Deutsche Telekom (NYSE: DT), which may find itself in a pickle with its U.S. operator T-Mobile USA if AT&T (NYSE: T) acquisition gets blocked — and still cannot offer the iPhone on its U.S. network — got a little sweet burst of breathless hype on its home turf when it emerged that the operator has today started to take some pre-orders of the as-yet unannounced next iPhone.
According to a report in Bloomberg with confirmation from a spokesperson, and a second in the German magazine Focus (first spotted by 9to5Mac), Deutsche Telekom in Germany is offering customers a kind of reservation for the next generation of the iPhone.
It sounds like the offer is part of a scheme called “premieren ticket”, which has its own site, and may have in the past featured other kinds of early-doors promotional offers to users. Now that site links to a page that helps users find the latest T-Mobile retail store.
According to the Bloomberg and Focus stories, this reservation is offered to users — one per customer — when they contact the company either at the end of a contract or if they are new to the network, and cannot be convinced to buy current models of the device, the iPhone 3GS or the iPhone 4. At the moment, T-Mobile in Germany is offering big discounts on the iPhone 4.
With so many scrambling to figure out what, where and when the new smartphone from Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) might hit the market, every shred of an iPhone story seems to merit some kind of examination — witness the bargate around the iPhone last week. This T-Mobile story is no different. There are absolutely no details on when the device might come out, what it will be called, and certainly nothing else. It’s unclear even if Apple had any involvement with T-Mobile in the promotion.
But it is an interesting coincidence that the story is originating in Germany. It comes at the same time that all eyes are on country as the site of Europe’s biggest tech trade show, the IFA in Berlin.
But it is perhaps also not a coincidence that while Apple has yet to announce any direct news of its own new devices, it has been working very hard to make sure that rival Samsung cannot distribute those that compete with them — most recently by succeeding in getting an injunction on the selling or promotion of the new 7.7-inch Galaxy Tab tablet at the IFA show.