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MTS in Russia rumored in iPhone 3G deal

updated 12:40 pm EDT, Thu August 21, 2008

Russian iPhone 3G from MTS

Russia may be in line for the iPhone 3g via Mobile TeleSystems, according to claimed "market sources." Reuters is reporting that Apple has agreed with MTS on iPhone 3G distribution in Russia, with sales likely beginning in October. Both parties are declining comment, though Apple is also rumored to be close to a deal with the two remaining major carriers in Russia, Megafon and VimpelCom.

Prices and other details have not leaked out yet, but could be the final roadblocks to a deal; Russia's aging pricing schemes, which currently lack contract-based subsidies, have been blamed for the delay in the iPhone 3G's arrival in the country of 140 million people.

Apple chief Steve Jobs has said in an interview that he anticipates both Chinese and Russian iPhone deals before the end of 2008.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Guest

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Aging Pricing Schemes?

    Excuse me?

    We have the best pricing schemes around, especially when compared to the bizarre contracts in the US, which is the number one reason I never had a cell when I lived in the US.

    Russia is pure pay as you go. You only pay for the amount that you use. There is no such thing as monthly minutes or weekend or evening minutes.

    I usually pay a hefty amount upfront, especially when I travel outside of the country, and then just forget about it. I put money on my phone in late June and probably won't have to put money on again until next year.

    Also, there is a very robust second hand market for phones here. I was able to sell my used Nokia N72 for close to $200 and a used iPhone I purchased in the US for $500, more than twice what I paid for it.

    Because there are no contracts and because you can put any SIM card into almost any phone and have it work, you can upgrade your phone whenever you want and make some money on the secondhand market.

    The service and hardware are totally divorced from one another, which is how it should be. I would rather pay $500-$600 for a new phone and actually own it.

    My service provider, Megafon, couldn't care less what phone I use. And, the cell manufacturers couldn't care less who my provider is.

    That is freedom of choice. The US should try it.

  1. ViktorCode

    Joined: Dec 1969



    "Russia is pure pay as you go"

    Actually there are plenty of monthly subscription plans in Russia. The contract and the phone subsidy is what isn't there, and you can drop your subscription any time you want.

    The real problem is the lack of any global 3G network in the country. MTS will have to magically produce one out of thin air before October, if rumors are true.

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