UK Palm Pré carrier confirmed
Well, it's not Vodafone...
Blighty’s exclusive Palm Pré carrier has finally been revealed. And the winner is, unsurprisingly, O2.
The smartphone will be “launched in Europe in time for the Winter holidays”, said O2’s parent company, Telefónica, which has also secured exclusive rights to sell the Pré in Spain, Ireland and Germany.
O2 hasn’t said how much the Pré and associated monthly contracts will cost UK punters. It’s not even known if the smartphone will be available on a pay-as-you-go basis.
But if O2’s iPhone 3GS pricing structure is anything to go by, then it’s reasonable to assume that the Pré could be very, very expensive. ®
O2 the Network that isn't
Yes great another win for the Network that doesn't technically exist*
a Network that spends money on exclusives at the cost of not spending a cent on its network.
*definded as 3G coverage of less than 10% uk by area - See ofcom coverage maps.
Well that's palm dead then...
Which genius decided that the two devices that are most in competition should be given, EXCLUSIVELY, to just one single supplier...
Of course naturally, now that O2 have got the rights to the Pre, Apple won't stop until it costs more than the iPhone
Why does NO phone manufacturer realise that some people don't want to not have a choice. There is no way on this planet that I will ever pay O2 any money, especially with their horrifically bad contract deals and high-balling.
*I* decide which network operator *I* want to deal with. Why does the mobile phone industry not get it??
Looks like I'll still be using Windows Mobile and Symbian on 3 then. The only two smartphone OSs that are truly available and competitive.
"How do I get an iPhone SIM free ?"
iPhone 3GS sim free: http://www.expansys.com/d.aspx?i=183742
iPhone 3G sim free: http://www.expansys.com/d.aspx?i=173895
Expansys (and no doubt others) will also shortly be selling the Palm Pre sim free.
Vodafone won't buy a Pre or iPhone sim free on the open market and re-sell it with a contract and subsidy because it's not really in their interest to do so as they'd have to sell it at a much higher price than O2 who no doubt get a discount from Apple and Palm. Vodafone clearly decided not to do a deal with Apple or Palm in the UK market and that's their choice (they did do a deal with Apple in several other countries). You can still use an iPhone or Pre with Vodafone if that's what you want to do. You'll pay more for the phone up front but as you aren't forced into an expensive contract the total cost over 18 or 24 months probably ends up being not that different.
The problem is not exclusive carrier deals, they are just a symptom of the subsidy model of selling phones. If phone manufacturers are doing subsidy deals with networks then they are obviously free to choose which networks they want to do a deal with, just as they are in any other business deal. It's not thwarting competition, it's just business. No one is forcing anyone to use a particular phone or a particular carrier, the choice is yours.
All though I'm not really in favour of the subsidy based phone selling business model, it probably does make mobile phone ownership a lot cheaper than it otherwise would be for the vast majority of people who choose their network first (based on coverage, friends/family having the same, rates etc) and then live with the phone selection the carrier has to offer.
@Michael Brown and @Alrego
How do I get an iPhone SIM free ?
If the Pre is available SIM free, why can't Vodafone buy it and then re-sell it subsidised with a long term contract?
Face it, the idea of these "exclusive" deals is to thwart competition - to give one carrier an edge over the other.
If there was genuinely an open market, Vodafone or 3 would offer a rebate on a new phone in exchange for signing a long term contract. The market is not operating like that and it needs to be investigated.
@Cathal Gantly 1 and Anonymous Coward 7th July 2009 12:06
Actually Cathal, you are correct. But it is the nearest thing I could find that would have some meaning, without setting up another, counter item.
However the comment from AC also holds some water and perhaps Reg could be the linch pin here. I don't see this happening myself, but it would give some clout to the whole thing.....