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O2 Could Offer Unlock Codes To iPhone Customers

Leading UK telecom service provider O2 has yet to clarify whether it will allow its users to unlock their iPhone devices once their contracts with O2 expire.

Also with O2 also ceasing to be the only service provider offering the iPhone on its network in UK from the coming week, the issue of allowing its users to unlock their phones has become more pressing.

Though there is hardly any official word from the company, many analysts believe that company may just give the unlock codes to its parting subscribers thereby reducing the frustration of having to go through a long list of grievances.

The iPhone will be available in UK on both Vodafone and Orange networks in near future and the loss of exclusivity for O2 may come across as a major financial blow.

The Telefonica owned operator would still have an exclusive arrangement with Palm Pre which is all set to launch on 16th October and remains, even 10 months after its launch, one of iPhone's main rivals.

O2 believes that losing its exclusive arrangement is unlikely to affect is business by any great degree; its CEO, Ronan Dunne, said in an interview to The Guardian that they were not "an iPhone house", before adding that "we were a successful business before the iPhone, we have been a successful business with the iPhone and we will be a successful business after it goes multi”.

Our Comments

O2 has been quite courageous in the face of adversity. Losing the iPhone to two bitter rivals has certainly dealt a bitter blow to the company even if it doesn't display any sign of ill feeling. O2 knows that it is and still will be in Apple's plans because of the number of subscribers it has. But with Orange and Vodafone now ahead of it, it is no longer the preferred suitor it seems.

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Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.