Apple struggling to reach iPhone deal with European carriers

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Apple, which is due to launch iPhone in the United States later this month, is facing opposition for potential European wireless carriers who are unwilling to concede to the company's stringent demands, according to a recent advisory from Current Analysis.



The report, issued Monday, notes that wireless provider Orange should be a shoo-in for the iPhone contract in Europe as it's the only operator with significant EDGE coverage in the region. "But early indications are that Apple may be forced to go retail-only in Europe," wrote analyst Avi Greengart.



Several European operators reportedly advised Greengart that they had spoken to Apple and found the company “unbelievably arrogant,” making demands that “simply cannot be justified, no matter how hot the product is.”



"Several were adamant that they will never offer the iPhone," Greengart wrote. Therefore, he suggested in his report that "early indications are that Apple may be forced to go retail-only in Europe."



As far as U.S. iPhone distribution goes, the Current analyst noted that for reasons he "cannot begin to fathom," Nokia and Sony Ericsson have left the high end consumer segment completely open for Apple.



"Other than productivity-oriented devices, there is basically nothing to buy above $199 at carrier retailers, where the vast majority of phones are sold," he wrote. "A receptive home market lets Apple figure out what works, and what doesn’t, before moving abroad."



Greengart attests that iPhone will need that incubation period because once it arrives in Europe and Asia, it will encounter serious, entrenched competition. Sony Ericsson’s W950, he noted, has offered European consumers a touchscreen smartphone with 4GB flash memory and music and Web capabilities – plus UMTS – for nearly two years.



Regardless of how insanely cool the iPhone’s user interface is, the analyst also said that some consumers will always gravitate towards phones with real buttons on them. But at the same time, he believes iPhone should still sell millions of units in the first six to nine months.



"I would consider anything above 1 million units of a $500 handset a smash hit, and it looks like Apple will sell considerably more -- possibly many times that," the analyst wrote.



Those likely to adopt an iPhone when it goes on sale in the U.S. on June 29th generally fall within three separate groups, according to Greengart. There's the "The Apple Faithful," "People who want the latest 'it' thing," and "some mainstream consumers."



"There may be disagreement on the size of the first two groups, but not whether they’ll queue up to buy. If Apple sells just to them, it will have a solid hit on its hand," he wrote. "The third group, mainstream consumers, is quite controversial. This is where having actually used an iPhone -- if only for a short while -- colors my analysis."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 128
    (sigh) At least there's talks happening. What about Canada?!
  • Reply 2 of 128
    irelandireland Posts: 17,749member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vistasucks.wordpress.com View Post


    (sigh) At least there's talks happening. What about Canada?!



    There's talk happening in Canada too. I hope they have to sell it unlocked with no SIM, that would be a win for the consumer here.
  • Reply 3 of 128
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vistasucks.wordpress.com View Post


    (sigh) At least there's talks happening. What about Canada?!



    Ever heard of the phrase "no news is good news" ?
  • Reply 4 of 128
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,408member
    This is that news.
  • Reply 5 of 128
    vinney57vinney57 Posts: 1,162member
    Eventually someone will have to blink and do Apple's bidding. The initial US sales figures will, I suspect, be phenomenal and nobody wants to give that sort of business to a competitor.
  • Reply 6 of 128
    does retail only mean apple becoming a virtual operator or simply selling iphones on no network for you to put your own sim in?



    orange are a lousy operator by all accounts so as long as its not exclusively apples and oranges it should be ok.



    if it was Voda or T Mobile I'd be happy. Used to support O2 util in typical british business man short signted ness they sold out. - and yes i am british, and i notice how the best run biritsh companies have foreign ceo's
  • Reply 7 of 128
    They are not having a problem giving it to someone else right now.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vinney57 View Post


    Eventually someone will have to blink and do Apple's bidding. The initial US sales figures will, I suspect, be phenomenal and nobody wants to give that sort of business to a competitor.



  • Reply 8 of 128
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 20,185member
    I don't understand why, in the first place, Apple needs a telecom service partner in Europe. It's not like the US, where the service providers are gatekeepers between the handset provider and the customer. I always figured that, in Europe, someone who is interested could just buy one retail (and unlocked), and take it to any provider to get a service (unless there is a discount, which Apple does not seem to want to agree to).



    I think not having a partner may become more of an issue a couple of years down the road. However, if and when its numbers grow, the service providers will find it in their interest to deal with Apple.



    All that said, I truly wish Apple would tone down its arrogance. That is the kind of thing that could truly destroy the company in the long run, regardless of how cool it is (or thinks it is). This attitude -- often attributed to US companies -- simply does not fly in Europe and Asia. (If they can't tone it down, they shouldn't even bother trying to enter those markets).
  • Reply 9 of 128
    gqbgqb Posts: 1,934member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post


    I don't understand why, in the first place, Apple needs a telecom service partner in Europe.



    The 'visual voice mail' feature is something that has to be implemented on the carrier side.

