French appeals court upholds ruling against iPhone exclusivity

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
A French appeals court has thrown out France Telecom's attempt to restore its exclusive rights to the iPhone, upholding a December ruling handed down by competition regulators.



France Telecom's wireless carrier Orange signed a five-year deal with Apple to carry the iPhone 3G, leading rival mobile phone service provider Bouygues Telecom to file a complaint last September joined by its fellow competitors.



On Dec. 17 the Competition Council sided with Bouygues, saying the deal risked "serious and immediate damage" to competition because of its "excessive" length and that all future iPhone agreements would be capped at a maximum of 3 months. Both Apple and Orange appealed.



However, the appeals court has denied the two partners in today's ruling, available in this French-language PDF. France Telecom told Reuters it plans to file another appeal with the Cour de Cassation, the highest court in France.



Bouygues Telecom, which is the No. 3 mobile operator in the European country, welcomed the ruling and indicated company officials are already engaged in negotiations with Apple to sell iPhones linked to its own network.



"With this decision, Bouygues Telecome will soon offer the iPhone as soon as the conditions for distribution (are) finalized with Apple," the company said in a press release translated from its original French. "This decision is a significant step forward for consumers who can now choose freely."



France's No. 2 operator, Vivendi-owned SFR, and Britain's Vodafone also embraced the news.



Analysts cited in the Reuters report estimate losses of 200 million euros (or $260.7 million) in sales for France Telecom as a result of the decision.



Orange claims it sold more than 600,000 iPhones in France since they went on sale in November 2007.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 47
    irelandireland Posts: 17,671member
    I'm glad.
  • Reply 2 of 47
    Too bad this has not happened in the United States.



    Would love other carriers to sell the iPhone.
  • Reply 3 of 47
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Too bad the lawmakers in the USA don't pass something similar to free the iPhone from AT&T but alas they're too busy spending our tax monies and avoiding paying their own.
  • Reply 4 of 47
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    Too bad the lawmakers in the USA don't pass something similar to free the iPhone from AT&T



    Honestly it doesn't mean much to me since the iPhone won't be fully functional on any other carrier besides AT&T in the US.
  • Reply 5 of 47
    teckstudteckstud Posts: 6,476member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by yensid98 View Post


    Honestly it doesn't mean much to me since the iPhone won't be fully functional on any other carrier besides AT&T in the US.



    Good for you- but for many others it would mean an iPhone finally without dropped or staticky calls.
  • Reply 6 of 47
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by yensid98 View Post


    Honestly it doesn't mean much to me since the iPhone won't be fully functional on any other carrier besides AT&T in the US.



    T-Mobile is GSM.
  • Reply 7 of 47
    So, Apple can't choose who it can sell it's products to now?

    I hope they at least get to demand things like visual voicemail to be implemented first... that's a part of the iPhone experience.

    From my past experience, Bouygues sucks big time.
  • Reply 8 of 47
    I think this is great news.



    Naturally Orange will earn less revenue if rival carriers are allowed to sell the iPhone, so i wonder now that the deal isn't Exclusive, will Orange need to revisit the agreement in terms of payments to Apple.
  • Reply 9 of 47
    Reading over the decision...

    It looks like Bouygues saw that Orange (FT) was selling TONS of phones and losing subscribers, so they asked Apple to let them sell iPhones. Apple has (or had now) contracts for 5 years with Orange, so they said no.



    Bouygues filed suit.



    In the judgment, they talk about the ipod and how much of the market it has, and that music was wrapped in Apple's DRM - not that that should have anything to do with the iPhone being sold by Orange exclusively... then is says that that doesn't matter much anymore (not that it should have anyways) since Itunes is going non-DRM.



    Then, it says that Orange made 140 million euros but only invested 16.5 million. So, obviously, that's "largely disproportionate"! Shame on them for making a great investment when no one else would!!



    The judgment then states that there was not a risk that Orange would lose money because Apple is well known in the tech world and the iPhone was a hit in America.



    Orange is having too much success in the limited (voluntarily by the government!) mobile phone market.



    Therefore, apparently, there is an iPhone market, and Orange has (had) a monopoly.

    3-6 months is ok, but 5 years is not ok.



