So it seems like Apple won’t change the basic value chain for mobile phones after all. By moving back to a straight, up-front subsidy from the carriers, rather than a services revenue sharing arrangement, Apple is saying the iPhone is going to play by the same rules as everybody else. What this also indicates is that, in case there was any doubt, the iPhone:

– Is definitely in a platform war
– Will be a hub for Apple services and software — at the expense of carrier services.

Nokia’s already strongly headed in both those directions. Will RIM and Microsoft go beyond platforms? Google will, assuming it ever actually gets into this market…