O2: Apple iPhone ‘the fastest-selling device we have ever seen’

“Peter Erskine, the chief executive of the mobile group, which is Apple’s chosen network partner in the UK, said: ‘It has been the fastest-selling device we have ever seen,'” Elizabeth Judge reports for The Times Online.

“The phone had sold ‘in the tens of thousands’ since its launch on Friday, he said,” Judge reports.

“Two thirds of customers buying the iPhone were new customers to O2, Mr Erskine said, although he refused to detail from which networks they had come,” Judge reports.

“However the refusal of both O2 and Carphone, the only independent retailer to sell the phone, to reveal exact sales figures, has raised speculation that the gadget — a combined iPod music player, mobile phone and internet browser — is not living up to expectations,” Judge reports.

Full article here.

It’s deja vu all over again. How ’bout waiting more than two seconds for the sales figures and you’ll get them? Why jump head first into the negative speculation? Imagine if someone suggested that both O2 and Carphone were refusing to reveal exact sales figures in order to preserve competitive advantages against rivals? The shock of a positive leap into the unknown might be too much for some people to handle.

Listen, we’ve already seen the whole series in the US: iPhone doesn’t have 3G, it has a built-in battery, “only” a 2-megapixel camera, people lined up at launch, some say the lines were long, some say the lines were short, Apple sells millions of iPhones regardless of what people say and write. We know how it all turns out. We really don’t need to sit through the UK reruns (even though we know we’ll be forced to do so).


  1. The people reading these words are more technologically literate and consume more technology news that average people.

    The real story here is not about us, but about how everyday average people react when they hold that device in their hand. This thing is like magic to them and it makes every other phone look inept.

  2. Whilst I agree that the British media loves to pour scorn, and that the stages of “dismissal”. “adulation”, “indifference”, “amazement” “envy” and “scepticism” appear to be following the same pattern as in the US, I would venture to suggest that it doesn’t actually matter whether the iPhone reaches some short term predicted ‘target”.

    This is a very different market to computers or even mp3 players, and although Apple have once again turned a market on its head with a product that both raises the technical bar and alters the existing sales model mindset, they have to follow a very different marketing and product development approach from that which they have been used to.

    Whether it’s the number of competitive companies out there, the sheer scale and number of competitive phone offerings, the price manipulation that goes on constantly, or the amount of Marketing £s these companies have, Apple are entering a highly competitive arena.

    The key to their success for me is not whether they sell 100,000 in the first week or 70,000; it’s what they do in a year and beyond; what will be in the iPhone range they develop, what different points of price entry they have, what consumer incentives they can give and above all how they will continue to innovate.

    I think Apple can do all this (even in a hostile economic environment which I think we are all about to suffer), but breathlessly following the hype week after week isn’t what this market and this busines and, yes, this brand is all about.

  3. I agree, I’m one of those UK iPhone owners and I think Apple needs tom play hardball in the mobile phone business.

    Firstly, Apple needs to make a range of iPhone for different price points and markets.

    For example, an iPhone Nano with basic functionality (no google maps or visual voicemail maybe) that is a very low price and that will be sold unlocked for £99.

    This would apeal to the teenagers to under 25’s market who want the best gadgets at a low price.

    Then there could be the iPhone Maxi, a top of the range device with multiple user video conferencing (iChat), 3G and connectivity to windows mail servers etc.

    It will be interesting how this develops, and as a new UK iPhone user I cant wait.

    The iPhone has so many exciting possibilites…

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