back to article T-Mobile, Orange and O2 land Europe iPhone deal

T-Mobile, Orange and O2 are to sell the iPhone in Germany, France, and the UK respectively, according to the Financial Times. The paper also reports that the operators have agreed to give Apple 10 per cent of all revenue generated from iPhone users. The companies concerned have dismissed the story as speculation and rumour, …


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  1. Chris Morrison

    O2 and 3G

    I think O2 will be the ones to have the iPhone in the UK.

    Thy have by far the poorest and costliest 3G service and I would guess their 3G sales are way below the other operators.

    That gives them three options as I see it,

    1. Ditch the iPhone, lower rates for 3G (at least offer some data packages) and really focus on selling these 3G models and try and recoup some of the investment they have already made.

    2. Continue to all but ignore 3G and take the iPhone. Get shafted for 10% of all your takings by Apple and have every other phone provider demand 10% of your revenues (on their phones) too. £4 billion wasted and they wont make much on the iPhone as UK users want 3G.

    3. Try and do both, take the iPhone and give apple 10% of sales but also really focus on 3G. Folk will come to O2 because it has the iPhone and it can shaft over Apple by trying it's hardest to sell an alternative model to the iPhone with 3G when someone goes into an O2 store. Give Apple their 10% for folk on iPhone contracts whilst making a fortune off all the guys your getting on 3G contracts. ....i'd be feigning some lack of availabilty of the iPhone or cost it through the roof whilst discounting all my 3G contracts.


  2. Mr Smin

    monthly charge lower then?

    I may have this all wrong but assuming networks recoup handset subsidies through service charges, does that mean I will get more bytes to the GBP if I pay for an Apple handset since the network will not need to recoup anything?

  3. Dawid Lorenz

    I'd rather say iPathethic

    This is ridiculous. Pay the full price (aka hundreds of £££) for the phone with contract? Not sure whether it has 3G, not to mention HSDPA? Only one operator to work with? Please, Apple, give me a break. If iPhone was sold just like any other phone, that I could buy in any shop without contract, or with any operator's contract for free or less than £100 - that would be a GREAT success. But now I can only tell it's just iPathetic...

  4. Stuart Boston


    You think that someone who will pay £300+ for a 2G iPhone is going to haggle over monthly charges? I see O2 stiffing them on that too, they have to make back that 10% somewhere...

  5. Steve Evans

    Nokia bypass the operator?

    Really? How?! From what I've seen, the UK operators Orange and Vodafone pretty much dictate what they want supplied on the handsets.

    My N95 turned up all sealed in an Orange box, with all the nice VOIP stack knobbled. If I do a firmware update on it from the Nokia site, the VOIP is still knobbled.

    The only way to do it is to change the model number of my phone to that of a generic Nokia supplied N95, then do the firmware update.

    I don't believe for a minute that Orange have a load of people modifying every phone supplied to them from Nokia.

    The only pro-bypass move I've seen from Nokia is they haven't gone after all the sites telling you how to unbrand your N95 by throwing DMCA at them.

  6. Simn Lovatt


    Let's get rid of all subsidies, pay for all of our handsets and have better rates with regards to data!

    Minutes and texts, I'm happy with. *nods*

    and no, paying for your handset doesn't mean you get more value, it just means the operator can't cover the entire cost of the handset as they won't recoup the full value of the handset and make a profit.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No free iPhone

    No free phone??? cant see punters buying into that one

  8. Andy Tyzack

    iThink not

    Anyone who is going to pay a montly subscription for the next 18 months and shell out for the hardware, needs a brain scan to determine whether they have some damage up there!

    Paying even 1 pence towards a contracted handset is ludicrious, people should boycott this!

  9. Dru Richman


    I suspect, despite the carping we'll find on the Reg, that the iPhone will be as wildly successful in the EU as it is in the US. Apple is on target to sell over 800,000 iPhones this quarter in the US. And every one of them is sold with a 2 year contract, through a single service provider (AT&T), and with no subsidy.