    So, when can I go to a BP gas station and get Fina gas if I choose? How about going to Auchan and getting Cora brand chips? I am a consumer merde! Give me what I want!
  • Reply 10 of 47
    This won't make a bit of difference. They will charge way more money for the iPhone through other carriers. I'm sure someone will buy them, but the masses will still flock to Orange or the reasonable pricing.
  • Reply 11 of 47
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by studiomusic View Post


    So, Apple can't choose who it can sell it's products to now?

    I hope they at least get to demand things like visual voicemail to be implemented first... that's a part of the iPhone experience.

    From my past experience, Bouygues sucks big time.



    Visual Voicemail isn't part of the iPhone experience. I bought my iPhone on O2 pay as you go, and you don't get visual voicemail with that.
  • Reply 12 of 47
    roos24roos24 Posts: 170member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by OriginalMacRat View Post


    T-Mobile is GSM.



    Sure, but the Infineon chip that Apple uses in the iPhone 3G misses the 1700 MHz band that T-Mobile uses in the US. Good luck.
  • Reply 13 of 47
    nasseraenasserae Posts: 3,158member
    More carriers = More iPhone sale = Good news for Apple = Good news for shareholders



    Also,



    More iPhone sale = Bad news for other phone makers
  • Reply 14 of 47
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Roos24 View Post


    Sure, but the Infineon chip that Apple uses in the iPhone 3G misses the 1700 MHz band that T-Mobile uses in the US. Good luck.



    It will work just fine with T-Mobile's 1900 MHz GSM/EDGE. The data speeds won't be as fast as 3G (actually, considering how fubared AT&T's 3G network is, it actually might), but it'll work, and you'll usually want to be using WiFi for data anyway. And of course, voice calls will work just fine, and you'll get better battery life to boot.
  • Reply 15 of 47
    hill60hill60 Posts: 6,992member
    I wonder if this will open the door for non-French owned networks to move into France.



    After all aren't those laws also restricting people's choices?
  • Reply 16 of 47
    tenobelltenobell Posts: 7,014member
    No, ATT's 3G is really not that bad.



    The iPhone uses more data by itself than every other model of smartphone combined. Since no other US carrier has a phone that uses nearly as much data as the iPhone, their is no way to know if their networks could handle a similar load with no problems.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by CharlesS View Post


    It will work just fine with T-Mobile's 1900 MHz GSM/EDGE. The data speeds won't be as fast as 3G (actually, considering how fubared AT&T's 3G network is, it actually might).



  • Reply 17 of 47
    ericblrericblr Posts: 172member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    too bad the lawmakers in the usa don't pass something similar to free the iphone from at&t but alas they're too busy spending our tax monies and avoiding paying their own.



    amen!!
  • Reply 18 of 47
    irnchrizirnchriz Posts: 1,591member
    I suppose Apple don't HAVE to sell the iPhone to them. And if they do they can charge them more due to the lack of a distribution deal.



    If I was an Apple exec I would screw the shit out of any other networks that wanted the handset. If those fucks didn't want to play ball in the first place now is the time to 'maximise' your profits.
  • Reply 19 of 47
    samabsamab Posts: 1,953member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by teckstud View Post


    Too bad the lawmakers in the USA don't pass something similar to free the iPhone from AT&T but alas they're too busy spending our tax monies and avoiding paying their own.



    That kind of thinking is penny wise and dollar stupid.



    The whole problem for France is that they have only 3 national carriers (and all three carriers are French owned).



    This is like the movie Casablanca where the French official said: "I'm shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here." Suddenly, the French competition regulator found out that "I'm shocked, shocked to find that France Telecom owns close to 1/2 the French mobile telecom market."



    Hell, give out a fourth and possibly a fifth telecom license (and allow foreign companies to own a French carrier) --- and you would find enough competition in France. The best iphone deals in the whole world is Hong Kong (6 carriers) and UK (5 carriers).
  • Reply 20 of 47
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mrochester View Post


    Visual Voicemail isn't part of the iPhone experience. I bought my iPhone on O2 pay as you go, and you don't get visual voicemail with that.



    You only get it with pay monthly, which is a rip off as you already pay a premium call rate.



    Would be great if iPhone was available on all 3G networks in the uk. I don't want to leave Orange. However if Apple rolls it out over the networks once the contract is over, it'll be 3rd or 4th gen, lovely.
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