Apple’s iPhone will be available to Orange customers in the UK later this year, ending rival O2’s exclusive deal over the must-have handset, the mobile operator said.
The announcement by Orange ends months of speculation that it was trying to muscle in on O2’s deal with Apple, which gave it exclusive UK rights to the iPhone in 2007. The 3G and 3GS versions will be available to Orange UK customers “later this year”, but no further details of dates, handset costs or tariffs are available yet, the firm said.
Operator exclusivity over Apple’s iPhone for the past 2 years has probably been good for boosting retention and aquisition in customers who love Apple or were already using smartphones.
This makes sense for the possible soon to be bigger operator. Customers on Orange are already offered a choice of Android, Symbian and Blackberry smartphones. Adding Apple to the range improves the chances of them staying with Orange and increasing ARPU and data usage.
What do you think? A smart move ??
*\* 4 November - updated ** Orange is sending out emails to everyone who signed up to their Apple database. Orange claimed over 200,000 people signed up
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