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back to article UK Palm Pré carrier confirmed

Blighty’s exclusive Palm Pré carrier has finally been revealed. And the winner is, unsurprisingly, O2. The smartphone will be “launched in Europe in time for the Winter holidays”, said O2’s parent company, Telefónica, which has also secured exclusive rights to sell the Pré in Spain, Ireland and Germany. O2 hasn’t said how much …

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FAIL

Winter Holidays...

...so any time up to December 24th. Not what I was hoping for.

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Hopefully

Hopefully. its more stable than the iphone 3g as of sometime this week. I will be on my 3 iphone 3g

The last refurb did not even last 24 hours before it all went wrong and ibricked...

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Samsung Galaxy on O2 too

Android 1.5 Handset, 5Mpx camera, la-di-dah etc.

I'd much prefer an Android handset, plus GSMArena has the handset cost at €410 (Guestimate, but usually accurate).

If only I could convince my mates to get Cloud subscriptions and Fring / Truphone instead... £10 a month in stead of £35 and all the VoIP calls you could want. Hell, SkypeOut for regular use, even.

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WTF?

I want to be able to choose my own network

So I guess the Pre joins the list of phones I won't be buying

What is it with phone manufacturers?

I want to be able to choose the network that works best for me not be forced into the network the phone manufacturer decide works for them - fuckwits...

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Another good device.....

... runied by being tied to a carrier.

At what point wil OfCom finally realise that these 'exclusivity deals' are bad for the user, the consumer for the hardware vendor, in fact everyone.

Preventing me from dropping in a local sim when I roam surely has to be illegal, 'desn't it .....?

P.

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Silver badge
FAIL

Yet another victory for Vodafone's Handset purchasers

Gotta admire their wholehearted effort to avoid selling an Iphone challenger. And no - android doesnt count.

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FAIL

Monopoly or what?!

Surely this is some kind of monopolistic position to ensure one carrier can overcharge for the phone and then control and restrict the usage of said hand set??

The Palm Pre looked a nice alternative to the iPhone too, but with O2 pricing that out of the market for all but the hardiest of enthusiasts, I'm guessing they're planning on doing the same with the Pre too. :(

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Pint

E Petitions on the web.....

OK....

A few people here seem tot hink that 'locking' devices to carriers is : wrong, bad, illegal, should be illegal, restricitve, poor form...... the list seems to be endless.

So, do something about it.

Sign up here, http://petitions.number10.gov.uk/Unlockmobiles/ , make a stand and be counted.

Not my petition, but I've joined it.

P.

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Stop

@Del Morpha

I really don't get this priced out crap. An iPhone 16gb costs £440 on pay and go. Back in the day I spent £400 on an original 20gb iPod and that _only_ played music.

All I hear is "Waa, waaa... I want an <insert shiny thing here>".

If you want one save up and buy one, if you think they're too expensive then don't buy it. Or buy an older one and hack it, that's what I did for 6 months until I realised that the weak point was the crap data offerings that Orange have.

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FAIL

OfCom

The Conservative party don't think they represent good value for money.

Well, here is a case in point. O2, part of Telefonica (one of the world's largest telecommunications companies by market cap) has big pockets. It can therefore snap up all the best "Smartphone" manufacturer contracts and get an exclusive position.

Will OfCom act ?

NO. No one has complained in writing.

Can El Reg organise a campaign using it's resources (e.g. web site) ? I don't have the technical skills but feel strongly about it.

Of course, OfCom may not act even after complaints, in which case I'll support their removal by the Conservatives.

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Sim locking

"I want to be able to choose my own network", "'locking' devices to carriers is : wrong, bad,...So, do something about it."

You can, just buy a phone sim free (off contract). Of course you'll have to pay the full price for it, but you can't have it both ways. If a network is paying a hefty subsidy (as much as 200-300 GBP on an expensive phone) then they should be allowed to recoup that subsidy by ensuring you stick with them for a reasonable length of time.

The real problem is the subsidy model by which phones are sold. IMHO all phones should be sold off contract (and unsubsidised). Then you would buy the phone of your choice (at it's real market price) and then choose the network and calling plan of your choice (at it's real market value). However, I think you'd find that would be extremely unpopular for most people, who have come to expect to get a new "free" phone every 18 months.

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FAIL

@Piloti... Not quite the same thing

While I agree with the petition, it's not the same thing as "exclusivity" deals.

I think it is unfair to be "locked in" to a network and handset. If I want a Palm Pre, an iPhone, or whatever handset is the flavour of the month, I should be free to purchase that handset, and then decide what network I want to use for calls. Just like your car manufacturer doesn't tie you to a particular petrol company, your CD player manufacturer to a particular record label. For the life of me, I cannot understand why Offcom allow this to continue.

