The end of the iPhone's exclusivity to certain mobile carriers has, predictably, led directly to a massive boost in sales of the handset across Europe.

The opening up and widening of Apple's iPhone distribution network in the UK and Europe has boosted Apple's value market share to 32 per cent in the latest quarter from 21 per cent just three months earlier, according to the latest research from Bernstein.

Non-exclusive profit

An impressive 600,000 iPhone handsets were sold during Q3 2009 in France alone.

"The expansion of iPhone distribution has clearly benefited Apple, helping it to more than double sales in three months," said Pierre Ferragu, analyst at Bernstein, adding that Apple's gain happened at the expense of Research In Motion Ltd.'s BlackBerry.

France is now the biggest market for the iPhone in Europe, said Carolina Milanesi, according to the mobile device division of analysts Gartner.

"Exclusivity in France ended in April. Our numbers show that shelf share tripled and market share doubled quarter on quarter," said Strategy Analytics analyst Neil Mawston.

"Given that the U.K. market is pretty similar and the brand strong there, yes, you can extrapolate that," he added.

There is still one question that potential European iPhone buyers need answering though. Should they buy a 3G or a 3GS!?

Over in the US, AT&T continues to be the exclusive mobile carrier to offer Americans the iPhone.

Via Electronista