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Apple inks exclusive iPhone deals in UK, France & Germany - report

post #1 of 106
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Apple Inc. has reached an agreement with three separate European wireless carriers to act as exclusive iPhone partners in the UK, France and Germany, the Financial Times is reporting.

Citing people familiar with the matter, the financial paper said T-Mobile of Germany, Orange of France and O2 in the UK, have each in recent days signed agreements that afford them exclusive rights to market the Apple handset to customers within those respective nations.

In return, the Cupertino-based electronics maker has reportedly succeeded in committing the phone operators to fork over 10 percent of the revenues made from calls and data transfers by customers using iPhones.

"The deal gives manufacturers of handsets for the first time a direct share of the revenues a mobile phone operator makes from calls and data transfers, marking a shift in the relationship between the parties," the Financial Times reported.

Thus far, mobile operators have campaigned fiercely against such an approach. However, experts told the Times that Apples success in securing the deals could spur other handset manufacturers to try to secure similar terms.

All three of the European wireless carriers are said to be hoping for a significant boost in their image from the exclusive deal with Apple, as well as a pool of attractive customers with high rates of spending on calls and data transfers.

Among the tactics used by Apple to lured the mobile operators, according to the Times, was the prospect of a financially risk-free business -- as it will not allow for common subsidies on the sale of handsets.

The operators will reportedly announce the partnerships at the IFA consumer electronics fair in Berlin, which runs August 31st through September 5th.
post #2 of 106
I wonder how much it cost Apple, Moto, Samsung, HTC to make these phones. I'd love to see direct sales at a subsidized price. If they all start asking for some of the phone/data money from these Cellular companies, I predict major problems ahead.
post #3 of 106
It's good to see these deals done. There are several questions that do come up, however.

People in Europe travel between countries a lot, just like people in the US travel between states. Will someone who is a UK iPhone owner have transparent use of their iPhone in Germany & France without huge roaming fees?

Also, has Apple ensured that US owners will have effective use of their iPhones in these countries - even if it means switching out the SIM card? I wold hope that Apple is taking a very universal approach in this area.

The European price is going to be higher because the US Sales Tax is included in the price, not added on to the purchase price at the cash register. (A far more effective approach in my opinion,) Hopefully Apple will be able to keep pricing fairly close to the US costs when taxes are considered, especially with the Dollar being as weak as it is.
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post #4 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenaustus View Post

I
People in Europe travel between countries a lot, just like people in the US travel between states.

Not really.
post #5 of 106
The family & friends I have in the UK do - makes me rather envious!

One other interesting bit from the Financial times - they are saying that ATT has a 2 years agreement with Apple, not a 5 year agreement we have been reading about. If that's the case then the T-Mobile agreement in Germany might provide T-Mobile in the US with a load of insight when the ATT agreement expires.
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post #6 of 106
O2 is Balls, Yeah?
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post #7 of 106
Yeah. Yeah?
post #8 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by waytogobuddy View Post

O2 is Balls, Yeah?

None are any better than the others in reality.

Customer Service is not a strong point really for any of them.

Quality of reception & coverage is location dependent - where I live O2 is best - have tried vodafone & orange here as well.

3G coverage is sketchy for them all but improving quickly - supposedly O2 is lagging here but not found it a particular problem personally - only use it for the internet & not video confrencing.
post #9 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenaustus View Post

People in Europe travel between countries a lot, just like people in the US travel between states. Will someone who is a UK iPhone owner have transparent use of their iPhone in Germany & France without huge roaming fees?

Also, has Apple ensured that US owners will have effective use of their iPhones in these countries - even if it means switching out the SIM card? I wold hope that Apple is taking a very universal approach in this area.

The European price is going to be higher because the US Sales Tax is included in the price, not added on to the purchase price at the cash register. (A far more effective approach in my opinion,) Hopefully Apple will be able to keep pricing fairly close to the US costs when taxes are considered, especially with the Dollar being as weak as it is.

