The iPhone looks set to make a big impression when it launches in Europe.

A pair of Europe/UK surveys published today reveal that almost half of Europe's iPod users participating in its 2,000-person pan-European survey by Canalys said that they are likely to consider Apple for their next mobile phone.

“Apple’s rating improves dramatically when you talk to existing iPod owners,” said Pete Cunningham, senior analyst at Canalys. “Almost half the respondents who owned an iPod rated Apple as likely to be considered for their next phone, compared to just 20 per cent for those who didn’t have an iPod, and they were five times as likely to give Apple the highest rating. There is a lot of loyalty that Apple can tap into.”

Canalsys asked respondents to assess how likely they would be to choose different mobile manufacturers. Nokia was clear first-place choice, followed by (in order): Sony Ericsson, Samsung and Motorola. Apple was in the mid-range, behind LG, but marginally ahead of well-known smart mobile device vendors like RIM, HP and Palm.

A second UK survey from Shiny Media says that even at its current price forcast, 25 per cent of people would be willing to switch their network provider to get their hands on an iPhone.

The survey also points out that 46 per cent of respondents would only purchase an iPhone if the price falls below £200. For many, the Nokia N95 is seen as the most threatening iPhone challenger.

Canalsys also found that mobile television and GPS navigation seem set to become major market catalysts. 51 per cent of those surveyed were interested in mobile TV, but demand a wide range of content. GPS navigation was desired by 62 per cent of consumers surveyed.