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Telco "Underdog" Bites 4G Big Boys

By Oonagh Reidy | Tuesday | 18/02/2014

Comeback kid Vodafone looks to undercut the big boys with $5-a day 4G roaming

Marketing itself as the telco 'underdog' (and we all love an underdog), Vodafone harnesses its global network's might 'to challenge industry bill shockers', it said today. 

Telstra may have the biggest 4G network in Oz, but Voda has the biggest in the world, now offering cheap as chips $5 a day roaming charges to users on Red mobile plans. 

Voda Australia will switch on 4G international roaming mid-year allowing customers to use super fast LTE Vodafone networks in NZ, UK and Europe with more countries to be added later, says CTO Benoit Hanssen.

"We're working really hard to give customers a good reason to stay with us" a company spokesperson said, adding "this is what customers want." 

Voda says it has 1 million Aussie users on 4G networks already, and claims to have the fastest service in Melbourne and Sydney. It says $5 cost is cheaper than hotel Wi-FI. 

Consumers can use their mobile data allowance as if they are at home, so if you're on a $65 plan you get to use your 1.5GB allowance outside Australia, and still get the usual data usage alerts once you hit 50% and 85% of your allowance, so no 'bill shock' while sunning yourself in Spain. 

Leaving its past troubles behind it, Vodafone says it's 'leading the industry' by providing access to the largest 4G international roaming network globally. 

Vodafone Group already offers 4G roaming in Greece, Italy, Portugal, Romania and Spain, but will launch in a slew of more countries including Australia, Germany, Netherlands, New Zealand, South Africa, and UK by the end of 2014 - more countries than any other operator worldwide.

Voda customers will be able to use 4G networks of other telco's in Austria, Belgium, France, Japan, Singapore, South Korea and Switzerland.

Benoit Hanssen, Vodafone Australia CTO said this move was another step in Vodafone's ambitious network strategy and the telco is "in an enviable position" with the largest global 4G network.  

"We have spent billions building a new 3G and 4G network and this latest news shows we have no intention of slowing down.

"Our customers are among the most mobile in the world; among the fastest adopters of new technology; and, among the biggest travellers globally. 

Recent figures show Voda's customer exodus is slowing. 

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