Apple could double its iPhone sales if it ended its policy of exclusive contract with mobile service providers, according to analysts.
Morgan Stanley analyst, Kathryn Huberty, wrote in a research note that the Apple iPhone could more than double its share of the mobile market if Apple moved from exclusive carrier contracts and opened up to selling the iPhone through more carriers per country. Huberty set a $210 price target.
UBS Investment Research analyst Maynard Um seems to agree with Huberty and upgraded the technology company to Buy from Neutral and raised his target price on the shares to $265 from $170.
However, in the US, AT&T is still the exclusive carrier for the iPhone.
Apple's iPhone market share could rise to an average of 10 percent in the top six iPhone markets if it signed with multiple carriers compared to its present 4 percent, according to the report.
Huberty cites a 136 per cent increase in the iPhone's French market share after the überpopular smartphone became available from SFR and Bouygues Telecom after initially being limited to Orange.
This total opportunity is substantial, Huberty writes. It adds up to an incremental 20.3M iPhone units.
Dropping exclusive contracts has already begun with Vodaphone on Friday announcing it will start providing service for the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS in England and Ireland as of 2010.
This follows an agreement unveiled last week between Apple and Orange under which Orange, a part of France Telecom, will bring the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS to U.K. customers later this year.