As it is now the consumers allready pay roaming prices when they travel abroad within EU. The price off course depends on the agrrements between the (inter)national partners. But as we are speaking the European Commission is working on a proposal to secure lower rates for the consumers when they cross the borders within EU.

I don't know how big a saying Apple has on the tariffs the company will charge their customers. The competition is so fierce anyway so that the tele-company can't afford to charge to high tariffs. The prices differ, though, quite substantially from country to country in EU so in that sence it would be close to impossible to set a uniform price, especially if one take into account that the VAT differs across countries.

Regarding taking a US iPhone to use in EU by switching SIM-card I would think it should be done by a small software upgrade (but I don't have any tech bagground to back that up - it's a guess)
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post #10 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluedalmatian View Post

Not really.

What does that mean? That you don't? Don't confuse yourself with everyone else, i am sure the original poster did not say "everyone moves between countries" just that people do. And yes many people do for work and for pleasure.
post #11 of 106
Oh Canada....sigh \
post #12 of 106
Quote:
People in Europe travel between countries a lot, just like people in the US travel between states. Will someone who is a UK iPhone owner have transparent use of their iPhone in Germany & France without huge roaming fees?

i think you'll certainly have transparent use of voice and basic sms messaging . . . phones from Orange and T-Mobile in the UK normally come carrier-locked, but still happily roam the EU.


There was also a recent directive to drastically reduce the roaming charges around the EU ( which were extortionate ).


I doubt though that you'll get the more advanced voicemail features and things . . . but thats no biggie.
post #13 of 106
Canada, please.
post #14 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenaustus View Post

The European price is going to be higher because the US Sales Tax is included in the price, not added on to the purchase price at the cash register. (A far more effective approach in my opinion,)

What are you talking about? I - and every other US retail customer - paid plenty of sales tax at the register.
post #15 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgabrys View Post

What are you talking about? I - and every other US retail customer - paid plenty of sales tax at the register.

In Europe, the advertised price is always the price including the VAT.
post #16 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgabrys View Post

What are you talking about? I - and every other US retail customer - paid plenty of sales tax at the register.


The poster was referring to the fact that instead of the price being advertised without the sales tax it will be included in the advertised price.

For example in my city:
iPhone starting at $499

NOT iPhone starting at $536.42

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post #17 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenaustus View Post


The European price is going to be higher because the US Sales Tax is included in the price, not added on to the purchase price at the cash register. (A far more effective approach in my opinion,) Hopefully Apple will be able to keep pricing fairly close to the US costs when taxes are considered, especially with the Dollar being as weak as it is.

I am guessing you have just made a mistake and got this the wrong way round!!

In Europe sales tax is included with the price, you pay what is on the label. In the US however it has been my experience that sales tax is paid at the register over and above the ticket price.
post #18 of 106
Bolx... O2 suck. I was really hoping for Orange or Voda in the UK. O2, come on Apple, why? Just because they were willing to bend the most? Think of your customers once please.

An iPhone was a certain until now. If this is true, I will seriously think twice about buying one on O2. I certainly won't be rushing out to be one of the first in the UK like I was planning.
post #19 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by waytogobuddy View Post

O2 is Balls, Yeah?

I'm on O2 - I think they're pretty good - but i think it really does depend on where you are. The only problem I have with them is that MMS messaging does not seem to work at all (tried several handsets). Oh well, that ain't even a potential issue on the iPhone
post #20 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by fisha View Post

There was also a recent directive to drastically reduce the roaming charges around the EU ( which were extortionate ).

http://ec.europa.eu/information_soci...l/index_en.htm
post #21 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phizz View Post

I'm on O2 - I think they're pretty good - but i think it really does depend on where you are. The only problem I have with them is that MMS messaging does not seem to work at all (tried several handsets). Oh well, that ain't even a potential issue on the iPhone

This is just one example of O2s crap network.
post #22 of 106
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post #23 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpinDrift View Post

Bolx... O2 suck. I was really hoping for Orange or Voda in the UK. O2, come on Apple, why? Just because they were willing to bend the most? Think of your customers once please.

