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.
We’re here to help you navigate this changed world and economy.
Our mission at Marketplace is to raise the economic intelligence of the country. It’s a tough task, but it’s never been more important.
In the past year, we’ve seen record unemployment, stimulus bills, and reddit users influencing the stock market. Marketplace helps you understand it all, will fact-based, approachable, and unbiased reporting.
Generous support from listeners and readers is what powers our nonprofit news—and your donation today will help provide this essential service. For just $5/month, you can sustain independent journalism that keeps you and thousands of others informed.
You make our
Support nonprofit news you love with a gift today.