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Europe sees low iPhone sales; exclusives over soon?

updated 03:25 pm EDT, Fri April 18, 2008

Europe Low iPhone Sales

Europe's iPhone carriers may face a significant financial hit from sub-par iPhone sales in the region, says a report from UK's The Times. Speaking to Morgan Stanley analyst Katheryn Huberty, the paper hears that temporary price drops at T-Mobile in Germany and O2 UK are likely to incur "significant" financial losses as the phones sell below cost. Carriers are expected to recover much of this through monthly fees, with T-Mobile altering its discounts depending on subscription rates, but are still anticipated to suffer to some degree.

While Orange has not joined the efforts and is allegedly under pressure from Apple to discount the iPhone's price in a subsidized model, all three European carriers have allegedly sold well below expectations. Total continent-wide sales reportedly reached the 330,000 mark where the providers together had estimated between 500,000 and 600,000.

The price cuts are already recognized by analysts as an attempt to clear stock ahead of a 3G iPhone release in mid-year, as both are due to end sometime in June. A handset with faster Internet access is considered critical to Europe, where 3G networks have been active for a longer period of time and higher-end phones are more likely to use the technology.

Huberty also suggests that further price drops may be helped along by shorter-than-expected exclusivity deals. The researcher believes that Apple's signed contracts with carriers are just two years long and will expire once Apple is no longer dependent on sharing carrier revenue. Once the company can rely on app sales and ads, there will purportedly be less incentive to depend on shared carrier revenues, allowing Apple to shop the phone to multiple providers in a single country. While still unconfirmed, a two-year plan would let Apple supply the iPhone to T-Mobile USA in July 2009 and key European carriers before the end of the same year.

As part of its article, the Times also cites sources who say the next iPhone will be "radically different" than the existing version, though doesn't go into details and appears to primarily speculate about possible form-factor changes for the device.



By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. Eldernorm

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Sep 2007

    0

    Must be a slow news day

    The Times sees to have run out of "junk" news and so is making up some of its own. :-) Its funny that only Apple seems to have the power to generate so much FUD lately. Even the economy only makes news if its tied to Apple. :-) LOL Poor Times.

    PS, did it ever occur to people that Apple needs to sell both versions as there are many people that do not have regular access to 3G networks???? NO? Did not guess that they even think at all. :-)

  1. henryblackman

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Feb 2003

    0

    what?

    eldernorm: Apple doesn't need to sell 2 versions. 3G phones work fine on 2G networks - they just switch. Apple is aiming to have a single SKU across the world, apart from flash capacity - the do it everywhere else they can as it saves money in having just one version of the same thing.

  1. Feathers

    Grizzled Veteran

    Joined: Oct 1999

    0

    victory for consumers...

    This is a seldom seen triumph for consumers (like Apple handing back 100 bucks in the USA). It appears that Europeans recognise the true value of the iPhone and aren't prepared to pay the MacTax, for once. Additionally, whether Psystar (Sister?) were bogus or not, one thing is clear, there is significant pent up demand for a fairly priced headless Mac (and not a stupid under-featured toy-box like the Mini). Is it possible that Apple and Steve in particular might actually start listening to it's customers rather than insisting that they know what's best. If there is a consumer crunch coming, Apple should get wise to the idea of selling what they can rather than what they want!

  1. ZinkDifferent

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2005

    0

    sorry, feathers...

    ...by and large, Steve and Apple know what's best for you (and us), because they aim for what we will need, not what we want. It makes a huge difference in what you get.

  1. ERG

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2003

    0

    @feathers

    change your pot supplier: I'm european (unfortunately looking at your comment): "It appears that Europeans recognise" that seems to me really too much.. look (everybody else) at some other euronews and you'll get the "canadian" morphing..

  1. Kees

    Junior Member

    Joined: Sep 2001

    0

    @feathers

    you need to understand that Apple does not want you as a customer. They sell minis so Windows users can buy a Mac while getting to keep most of their gear. The idea is that they buy an iMac the next year. And a new one 2-3 years later. What Apple does not want is a whole lot of Frankenmacs out there with all kinds of bolted-on cheapskate hardware from walmart giving OS X a bad rep.

  1. dliup

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2006

    0

    re: feathers

    If you think you know consumer demand better, why don't you start your own company, if you think you can do it better than Apple?

    Guess what? Apple market share is steadily rising, that's probably due to lack of knowledge on what people want.

    PS, plenty of Europeans and foreigners buy iPhones in the states due to the weak dollar.

  1. Feathers

    Grizzled Veteran

    Joined: Oct 1999

    0

    wow...

    ...you guys know I'm NOT Testudo, right? I mean, isn't he the only one who triggers more than two responses? Although, to be honest, I think "erg" is the dude with the strong-bong because I don't understand the point that he is making!!! Morphing Canadians...wasn't that a TV show in the eighties?

  1. Theres_NO_MAC_anymore

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Nov 2006

    0

    APPLE = LACK OF QUALITY

    There are no quality left in apple these days. They just sell PC junk with high prices "and lack of support". US is laying way after europe regarding cell phones. So who buys an apple c*** phone (well apple nuts do) when you can buy a cell that fits your need without having to choose it from a specific carrier. Viva La Freedom!!!

  1. dliup

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2006

    0

    lol

    hey "there_no_mac_anymore",

    So why does Apple has the highest customer satisfaction? Why is Apple's market share growing and stock increasing steadily?

    Why is all other cell phone makers trying to copy the iPhone?

    Why does Apple laptop got rated fastest in its class for awhile by PC magazine? MacBook Pro 2007: fastest computer in its class at the time http://www.pcworld.com/article/id,136649-page,3-c,notebooks/article.html

    Who are you trying to fool? You can fool yourself but you can fool those who actually know what they are doing (most mac users).

    What a doofus.

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