Apple’s iPhone 5 will launch on Orange in Europe on October 15th according to comments from the CEO of the carrier’s parent company, France Telecom. FT chief executive Stéphane Richard, who has openly discussed Apple’s plans for the iPhone ahead of announcement in the past, told the French press that the iPhone 5 will launch on Orange in mid-October, TechRadar reports. “If we believe what we have been told, the iPhone 5 will be released on 15 October,” the CEO said without elaborating. Apple’s iPhone 5 has previously been rumored to be set for an October 7th release, which may still be the case in some markets. Apple is expected to unveil the iPhone 5 alongside an updated iPhone 4 model at a press event later this month or early in October. More →
After eight months of waiting, Deutsche Telkom and France Telecom have merged their UK operations to form Britain’s largest communications company, now know as Everything Everywhere. The 50:50 joint venture will merge the corporate operations and network resources of Orange UK and T-Mobile UK to create an umbrella company that will continue to operate the two distinctive brands. Combining the best of both Orange and T-Mobile UK, the newly merged Everything Everywhere now boasts: 713 retail stores, 16,000 employees, and a customer base of 30 million — which exceeds that of rival O2. Hit the jump for the full press release.
Our pals across the pond are going to be facing some changes in the coming months as Deutsch Telekom and France Telecom are planning a massive merger in the UK. The companies are reportedly preparing to combine T-Mobile UK and Orange to form what will become the largest telco on the island, assuming the joint venture is approved by antitrust regulators. The deal is expected to be inked toward the end of October, giving the parties involved plenty of time to iron out details in the interim. The bright side for consumers, we suppose, is expanded network coverage — the downside of course being the fact that the two carriers will no longer be competing for business. So, what do our UK friends think?
Thanks, Roger A!
France Telecom is not in a good place right now. Imagine the time, negotiations and bags of money resources it took to score iPhone 3G exclusivity on Orange for a five-year term all to see things evaporate thanks to the scrappy Bouygues Telecom. Appealing to the Competition Council, Bouygues contested that this exclusivity agreement seriously undermined competition in the mobile space due to the excessive length of the agreement. Despite obvious opposition from both France Telecom and Apple, the Competition Council concurred and decided in December to cap such exclusive agreements at a substantially abbreviated three months. Body blow! Needless to say, FT and Apple went right to work fighting the decision but an appeals court ruled today that the decision would be upheld. Upper cut! Apple and FT plan to take their appeal to Cour de Cassation, France’s Supreme Court, while Apple slyly plays both sides by undertaking negotiations with Bouygues to offer the iPhone 3G on its network. T.K.O. Apple stands to benefit either way of course and as such, the company appears to be fairly brazen in its handling of the situation. FT on the other hand, has everything to lose – including a healthy portion of its customer base on Orange. Bouygues, currently the number three operator in the French region, would undoubtedly couple iPhone availability with some incredibly attractive rates to lure customers away. Hmm. We have to wonder what AT&T’s 2008 would have looked like with the iPhone on multiple US carriers…
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