An iPhone was a certain until now. If this is true, I will seriously think twice about buying one on O2. I certainly won't be rushing out to be one of the first in the UK like I was planning.

In my experience (having been a customer of all 5 UK operators) 02 is indeed the worse, But Apple will probably be thankful that they have got anyone even if it is 02. They are pushing a product that the carriers do no really want to sell. As has been discussed many times now the mobile phone market has changed alot recently, carriers are now also content providers, they see their future profits coming from selling music and videos to customers directly, the iPhone does no fit into that model.

The Biggest question has to be however is that if they have signed T-Mobile in Germany why the hell have they not signed T-Mobile in the UK???
post #24 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phizz View Post

... MMS messaging does not seem to work at all (tried several handsets). Oh well, that ain't even a potential issue on the iPhone

No but it could be a huge issue to iPhone in the UK, i can see lots of people trying to return iphones when they realise they cannot send pictures to their mates phones.
post #25 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Citing people familiar with the matter, the financial paper said T-Mobile of Germany, Orange of France and O2 in the UK, have each in recent days signed agreements that afford them exclusive rights to market the Apple handset to customers within those respective nations.

Noooooooooooooo!

All three of those carriers operate in the UK yet it seems from the above we'll be stuck with the crap one - O2 - with the highest charges, worst coverage and no EDGE at all, unlike the other two.

The O2 website doesn't even work properly with Safari and their shop throws certificate errors. It's down for maintenance now apparently. Terrible.

Seems like an odd choice for Apple to take - pick the least iPhone compatible service.
post #26 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phizz View Post

I'm on O2 - I think they're pretty good - but i think it really does depend on where you are. The only problem I have with them is that MMS messaging does not seem to work at all (tried several handsets). Oh well, that ain't even a potential issue on the iPhone

MMS works fine for me & all my family on 02 & on different handsets?

Quote:
Originally Posted by aegisdesign View Post

Noooooooooooooo!

All three of those carriers operate in the UK yet it seems from the above we'll be stuck with the crap one - O2 - with the highest charges, worst coverage and no EDGE at all, unlike the other two.

The O2 website doesn't even work properly with Safari and their shop throws certificate errors. It's down for maintenance now apparently. Terrible.

Seems like an odd choice for Apple to take - pick the least iPhone compatible service.


O2 website works fine for me Safari. When I got my contract (on-line via safari) O2 were by far the cheapest for what I wanted. The deals change all the time. Vodafone had the worst customer servce & orange the worst coverage (in my area)
post #27 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by murphyweb View Post

No but it could be a huge issue to iPhone in the UK, i can see lots of people trying to return iphones when they realise they cannot send pictures to their mates phones.

Try sending the picture through email. Works fine.
post #28 of 106
Now the big question is if it is O2, how do they handle the Edge problem?

Do they:

1) Have the 3G version of the phone ready
2) Get O2 to upgrade their network to support EDGE
3) Make us use std GPRS (yuk)

if it's option 3 it might be a blessing in disguise as O2's current data plans are to expensive to bother with.
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post #29 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgabrys View Post

Try sending the picture through email. Works fine.

email is not MMS.

with MMS you take a photo pick a contact and press send, it then compresses that photo automatically to a small size and instantly it appears in ANYONES inbox.

To email a picture to someone elses phone they need a phone with a POP3 email client (which is set up and they use - and not many people at all have POP3 email working on their phones becasue texting is easier) you would want to manually compress the picture first to make it small enough because if you or your friend are not on 3G you do not want to send a huge file. you physically have to write the email and attach the photo. And if you want your friend to see the picture straight away (which is the whole point of MMS) you will probably need to call them or text them to check their inbox!!

And you say it works fine?

Trust me, it may not be an issue in the US but in the UK MMS is very popular especially amongst the young, we used to use it all the time when i was in the UK. sending pics from bars, concerts, holiday etc..
post #30 of 106
I don't care who gets it in Ireland, but it damn better be 3G or Steve can go shove it up his ***
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post #31 of 106
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post #32 of 106
>>Originally Posted by kenaustus
People in Europe travel between countries a lot, just like people in the US travel between states.<<

Quote:
Originally Posted by bluedalmatian View Post

Not really.

