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Free launches French mobile service
11 January 2012
Xavier Niel’s start up venture’s new services is aimed at breaking incumbency in French mobile sector
Free Mobile has introduced a new service that offers unlimited texts and calls within France as well as data for €19.99 a month. The bundle also includes calls to 40 European and North American countries, according to the Financial Times.
Free’s founder Xavier Niel recently stated that his venture is aimed at breaking the dominance of France Telecom, Bouygues Telecom and Vivendi’s SFR unit in the French mobile market. He believes that the new low priced service will hit the market positions of the incumbent operators.
Free’s new service is cheap compared to other operators’ low cost services, including that of France Telecom’s SoSh service which offers a similar service for €49.40, the FT reports. Experts, however, have pointed out that Free’s parent firm Iliad is smaller than the major operators in France and have cautioned that Iliad should be prepared for the expected demands for the service.
Free is planning to open only a few shops and intends to focus on internet sales, according to the FT. Niel has said that the operator will include one more service which will allow users to get 60 SMSs and 60 call minutes per month for just €2, the report added. GTB
Further reading from Global Telecoms Business:
Four bid for French 4G licences 16 Dec 2011
France rejects move to block 4G auction 08 Sep 2011
Iliad challenges French 4G auction terms 25 Aug 2011
Iliad and France Telecom sign 3G roaming deal 04 Mar 2011
SFR invests €1.5bn in network expansion 09 Jul 2010