Orange iPhone vs O2 iPhone: Better 3G and lower prices?

O2's exclusive deal to flog Apple's iPhone got a gunshot to the face this morning. Orange has officially confirmed it will be offering the iPhone 3GS online and in its stores later this year

O2's exclusivity on Apple's iPhone got a gunshot to the face this morning. Orange has officially confirmed it will be offering the iPhone 3GS online and in its stores later this year.

Prices, tariffs and availability dates are yet to be announced. But Orange has launched a Web site for people to register their interest in the meantime, at orange.co.uk/iPhone.

Earlier this year, Ofcom published a ' UK 3G coverage map ', which highlighted the poor reach of O2's high-speed data network. In fact, last year it even warned the network its 3G licence could be revoked if it didn't sort it out.

Here's what O2's coverage looks like:

O2

In comparison, here's what Orange's 3G network looks like:

Orange

But regardless of how much better Orange's 3G network is, by far the most promising potential outcome of the deal is that competition between the two networks could force prices towards the direction of your feet. We're looking forward to seeing how, or if, O2's pricing changes over the coming weeks.

Are you excited at the prospect of having an iPhone on Orange? Let us know in the comments.

Update:O2 has responded to the Orange announcement on its blog.

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