"When Apple launched the iPhone, it decided to go it alone, believing that punters would pay top dollar for the Apple product. It is one of the few mistakes Steve Jobs made"
Curious, because what I remember is long lines round the block at launch followed by 6 months of supply issues.
Apple releasing the phone like that was about setting the table with the networks, showing them how fucking lucky they were that Apple was allowing them to sell their überfone.
To Recap: No Network Subsidy, but Apple takes a cut from the Network subscription plan. Apple handles user details and phone registration. Apple handles all extra revenue services such as music & ringtones, Apple defines design and operation of device. Apple maintains and updates phone firmware, Network must include unlimited data with all iPhone plans. Network must heavily advertise device. Network must provide support for users of device. Network must never make direct eye contact with Apple.
This is also why it took so long for MMS, it was never technically hard to implement, it was simply another kick in the balls for the networks so they knew their place in the relationship.
It's coming up for 3 years since Apple went it alone and now they still have all of the above but now the network buys the phone up front, and all it cost Apple was adding MMS lol.
Oh, the tablet, it's going to be initially strong in the education market then branch out from there as specialist apps become available. You shouldn't read anything into any subsidies other than as an indication of Apple's stronger negotiating position.