Free Mobile still making waves in French telecoms market

26 Sep 2012

The Vivendi-owned French alternative operator SFR has revealed that it will now be offering its TV Evolution package of video services as a standard part of its fibre and ADSL fixed broadband offerings. According to a report from Digital TV Europe, TV Evolution will be offered alongside high speed internet access and voice telephony services in the ‘Box de SFR’ bundle at a cost of EUR29.99 (USD38.77) per month. TV Evolution includes live TV, DVR, on-demand TV and games-on-demand, with a 250GB hard disk. The move is seen as a response to the increased competition in the French telecoms market since low-cost operator Iliad launched its Free Mobile service at the start of this year. Iliad/Free now offers quad-play packages of voice, data, TV and mobile services. SFR announced this week that it was bringing forward its launch of Long Term Evolution (LTE) 4G wireless services, which has been seen as another move to head off the growing competition from Iliad.

Separately, the French retail group Carrefour is dropping its mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) service Carrefour Mobile, with its several thousand customers being transferred to network partner Orange France. A report from Pre-paid MVNO, which cites local newspaper La Tribune, says the arrival of Free Mobile in January this year has been a blow for smaller MVNOs such as Carrefour. The retailer will continue to market mobile services at its 4,500 outlets across France, but this will be done under a brand licensing agreement with Orange rather than as a fully fledged MVNO.

France, SFR, Iliad (Free), Free Mobile (Iliad),

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