IPhone fever is mounting after confirmation from Apple's exclusive mobile phone partner in the UK and Ireland that a joint announcement will be made "in the coming weeks".
Speaking at the announcement of O2's first-quarter results, Matthew Key, chairman and chief executive of O2-owner Telefónica Europe, refused to give an exact availability date for the 3G iPhone.
"That's more of a question for Apple," he said. "But over the coming weeks we will do a joint announcement with Apple as Telefónica Group."
O2 has an exclusive multi-year contract with Apple to sell the iPhone in the UK and Ireland, and recently sold out of the current 8GB version after cutting the price in preparation for the arrival of the 3G version.
O2 added 206,000 new contract customers over the first three months of the year, a "significant number" of whom are understood to have bought an iPhone.
"This was driven by iPhone and strong 'traditional handset' connections, and excludes connections to the O2 UK mobile broadband offer launched in April," said Key.
Apple chief executive Steve Jobs is widely expected to take the wraps off the much-hyped 3G iPhone during his keynote speech at the Worldwide Developers Conference on 9 June.
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