IPhone Must Be Offered Without Contract Restrictions, German Court Rules
Posted in: Legal, Privacy & Security at 22/11/2007 09:44
Last month, French law forced Apple to promise that consumers could buy a version of its iPhone in this country without having to be locked into a long-term contract with Orange, the only mobile phone operator offering the new device.
Now, the same issue is tripping up Apple's plans to sell the music-playing cellphone in Germany, the largest European telephone market. Last week, the Vodafone Group won the first round of a legal case against T-Mobile over its exclusive deal to sell the iPhone there.
A German court ruled that T-Mobile must offer the iPhone to everyone, even without the 24-month contract that it had required for buyers of the phone, which went on sale in Germany for 399 euros ($591) on Nov. 9. T-Mobile is appealing the ruling.
Fresh blow for exclusive Apple iPhone strategy
iPhone's German partner caves in and opens the device to rival mobile networks after a legal challenge by Vodafone
Apple's iPhone strategy was dealt a fresh blow today when its exclusive partner in Germany -- Europe's largest market -- was forced to make the gadget available on rival networks.
T-Mobile said that it would, with immediate effect, make the phone accessible to other mobile operators.
The move followed a legal challenge by Vodafone which claimed that the exclusive deal -- under which customers were forced to sign up to a 24-month T-Mobile contract -- breached local competition laws.