Germans will get bragging rights to owning the iPhone before UK customers this Friday. The Deutsche Telekom (NYSE: DT) store at Schildergasse in Cologne will open at 12.01am CET (1.01am GMT) to let customers buy the device on T-Mobile (via release). In the UK, O2, Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) and Carphone Warehouse stores will open at 6.02pm GMT – the companies are allowing two per customer but stressing (via emailed release) it’s strictly “first come, first served”.
In Cologne, what DT hopes will be queuing customers “will be provided with food and drink, as well as the necessary shelter from the midnight cold”. The device will be sold in some 700 DT shops (399 euros or £277 on a two-year contract) but it gets traction in around 1,200 UK spots thanks to the three-way retail deal (£269 on an 18-month contract with unlimited data and WiFi from £35pm). Carphone Warehouse expects to shift 10,000 units on launch day, O2 forecasts 200,000 sales over Christmas. Orange sells the iPhone in France from November 29.