18 Sep 2013
Dutch multi-play cableco Ziggo has launched mobile voice/data services for consumers and businesses via a national mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) agreement with Vodafone Netherlands. As announced in the company’s press release, Ziggo Mobile is mainly targeting existing Ziggo cable customers, as packages are priced higher for other users, while it stresses the interoperability and data cost-savings available for mobile internet users via its extensive Wi-Fi hotspot network. The new mobile offers include two SIM-only subscription options for consumers and two for business clients. The cheapest consumer subscription is available from EUR15 (USD20) per month (including VAT) including 300 minutes call time/text messages, 1GB data and unlimited access to the existing network of around one million Ziggo Wi-Fi hotspots for up to four devices. There is an introductory subscription for business clients from EUR20 (excluding VAT) with the same benefits plus 100 additional call minutes.
At the end of April this year Ziggo started to activate the Wi-Fi hotspot functionality on customers’ cable modems, with more than one million Ziggo Wi-Fi hotspots currently activated. Ziggo customers who have access to these hotspots only have to log in once (per device) whereafter their device (e.g. smartphone) automatically connects as soon as it comes into range.
TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database notes that in May 2012, Ziggo – the Netherlands’ leading cable operator by subscribers – launched a 4G LTE wireless network exclusively for business users, using its spectrum in the 2600MHz band in selected cities. However, the cableco opted not to extend its 2600MHz LTE services to the consumer segment, preferring instead to focus on the lucrative business sector, while it pulled out of the country’s December 2012 multi-band 4G frequency auction (bidding jointly with UPC) when the price was driven up too high. An existing consumer MVNO-based mobile broadband-only service provided by Ziggo in partnership with network operator KPN Mobile and mobile virtual network enabler (MVNE) Aspider is being shut down following a decision taken in July 2013, due to low take-up.