Thursday, November 18, 2004

BT Launches Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) business

In what it described as its first major step to creating the world's first fully converged fixed-mobile service, BT launched its Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) business to the corporate market. The range of new BT mobile services includes a mobile Virtual Private Network service, Business Circle and Conference on Demand, as well as new tariffs to give large and small businesses greater freedom to structure prices according to their needs.

Building on the recent launch of BT-branded BlackBerry handhelds, BT is launching Business Circle, which enables businesses to better manage their communications costs through a mobile Virtual Private Network (VPN). This enables an employee's mobile device to become an extension of the switchboard, and means calls to company mobiles across the VPN are charged at reduced prices. The new Conference on Demand facility is also now available, allowing conference calls to be managed via a mobile handset. BT will also announce soon that it is to offer its BT Mobile business customers the opportunity to experience BT Openzone Wireless Broadband for a reduced monthly fee.

BT will begin marketing and connecting business customers to its new mobile service. All business customers will be account-managed solely by BT, which will be responsible for all marketing, branding, billing and customer service. Network airtime and services will be provided by Vodafone UK, marking the beginning of its new strategic partnership with BT. BT Mobile will extend its service to the consumer market in January.

The announcement also marks the start of building BT's vision for converged services in the business and consumer markets, with plans to introduce a range of future services across fixed and wireless, voice and data networks.

Steven Evans, CEO of BT Mobile said "BT is uniquely placed to deliver a comprehensively-managed experience to business customers. We can draw on expertise in the fixed and mobile markets, as well as emerging mobility services such as Wi-Fi, and our experience of delivering IT and networking services to businesses of all sizes. BT Mobile will ultimately offer the world's first, fully-converged fixed-mobile service, seamlessly bringing together the advanced technologies and networks, whether that's broadband, wireless broadband or 3G."

See also