Looks as thought 12 month Pay Monthly contracts are going to be mandatory from this May onwards. The introduction of a new EU law brought in under Ofcom will see the networks forced to offer 12 month contracts.
Current smartphone owners are more often than not bound to 24 month contracts, forcing them to upgrade to the latest handset every two years. Under the new 12 month offerings those desperate for the latest gear will be able to get a new handset each year.
This could prove incredibly popular with iPhone owners, who typically have to 'skip' a generation as they often miss out on upgrades. Signing up for a 12 month iPhone contract could see you getting a new one every year.
There's no word on how this will affect pricing just yet. It's likely that mobile networks will compensate for the lack of lengthy contracts however by raising monthly fees and handset prices.
Tesco Mobile, an MVNO that uses O2's network, is currently selling the iPhone 4 on 12 month plans which start at £25 a month.
The new laws will also see that operators make it totally clear what tariffs are available to customers and that control notifications will be given if bills exceed their limit.
Source: Know Your Mobile