Vodafone achieve early hit with iPhone, Nexus One bombs

Having gritted its teeth in anguish for many months, Vodafone is making much of the 50,000 iPhones it has shipped to pre-registered customers on the first day of launch in the UK. This figure outstrips the 30,000 that rival operator Orange claimed it sold on its first day of selling the phone.

The company claims this level of uptake is down to the quality of its 3G network having spent the last 12 months preparing it for the launch of the Apple handset. This - at least currently - could help Vodafone steal iPhone subscribers from O2 which has had very public difficulties with its 3G network becoming overloaded with iPhone-generated data traffic.

Apart from Vodafone's network quality claims, its iPhone offer looks very similar to what is already available from O2 and Orange. However, Vodafone does provide slightly more minutes and text messages within its contract, but then caps 3G internet access to 1Gigabyte per month.

Meanwhile, the much-hyped Nexus One has been rubbished by complaints from users after only being available for one week. The device, which is reported to have only shipped 20,000 units worldwide, has been criticised for having an unresponsive touchscreen, 3G connection problems, terrible customer support and extravagant fees.

T-Mobile is said to be offering early adopters a €100 refund to any customer who bought it at the €380 price tag, and has also dropped the selling price of the Google handset.

The Nexus One is being priced by Vodafone Germany at €150 with a two year contract, similar to the Nokia N97 and LG BL40 Chocolate, with the Motorola Milestone being available at just €99.

Commenting on issues encountered in the US, Andy Rubin, VP in charge of Google's Android technology, said that his company must and will improve on customer service. "The first goal is moving from average response time to customer service e-mails from three days to hours."

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