One million iPhones have gone missing

Register report:

About 27 per cent of the iPhones sold in 2007 are being operated on unauthorized wireless networks, according to research released today. That works out at about one million handsets.

The unlocked phones are used largely in regions where the must-have device isn’t officially sold, according to a report issued by Bernstein Research analyst Toni Sacconaghi. He says the appetite for the modified phones has given way to a cottage industry that sells hacks or phones that come out of the box unlocked. Most phones originated in the US where, thanks to current currency exchange rates, prices are comparatively low…

Unlocked phones dramatically reduce the profitability of iPhones for Apple becaue the company gets $300 to $400 from its network ‘partners’ for each iPhone sold. So the missing phones generate 50 per cent less revenue and up to 75 per cent less profit than normal. A million missing phones therefore means $400m in lost revenue. Ouch!