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O2 to cleanse ‘grubby’ international calling market

Michael Garwood
October 13, 2010

O2 will launch its new ‘International Favourites’ bolt-on this month, offering customers up to 3,000 international minutes from £10 per month

O2 will launch two new tariffs on October 26 to “simplify” the “grubby” international calling market, it said.

O2 claims to lead the sector, with about 10 per cent, or £140 million, of international calling from the UK.

Its customers, including both businesses and consumers, will be able to pay an additional £10 per month on top of their current voice package to make up t0 50 hours of international calls to three selected fixed line numbers.

For £20 per month, the package will include an additional two numbers and and an additional 200 minutes for international calls to mobiles (3,200 minutes to five selected fixed line numbers).

O2 said it had conducted tests and trials of the service with over 10,000 customers to ready the proposition.

Both packages will also include a ‘Call Me’ number, which gives international customers a local prefix to enable calls to the O2 customer in the UK to be charged at a local rate.

O2 developed International Favourites following the £250 million acquisition of VoIP company Jajah late last year. All calls made to international numbers are intercepted and carried over its IP network.

The service is currently available in the UK and Germany. O2 said it will be extended across other markets it operates in in due course.

O2 described the current international calling market as “grubby”, and said the new package will save customers money as well as remove the fear of high bills and “clock watching.”

O2 marketing director Sally Cowdry (pictured) said: “International calling is a poorly served market. It can be expensive, complex and is renowned for hidden catches and scams. With International Favourites we have used the innovation that the Jajah acquisition brought to us to create a genuinely unique proposition which offers a fresh approach to the market.

“It gives our customers a great value and convenient option for connecting with their friends and families abroad through mobiles.”

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