YES REALLY!

More europeans cross their boarders than US citizens cross thier state lines! THATS A FACT!!!
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post #33 of 106
Nice, but what will Apple do in the other country's? Belgium, The Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden ... ? Also Simlock is forbidden in Belgium, so will they pick a partner there?

Oh yeah, I live in Belgium and I travel a lot to other EU country's! The Netherlands, France are just a half our drive away.
post #34 of 106
At some point in the future, people are going to look back and shake their heads wondering were they really silly enough to buy an iPhone. The greed inherent in Apples demand for a slice of the coms traffic is really something to behold. I would like data rates to get a lot cheaper in Europe, as they are in the US and Japan, not more expensive!

The carriers who carry the iPhone are certainly not going to be keen to reduce their charges if they have to give Apple a slice of the pie.

Apples model will fall apart in time, I think. So maybe they are just grabbing as much as they can before people and the carriers wake up to having being conned. Surely they won't be able to get the carriers to agree to do the same for future simplified and cheaper models, there is just too much competition.

I really can't get my head around this. How far would Apple get if they tried to demand a share of broadband connection charges for the computers they sold - mad!
post #35 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by Macfabulous View Post

>>Originally Posted by kenaustus
People in Europe travel between countries a lot, just like people in the US travel between states.<<



YES REALLY!

More europeans cross their boarders than US citizens cross thier state lines! THATS A FACT!!!

Exactly. I've been to france, switzerland and belgium so far this year, all on seperate trips, and I'm only finished college in June. I am obviously nowhere in the league of a busy traveller either. Off to Aberdeen in Scotland in 8 hours, ie. flight takes off in 8 hours... better get some sleep. So yeah, roaming is hugely important to the European customer though I doubt that many people take it (costs) into account.
post #36 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by cnocbui View Post

I would like data rates to get a lot cheaper in Europe, as they are in the US and Japan, not more expensive!

The carriers who carry the iPhone are certainly not going to be keen to reduce their charges if they have to give Apple a slice of the pie.

On the glass half-full side:
Apple could sell the handset for 800 ($ or Euro), let providers subsidize it down to 400 or sell it to them for 400 and ask for 10% of the revenue.

My problem with handset subsidies is that if you do not get a new phone every year (or second year depending on your contract) your phone charges are used to subsidize the handsets of the people who get a new phone every year.
post #37 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluedalmatian View Post

Not really.

Huh? I have been to 3 other countries within the last two years and it will be 4 by the end of this year. I bought my current phone from a girl in the UK. She had been to at least 6 different countries within 18 months. She forgot to delete the photos from the phone before parting with it and they were date stamped. There were some 'interesting' shots she really should have deleted first - no, make that would wish she had deleted.
post #38 of 106
Every Telecom has been working with Apple in both a sales and technical standpoint to make the product work as expected by Apple on their respective Networks.
post #39 of 106
I love it. Not because I live in Europe and want an iPhone. I think APPL will be up big tomorrow. Another 5 points would be nice.
post #40 of 106
the carriers made the bargain to gain customers and after the att situation a 2nd or 3rd tier carrier can poof gain customers in other situations would cost them boatloads., i bet someone on these forums as the experience to say what is the average cost to get a NEW customer, how to steal a customer, how else with such a simple thing......use the iphone and apple"s name recognition and you give up a little on the marginal revenue but then you've got $$$$ you would not have had in the first place. also use it as a competitive assault on your big name players. SJ is brilliant. i bet the carriers want apple to go away, but not before they bring boatloads of new customers that they can entrap with long contracts. also much of the advertising cost is being made by apple and the media. it's like the carriers have won a lottery. talk about a halo affect.....for the carriers, for all that don't get the iphone at the carriers how many buy from them anyway waiting for apple upgrades to come along and then they don't have to mess with changing carriers to get the apple bling
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