Spotted: Add another iPhone rumor to the list. The Financial Times is reporting that T-Mobile may end AT&T’s lock on the Apple iPhone later this year.
René Obermann, chief executive of T-Mobile USA’s German parent Deutsche Telekom, told the publication that the company is focusing on mobile Internet. And then there’s this sentence buried at the bottom:
The iPhone has provided AT&T with strong revenue growth, and T-Mobile USA is hoping to start selling the popular smartphone later this year or next year.
But are the two connected? Did Obermann really say during the FT interview that T-Mobile will offer the iPhone this year? It would seem that way based on how the story was written. But why bury this juicy nugget?
It could be that it’s because in Germany, T-Mobile sells the iPhone. So perhaps the German-based reporter didn’t think a direct quote from Obermann was crucial.
However, this isn’t the first time T-Mobile has appeared as a possible iPhone vendor. In December, Thomas Weisel analyst Doug Reid said he believed T-Mobile would be next and not Verizon Wireless, as others have long theorized. Why T-Mobile? ”Apple wants to move away from exclusivity; T-Mobile achieves this for Apple in the U.S.,” Reid wrote.
T-Mobile also uses the same wireless technology as AT&T so an iPhone doesn’t need a complete hardware overhaul to join the T-Mobile network.
I guess we’ll find out this fall whether there’s any truth to the story.
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