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MetroPCS version of iPhone 'not imminent,' says T-Mobile CEO

After the official announcement of T-Mobile's merger with MetroPCS, pundits in the tech community assumed the no-contract carrier would be granted access to the iPhone, but T-Mobile CEO John Legere warned subscribers will have to wait before such an offering is established.

T-Mobile MetroPCS

In an interview with AllThingsD, Legere cautioned that an iPhone for MetroPCS is not a given, saying the timing of such a launch will have to fall in with the newly expanded company's branding plans. For T-Mobile, the MetroPCS deal opens the door to an additional 9 million addressable subscribers to which an iPhone can be marketed.

"“The answer to that is not ‘No’,” Legere said, referring to the iPhone on MetroPCS. “It’s not imminent; I think that’s safe to say.”

Also impacting whether the Apple handset will be expanded to the smaller carrier is marketing. T-Mobile has yet to decide where it wants to place the iPhone in regard to the scheme of its current offerings.

“It’s also something that involves Apple,” Legere said, adding that “we’ve started those dialogues with our partners.”

All hope is not lost, however, as T-Mobile is said to be introducing a variety of MetroPCS-branded handsets that run on its network, a move that will help minimize unwieldy spectrum changes.

“This is about customer migration, not network integration,” Legere said.

The statement bodes well for a future MetroPCS iPhone, though the exact timeline remains murky.

Most recently, T-Mobile launched its "uncarrier" campaign, which takes an aggressive stance on product pricing with by adopting a no-contract standard. The new model, which does away with carrier subsidies in return for lower monthly fees, debuted alongside the telecom's first iPhone sales in April.