While most info is scarce, we’ve managed to pick up some new unconfirmed details about the long awaited iPhone release in Israel. As reported, Apple has recently approached the Antitrust Authority in order to officially approve all of its activities with the local carriers in the country, and to make sure there are no legal issues left ahead of the coming launch, which initially supposed to take place back in August. Now we’ve been told, that the official debut will happen somewhere between the 25th to the 27th of November, in all large Israeli operators, contingent upon final approvals from the Ministry Of Communication. Additionally, we’ve just learned that the iPhone itself will be offered in the following forms:

iPhone 3GS 16GB – is priced around 4000 NIS, pay to go (prepaid), while contract packages will run you only 999NIS.

iPhone 3GS 32GB – is priced around 5000NIS, pay to go (prepaid), while contracted users will pay only 1499NIS.

iPhone 3G – we were told there’s a small amount of 3G devices, that may (or may not) go out for 599NIS .

In any case, all packages include a monthly fee, ranged between 200 – 300 NIS, and being delivered with A) 150 SMS text messages B) 200 minutes talk and C) 100MB of data.

From what we know, and specifically for this task, all carriers already recruited special salespersons, who suppose to take a two weeks course and learn about the iPhone machines during this period of time. The orders these people were given are very clear: “Sell only iPhones or don’t sell anything”.  Stay tuned for more info to come.

“Pay to go” = without a contract.

Update1: Mind you this info is relevant for today, as dates and details may vary.

Update2: Data packages will apparently cost 69NIS for 1GB, both in Cellcom and Orange, if you’re buying iPhone or Android devices.

Update3: As mentioned, 1GB of data will cost 69NIS, but those who exceed the limit will pay 10NIS for every additional 1MB they use.

Update4: Besides the 1 year warranty, it seems the carriers will not include any repairing insurance when buying an iPhone in Israel. That means you won’t be able to buy insurance for your iPhone in order to subsidize repairing beyond the first year.

Update5: After endless rumors floating around, the Cupertino team has officially announced that all three carriers can start selling the iPhone in Israel, starting from December 10. That of course happened after Apple has managed to clear up a few regulatory hurdles and received the final approval needed.

Update6: Read more updates about release day, packages and prices in here.apple-iphone3gs

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Nir Shein

Internet freak and technology geek; Aspiring screenwriter, devoted tech blogger & Technologer chief editor . Early adopter with a keen interest in gadgets, technology, internet and mobile.


  1. Even if this is unofficial, it’s nice to know that progress is being made. I’ve been pushing off getting a making a decision about which phone to get until this information was announced. I hope that they are well stocked and don’t run out before Hanukkah 🙂

  2. If they will cost 4000NIS with commitment and plans in addition, which is about $1000 – why shouldn’t people still go and buy them abroad simfree, commitment free and cheaper??

  3. Just for comparison iPhone in the US costs (1$=3.75NIS below):
    3G: 99$ -> 371NIS
    3GS 16G: 199$ -> 746NIS
    3GS 32G: 299$ -> 1121NIS

    And the least expensive AT&T plan for the iPhone is:
    Voice: 450min 39.99$ -> 150NIS
    Data: Unlimited 30$ -> 112NIS
    Text: 200messages 5$ (optional) -> 19NIS
    Total: 262NIS or 281NIS (with text)

    The prices for the device in Israel are higher than the US (60% 3G, 30% 3GS 16G, 33% 3GS 32G). Apart from the 3G, I would say these prices are reasonable especially given that in the US prices are before tax. The 3G is sole for much more than its price in the US. It looks like they don’t want people to buy it.

    The plan is similar in price to the US, BUT you get only 1GB of data and 200min. For the iPhone 5GB of data is a minimum. Also many use more than 200min of voice per month.

    This is not yet official, I would still wait for an official statement from the carriers.

  4. @Yossi

    Nice detailed comment. Prices are reasonable if you take into consideration a 35% mobile phones tax in Israel on top of US prices.

  5. Tax for mobile phones in Israel is 16% (32% INCLUDING VAT). The prices reported here for stand-alone units without commitment, if true, are outrageous. Assuming a SIM free unit, let’s compare with Hong Kong, where iPhone 3G S is always sold SIM free without commitment: 16GB for 2618 NIS and 32GB for 3055 NIS!

    See my point? 60% more expensive in Israel than in Hong Kong, and that difference is WAY more than what the taxes account for. Plus, I doubt that these prices are for a SIM free unit — they are probably still carrier locked to whoever you buy them from.

    Bottom line? If you can manage it, sounds like importing from other countries is still the way to go…

  6. @Eldad

    Thanks for the correction. If you take a $699 stand-alone iPhone price and add 32% taxes you can easily get to 3500NIS, before anyone takes his share. I’m sure these prices aren’t for simfree devices, so everyone should be doing the math for themselves.

  7. the 3 carriers are ripping us off.
    how come we have to pay 40% more on prices of iphone with no commitment??
    only suckers will buy it here. the rest will buy abroad sim free.
    how stupid do they think we are?
    i say: don’t buy an iphone here. buy it abroad.
    cellcom,orange,pelephone? u suck.

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