New episodes of "The Uncertain Hour" are out now! Listen now

Vodaphone front-runner for Euro iPhone

Marketplace Staff Jun 29, 2007
HTML EMBED:
COPY

Vodaphone front-runner for Euro iPhone

Marketplace Staff Jun 29, 2007
HTML EMBED:
COPY

TEXT OF INTERVIEW

Doug Krizner: The iPhone’s making a splash in the U.S. today, after six months of hype. It’s a big day for Apple, and for AT&T, the phone’s exclusive carrier in the U.S. Apple wants to sell 10 million iPhones worldwide by 2008.

But in Europe the company doesn’t have a wireless a partner — yet. Elizabeth Judge is telecoms correspondent with the Times of London. Elizabeth, you’ve reported on intense negotiations between Apple and the major mobile companies in Europe.

Elizabeth Judge:All of the main European operators are desperately keen to get their hands on this — they’ve been in intense negotiations for many months. And as the U.S. launch happens, these negotiations are reaching a climax in Europe. You know, Apple wants to launch it here by the end of this year, and in order to do that, they will need to secure a deal with one of the networks pretty soon.

Krizner: Is there a front-runner at this point?

Judge:At this point, Vodaphone, our sources are telling us, is the front-runner. This is partly because of its sheer size and scale and spending power. It’s an $88-billion market cap company, and it has the spending power its rivals lack. At the same time, its chief executive, Arun Sarin, is known to have a good relationship with the Apple chief executive and had private talks about this. So, we know they’re pushing hard for a deal, and it looks like the money’s on them getting it.

Krizner: What about T-Mobile? You’ve got to believe a company like that is not going to take this lying down.

Judge: Oh, no, sure — all of the rivals are going to put up a fierce fight. They’re not going to let Vodaphone get it without a fight. And partly that’s because they stand to gain more from this. You know, the smallest player in the U.K. market (is) T-Mobile, and it would mean a lot for them to associate themselves with the Apple brand and the lust that it has.

Krizner: Elizabeth Judge — she is telecoms correspondent for the Times of London. Thanks very much for joining us.

There’s a lot happening in the world.  Through it all, Marketplace is here for you. 

You rely on Marketplace to break down the world’s events and tell you how it affects you in a fact-based, approachable way. We rely on your financial support to keep making that possible. 

Your donation today powers the independent journalism that you rely on. For just $5/month, you can help sustain Marketplace so we can keep reporting on the things that matter to you.