicate what it’s going to cost, and how quickly you’ll be up and running — and that you’re up and running before you leave the store,” explained Mophie’s vice president of marketing, Ross Howe.

On the good news front, the mobile payment solution does not require a long-term contract. “Most merchant service providers require hefty contracts and incredible termination fees,” Howe said, “and the fact that you can turn this on if you’re in a farmers’ market for the sunny summer and then just call and cancel your account until next sunny summer, for really reasonable rates — and there’s something to be said for that.”

With the delay of Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey’s competing Square payment system, Intuit and Mophie’s new Complete Credit Card Solution looks like the perfect solution for small business owners on the go.

Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter

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