3 Mobile Broadband
T-Mobile and Orange have been making puppy dog eyes at each other for ages now so it should come as no surprise to anyone that it was announced today that the two mobile networks are to officially merge. A big engagement party with streamers and delicious cake and everything was thrown in honour of the union (note: we made this bit up).
According to the Times Online, the merger has now been approved by the European Commission and will see rival mobile network 3 doing rather well out of the bargain as well.
The union of T-Mobile and Orange in the UK would have seen the super-networks’ customer base swell to some 30 million customers, which would leapfrog current market leader O2 and potentially stifle competition in the market. In order to allay regulatory fears, the UK’s smallest network 3 will be able to access 3,000 more T-Mobile masts, giving it greater 3G coverage.
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Posted by Tom on February 22nd 2010 in 3 Mobile Broadband, Mobile Broadband, Orange Broadband, T-Mobile
Illegal downloads are on the wane in the UK according to a survey results published yesterday on Music Ally. A survey of 1,000 UK music fans suggested that illegal downloads and file sharing of audio content had decreased to 17 per cent in January 2009 from 22 per cent in December 2007.
Music streaming sites such as Spotify and YouTube are said to have contributed to the decline in P2P and torrenting.
Paul Brindley, the CEO of Music Ally said, “File sharing is a moving target, so industry and Government policies need to recognise this. It’s already being somewhat displaced by other means of accessing music for free. Some are licensed [Spotify] and some involve a bit of both [YouTube]…
Kids find services like YouTube much more convenient for checking out new music than file sharing. But even YouTube can become a source of piracy with some kids ripping YouTube videos and turning them into free MP3 downloads”.
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Posted by Tom on July 14th 2009 in 3 Mobile Broadband, Be Broadband, BT Broadband, Demon Internet, Eclipse Internet, Orange Broadband, Sky Broadband, TalkTalk, Virgin Media
3 has just launched a new 30 day rolling SIM-only mobile broadband deal which costs £15 a month provides 5GB data, and access to the net at top speeds of 3.6Mbps.
This is perfect for those who don’t want to commit to a long-term contract, but will want to be able to connect at odd months throughout the year, and get better value for money that Pay As You Go. As with SIM-only plans seen on mobile phones, customer only need to give 30 days notice to cancel the contract, so there’s no long term obligation.
This SIM-only mobile broadband package can also be bought with a USB modem, for those who don’t have a spare dongle lying around. The Huawei MF627, E156g and E1550 are all available for £19.99 each.
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Posted by Tom on June 9th 2009 in 3 Mobile Broadband, O2 Broadband, Orange Broadband, Vodafone
Vodafone and O2 have agreed on a deal which will see the two mobile operators merging their mobile networks, in order to improve mobile phone reception across the country, and, more importantly, improve the availability and quality of mobile broadband services.
Matthew Key, chief executive of O2 owners Telefonica Europe said: “This goes some way to ‘future proofing’ the network,” adding that “the current economic situation was a catalyst.”
The merging of the networks will see the operators saving hundreds of millions of pounds over the next few years, and could, in theory, lead to the eventual rollout of mobile broadband services comparable to fixed-line connections in terms of speed and reliability, in accordance with Lord Carter’s Digital Britain proposals.
This follows in the footsteps of a deal done in December 2007 between 3 and T-Mobile. The two operators share HSDPA networks and are starting to decommission masts, with T-Mobile already noticing savings, costs, freeing up money that can be invested.
In Spain, a joint venture between Vodafone and Orange saw the two providers able to bring much faster services to rural areas, by reducing the number of base stations needed, thereby reducing the cost of running and maintenance.
Posted by Tom on March 20th 2009 in 3 Mobile Broadband, Mobile Broadband, O2 Broadband, Orange Broadband, T-Mobile, Vodafone
Virgin Media came out on top in a recent survey on mobile broadband products by independent consumer group Which? who tested each of the provider’s products to see if the much advertised plug and play aspect of mobile broadband set up really was as easy as that.
Providers were tested on usability, customer service, ease of set up, speed and connection, and how easy it was to cancel.
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Posted by Tom on March 10th 2009 in 3 Mobile Broadband, Mobile Broadband, O2 Broadband, Orange Broadband, T-Mobile, Virgin Media, Vodafone
Mobile operator 3 is the latest network to offer mobile broadband packages for small businesses.
The company’s small business arm, 3 Business, is to launch two new mobile broadband packages aimed at smaller players. The bundles will see data allowances increased to 5GB and 15GB, costing £15 and £30 a month respectively – a good deal greater than the previous 3GB and 7GB limits.
3 Mobile said that any small business that takes out an 18 to 24 month mobile broadband or phone package will also be able to buy a second connection for half the price.
Current 3 customers wanting to sign up to business mobile broadband will be given 50 per cent off line rental for the new plan.
“3 Business has always been focused on offering small businesses a wide range of communications options at the best possible price,” said Renato Bottini, head of 3 Business.
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Posted by Ellie on November 4th 2008 in 3 Mobile Broadband, Broadband, Mobile Broadband, O2 Broadband, Virgin Media
Mobile broadband packages which come with a ‘free’ laptop are set to become a must-have gift this Christmas, overtaking standalone dongles.
Consumers looking to save money or defer the cost of buying new technology are driving sales of mobile broadband pay monthly deals which include a laptop in the price. Networks and electronics retailers such as 3, Vodafone, Carphone Warehouse and PC World are offering free laptops or netbooks on certain mobile phone contracts usually lasting 18 to 24 months, and retailers have experienced a sharp increase in sales of free laptop deals in recent months, by as much as 23% of overall sales since July.
