T-Mobile admits iPhone imports


T-Mobile admitted at an HSC dealer conference last month it had sourced Apple iPhone handsets in Europe to sell to UK customers.

T-Mobile was asked for clarification of press reports last year of T-Mobile supplying iPhone handsets for selected customers, something always denied to both press and the channel.

One dealer said, while support from T-Mobile had been “fantastic”, he faces losing customers to O2, Orange or Vodafone because of iPhone distribution.

T-Mobile, which claims the highest number of unlocked iPhones in use upon its network, said no deal for the iPhone is imminent, but said it has other devices in its portfolio and expects to announce the Nexus One in weeks.

T-Mobile area sales manager for the south Lee Wales said: “In the past we did buy some iPhones in Europe because we were concerned customers would leave if they didn’t get the iPhone.

“We took the decision and it might have backfired because Apple wasn’t very happy. But we decided that retaining those customers was important. But it’s not our policy, and it has been two quarters since we last did this.”