    There will be some that will complain that the iPhone costs too much. True it costs more than some (like the Razr), but it costs less than others (like the N95 and the La Prada). And my mini costs less than your Rolls. Your point? Buy what you can afford, and what meets your needs.

  10. Alastair Dodd


    I pity the sad fools who buy this overpriced under featured fashion accessory and amazingly I pity O2 for being stupid enough to be strung up this way by Apple.

  11. Colonel Panic

    02 has no EDGE

    ...therefore there only three possibilities:

    1) the story is wrong, and another operator will get the current iPhone for UK (AFAIK, only Orange supports EDGE);

    2) 02 will get a 3G-capable iPhone;

    3) 02 is getting the current iPhone, and you can look forward to browsing at 56kbps. Which is like getting a Ferrari - and using it to plow fields.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    More like iRipOff

    So, customers will end up having to pay the full amount for the device, pay a high price each month and end up with a long contract - all of this whilst Apple eats 10% of the revenue.

    I'm sure hardcore Apple fans will love the iPhone once it arrives in Europe, but for the majority of the public it's just overpriced in every way possible.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Blah blah something Chris Morrison blah blah

    > I think O2 will be the ones to have the iPhone in the UK.

    Wow, what insight. You managed to read the first line of the article, you do understand what "respectively" means don't you?

    It's great fun reading all the haters on here. You'd almost think the iPod was only sold to "hardcore Apple fans" as they don't do everything other mp3 players do. So many of you totally miss the point. It's not meant to do everything, it's meant to appeal to people unlike you... and surprise surprise it does. Why do people get so hot under the collar that there could possibly be a demographic that doesn't include them? It's not the borg, there's no assimilation here, you don't like it, don't buy it, why whinge about it?

    > Anyone who is going to pay a montly subscription for the next 18 months

    > and shell out for the hardware, needs a brain scan to determine whether

    > they have some damage up there!

    All of a sudden the fact that plenty of new-to-market or highly featured handsets require either an upfront payment or a ludicrously high monthly payment has totally evaded your memory? It's been working for the operators for years, maybe you need the brain scan?

    Nowhere have the monthly costs been documented, nor the contract length, also as to GBP per byte, the US deal is unlimited data so perhaps the same model will be used here who knows...

  14. Andrew Murphy

    10% of revenue

    Mobile phone operators in the UK operate on pretty thin margins, so 10% of revenue will come to pretty much 100% of profit from the iPhone subscribers. O2 would have to be crazy to agree to that.

    Plus, I'm not sure why apple is insisting on removing network subsidies. an iPhone costs $499 in america (£260 ish). Given american companies usual policy of robbing UK customers blind, that should translate to about £350 over here. An N95 costs £130 on their most popular tarriff, that's a BIG difference.

    It'll sell, but I think it'll sell to a few rich kids and city bankers out to impress their clients. O2 won't make any money out of them, but there'll be so few that it will be worth the extra footfall into their shops from people interested in an iPhone. When they hear the price the salesman can then flog them an N95.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Apple Can Kiss Me Cork!!!

    If Apple or a UK operator think a customer will be stupid enough to pay hundreds of pounds for the phone, then enter a 18 month contract and pay what ever headed price the operator wants to charge for their tariff than apple needs to get a grip with reality and stop being so god dam GREEDY...

    ... Does APPLE want a reputation of being as bad as MICROSOFT? I have the majority of Apple products and have always been happier than a pig in shit, but i certainly wont be paying for the phone and being in a contract with a mobile operator. Now if I could buy the phone unlocked and use it as i see fit maybe!

    Get a grip apple and sort your heads out before your rep goes from hero to zero overnight...

  16. Steve Evans

    @Dru Richman

    Cost less than some?

    Where does an iPhone cost less than anything that doesn't have wheels and an internal combustion engine?!

    The N95 is free on most contracts, even if you're only paying £25-£30 a month you can get it free with only the mildest of bartering.

