BUBBLY MOBILE OPERATOR O2 has become the first mobile network to reveal pay monthly pricing for the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C handsets.
O2 had already said that it will be offering both handsets from 20 September, with iPhone 5C pre-orders set to begin on 13 September. The firm has now spilled the beans on the new Apple smartphones' pay monthly pricing. Those faint of heart might want to close this page now.
With SIM-free prices starting from £549, we expected the iPhone 5S to be a tad more expensive than its predecessor. However, we weren't expecting it to be quite this expensive, as O2 has revealed that pricing for the 16GB model on its O2 Refresh tariffs will start from £119.99 when picked up with a 24 month contract costing £37 per month - and that won't even get you 4G access.
For LTE, you'll need to sign up to a two year long £47 per month contract instead, which comes with unlimited texts, unlimited minutes and 5GB of monthly data.
However, interestingly, O2 has revealed that iPhone 5S and 5C buyers won't have access to its 4G LTE network immediately, saying this will be switched on when new settings are sent by Apple. However, those who pick up a handset on a 4G contract at launch will save £5 on their bill.
The iPhone 5C's pricing isn't much cheaper, despite speculation ahead of its launch claiming it would be the company's first "affordable iPhone".
On a 3G-only contract with O2, the iPhone 5C will cost £29.99 on a £32 a month contract, while those after a 4G tariff will have to hand over £99.99 and sign up to a pricey £42 contract.
It's not all bad news, though. Like EE, O2 offers customers the chance to upgrade their smartphones mid-contract, so it could be a good option for those who will want to upgrade to next year's new Apple iPhone.
What's more, O2 is yet to announce its full tariff lineup with the firm only revealing O2 Refesh pricing, so it's possible that there could be some cheaper contracts available at launch. The firm also has its own smartphone trade-in programme, so customers could bag up to £280 by handing over their old device.
Check out our iPhone 5C price, release date and where to buy roundup. µ