iPhone Roundup: KPN Calls iPhone Useless; DoCoMo Difficulties; Apple Third In Global Market


KPN Chief Calls iPhone “Useless”: Ad Scheepbouwer, chief executive of Dutch telecoms company KPN has called the iPhone



So interesting to see what reflexes Scheepbouwer has when he doesn't have it his way immediately. No insight, no thinking. He responded the same way to competition on landlines, which was long overdue. I mean, Pretium had to take him to court how many times? And they won each and every time, if I am not mistaken.
This is a business of rapid change, you know what they say: If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

Sasha Svitlica

I have personally met Ad Scheepbouwer and talked to him on few occasions and I can say with confidence that as a CEO he is pretty useless. The man is known in Netherlands as cost-cutter and nothing more. He was brought in KPN to save it from edge of disaster after dotcom bust and he does know how to lay people off, remove reception desk people and provide his workers with most distasteful coffee I ever had chance of tasting (all while pocketing few millions for himself).

I can personally attest to that man does not know megabyte from megahertz and that he dresses terribly. So how can someone without technical knowledge and with no style whatsoever dare to say anything about iPhone is beyond me.

Strictly from the business point his remarks are utterly stupid. Steve Jobs is known to hold a grudge and such negative remarks about iPhone are not helping. Another interesting fact is that KPN would not be able to sell iPhone because despite the fact that they were the only one in Netherlands who had a very good EDGE network – they have switched it off in June 2007 just when iPhone was about to get on the market.

So why did Ad Scheepbouwer made such a stupid remark? One possibility is that he has intellectual capacity of a squashed apricot (quite possible). However the most probably is that he failed to ensure that iPhone will ever come on any KPN network and since he has nothing to lose it can't hurt to throw some mud in the general direction of Coupertino. (I told you the man has no style)

As for his remark that T-Mobile sold only 70.000 phones – even intellectually challenged people like Ad know that initial numbers of subscribers are less important. The most important metrics in the mobile telecom world is churn (how many customers you lose to your competitors) and in the case of iPhone that is almost zero (once you try Mac – you never go back). And that is what hurt the badly dressed, foul mouth, farmer CEO. He knows that device he can't understand is going to take a LOT of customers away and no amount of free Nokia's, shiny LG's and interface challenged Samsung's is going to change that. And that pisses him off.

Sad individual, I'd say.


It's called double Dutch:

I don't like you because you're not my friend.
But I'd like to have you as a friend.

His name means Shipbuilder, but I'm not so sure whether this is the best way to build the KPN ship.

From a previous KPN customer.


"Dear Steve,

Your product is rubbish, but we'd like to sell it anyway.

With much love,


I suspect the answer might be no.

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