For years now, Research In Motion's
On Monday, soon-to-no-longer-existAT&T Wireless
Compared to the BlackBerry, the Ogo looks to be quite a bargain. For one thing, AT&T is offering the Ogo at the bargain basement price of $99 after rebate. In contrast, the two BlackBerry models currently advertised for sale on Amazon.com
That's pretty aggressive pricing on AT&T's part. The company obviously wants this product to succeed. But you have to wonder how well AT&T thought this out. For one thing, AT&T is targeting the youth market with its Ogo. But you know youth -- they love their cell phones. Sure, they love IM'ing each other and inserting cute little emoticons into emails, too. But budget price or no, asking them to pay a monthly Ogo bill on top of their existing cell phone bill may be stretching the limits of the kids' parents' wallets just a little far.
And then there's the timing issue. AT&T is, after all, about to get itself acquired by Cingular -- not exactly the best time to introduce a brand new service of untested profitability or market acceptance. It also stands to reason that, with all the debt it took on to buy AT&T, Cingular will want to generate "efficiencies" and "synergies" (i.e., cost-cutting) once the merger is completed. If that's true, Cingular will not likely be pleased with AT&T ramping up marketing expenses to push a new product. Which is why I keep picturing Cingular's parents, SBC
This is the first anyone around here has heard of the Ogo, but we've written plenty about the BlackBerry. Read all about it, and its maker, in:
- Research In Motion Slowing
- Research In Motion Going Strong
- Research In Motion's Gamble
- The CrackBerry Strikes Again
Fool contributor Rich Smith owns no shares in any company mentioned in this article.