On Friday, wireless carrier T-Mobile confirmed last month's rumors that the operator was scouring Europe for contract-free Apple iPhones to offer as incentives for customers to stay with them. In an interview with the Financial Times, Richard Moat, UK managing director of T-Mobile stated that T-Mobile had supplied iPhones "to a few hundred" high-value contract customers.
Wireless carrier O2 may be set to lose its exclusive deal as the iPhone's mobile network on October 9th. The Mobile Entertainment web site has claimed to have seen documentation confirming that O2 will lose its exclusive license on this date. Per the article, O2 will retain the rights to sell the device until 2012; but its period as the exclusive seller is only for two years.
UK iPhone carrier O2 has signed a deal with BT Openzone, adding another 3,000 Wi-Fi hotspots that O2 iPhone users can now access in hotels, airports and coffee shops, including Starbucks. This is in addition to the 5,000 owned and operated by The Cloud that iPhone owners can also access. [via Macworld]
Despite what would seem to be far shorter lines, O2 UK has revealed that as of noon local time they have already sold more iPhone 3G S handsets than they did for the entire day of the iPhone 3G launch last year. By the end of the day, they estimate sales to be 50% more than last year. Meanwhile, AT&T says they have pre-sold "hundreds of thousands" of the devices prior to today, leading AppleInsider to speculate that they could easily sell more than a million of them in just the first three days.
Macworld recently surveyed iPhone owners O2 for their carrier (1,400 at the time it was written), and found that there is strong resentment toward O2 for their subsidized pricing policies. Only 14% of respondents will be making the upgrade, and 4.1% will be within their contracts and have to pay the higher price. 47.7%, nearly half, of voters said they would be waiting out their 3G contracts to get the 3G S. In fact, 21% were so outraged that they say they won't buy the new iPhone until it's on a new carrier.
In retaliation of AT&T and O2's unwillingness to subsidize the iPhone 3G S for current 3G owners, users on Twitter are forming "twittitions", a new virtual petition that users can "sign" by posting a tweet. At the time this was written, the Twitition for O2, which was created first, was at 2621 signatures, and the AT&T Twitition at 1858 signatures.
As we reported earlier this month, O2 is set to begin offering the iPhone 3G for free alongside a reduced £35 tariff. Currently O2 offers the 8GB iPhone for free with their £44.05 and £73.41 tariffs. The offer is likely being introduced as a way to move iPhone 3G stock in anticipation of a new phone.
According to Mobile Today, O2 will be dropping the price of the iPhone 3G some time this May in preparation for a new iPhone launch from Apple either some time this June or July. The price drop will make the 8GB model free on the £35 and £45/month contracts where it currently costs between £59 and £159.
UK iPhone carrier O2 has finally announced their pay-as-you-go contract prices for the iPhone 3G. Starting September 16, the device will be available without a contract from O2, Apple, and Carphone Warehouse. The unsubsidized price of the device will be £349.99 (US$630) for the 8GB model and £399.99 for the 16GB. Interestingly, this price includes Wi-Fi and data network access for 12 months after activation, and only afterward will users need to sign up for a £10 monthly subscription. However, Apple warns that Visual Voicemail and call merging will not be available on contract-free versions. Thanks for the tip, Ash!
O2 announced during their Q2 financial results that they have gained over 137,000 new monthly-paying customers to their user base thanks to the iPhone. Interestingly these users arrived before the iPhone 3G launch. Prior to the iPhone 3G launch, O2 cut the prices for their 8GB and 16GB iPhones to clear out inventory in anticipation of iPhone 3G shipments, and their claims show that it was successful.