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Russian carriers MTS and VimpelCom will resume selling the iPhone on October 25th, says Reuters. All three major local carriers -- the continuing holdout being Megafon -- stopped direct sales of the iPhone earlier this year, as they chose not renew their contracts with Apple. The Russian government doesn't allow cellphone subsidies, and given the high cost of the iPhone, that put the device out of reach for many people. Apple, meanwhile, was demanding strict sales volumes and marketing budgets.
All three major Russian phone carriers have stopped selling the iPhone at their stores, leaving people to buy from Apple directly, Svyaznoy outlets, or else the black/gray market, says Fortune. The last holdout was VimpleCom, whose Beeline brand severed its ties with Apple last week, replacing the iPhone 5 in its lineup with the Samsung Galaxy S4. Beeline blames the switch on "draconian [Apple] contracts" and "harsh conditions...especially in the marketing department." Previously, MTS CEO Andrei Dubovskov stated that "Apple wants operators to pay them huge money subsidizing iPhones and their promotion in Russia" when asked about his own company dropping the hardware.
Sony's Xperia T, which is also being called the Bond phone on account of its upcoming cameo in the Skyfall blockbuster flick, will arrive this November at various Canadian wireless providers, Sony announced on Wednesday. While a specific date hasn't been nailed down, Bell, Mobilicity, MTS, Rogers, and Videotron will begin carrying the phone in November. Pricing hasn't been revealed, but the associated contracts, as applicable will no doubt last three years and require data plans.
According to a report published by wireless carrier MTS, Apple's share of Russia's nascent smartphone market grew slightly the first quarter of 2012. The overall Russian smartphone market grew 10.1 percent by volume from the first quarter of 2011 with Samsung nearly doubling its share primarily at the expense of Nokia, with huge year-over-year gains.
Many Canadian wireless providers have began offering the newly announced iPhone 4S for pre-orders. We've summarized the prices for the various capacity models at each. The device is available in either black or white at all, and the prices are in Canadian dollars.
The Ukraine should finally receive the iPhone later this week, the Russian financial paper Kommersant is said to claim. Reports say that the phone will launch overnight between October 2nd and 3rd, and be carried by MTS, with the possibility of more sales through KievStar. This information has not been confirmed by Apple's distributor for the region, Pro Turbo Service, but the company does say it expects the phone to be released in the Ukraine before the end of the year.
The iPhone should go on sale in Russia October 3rd, Reuters reports. Nadezhda Senyuk, a PR director for Russia's Tekhnosila retail chain, explains that several retailers should begin selling the iPhone overnight between October 2nd and 3rd. Two other retailers, Eldorado and M.video, have confirmed Senyuk's statements by issuing separate announcements of an October 3rd sell date. Eldorado says it expects total iPhone sales in the country to reach 150,000 for 2008, out of which Eldorado hopes to claim 15,000.
Russia's top cellular carrier, Mobile TeleSystems, today announced it has successfully negotiated with Apple and will soon be offering the iPhone, according to the Associated Press. This confirms speculation that Apple would be making deals with all three major Russian carriers, as the company signed deals with Vimpelcom and MegaFon earlier this week.
Russia's third-largest telecom firm, Megafon, has announced that it has reached an agreement with Apple to carry the iPhone 3G, making it the second carrier in the country to offer the device. The company has not yet committed to any particular release date, but has announced in a statement that the iPhone will be available "later this year."
Russian telecoms firm VimpelCom today said it has struck an agreement with Apple to carry the iPhone 3G, making it the first carrier in the country officially set to offer the device. The telecoms firm follows the practices of earlier carrier announcements and doesn't commit to a particular release date, saying only that it would have the device "later this year."