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Vodafone & Orange Share 3G

3:20 PM -- Hey there, broadbanders!

We're happy to report that we can confirm today's report in The Guardian that Vodafone UK and Orange UK have told employees that they plan to form a joint venture company to house their shared 3G radio access network (RAN) assets.

The joint venture is code-named Shared RAN, Unstrung has learned from an industry source, and the operators have been working on how to make it work since they announced the partnership back in February. The operators also plan to seek an outsourcing partner to manage the shared RAN networks. (See Will More Mobile Operators Dare to Share?, Time for a Mobile NetCo?, and Vodafone, Orange to Share RANs.)

Vodafone expects to save between 20 and 30 percent over several years on combined 2G and 3G opex and capex from the agreement with Orange.

The news makes for a busy week for network sharing in the U.K. T-Mobile (UK) and Three UK are also talking about sharing 3G RANs. (See T-Mobile to Bid for 3?)

Check out the Unstrung Insider report: "RAN Sharing: Cutting the Cost of Mobile Broadband."

Here's the best of the rest.

— The Staff, Unstrung

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