(-) – Virgin Media and O2 have merged into one firm, now coming beneath the mixed identify Virgin Media O2.
Nonetheless, other than the identify, what does this new coming collectively truly imply? What impression will it have on present prospects? And what companies will Virgin Media O2 supply?
We clarify all under.
First introduced in Could 2020 and ratified by the UK’s Competitors and Markets Authority a 12 months later, Virgin Media and O2 have now mixed in a 50-50 deal to develop into one communications large.
The brand new firm is a three way partnership between Virgin Media proprietor Liberty World and O2 proprietor Telefónica and has been created to offer an entire package deal of companies: cellular, TV and full-fibre broadband. This permits the agency to sort out BT/EE head-on.
Virgin Media did already supply cellular companies, however as an MVNO (cellular digital community operator), which meant it used a distinct community’s cellular service to attach its prospects. It at present makes use of Vodafone’s community – having initially used EE’s. Nonetheless, that’s now prone to change once more.
The deal will seemingly see the brand new firm broaden its connectivity choices, together with gigabit fibre broadband and 5G. Virgin Media’s CEO, Lutz Schüler, has assumed the identical place for the brand new firm.
“With the quickest broadband and most dependable cellular community within the UK at this time, Virgin Media O2 is the whole package deal,” he mentioned.
“We’re able to shake up the market and be the competitor the nation wants at a time when alternative has by no means been extra essential. By way of funding and innovation in cutting-edge infrastructure and future expertise, we are going to join extra folks to the issues they love, help communities throughout the nation, assist companies to develop, and energy the UK economic system.
“With no restrict to our ambition, we’re right here to improve the UK – and our mission begins at this time.”
What it means to present O2 and Virgin Media prospects
In case you are an present O2 or Virgin Media buyer (cellular, TV or broadband) you’re unlikely to note a lot change initially – not less than, past the masthead on payments.
Nonetheless, within the coming months you could be supplied wider tariffs and plans that embody different companies – for instance, an all-in-one package deal for cable TV, broadband and 5G.
“Whereas there isn’t a change to present companies at this time, plans are properly underway to supply seamless broadband, leisure and cellular companies multi function place, beneath one roof, later this 12 months,” mentioned the corporate in a press release.
Virgin Media Enterprise prospects may even seemingly be supplied new, extra companies beneath the Virgin Media O2 Enterprise banner.
As well as, as acknowledged above, it’s seemingly that Virgin Cellular prospects can have their community connectivity switched from utilizing Vodafone’s system to O2’s. We’re not but positive when this would possibly occur, as Virgin Media signed a take care of Vodafone that’s meant to run till 2026. It could be that contract continues till it expires.
It may be the Virgin Cellular prospects are supplied the possibility to change their contracts to O2 equivalents.
When that occurs, you would possibly expertise adjustments in community protection – particularly 5G the place totally different networks at present have totally different strengths and weaknesses relating to places.
O2’s non-mobile house broadband enterprise was purchased by Sky in 2013, so this merger will enable the brand new firm to supply fixed-line broadband to O2 prospects immediately once more.
We’ll replace after we know extra about any new companies and adjustments.
Writing by Rik Henderson.