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Nokia Pushes T-Mobile

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LR Mobile News Analysis
Light Reading
10/29/2004

Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK) has been confirmed as infrastructure supplier for T-Mobile International AG's commercial push-to-talk (PTT) service in Germany, a deal the Finnish vendor could repeat throughout the carrier's European markets.

Flagged by Unstrung earlier this month, the German deal was officially announced yesterday (see Nokia Linked to T-Mobile PTT and Nokia Confirms T-Mobile Push). T-Mobile is set to become Europe’s second carrier to launch a PTT service, following Orange SA's (London/Paris: OGE) lead last month (see Orange Pushes in Europe).

“Launch is being planned for this quarter, before Christmas,” says T-Mobile spokesman David Hanney.

Nokia is keen to stress that its contract with T-Mobile is not limited to a German rollout. “It’s for any other [T-Mobile] market as well,” explains communications director Thomas Jönsson. “We are working with T-Mobile International.”

The carrier itself remains tight-lipped on plans for future PTT launches outside of its home German market. “It will be extended, but nothing has been announced,” comments spokesman Klaus Czerwinski.

Potential European market launches include the carrier’s majority owned companies in the U.K., Austria, the Netherlands, and the Czech Republic. The carrier could also potentially use Nokia to offer PTT in the U.S.

PTT allows people to use their phones as walkie-talkies, merely pushing a button to talk to another user or group of users. PTT has already experienced significant success in the U.S., with Nextel Communications Inc. (Nasdaq: NXTL) claiming to generate around 20 percent of its revenue from the technology.

— Justin Springham, Senior Editor, Europe, Unstrung

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