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O2 Grabs Palm Pre Exclusive?

Gordon Kelly


O2 Grabs Palm Pre Exclusive?

Now here's a turn up for the books...

Contrary to commonly held belief it is now being reported that O2 parent Telefonica has beaten Vodafone to tie up a deal for the new Palm Pre in the process snagging exclusives for the UK, Spain and Latin America.

The news comes from respected Spanish newspaper Expansion and it goes on to say the Pre will be announced on schedule "before summer" which should beat a third generation iPhone out the traps. Of course we all know Palm's dire financial straits mean it can't afford to be late with the Pre so as long as a half finished Storm-esque product doesn't turn up this is good news.

Perhaps just as importantly however is the coup it would represent for O2. Rival networks have long searched for an 'iPhone killer' to compete with O2's exclusive deal with Apple, but should O2 actually grab the first legitimate iPhone killer I've seen then it could well be laughing all the way to the bank. As for contracts, this would likely bring the Pre in line with talk it will mirror iPhone pricing.

We'll be watching this one like a hawk...

Wondering what all the fuss is about? Check out my Palm Pre first impressions.

In related news Confirmed Pre US telco Sprint has unveiled its price plans for Pre with the following tariffs: 450 minutes ($69.99), 900 minutes ($89.99) and unlimited plans ($99.99). Family bundles are 1,500 minutes ($129.99), 3,000 minutes ($169.99) and unlimited plans ($189.99). Now don't read much into this since the US 'cellphone' market is hugely different from ours (read: worse) but hopefully it does mean we're getting towards the business end for this device.


Expansion Article (Translated)

via Palm Infocenter


March 13, 2009, 11:36 am

If correct then this must be a huge coup for o2. Personally i hope o2 do the contract exchange thing they did with the first release of the iphone. I love my LG renoir but want this phone but have some 14mths to run on my contract :( Do the guys at TR think that o2's exclusivity contract for the iphone is coming to an end and that's why they might've gone for this?


March 13, 2009, 12:57 pm

I'm a Palm veteran, with a six month-old iPhone. Love the look of the Pre and some of the revolutionary ideas that have been designed into it's new OS (WebOS).

For me, there's a few gotchas...

1) No memory card slot

2) Lack of compatibility with earlier Palm OS apps

3) Lack of 'proper', 'hit the metal' SDK

But it does offer a good implementation of Copy/Cut/Paste (clipboard) functionality and the whole seamless web-service/info/contact-aggregation features look like the start of something amazing.

If it had an SD socket, that'd be enough reason for me to consider it - a big oversight by both Apple and Palm to restrict consumer's ability to plug in flash storage from Digital Cameras or which can conveniently contain GPS Maps / Music / Vidz / Docs that you don't necessarily want to saturate the on-board storage with.

The market needs something like this, to keep innovation ticking over and for other manufacturers to realise how important the OS is in delivering a compelling consumer device.


March 13, 2009, 5:45 pm

Brilliant news!

I was shuddering at the thought of having to sign a contract with the money leaching corporate monster that is Vodafone. I promised myself i'd never go back to them after I experienced the worst customer service with them for a year.

O2 are far more user friendly, in my experience and more willing to do a deal with you.

I bet Apple are a bit miffed with them for selling their main competitors handset! Has O2 already sighned the supply contract for the iPhone 3.0?


March 13, 2009, 7:56 pm

Quote: I bet Apple are a bit miffed with them for selling their main competitors handset! Has O2 already sighned the supply contract for the iPhone 3.0?

Not sure I agree, O2 are already selling the vast majority of the competitor models - XDAs, Nokia N's etc.

Though I would agree with you on O2 vs Voda - best decision I have made switching over to them, through to support in a couple of minutes everytime I have rung them for help (mainly due to the account setup and number porting rather than problems - just systems needed to catchup for web logins and mobile internet onto BT Openzone) - Voda - took me 1 hour 15 minutes of hold to get through to cancel my contract and get my PAC


March 13, 2009, 8:03 pm

sign me up! im on O2 right now and my contract ends in june.... ill take a pre please! screw the iphone!


March 14, 2009, 1:04 am

From Baileys: "Lack of 'proper', 'hit the metal' SDK"

Sorry to be a numpty but can someone explain what this means, please? I quite fancy the Pre - tho I'm not sure about the slide-down keyboard instead of slide-out - maybe enough to move from tmobile as long as its not to vodafone. I'd rather it went on general release tho - not a fan of these anticompetitive tie-ups.

PaulW 1

March 21, 2009, 3:40 am

From a report in the Wall Street Journal on an analysts call with Palm Chief Ex Ed Colligan:

"While Palm still doesn't have a European partner for the Pre, Colligan said he sees a lot of good options overseas."



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