02 drops cost of iPhone. Slow sales perhaps?

Amid rumours that the iPhone has not been selling as well as hoped in the UK, O2 has decided to make the packages for low and mid-tier iPhone owners somewhat cheaper. The £35 tariff customers will get up to three times as many free calls and text messages for the same price, while it is phasing out its existing £55 per month deal, moving customers to the equivalent £45 per month contract instead. The high-end tariff, costing £75, will give users 3,000 minutes and 500 texts. The £269 cost of the iPhone itself remains unchanged as does the 18 month contract. Meanwhile it appears that a million iPhones mysteriously missing from Apple’s sales figures are most likely to be handsets which are being shipped by the truck-load to Asia where they are unlocked. My own experince of meeting iPhone owners in the UK is that the handset is almost always unlocked, except where the bill is being paid for by their company. As most UK iPhone owners know, you can get better deals than the ones on offer from O2, hence the incentive to unlock the thing. In addition, the iPod Touch, now with its new productivity apps like email, is probably eating into iPhone sales as well, given that it comes without a contract.