    But yes, you're right, they'll sell a shed load of the overpriced, underspecced things, just cos they look swish, and the fanboyz and gurlz would buy a pile of doggy doo doo if it had this much hype and a glowing apple logo on it!

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    iREALLY dont want one

    If, for some misguided reason, people wish to have an out of date technology, just to gain another MP3 player, well, so be it, let them spend their hard earned brass.

    Let us remember, for example, Belgium. Subsidies of handsets are illegal, meaning you get what you pay for! Many people in the UK seem to believe a phone, such as the N95, actually is free, they seem to think that Nokia is a Charity along with all the other manufacturers. The mobile networks are in business to make a profit, they subsidise the phones in return for a contract with charges for packages including calls and text. I would much prefer to see fair rates and no subsidy, as in Belgium and other countries.

    I do have a Nokia N95, the battery life is poor to say the least, with VOIP enabled, it lasts a few paltry hours. I am happy to have a high quality Sony MP3 player as a separate item.

  18. Chad H.

    ithoughtweagreedtoendtherumourstories (tm)

    I'd like to again stress, the companies denied it.

    Is the FT short on stories atm?

  19. Roy Nana

    iT's the iPod killer, not just a phone...

    Think of it... you're buying a museum piece. You're getting a Nano with a revolutionary "pinch" UI, big screen and flippy iTunes interface that makes the hard drive iPods look 5 years out of date. It's expensive, but everything will be made this way one day, you have to admire what they've made. Anyone wanting more features will want the Nokia N95 instead.

    O2 have always been half-hearted with 3G (flirting with i-mode...) but then so has the general UK consumer. iPhone's ok if you're going to Google Maps and heavy downloading before you step out the door. Waving one about in public is just asking for trouble.

    Anyway, if it is wildly successful then O2 might get off it's arse over data plans and 3G/HSDPA finally for the next iPhone.

  20. Philip Machanick

    speculation on unnanouced prices

    In the US, much the same debate followed the "no subsidised handsets" announcement -- the overall cost over 2 years turned out to be less than competing options with comparable features, when someone bothered to check. "Free" means you pay for it somewhere else. So I would wait for the prices to be announced before jumping to any conclusions.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    The carrier for the iPhone was agreed months ago, Telefonica won the deal, they own O2 in the UK. Its a fashion phone due to its legacy data connectivity, it will sell well, basicly because 90% of the mobile purchasing marketplace is motivated by 'style'

  22. Kevin Larson


    Here in Germany, when signing up for a service plan with a mobile phone, the phone is subsidize which could mean costs for the operator from 200 to 500 Euros. This of course is covered under the plan. Since the iPhone will not be subsidize the "savings" that the operator has should easily cover that 10%. I personally I buy my mobile unit direct from the manufacturer (Nokia) to avoid branding and specialize firmware. Last year the Nokia Communicator 9500 had cost me 550 Euros and now I am looking at the E90 which is at the moment going for 700 to 800 Euros. Whats really interesting about the iPhone launch in the USA was that at&t created an attractive and when compared to offers here in Germany an affordable service plan for the iPhone. I am going to wait and see. The iPhone has a feature set that meets almost all of my needs and if T-Mobile introduces an affordable voice and 24/7 data plan, I'll probably get one.


  23. Scott Mckenzie

    And still it goes on...

    ...people still raving, ranting or whatever about the iPhone.

    It's quite simple, if you don't like it, don't buy it, if you don't want one, don't buy one, if you can't afford it, tough.

    But all this constant slating, baiting and whatever, does anyone really care... the phone will sell in huge numbers at whatever cost because people want them, so little johnny on his private crusade to change the business plan of Apple and whomever the local carrier is, isn't really going to phase anyone.

    I'm narked as i want one, can afford one but am with Orange.... and i'm not moving to France!!!

  24. Richard Hodgson

    Wot No 3G?

    If they manage to upgrade the handset hardware to use 3G, this would be a must buy for me.

    Otherwise, my ageing T-Mobile MDA Vario does everything else I want, for a lot less.

  25. Olaf Storaasli

    And now this fly in the ointment?

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