All three major Russian carriers drop the iPhone

We posted recently on the largest Russian carrier MTS dropping the iPhone in favour of promoting Windows Phone, and now it has emerged that the other two, MegaFon and VimpelCom, have also stopped promoting phones from the Cupertino company.

The decision is blamed on “harsh” marketing requirements by Apple which often meant carriers lost money on selling the handset.

Vimpelcom’s Beeline is rumoured to have made a deal with Samsung to promote their handsets instead, but the carrier does still sell a range of Windows Phones which will likely equally benefit from the absence of the iPhone. 

In Russia Windows Phone is poised to overtake the iPhone in market share, rising from 5.1% last year to 8.2%, according to the IDC, while Apple dropped from 9% to 8.3%. Around 80% of handsets are sold through Russian carrier stores.

Around 4.5% of MTS Ukraine’s smartphone subscribers already use Windows Phones, up 119% from a year ago, and with all phones being sold unsubsidized in the region I expect the good value for money Windows Phones offer will only lead to more growth there.

Via, thanks Jobo and JamesSB for the tip.