Orange said it plans to work more closely with Deutsche Telekom to boost the operators' respective technology start-up programmes.
The France-based operator announced the collaboration with Deutsche Telekom during a half-day demonstration of the start-ups Orange has fostered to date as part of a programme named Orange Fab. The company said the work with its German rival--which offers a programme called hub:raum--will offer start-up companies more growth opportunities, by opening the door to a potential combined customer base of 500 million users in Europe, Middle East and Africa.
Orange added that the operators may also invest in some start-ups as part of efforts to grow their respective digital ecosystems. The pair will focus on start-ups working on Internet of Things, network optimisation and access technology, mobile payment, cyber security, and big data.
Mari-Noëlle Jégo-Laveissière, senior executive vice president of Innovation, Marketing and Technologies at Orange, said large companies "have a major role to play, to support start-ups at a crucial stage of their development".
The collaboration with Deutsche Telekom "is key to fostering the innovative ecosystem, as well as to contribute to job creation", Jégo-Laveissière added.
Orange also revealed it will expand Orange Fab into Israel and Ivory Coast in October, adding to current availability in France, the U.S., Poland, Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan.
In a separate announcement, the French operator said it will become the first operator to offer pan-European streaming of a live music event, when it offers access to acts performing at the Orange Warsaw Festival this weekend.
Orange teamed with streaming specialist LoveLive to provide its customers in France, Poland, Spain, Romania, Slovakia, Luxembourg, Armenia, and Moldova with free access to the music festival over LTE and fibre networks.
Thierry Marigny, vice president of global brand at Orange, said its customers "are increasingly using mobile devices to stream music".
- see Orange's start-up press release
- see the Orange Warsaw Festival announcement
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