French MVNO launches with IP messaging

French MVNO Ten, which runs on Orange's network, launched today with voice and mobile Internet messaging services. The MVNO is touting MSN Messenger and mobile email (POP3 mail services) as its differentiator. Ten offers unlimited subscriptions to MSN Messenger or push mobile email for €6 per month individually or €8 per month for both. The services use GPRS and work via Java apps downloaded over-the-air. Postpaid voice subscriptions start at €22 a month for one hour. Ten also offers three subsidized handsets that start at €39.

Ovum says Ten is a threat to mobile operators in France because it promotes IP messaging, which carriers have resisted because of its threat to SMS revenue. The incumbents have plenty going for them though: Ten's voice plan is more expensive than Tele2's, it doesn't support prepaid yet, it has no market presence and, of course, it still needs to acquire subscribers.

For more on Ten:
- read this analysis from Ovum