[UK] Orange UK will begin selling the iPhone on November 10th, just eight days time. But it won’t usher in the price war that many had predicted (although I wasn’t one of them) now that 02′s exclusive has ended. Instead, Orange have chosen almost without exception to match its rival’s existing iPhone pricing. The retail monopoly has been broken but Apple’s supply monopoly remains in place and it shows.
Aside from a few pennies saved on the up front cost for an iPhone 3GS on certain tariffs, the only tangible difference in the two networks’ offerings is that Orange have a slightly cheaper tariff of £29.36 against £34.26 on O2 although you get less inclusive minutes and texts.
Orange will, of course, talk up its wider 3G coverage as a unique selling point, although it will be interesting to watch how its network copes with an influx of data hogging iPhones users. On that note, while both carriers offer ‘unlimited’ data and WiFi, Orange’s fair-use policy caps data at 750 mb per month, while 02′s fair usage policy is conveniently ambiguous.