UK mobile operator Three has followed rivals Orange and T-Mobile in announcing it will shortly be offering Apple’s iPad on a contract basis.
In a statement almost identical to that issued by its rivals, Three said it would “offer new purchase options for iPad users, including more affordable prices when purchased with a data service plan, for iPad with Wi-Fi + 3G models in the coming months.”
Ahead of the iPad’s launch many consumers expected operators to offer the device on similar terms as traditional mobile phones. Apple instead offered it on an ‘unlocked’ basis with users able to chose and switch between networks offering data plans.
Unlike the current daily and monthly plans, consumers signing up for the “more affordable” iPads are likely to have to enter longterm contracts.
With a new iPad due next year, buyers could find themselves tied to an old model within weeks or months of committing themselves to a two-year data plan.
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