Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Rumours lead to false hope of a BT and o2 MVNO – United Kingdom

Since selling its mobile network to o2, BT has made multiple attempts to succeed as an MVNO. The logic is that they have a substantial presence in the UK fixed line market, being the original monopoly holder, and that this should translate into fixed-mobile and triple-play business (multiple services from the one supplier).The reality is that consumer take up has been poor in response to each attempt.

Non-competitive pricing, a history of poor customer service, being too late for the gold rush and a lack of interest in fixed-mobile have all seen BT’s MVNO ventures fail (BT Fusion, BT Mobile).

Over the past week there has been industry speculation that BT would announce today their re-entry into the mobile market as an o2 MVNO. Fresh from BT’s newsroom is something else, non-MVNO. BT are going to work with o2 to allow the latter to sell fixed line services to enterprise markets using BT’s fixed line network. The statement made no mention of a mobile tie up, no MVNO.