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Telefonica: 3G iPhone in "coming weeks"

updated 11:15 am EDT, Wed May 14, 2008

Telefonica iPhone Soon

Telefonica Europe chief Matthew Key today said that his company would make a joint announcement with Apple regarding the iPhone within weeks, hinting at a near term launch for an anticipated 3G upgrade to the cellphone. Key, whose telecoms group operates O2 in Ireland, the UK, and other countries, hasn't directly confirmed the device when asked about its existence but alludes to both its release and a possible expansion of service beyond just the O2 brand.

The timing of a 3G iPhone launch is "more of a question for Apple," he says. "But over the coming weeks we will do a joint announcement with Apple as Telefónica Group."

Telefonica offers cellular service under its own name in its home of Spain as well as in Argentina and Chile, and also operates the Movistar brand in multiple Latin American countries, including Colombia, Ecuador, and Venezuela. Beyond the two English-speaking European countries, O2 in turn operates out of Germany as well as the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

The allusions point to a much wider worldwide launch for the iPhone than already referenced to date. The existing launch includes more than 30 carriers split between multinationals America Movil, SingTel, and Vodafone, as well as one-nation providers such as Rogers and just-announced partner Swisscom.

The launch is unlikely to involve the existing iPhone. All 8GB models are currently sold out with O2, Carphone Warehouse, and Apple's online store, while 16GB models show intermittent availability. Observers expect Apple to entirely replace one or both versions with a 3G model in part due to a greater dependence on the faster cellular data by the British and other Europeans, who use it for video calling, media downloads, and frequent web access.

By Electronista Staff
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  1. Feynman

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2006


    In just

    18 days is WWDC (not including weekends). That leaves just three Tuesdays until WWDC. Mark my words, we will not see anything till then.

  1. Rolando_jose

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2006



    In Panama and Nicaragua

  1. Jeronimo2000

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001


    oh no

    Oh, dear Matthew Key... don't you know the first thing about working with Apple? Don't announce stuff before Apple announces it. Only makes Steve angry. And when Steve gets angry...

  1. Jeronimo2000

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001


    aaah, dell...

    "Tough financial circumstances"? Hmmm... what would I do if I were Michael Dell?

    Yes! I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders!


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