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New iPod games; iPhone data plan; Sprint's anti-iPhone talking points

Apple has released a new trio of iPod games aimed at helping students prep for the S.A.T.'s. Meanwhile, some hints at potential AT&T iPhone data plans have surface. And Sprint has issued to its retail employees a guide filled with "iPhone Talking Points" to help curb iPhone converts.

Kaplan SAT Prep games for iPod

Apple through its iTunes Store on Monday released a trio of educational games by Kaplan to help students prepare for the Standard Aptitude Tests (SATs). SAT Prep Math 2008, SAT Prep Reading 2008 and SAT Prep Writing 2008 are available for $4.99 each.

"Kaplan has helped more than three million students score higher on admissions exams and get into the nation's top colleges and universities," Apple wrote on the iTunes store. "Now, Apple is bringing Kaplan's exclusive test-taking strategies and tips to the iPod so you can prepare for your college admissions anytime, anywhere."

SAT Prep 2008 games are compatible only with the fifth-generation iPod with iPod Software 1.2 or later. The titles, which are only in the English language, include practice quizzes, informative audio tutorials, and performance feedback. They also allow users to listen to music tracks while prepping.

Possible iPhone data plan details

Meanwhile, the BGR is citing its usual AT&T managerial sources in saying the carrier's iPhone data plan — or "iPlan" — will cost iPhone adopters "around $34.99 to $44.99 and feature unlimited data, and either 2000 text messages, or unlimited text messages."

The blog site adds that once Sunday's iPhone shipments pass through customs, they'll be transfered to FedEx, which will then hold individual store shipments until Friday afternoon.

Sprint outlines anti-iPhone battle plan

Also preparing for Friday's "iDay" is Sprint, which last week issued a series of guides designed to help retail employees counteract customers who are looking to cancel their service contracts in favor of rival AT&T and iPhone.

The document, title "iPhone Talking Points Guide for Sales and Customer Care," comes by way of MDN, which notes that Sprint staffers "are being told to expect an initial drop of up to 6 percent of their current 'smart phone' customers" beginning with Friday's iPhone launch.

We've highlighted some of Sprint's more entertaining anti-iPhone talking points, though all are accessible via a quick PDF download [124K]:

  • "Using the iPhone on the GSM/EDGE network may be like having a really powerful computer on dial up."
  • "Whether you want music, email, web surfing or business files, our phones will download everything faster."
  • "Concerned about coverage? I think you’ll see that we are comparable or better than all other carriers. Let me show you the map on our Power Network Coverage Tool to verify your coverage area."
  • "We have many handsets that are MP3 players."
  • "You want to have music with your phone? Let me show you the new Upstage or the Fusic II."
  • "Any music phone from Sprint lets you download songs instantly – out of thin air."
  • "Are you sure 4G or 8G is enough storage for you? To give you a comparison, most iPods/MP3 players hold 40 to 60Gigs or more."
  • "The Upstage takes external mini-disks for unlimited storage."
  • "Sure we have less expensive phones than the iPhone. The MotoQ, for example, is only $79 and is an MP3 player, PDA, camera, mobile internet device, and of course, a phone."
  • "Most current Smartphones have secure email necessary for business functionality. "
  • "The iPhone uses Yahoo and Mac email which is not secure. "
  • "[iPhone] has a non-replaceable battery. "
  • "[iPhone] offers no external storage. "
  • "The iPhone is an Apple product and has some nice features. It also has a nice price. Do you really need all those features in one device?"