THE ANNUAL FESTIVAL of Saint Visa benefited few more handsomely than the UK’s four mobile networks, which between them collared no fewer than 2.54m new subscribers -’ the majority on pre-paid packages. The largest network, Vodafone, netted 938,000 new subscribers in the three months to 31 December. Cellnet gained 658,000; Orange, 512,000; and One 2 One, 439,000. The latter’s managing director, Tim Samples, hinted at an ongoing reduction in costs: the worry of ‘runaway prices’, he said, would be offset by ‘a number of new service propositions’. There are now an estimated 13m UK mobile phone users.
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