Just a day after Orange announced that it will start selling the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS in the UK, Vodafone announces they have also signed a deal with Apple to start selling the iPhone in the UK, thereby making it 3 mobile operator offering the iPhone in the UK.
According to The Telegraph who was one of the first to cover the story in the UK, Vodafone has been working hard to secure the iPhone after loosing over 150,000 customers in the last quarter, largely due to customers wanting the iPhone. The threat of being left behind in the wake of O2 and Orange both selling the iPhone, this deal was very important to Vodafone.
For UK customers this can only be good news as we can expect prices to come down as 3 networks will be fighting to win the lucrative iPhone customers. How much prices will come down is difficult to predict though, but some talk about monthly fees perhaps being reduced by £4-5 on a 24 month contract.
Vodafone was the UK’s largest mobile operator in 2006, but has been overtaken by O2 in the last couple of years, much thanks to strong sales of the iPhone. With yesterdays Orange announcement and todays Vodafone announments, the iPhone will be available on the 3 largest mobile networks in the UK. In addition there are rumors that Virgin is also keen to get a deal with Apple to sell the iPhone in the UK.
For Apple securing multiple networks in the UK seems like a good move, especially since they have very likely been able to secure some strong deals given that all the networks have showed a lot of interest in selling the iPhone. There is nothing like having distributors fighting over your product!
We will be back with more information on the Vodafone iPhone deal, including prices and release dates as soon as it becomes available. At the moment it looks like we have to wait until early 2010 for Vodafone, whilst Orange is expected to be able to start selling the iPhone before Christmas.