iPhonAsia comment: the Hami platform was not developed overnight suggesting months of planning and coordination between Apple and Chunghwa. The Hami platform also shows that Apple is more open to value-added services customized for carriers. Another example is the Mobispine MMS app developed for TeliaSonera. Look for customization and other carrier VAS adds when iPhone is launched in PRC through China Mobile and later China Unicom.
Taiwan market: Chunghwa Telecom reveals details of new value-added service platform to launch alongside iPhone 3G
Kaddy Chung and Ricky Morris, Taipei; Adam Hwang, DIGITIMES [Friday 21 November 2008]
Chunghwa Telecom (CHT) on November 20 unveiled Hami, a package of free value-added services specifically designed for CHT 3G subscribers using iPhone 3G handsets. Hami will be launched alongside the iPhone 3G in December, according to CHT.
The name Hami derives from the Chinese for honeydew melon, continuing the fruity theme of the iPhone, and was chosen as it sounds like “happy me” in English, according to CHT’s explanation. (This “creative” use of naming is not uncommon in the local market.) More interesting, the fact that CHT has demonstrated Hami in action this week despite announcing it had inked the deal with Apple to distribute the iPhone in Taiwan only last weekend, is evidence that the companies must have reached an agreement some time earlier.
Hami consists of 11 services including news, weather, stock market tracker etc., CHT indicated. CHT will set up an editing team responsible for producing audio/video and image content for Hami, the company noted.
Although CHT has not yet announced pricing for the iPhone 3G and related services, it is speculated the telco will subsidize the handset to cost NT$0 for an 8GB model and NT$2,990 (US$90) for a 16GB model along with a two-year contract, according to industry sources.
CHT currently offers the HTC Diamond at a subsidized cost of NT$2,990 alongside a NT$1,683 per month two-year 3G service contract. The company also announced recently a voice and 3G data tariff costing N$1,789 per month. As is typical for the Taiwan market, neither of these tariffs include any free call or data allowance, instead charges are deducted from the monthly subscription fee, before the company bills for any excess or ineligible charges (as defined by the contract).