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RUMOUR: DiGi to offer iPhone 4 in second half 2010

(Update 20072010 1738hrs) Looks like our predictions are correct. BREAKING: DiGi opens pre-order for iPhone 4.

Immediately after the iPhone 4 was revealed at WWDC10, Maxis has announced that it will launch the device within the third quarter of this year.

Now sources deep within DiGi are throwing around the possibility of them launching the iPhone 4 in the second half of 2010.

We have to make it very clear that this is just a rumour. DiGi has yet to release any official word on this but there’s compeling evidence to say that this rumour could very well be true. We’ve pointed out DiGi’s CEO saying that DiGi are key partners with Apple and that DiGi fully understands that its subscribers expect to get the latest devices. So there might be some weight in this rumour.

There’s a whole six months in the second half of 2010 and that’s a big time window for things to happen. Based on the information we have, we can narrow down DiGi’s iPhone 4 launch to within a couple of months within the third quarter of 2010.

We know that it is almost certainly not going to be July. Here’s why, in his keynote Jobs stated that the first shipments of the iPhone 4 in June 24 is going to five countries with Japan being the only Asian receipient. In July 2010, the second batch of iPhone 4 shipments will go to an additional 18 countries of which will be Singapore, Hong Kong and Australia. So, July is almost definitely out of the question for a Malaysian iPhone 4 launch.

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Jobs mentioned in his keynote that 24 more markets will open for the iPhone 4 in August and an additional 88 in September. That leaves August and September as probable launch windows for DiGi and Maxis to launch the iPhone 4. So when will it be?

In our previous post, we toyed around with the possibility of DiGi and Maxis launching the iPhone 4 together. Although this can be done, we thought that this might be very unlikely based on the past iPhone launches in other countries.

But we might be wrong because fresh off the iPhone 4 announcement in WWDC10, six telcos in two countries have confirmed availability in June and July (specifically three telcos in UK in June and another three telcos in Canada in July).

So we’re not rulling out a simultaneous iPhone 4 launch here in Malaysia, but we’re still not holding our breaths.

Now, back to August and September. We predicted that the iPhone 4 could be here as early as August and we’re gravitating towards that. Reason being? The fasting month. Ramadhan will hit sometime around 9-10 August. And if we know PR, everyone will want to clear out events before Ramadhan, which is usually a quite month with less promotions and launches (a part from Hari raya deals etc.).

On the other hand, launches during the Ramadhan month is not uncommon but considering the scale of previous iPhone launches here, Maxis and DiGi would want to get it over and done with before everyone starts fasting. They will want to do a big launch party with a strong pre-launch campaign to tap into the power of social media.

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What if Maxis and DiGi miss August? Well, then that leaves us with September which we think is not looking like a good month. You have to take into account that the market would have already spent their money on Hari Raya festivities and the telcos could only do a launch ever at the third week of September (because Raya holidays, which will start around 10-11 September, will take a week off the month).

Add to that the fact that the telcos would want to launch the iPhone 4 as soon as possible and the fact that it’s always nice to have a new phone to show off to friends and family during the festive period; so we’re putting our money on a very likely August launch for the iPhone 4 in Malaysia.

Will it be a simultaneous launch for both Maxis and DiGi? We’re 50-50 on that. It might be it might not, that’s up to the telcos to work out. Because they know, the one that comes late to the iPhone 4 party will have a hell of a lot to lose.

The good thing, at the end of the day, it’s us – the consumer – that’s going to win big.

So what do you think? When will the iPhone 4 launch in Malaysia?