O2 announces it will be the exclusive distributor of the Palm Pre smartphone when it hits the British market on Oct. 16.
Telef??nica Europe subsidiary O2 has announced the Palm Pre smartphone will be
available in the U.K.
starting Oct. 16 exclusively on the O2 network.
Palm Pre is free to O2 customers taking out a 24-month contract; for customers
taking a 24-month or 18-month contract, it will cost ???44.05 ($72.00) or ???73.41
($120.14) per month, respectively. The company said all customers will receive
data browsing over O2's HSDPA network and unlimited access to 7,500 Wi-Fi hot spots
through both The Cloud and BT Openzone, a network of Wi-Fi hot spots deployed
by British Telecom.
The Palm Pre will be sold with accessories such as the Palm Touchstone
charging dock, which allows connectionless charging of your Palm webOS phone.
The Touchstone is based on inductive technology inside the charging dock that
allows users to charge the handset without connecting a wire directly to it.
The Touchstone and back cover will retail at ???44.11 ($72.05), according to a
For businesses professionals, O2 said the Pre will be available on current
O2 business tariffs as a monthly bolt on, with the device available for free to
account holders on all business tariffs from ???30.91 ($50.58) on a 24- or
36-month contract. Business customers can receive the same benefits as existing
O2 business customers, including unlimited calls between O2 customers,
unlimited calls to 10 landlines, sharable minutes and texts between users, plus
multiuser billing and activation and free, 24/7 access to business customer
"There's a lot of excitement about Palm Pre in Europe
as we continue to expand Palm webOS products across new carriers and
countries," said Jon Rubinstein chairman and CEO
of Palm. "We look forward to launching Palm Pre with O2 so people in the U.K.
can see firsthand how Palm webOS offers a new and better smartphone
The Pre is Palm's first phone based on the company's webOS software, which
brings mobile applications together in an intuitive multitasking platform. Palm
webOS also introduces Palm Synergy, which brings users' information from the
many places it resides into a single view of their lives.
Ronan Dunne, CEO of Telefonica O2 UK,
said today's announcement reinforces O2's position as the home of the
smartphone. "With the addition of the excellent Palm Pre to our already
extensive portfolio, we will continue to offer our customers the widest range
of the very best devices on the market today," he said.
Nathan Eddy is Associate Editor, Midmarket, at eWEEK.com. Before joining eWEEK.com, Nate was a writer with ChannelWeb and he served as an editor at FierceMarkets. He is a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.