Tesco has yet to announce tariffs for the iPhone, but it is unlikely to provoke the much-anticipated price war now that O2's UK exclusivity has ended.
The retailer's iPhone offering, which it hopes to make available before Christmas in Tesco Phone Shops and online through Tesco Direct, is a joint venture with O2, so pricing is unlikely to be significantly lower.
Any competitive edge from Tesco Mobile is more likely to come from its airtime and text bundles, although data will be more attractive to business users and serious web users in the consumer market.
Hopes of competition-driven price cuts were dashed by mobile operator Orange earlier this month when it announced that tariffs would be similar to those of O2.
But Vodafone may still deliver on the promise of a price war when it makes the iPhone available early in 2010.
The remaining large mobile operators in the UK, T-Mobile and 3, have yet to announce if they will carry the iPhone.