Following hot on the heals of the announcement that Vodafone is dropping Carphone Warehouse from selling its mobile phone contracts, rumours are gathering pace on the Internet that Orange is about to follow suit.

According to reports online, the mobile phone operator said it was reviewing its "indirect sale strategy" as fears grew for the future of independent mobile retailers who could be forced to lower commissions as operators look to lower costs.

A spokesman told the Scotsman newspaper: "Our relationship both with Carphone Warehouse and Phones4u remains unchanged. However, since our indirect distribution costs have gone up significantly over the last few years, we are in the process of reviewing our independent strategy for 2007".

Vodafone rival and The Link owner O2, plans to stick with the Carphone Warehouse for now.

A spokesperson for the mobile service provider told Pocket-lint: "We have a really good relationship with the Carphone Warehouse and we're going to continue working with them closely".

We will keep you posted.