Mobile retailer Phones4U has reported considerable growth since it launched a ‘free’ laptop deal, predicting that such bundles will prove a popular choice this Christmas.
“Since launching laptop-broadband deals on Phones4u.co.uk, we have seen significant sales growth month-on-month and predict that laptop-broadband deals will be top-sellers this Christmas,” stated a Phones 4U spokesman.
A piece in The Guardian this week suggested that 3 and Vodafone currently offer the best deals on mobile broadband-laptop bundles.
However, though deals including a free laptop may seem like an inexpensive option in the run-up to a credit crunch Christmas, they are likely to cost you far more in the long run than if you bought a standalone dongle and laptop separately. The cost of laptops advertised as being ‘free’ is in fact spread over the length of the contract.
For example, a 24 month deal on Vodafone which comes with a ‘free’ Dell Inspiron Mini 9 ultraportable will set you back £25 a month, costing a total of £600 over the two years. Bought on its own, the Mini 9 will cost you around £300. Of course, you get the data contract as well, but with mobile broadband prices set to come down further in the coming months, you may well regret being tied down to a 2 year contract.
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Posted by Ellie on October 27th 2008 in 3 Mobile Broadband, Broadband, Carphone Warehouse, O2 Broadband, Orange Broadband, Vodafone
Mobile operators T-Mobile and 3 have signed a five-year agreement with BT to connect 7,500 of their base stations to BT‘s high speed next-generation broadband network.
The deal was struck between BT Wholesale and Mobile Broadband Network Ltd (MBNL), a joint venture between 3 and T-Mobile. Mobile Broadband Network was established to provide 98% of the UK with access to high-speed HSDPA mobile broadband by 2010, thus making it the largest network in the country.
Mobile phone providers are being urged to increase their data transmission speeds as more and more users make wider use of mobile broadband. This need for speed has been highlighted as part of the five-year plan. Rival mobile operator Vodafone already signed a similar deal in April, with O2 following suit last May. Orange is now the only major mobile operator in the UK without such a deal.
As part of the agreement, BT will lighten the load of the network operators by carrying data from their mobile broadband services over the newly planned fibre optic network. This is known as backhaul. The deal will be worth several hundred million pounds – a large and welcome boost to BT’s business arm, which has suffered from a recent drop of revenues as companies such as Carphone Warehouse have stopped using its products.
The technology director at T-Mobile UK, Emin Gurdenli said: “This agreement with BT will make sure backhaul is not a constraint now or in the future at a time when T-Mobile is experiencing strong growth in mobile broadband and other mobile data services.”
The release of the Apple 3G iPhone, Google’s G1 and other smartphones such as the N96 are fuelling the current popularity of mobile broadband. As demand further increases, mobile providers will need to make sure that the networks they control can handle the increased volume of data traffic.
The managing director from BT Wholesale Markets, Brian Fitzpatrick said: “BT now supports the base station connectivity requirements of four of the five mobile players in the UK market, bringing our economies of scale to a hugely important element of the communications marketplace.”
Posted by Ellie on October 7th 2008 in 3 Mobile Broadband, Broadband, BT Broadband, Carphone Warehouse, Mobile Broadband, Next Gen Broadband, O2 Broadband, Orange Broadband, T-Mobile, Vodafone
Gordon Brown has launched an internet watchdog to protect children from harmful online content such as violent video games and cyber bullying.
The Prime Minister said that the UK Council for Child Internet Safety, which aims to teach children about dangers on the web, target harmful internet content and establish a code of conduct for websites enabling user uploads, was a landmark in online child protection.
Speaking at the Science Museum in London last week, Brown said the internet offered children “a world of entertainment, opportunity and knowledge”. However, it was important to strike a balance between safety and internet freedoms.
“Just as we would not allow [children] to go out unsupervised in playgrounds or in youth clubs or in swimming pools, so we must put in place the measures we need to keep our children safe online,” he said.
Home Secretary Jacqui Smith, also at the launch, said: “We are determined to do all we can to ensure that the internet environment is safe for children to use.”
The council will be made up of representatives from over 100 organisations including social networking sites such as Facebook, technology firms such as Microsoft and Google, and mobile phone companies such as O2, Orange, T-Mobile and 3. They will come together to form a strategy that aims to establish a public awareness campaign, promote responsible advertising to children online, draw up voluntary codes of practice for websites and establish measures to protect children on the net, such as dismantling illegal sites.
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Posted by Ellie on October 6th 2008 in 3 Mobile Broadband, Broadband, Mobile Broadband, O2 Broadband, Orange Broadband, T-Mobile
It has been officially announced that rumours about leading UK mobile network and ADSL2+ providers O2 Broadband would bundling Apple MacBook laptops with their home broadband and mobile broadband products are nothing more than that.
An O2 spokeswoman confirmed that there are “no such plans to launch an Apple MacBook laptop offer,” and that the rumours are “untrue”.
Mobile network and broadband rivals Orange, T-Mobile, Vodafone, and 3 Mobile have all done well out of broadband and laptop bundle deals, and it was thought that O2 would want to get in on the action.
It was announced earlier this month that Carphone ISP TalkTalk would be giving away iPod Touches as part of a September prize draw, and as both O2 and the Carphone Warehouse have the exclusive right to sell the Apple iPhone in stores across the UK, and it was thought that O2 would want to work out a similar deal with regard to Apple products.
Internet rumour mongers put two and two together to make five, and, well, you know how these things happen.
Posted by Tom on September 30th 2008 in 3 Mobile Broadband, Carphone Warehouse, O2 Broadband, Orange Broadband, T-Mobile, TalkTalk, Vodafone
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