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The fog of (price) war

December 22nd, 2009 · Posted by Skuds in Life/Technology · No Comments · Life, Technology

I think I have found the year’s least readable newspaper story.  It is from the Guardian and all about Vodafone’s forthcoming deals on iPhones.  The first section is OK, and Vodafone will be happy that their PR line about it not being a price war but a network quality war got included.  After that it goes downhill rapidly: whether Vodafone reckon it is a price war or not, the Guardian decided to list all the different price plans and options for all four suppliers.  In prose.

This is the sort of information that is crying out for presentation in tabular form, and even then it would be hard to work out which is the best deal.  Writing it all out longhand just makes it extremely muddy.  I suspect Vodafone will be happy with that too, along with Tesco, O2 and Orange because this is classic marketing by confusion – just like with any mobile phone plans, gas and electricity tarriffs and broadband connections.  With such intangibles the only way that more than one player can stay in the market is if there is no easy way to directly compare like-for-like costs.

I’m sure Scott Adams wrote about it in one of his books.

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