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iPhone 4 is now free on Orange UK £50/month

Orange have re-jigged their iPhone pricing strategy making the device range much more accessible.

Most members of the UK public come out in spots when they’re told they have to pay for a phone.  It’s because we’ve had a decade or so of free goodies from the mobile operators in return for long term contract commitment.

I can always spot the surprised customer standing in a Carphone Warehouse store wondering why despite agreeing to a 24-month contract, they still have to stump up cold, hard cash for their Jesus Phone.

Today, Orange has made it a little easier.  You can now pick up an iPhone 4 16GB on a 24-month £50/month contract entirely free.

Free.

Yes you’re committing to pay £50 x 24.  But nobody cares.  Nobody cares as long as the phone is free.

So I predict that Orange will begin to sell a lot more at that price-point.  At the super-sweet spot of £35/month, the 16GB version still costs £119 — enough to dent the monthly budgets of most employees.

The company’s also brought their iPhone plan strategy into line with their wider pay-monthly pricing.  So if for example you agree to take less bundled minutes, you can qualify for a photo messaging bundle, Orange Maps & Navigation or more inclusive data.    That will appeal to many.

The key for me, though, is that the iPhone is now available at a heck of a lot more price points from £30-£75 and on 18 or 24 month price plans.

And if you’d like a top-of-the-range 32GB iPhone 4, stump up £75 per month and the phone will cost you a measly £29… The good news is that, at this price point, you aren’t billed for anything, basically.   Unlimited minutes, unlimited texts, 1GB data, 3GB tethering allowance, 20MB roaming data (per month, I think).  Again, that’s going to appeal to heavy users.

I’m sure we’ll see some updates from the other operators soon.

[My upgrade from 3GS to iPhone 4 with Orange was ridiculously simple.  I logged in online, the order process took perhaps 180 seconds and the iPhone arrived the next morning.  And the activation (swapping my 3GS sim to the iPhone 4 microsim) was painless.  I phoned the automatic activation line and boom, my iPhone was working within 15 minutes.]

Get thee to the Orange Online shop.

By Ewan

Ewan is Founder and Editor of Mobile Industry Review. He writes about a wide variety of industry issues and is usually active on Twitter most days. You can read more about him or reach him with these details.

3 replies on “iPhone 4 is now free on Orange UK £50/month”

This question is not directly linked to this story, but here goes. Do Orange, on the monthly bill, break down the “£50 a month” to show how much you pay for the phone and how much you are paying for the network service? Do any of the UK operators do this?

It is all well and good saying that it is £1200 over two years but surely no one believes that they have to pay £1200 for the phone! Also, is the phone yours at the end then? Sim lock removed upon last payment etc?

Or am I being too sensible?

I know that Three generally do this when you're deciding what you want in the online store. But after you've made your selection, I don't think it's separated out on the bill.

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