Reports in the Austrian press suggest that the country’s former monopoly telco, Telekom Austria, is set to axe up to 1,700 jobs from its domestic fixed line business which has been suffering as customers switch from wireline to mobile communications. A report from Dow Jones quotes local newspaper Die Presse which says the job cuts will occur over the next 18 months, with around 1,000 coming in 2008 and another 500-700 next year. The firm is hoping to reduce operating costs at the unit by EUR150 million (USD238 million) over the next two years, with EUR90 million of this coming from lower personnel costs. Telekom Austria’s fixed line division currently employs around 9,000 people.
Meanwhile, the telco has launched a combined fixed and mobile internet tariff, A1 Breitband Unlimited, which offers unlimited internet access via a home broadband connection or a portable device such as a laptop. The service costs EUR30 a month. Laptop users can connect to their fixed DSL connection via Wi-Fi while at home, with mobile connectivity coming via the HSPA 3.5G network of Telekom Austria’s cellular subsidiary Mobilkom.