Saul Hansell suggests that the iPhone is headed to Europe. If true, that's good news for my European friends who have been waiting to get their hands on an iPhone.
Carrier choice is unconfirmed, though reports suggest O2 in the UK, T-Mobile in Germany and Orange in France.
When I saw this quote from the Guardian article, I had to chuckle:
Throughout discussions over marketing the iPhone in Europe, Apple has played off the UK’s four main networks - O2, Orange, T-Mobile and Vodafone - against each other. All of them, at one stage, believed they had an exclusive deal for the British market.
As a result, many mobile phone company executives are unimpressed with the way the Californian computer group has conducted businesses this side of the Atlantic, although similar tactics were used in the US.
I find it hard to believe that the network execs would be surprised by a "play them against each other" tactic, especially since the same approach was used in the US — before the iPhone's launch and wild success.
Isn't this negotiation strategy 101?
And what does "believed" mean here? Are they suggesting Apple tricked them? Or some operators "believed" they had the deal locked up and didn't count on a more aggressive operator like O2 going even farther to win the deal?
I'm curious to see how the iPhone is received in Europe, where SMS and texting are more common. Will the touch screen be a liability, or will Europeans adapt to it?
Should be very interesting to watch! :-)
It's official: Apple chooses O2 for exclusive carrier in the UK:
iPhone is scheduled to go on sale on November 9 and will be sold exclusively in the UK through Apple’s retail and online stores, O2 and The Carphone Warehouse's retail and online stores.
iPhone will be available in an 8GB model for £269 (inc VAT) and will work with either a PC or Mac. Three new great value iPhone tariffs will be available from O2 starting at £35, which all include unlimited anytime, anywhere mobile data usage and, in a market first, free unlimited use of the UK’s largest single public Wi-Fi network, covering over 7,500 cafes, restaurants, airport lounges, pubs and other locations across the UK.
Nice touch to offer the WiFi coverage. Wonder how long until the software developers manage to unlock the phone for other UK carriers?
(via Daring Fireball)