Apple iPad in the UK has gotten a lot more affordable. Orange, Three UK and T-Mobile each have announced a slew of new pricing options as well as contract plans that brings the iPad closer to affordability.
This pricing war was set in motion last month by Orange who announced that their iPad 3G-enabled models will now available at a price between £199 and £349. These customers also get some affordable data plans. Close on the heels of this announcement, T-Mobile has announced a plan similar to Orange, except that there is no Wi-Fi hotspot access that is available with the latter.
It is worth noting that both T-Mobile UK and Orange are now part of the same group. Three UK customers have been offered a new data plan that will give them 15GB of data at just £25 per month. Of course, all these plans are available only with new two year contracts.
Apple and its Android rivals have been treading a slightly different strategy when it comes to its distribution strategies. While the Samsung Galaxy Tab has been made available on most of the carriers of note, Apple has made the iPad available quite selectively.
Now with competition heating up and the launch of iPad 2 a few months away, it looks like Apple would be expanding its distribution reach. UK carrier 3 has just revealed that the carrier would be stocking the original iPad on its stores in the “coming months“. The company has indicated that both the Wi-Fi only model as well as the 3G-enabled model shall be put on sale though the exact launch date has not been revealed.
This should be interesting given that iPad 2 is speculated to launch in April this year. That would mean news about the launch could be announced at least a month before – in March perhaps. Any launch of the original iPad on 3 after this would bring little to no sale since the customers would rather want to wait and buy the newer model. Makes you think an early February launch is possible.
Orange UK has officially announced the data plans for iPad customers when the device goes on sale later this month. The network carrier has offered a “Pay as you use” service that begins at 5p for every MB consumed. This apart, there will also be daily, weekly and monthly plans on offer.
PAYG : 5p for every MB
iPad daily bundle : £2 with 200MB usage allowance
iPad weekly bundle : £7.5 with 1GB usage allowance
iPad monthly 15 bundle : £15 with 3GB usage allowance
iPad monthly 25 bundle : £25 with 10GB usage allowance
The iPad monthly bundles also come with “unlimited browsing” across BT OpenZone Wi-Fi hotspots. Of course, they come with a fair usage policy of 750MB. Also, all subscribers will be offered a £10 credit upon activation of any of the bundle plans.