Apple Inc.’s iPhone will go on sale in Britain on Nov. 9 have the O2 network as its exclusive carrier, Apple CEO Steve Jobs said Tuesday.
The 8-gigabyte model will sell for $536 (269 pounds), Jobs said at a news conference in London.
“We can’t wait to let people here get their hands on it and see if they love it as much as we do,” Jobs said.
Apple cut the price of the 8-gigabyte iPhone in the U.S. from $599 to $399 and discontinued the $499 4-gigabyte version. It apologized to those who had paid full price and offered $100 credits to early buyers.
Apple’s announcement in London was bound to spur speculation about further launches in Europe, though Jobs declined comment.
“We’re announcing the U.K. today. We’ve said we’ll be in a few countries in Europe next quarter. As we roll those out, I’m sure you’ll hear about it,” he said.
For months, rumors have circulated that Germany’s Deutsche Telekom AG has been in talks to carry the iPhone in Germany through its T-Mobile wireless unit, while Spain’s Telefonica — the parent of O2 — and France’s Orange have been touted as likely candidates to offer the device in Spain and France.
None of those companies has confirmed if they have even been in talks with Apple.
Cupertino, Calif.-based Apple announced last week that it had sold one million iPhones in the United States in 74 days after the combination cell phone-iPod went on sale there — and less than a week after its price was cut by a third.
Jobs said the iPhone was scoring higher on customer satisfaction than any previous Apple product, with more than 90 percent of buyers saying they were “very happy” and 85 percent saying they would enthusiastically recommend the phone to a friend.
He said Apple chose to team with O2 “because they were the best culture fit with Apple in the U.K.”
Asked about media reports that some British phone companies felt Apple had played them against each other, Jobs said: “You want to go on a few dates before you get married.”
“Yes, we dated a few people but we didn’t get married,” he said. “But we found one we wanted to get married to, and we did. So there’s a few upset girlfriends out there.”