Having spent 12 months discussing the idea of sharing network infrastructure, Vodafone and Orange have announced an agreement that will see them sharing masts--leading to a reduction of some 3000 antenna towers.
While the original discussions were designed to lead to much greater levels of infrastructure sharing, this deal only includes masts. The two firms stressed that they would continue to maintain separate networks and full responsibility for their quality of service.
Tom Alexander, CEO of Orange UK, said: "This deal will see our two companies work together to ensure our customers benefit from better, deeper and faster mobile coverage in more places, with fewer mast-sites across the country."
Vodafone and Orange agreed to a similar deal in Spain recently, while T-Mobile and 3 unveiled an agreement in December to share 13,000 masts in a move that should enable them to have a fast wireless network covering 98 per cent of the population by the end of 2009.