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Three European ops to get iPhone

Well it looks like most of the recent speculation on European iPhone distributors was correct, with reports coming in that Apple has signed up three different operators in the region.

According to a report in the Financial Times Deutschland, O2 in the UK, Orange in France and T-Mobile in Germany, have all agreed contracts with Apple to sell the iPhone later this year.

It looks like the device will only be available in these three markets for the time being but will likely roll out to the rest of Europe and Asia in 2008. Given that all three operators above have operations across Europe, it may be that the contracts with Apple will extend into other countries.

Despite the fact that subsidies on the European iPhone are likely to be minimal to non-existent, keeping the operators with more in their pockets, Apple has pulled a smooth move by getting them to agree to sign over 10 per cent of the revenues from calls and data traffic from iPhone users.

This is an unusual model for the operator community, which has traditionally been against such contracts. However, it could be that Apple’s show of strength in this move could prompt other handset makers to do the same with popular devices.

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