O2's fears about losing iPhone customers when the Palm Pre comes out could have vanished into thin air, following rumours in Spain that the mobile phone operator has signed the new smartphone exclusively.

According to Palm fan-site palminfocenter.com "Numerous Spanish media outlets are reporting today that Telefónica's Movistar will exclusively offer the Palm Pre in Spain, UK and Latin America".

While Moviestar isn't an operator in the UK, O2, also owned by Telefonica is suggesting the it could get Palm's "last hope" in time for disgruntled iPhone 1G users to switch to something else rather than having to leave the network.

If the rumours are true it will be a massive blow to Orange, Vodafone and T-Mobile who are still struggling to find an iPhone competitor. Vodafone currently has the BlackBerry Storm and yet to be released HTC Magic, while T-Mobile has the Android powered G1.

Shown off at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, the Palm Pre was used with a Vodafone SIM sparking rumours a deal had been done with the Newbury based operator, something which Vodafone and Palm have flatly denied.

We will keep you posted.