Maxis gets right to distribute iPhone 3G?

KUALA LUMPUR: The news is out - Maxis Communications Bhd is believed to be bringing in the second-generation iPhone to Malaysia for under RM1,000.

However, when contacted, Maxis declined comment on speculation that it will start offering the iPhone 3G at below RM1,000 to its 10 million customers in Malaysia soon.

It has been speculated in the industry for sometime now that Maxis has been bidding for the first rights from Apple Inc to bring the iPhone to Malaysia.

So it did not come as much of surprise when online newsportal Malaysian Insider reported that Maxis will offer the iPhone 3G in Malaysia at a competitive price below RM1,000.

When asked by The Edge Financial Daily in April if the telco planned to bring the iPhone here, Maxis chief executive officer Sandip Das had said Maxis had no plan at that time to bring in the phone as Apple had not decided on its Asian distribution policy.

The scenario has changed since then, as last month Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel) told Reuters that it would bring the iPhone 3G to Singapore later this year.

In May, it said its associates Bharti Airtel Ltd, Globe Telecom Inc and its Australian subsidiary Optus would bring the iPhone to India, Australia and the Philippines by year-end.

If the speculation proves true, Maxis timing couldnt be more perfect. The telco, which already has a strong postpaid user base, will gain an even bigger edge over rivals Celcom (Malaysia) Bhd, DiGi.Com Bhd and newcomer U Mobile Sdn Bhd, especially if mobile number portability (MNP) takes off in August as planned. However, the implementation of MNP may be delayed.

With the telcos fighting tooth and nail to retain their customer base and win new ones, securing the rights to bring the elusive iPhone to local shores will be the perfect lure for mobile users to switch service providers.This is because MNP allows mobile users to retain their mobile phone numbers even when they move from one service provider to another.

The iPhone 3G models are third-generation (3G)-equipped and offer a host of new applications and smart phone-like features such as visual voicemail, global positioning system software to facilitate location-based services and push email, incidentally a signature feature of the Blackberry.

Incidentally, Maxis and Celcom are known for their Blackberry packages for postpaid users. If Maxis successfully introduces the iPhone on local shores, this would allow it access to a wider business user segment.

The new iPhone models began selling in the US market at US$199 (for a 8-gigabyte model) and US$299 (for a 16-gigabyte model) starting Friday. Thats roughly half the price of the original eight-gigabyte iPhone, which debuted in the US last June at US$600 (RM1,962).

The iPhone 3G went on sale in a total of 22 countries on Friday, including the US, Japan and Australia. According to foreign news reports said the iPhone would be sold in 70 countries by year-end.


Wow, if this really come official, this is indeed a big good news for those who have wait for genuine & official iPhone. Say sayonara to jailbreak.

Looking forward till it officially launch. :smiley:

Darn, was hoping it’d be open, like in OZ.

It is possible this rumor was produced to boost Maxis stocks. :wink: