Feeds

CPW and Vodafone finally make up

Operator discovers who's wearing the trousers

The essential guide to IT transformation

Customers wanting a Vodafone contract will be able to get one at Carphone Warehouse from 7 July, signalling the end of a two-an-a-half-year experiment to see how much power network operators actually had.

Vodafone cut Carphone Warehouse out of selling contract connections back in October 2006, claiming that Phones4U had better contacts with the network's target audience - 16 to 34-year-olds - in what was really a flexing of operator muscles that has now ended with the operator effectively conceding defeat.

When the deal was announced it sparked a flurry of speculation about other operators doing the same thing - signing exclusive deals in the hope of more shelf space and greater promotion. Network operators are already courted by handset manufacturers in the hope of decent subsidies, and the idea of having retail outlets fighting for their business must have appealed hugely.

Soon after Vodafone signed the exclusive with Phones4U, rival operator O2 signed an equally exclusive deal with Carphone Warehouse, on a similar basis. That only lasted a year with O2 then claiming that it was always intended to be a temporary move, to avoid signing up too many of the 16 to 34-year-old bracket to attracted to Phones4U stores - apparently.

Vodafone held out longer, but Carphone Warehouse never blinked even if claims that the deal would have no impact of the company's bottom line were met with scepticism by investors. The company just kept selling pre-paid connections to Vodafone, and contracts to everyone else.

And now Vodafone contracts are again on the shelves at Carphone Warehouse, with the operator claiming to have "teamed up" with the retail giant to offer "more choice" to customers; but in reality a power struggle that could have changed the industry has been won by a retail giant. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Déjà vu: Virgin Media jacks up broadband prices
Screw copper phone lines, we're UNIQUE, bleats telco
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
Fifteen zero days found in hacker router comp romp
Four routers rooted in SOHOpelessly Broken challenge
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
US TV stations bowl sueball directly at FCC's spectrum mega-sale
Broadcasters upset about coverage and cost as they shift up and down the dials
UK mobile coverage is BETTER than EVER, networks tell Ofcom
Regulator swallows this line and parrots it back out at us. What are they playing at?
What's the nature of your emergency, Vodafone?
Oh, you've dialled the wrong number for ad fibs, rules ASA
EE network whacked by 'PDP authentication failure' blunder
Carrier is 'aware' of cockup, working on a fix NOW
ROAD TRIP! An FCC road trip – Leahy demands net neutrality debate across US
You crashed watchdog's site, now time to crash its ears
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?