3G doesn't matter on an internet phone? Are you kidding?
"Consumers really don't care if the phone doesn't have 3G"
They care VERY MUCH if they spend £300+ on a phone for its web surfing abilities and then find it's much slower than other phones at surfing the web.
"The fact that this phone doesn't support 3G is of supreme irrelevance to most people"
What, exactly, do you want a huge-screened iPhone for if not to access the internet? Just to admire the animated transitions? Do you really need an enormous two-handed phone for listening to music? Do you really want to text on a phone with no keypad at all?
The main attraction of the iPhone is the internet, and wifi just doesn't cut it any more, 3G is far far more ubiquitous.
"If anyone thinks this phone won't be a success because of a lack of 3G support, they are being insanely naive to the consumer market's attitude on tech and functionality,"
I think you're the one being naive if you think a £300 phone will take a significant chunk of the market. Do you know what the average price paid per phone sale is? £60.
Yes, the Apple name is worth something, but brand alone will not carry a product that costs 400% more than the average. That's the kind of hubris that's put Sony on the rocks with the Playstation 3.
Those who say "think what Apple did to digital music" ought to ponder the following fact: Even if literally everyone who currently owns an ipod bought an iphone, that would STILL give the iPhone a pathetic market share as music players are vastly outnumbered by mobile phone sales. Mobile phones sell over a billion a year, whereas the iPod has only sold 100 million over the past five years.
Music players are a luxury item bought by a relatively small number of people, while mobiles are an essential tool bought by the majority of the earth's population. Apple is not in the business of making essential tools, they're just there to pander to a small number of rich and fashion-conscious people in the developed world.