By all accounts, the Pre is as good a rival to the iPhone as we have seen so far. Can't help but feel it won't get a fair crack of the whip as o2 win either way.

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FAIL

Shame

Well when the Pre hardware costs less then $200 to make (of course + dev and such), people really don't want to pay £400+ for it.

O2 will infact force people to pay much more then £400 though

£200 for then phone and then a 24 month contract at £35 a month, that's £1040, so that's over £500 a year for the phone and service.

What if i don't (want to) use £35 a month of calls and data, what if i am just happy to pay £300 for the "phone" and just keep with my Prepay service. tuff kack apparently!

I understand why they lock the phones to there network, if they give you a free phone to use there service thats fair enough but forcing people to buy a service to get "the phone" is wrong.

Things such as this should be dealt with by the CC (competition-commission) they stop much lesser competition infringing deals.

Shame on Palm too, I have had Palm devices for over 10 years and love the platform and love even more the technology behind Pre but there is no way I will be signing up to a TWO YEAR contract to own one.

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WTF?

Buy the phone SIM Free

If you don't like O2, just buy the phone for it's market value once that's announced http://www.expansys.com/d.aspx?i=179520 Then stick in a pre-pay SIM and rent the services you use. Ok it won't be subsidised by the network, but the free phone culture has warped our sense of value for these amazing gadgets.

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WTF?

@Michael Brown and @Alrego

How do I get an iPhone SIM free ?

If the Pre is available SIM free, why can't Vodafone buy it and then re-sell it subsidised with a long term contract?

Face it, the idea of these "exclusive" deals is to thwart competition - to give one carrier an edge over the other.

If there was genuinely an open market, Vodafone or 3 would offer a rebate on a new phone in exchange for signing a long term contract. The market is not operating like that and it needs to be investigated.

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Headmaster

@Cathal Gantly 1 and Anonymous Coward 7th July 2009 12:06

Actually Cathal, you are correct. But it is the nearest thing I could find that would have some meaning, without setting up another, counter item.

However the comment from AC also holds some water and perhaps Reg could be the linch pin here. I don't see this happening myself, but it would give some clout to the whole thing.....

P.

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@AC 7:30

"How do I get an iPhone SIM free ?"

iPhone 3GS sim free: http://www.expansys.com/d.aspx?i=183742

iPhone 3G sim free: http://www.expansys.com/d.aspx?i=173895

Expansys (and no doubt others) will also shortly be selling the Palm Pre sim free.

Vodafone won't buy a Pre or iPhone sim free on the open market and re-sell it with a contract and subsidy because it's not really in their interest to do so as they'd have to sell it at a much higher price than O2 who no doubt get a discount from Apple and Palm. Vodafone clearly decided not to do a deal with Apple or Palm in the UK market and that's their choice (they did do a deal with Apple in several other countries). You can still use an iPhone or Pre with Vodafone if that's what you want to do. You'll pay more for the phone up front but as you aren't forced into an expensive contract the total cost over 18 or 24 months probably ends up being not that different.

The problem is not exclusive carrier deals, they are just a symptom of the subsidy model of selling phones. If phone manufacturers are doing subsidy deals with networks then they are obviously free to choose which networks they want to do a deal with, just as they are in any other business deal. It's not thwarting competition, it's just business. No one is forcing anyone to use a particular phone or a particular carrier, the choice is yours.

All though I'm not really in favour of the subsidy based phone selling business model, it probably does make mobile phone ownership a lot cheaper than it otherwise would be for the vast majority of people who choose their network first (based on coverage, friends/family having the same, rates etc) and then live with the phone selection the carrier has to offer.

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Well that's palm dead then...

Which genius decided that the two devices that are most in competition should be given, EXCLUSIVELY, to just one single supplier...

Of course naturally, now that O2 have got the rights to the Pre, Apple won't stop until it costs more than the iPhone

Why does NO phone manufacturer realise that some people don't want to not have a choice. There is no way on this planet that I will ever pay O2 any money, especially with their horrifically bad contract deals and high-balling.

*I* decide which network operator *I* want to deal with. Why does the mobile phone industry not get it??

Looks like I'll still be using Windows Mobile and Symbian on 3 then. The only two smartphone OSs that are truly available and competitive.

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Alert

O2 the Network that isn't

Yes great another win for the Network that doesn't technically exist*

a Network that spends money on exclusives at the cost of not spending a cent on its network.

*definded as 3G coverage of less than 10% uk by area - See ofcom coverage maps.

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