    Since that's possibly the single most 'revolutionary' feature of the phone, I doubt that Apple will partner with any carrier that won't do the work necessary to implement that feature.
  • Reply 10 of 128
    vinney57vinney57 Posts: 1,162member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post




    All that said, I truly wish Apple would tone down its arrogance. That is the kind of thing that could truly destroy the company in the long run, regardless of how cool it is (or thinks it is). This attitude -- often attributed to US companies -- simply does not fly in Europe and Asia. (If they can't tone it down, they shouldn't even bother trying to enter those markets).



    This is portentous rubbish.
  • Reply 11 of 128
    That's your opinion.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vinney57 View Post


    This is portentous rubbish.



    "Operators consistently told us, not for attribution, of course, that they had spoken to Apple and found the company 'unbelievably arrogant', making demands that 'simply cannot be justified no matter how hot the product is',"
  • Reply 12 of 128
    physguyphysguy Posts: 919member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by BlackSummerNight View Post


    That's your opinion.



    "Operators consistently told us, not for attribution, of course, that they had spoken to Apple and found the company 'unbelievably arrogant', making demands that 'simply cannot be justified no matter how hot the product is',"



    And if I were having trouble getting what I wanted from Apple I might just 'anonymously release' this information. FUD abounds everywhere.
  • Reply 13 of 128
    bigmigbigmig Posts: 77member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post


    All that said, I truly wish Apple would tone down its arrogance.



    If we were talking about actual end users, then I would agree. But we're talking about telecom companies, which - if they're anything like the companies in the US (Verizon, AT&T, Sprint) - are unbelievably arrogant and treat their customers like complete sh*t...basically give them garbage service and tell them they should feel lucky to even have that.



    However arrogant Apple may be in its treatment of the telecoms, it can't possibly be as arrogant as they actually deserve.
  • Reply 14 of 128
    Yes it is. How do you know who's trying to screw who.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by physguy View Post


    And if I were having trouble getting what I wanted from Apple I might just 'anonymously release' this information. FUD abounds everywhere.



  • Reply 15 of 128
    tenobelltenobell Posts: 7,014member
    It depends on who is trying to help the consumer



    Are the telco companies demanding to lock down features that the consumer will have to pay more money for?



    Or is Apple demanding a percentage of subscription fees?



    It depends on what they are negotiating.
  • Reply 16 of 128
    zenatekzenatek Posts: 203member
    The biggest problem with Canada is the cost of Data transfer. One of the main features of the phone will be useless unless we get some reasonable data transfer rates here.
  • Reply 17 of 128
    the cool gutthe cool gut Posts: 1,714member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bigmig View Post


    If we were talking about actual end users, then I would agree. But we're talking about telecom companies, which - if they're anything like the companies in the US (Verizon, AT&T, Sprint) - are unbelievably arrogant and treat their customers like complete sh*t...basically give them garbage service and tell them they should feel lucky to even have that.



    However arrogant Apple may be in its treatment of the telecoms, it can't possibly be as arrogant as they actually deserve.



    ++



    I haven't upgraded my Blackberry in 4 fucking years, because the new ones really don't offer anything extra. Cell phone development is fucking rediculous, and it's all because the Carriers tell the handset makers what to do. The iPhone has changed the game, and now handset makers are going to need more leeway to compete, so of course the carriers are going to have a hissy fit.
  • Reply 18 of 128
    tomikontomikon Posts: 3member
    Apple doesn't understand that Europe & America are two diffirent merkets.



    For example, here in Belgium operators can't sell a phone and a SIM (postpaid/prepaid) together. So you have to buy a phone as "bulk" and buy prepaidcards or subscribe to a postpaid contract.

    The only thing they can do is put there name on the box of new phones. Like Mobistar (Orange Belgium) has phones boxed with "MobistarCollection" on it, The phone has settings for the operator preloaded but there's no SIM in the box.



    So what will Apple do in Belgium?
  • Reply 19 of 128
    May I ask what features Carriers are blocking. I'm a Cingular customer, and I've never had any problems. I have heard that tmobile cripples bluetooth and wifi.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by the cool gut View Post


    ++



    I haven't upgraded my Blackberry in 4 fucking years, because the new ones really don't offer anything extra. Cell phone development is fucking rediculous, and it's all because the Carriers tell the handset makers what to do. The iPhone has changed the game, and now handset makers are going to need more leeway to compete, so of course the carriers are going to have a hissy fit.



  • Reply 20 of 128
    louzerlouzer Posts: 1,054member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by the cool gut View Post


    ++



    I haven't upgraded my Blackberry in 4 fucking years, because the new ones really don't offer anything extra. Cell phone development is fucking rediculous, and it's all because the Carriers tell the handset makers what to do. The iPhone has changed the game, and now handset makers are going to need more leeway to compete, so of course the carriers are going to have a hissy fit.



    The iPhone hasn't changed anything, except now its not the carriers holding back your abilities, it'll be apple. They're the ones trying to tell the carriers what to do, what to allow and not allow.
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