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MVNO Monday: a guide to the week’s virtual operator developments

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4 May 2020

Three of the United States’ largest cablecos have reported strong 1Q20 subscriber additions at their MVNO units. Comcast Corporation has reported that its Xfinity Mobile MVNO subscriber base reached 2.267 million subscribers at 31 March 2020, up from 1.405 million one year earlier. Quarterly wireless revenues jumped 52.1% from USD225 million in 1Q19 to USD343 billion in 1Q20, the cable giant confirmed.

Charter Communications added 290,000 Spectrum Mobile lines in the first quarter, taking its wireless subscriber total to 1.372 million. Mobile revenues jumped 85% year-on-year from USD140 million in 1Q19 to USD258 million in the period under review.

Altice Mobile, meanwhile, has signed up 110,000 mobile subscribers since its commercial launch in September 2019, including 41,000 net additions in Q1. Altice Mobile generated revenue of USD18 million for the quarter.

Over in Ireland, 48 Months, the former O2 Ireland sub-brand that was inherited by Three Ireland following its 2014 takeover, has rebranded itself as 48. The youth-focused brand – which was first introduced in 2012 – has faced tough competition within the budget segment since the launch of GoMo by eir in October 2019.

Finally, Telefonica Brasil (Vivo) and deactivated MVNO Mais AD are set to face off in court over a dispute arising from the virtual player’s recent shutdown. According to TeleSintese, the MVNO – which is affiliated with the Brazilian arm of the Assembly of God church – has demanded BRL17 million (USD3 million) from Vivo, while the MNO believes that Mais AD owes it BRL2 million. The fees are understood to relate to subscriber transfer payments. As per the article, Vivo says that the MVNO served just 1,600 subscribers at the time of its shutdown. As previously reported by MVNO Monday, Mais AD shutdown on 5 April 2020. The company switched on its virtual network on 1 October 2015, but struggled to make an impact – despite the church having more than 20 million members.

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