Vodafone: iPhone Sucks… But, Hey, Why Won't Apple Let Us Sell Them In Germany!?!

from the sour-grapes-much? dept

Vodafone boss Arun Sarin made some news for saying that the iPhone “a pretty poor experience,” but apparently that hasn’t stopped the company from sending out the lawyers when it wasn’t allowed to sell them. Vodafone’s German unit has convinced a judge there to ban the sale of iPhones by rival T-Mobile, claiming that Apple’s exclusive deal with T-Mobile is somehow unfair. For such a poor experience, it certainly seems like Vodafone would have been happier if it had been Vodafone’s poor experience, rather than competitors’.

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Companies: apple, t-mobile, vodafone

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Comments on “Vodafone: iPhone Sucks… But, Hey, Why Won't Apple Let Us Sell Them In Germany!?!”

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ScaredOfTheMan says:

At least....

They didn’t close customer service upon the iPhone’s launch, like they did in the UK….. Oh wait its not launched yet. Never mind, still time to do that.

Honestly how bad must Nokia (even with their big profits), Motorola, HTC, Samsung feel right now….. whether you hate or love the iPhone, you have to admit, no one company has been able to rock the mobile phone market in such a profound way. In the past handset providers used to beg carriers to carry their phones, in 8 months or so, apple has turn that notion on its ear.

They sell an non-subsidized, handset that’s so compelling, people sign up for a 2 yr contract with “not so good” AT&T in return. THEN AT&T still gives apple a piece of the backend from all those service contracts.

I am not an iPhone owner (my wife has one), I am simply amazed at what one company has pulled off in such a short amount of time. This is a testament to great design and even better marketing.

Aaron K says:


True Apple ha rocked the industry in America, but overseas cell phones are generally not locked down to the carrier. I know when I lived in Korea, I bought phone cards to reload the minutes on my phone. Demand was driven by price and service. I quickly realized which “carrier” (aka phone card provider) offered the best service and rate for my needs.

ScaredOfTheMan says:

Read the post

You can say the iPhone is really nice (cause it is), and not be sheep. Granted there are plenty of Apple zealots out there with undying allegiance to Master himself.

My comment had to do with how one company (a complete outsider), was willing to take some design risks (i.e. no buttons etc), with a great interface can create so much demand, that they change the way an entire industry operates (who pays who). As a study in business, it’s incredibly impressive…. It took a computer / consumer electronics company to do what no mobile phone company ever did.

Unfortunately it also may not be best for consumer because apple’s quest for higher profits (borderline greed) combined with its uber restrictive locks and restrictions are a step back in mobile phone carrier mobility, as AaronK correctly points out.

Anonymous Asian says:

the new Evil MS

the reason phones were “locked” into a service provider in the states is cause we’re too cheap to go to a store and pay full price for the phone. the service providers usually subsidize the cost of the handset unlike asia or europe. now if at&t was letting “dealers” subsidize the i-phone, i’d understand but since there are no signs up yet for a “FREE i-phone with a 1000 year contract ” , and i have to pay full retail, i should be able to take it to whomever i choose.
secondly, nokia had become head strong and didnt wanna make any other form factors other than the candy shape ’cause they were # 1 worldwide. that was only true cause india and china gobbled up those phones and didnt want motorola’s shitty quality flip’s. and nokia did not really care about the us market till about a year ago till it was too late. they have a great lineup including the N-series with great form factors, better camera lenses than anyone on the market , and phones that dont freeze (like my crack-a-berry) but they do need to bring the prices down. i cant go get a 3 year mortgage everytime i “want ” a new toy .

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: the new Evil MS

I think you’re very confused about the mobile phone market in Europe. Many European countries subsidise phones, in fact this is the standard practice for all UK network operators.

You can get a free handset from all contracts available and with the mid-high end contracts you will almost certainly get the newest handsets available for free.

With the exception of the “luxury” handsets like Prada, but even then they will only cost a fraction of their retail price.

The mobile phone market is so ultra-competitive in the UK a savvy buyer can obtain a high end contract, with a free top of the range phone and claim back all of their monthly line rental via redemption.

I’ve not paid a penny for a handset or contract in the past 3 years.

Jamie says:

I agree with Mr Sarin’s comment about the iPhone being a “pretty poor experience”. While it is innovative in a lot of ways, it’s also missing a number of technologies which are common in most high-priced phones (e.g. 3G, camera, MMS).

While this is true, it doesn’t stop a large number of people from wanting an iPhone. They want the latest trend in phone technology, and the iPhone is it.

I’m in New Zealand, and while the mobile operators here will subsidize handsets, you can also buy them outright and use them on a pre-pay plan. I imagine that this is fairly similar to Europe – you can get a subsidized phone on a contract, but you don’t have to.

Having an unlocked cellphone is important to me. If I travel overseas, I can get a prepay SIM card in that country and not have to worry about roaming charges when I get called. You just can’t do that if the phone is locked to one provider.

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