What have you always wondered about the economy? Tell Us

iPhone attracts British suitors

Stephen Beard Jan 11, 2007

TEXT OF STORY

MARK AUSTIN THOMAS: The iPhone has sparked a lot of interest across the pond. Britain’s cell phone providers are scrambling to reach a deal to provide a network for the new device. But some analysts are sounding a note of caution. From London, Stephen Beard reports.


STEPHEN BEARD: Music downloads are among the most successful new applications for cell phones in Britain, and UK cell phone providers clearly believe the iPhone could play a major role in that market.

They’re falling over themselves to sign an exclusive deal with Apple. O2 looks to be the frontrunner. Vodaphone, Orange and T-Mobile are also contenders.

But one leading expert, Windsor Holden of the Analysys research firm, has his doubts about the device because iPhone won’t work with Britain’s 3G maximum capacity network.

WINDSOR HOLDEN: It really strikes me that what you have here is the equivalent of a sports car which has all the whistles and bells but one that runs at only 50 miles per hour.

He also points that at $500 each, iPhone is very much more expensive than existing music cell phones.

In London, this is Stephen Beard for Marketplace.

Marketplace is on a mission.

We believe Main Street matters as much as Wall Street, economic news is made relevant and real through human stories, and a touch of humor helps enliven topics you might typically find…well, dull.

Through the signature style that only Marketplace can deliver, we’re on a mission to raise the economic intelligence of the country—but we don’t do it alone. We count on listeners and readers like you to keep this public service free and accessible to all. Will you become a partner in our mission today?

Your donation is critical to the future of public service journalism. Support our work today – for as little as $5 – and help us keep making people smarter.