LuXcommunications VOXmobile, Luxembourg
LuXcommunications SA is a joint venture between Audiolux, BGL Investment Partners and La Direction. The company obtained a 3G licence in 2003 and immediately commissioned Siemens to supply and install their 3G/UMTS network in Luxembourg.
Siemens was chosen for the contract because of their wide experience in the 3G/UMTS sector. The contract covered the entire 3G/UMTS network infrastructure for the radio and switching network, network installation as well as expansion, upgrades, maintenance and commissioning of the network.
The initial network roll out was started in late 2003 and was completed by the third quarter of 2004 becoming active in late 2004 following testing and commissioning. Prior to their 3G network becoming active LuXcommunications was able to operate and offer services to subscribers as a virtual GSM operator on the LUXGSM network. The new 3G/UMTS network is marketed as VOXmobile.
The company applied for Luxembourg’s fourth 3G licence in a tender bid in May 2003. The bid was unopposed and the licence was granted in July 2003 by Luxembourg’s telecoms regulator, L'Institut luxembourgeois de Regulation.
Under the terms of the licence, which was granted for 15 years, the licensee was required to pay 0.2% of their revenue during the term of the licence, with a minimum of $189,000 per year.
LuXcommunications are currently (2006) in a competitive market with three other 3G networks. These include P&T Luxembourg, which launched its Siemens constructed 3G network in mid 2004; Tango, a unit of Tele2 which launched its 3G UMTS network in April 2003; and Orange.
LuXcommunications have faced some tough competition in the battle for new subscribers in a saturated market. They have done this by putting forward competitive tariffs for data and voice services and by providing a range of useful consumer friendly services.
CONTRACTORS AND SERVICES
Siemens supplied equipment and deployed the 3G UMTS network. Tecnomen was selected by LuXcommunications to provide its Multimedia Messaging Service Centre (MMSC) in late 2003. This enabled LuXcommunications to offer innovative MMS, including video messaging, on their new network.
The Tecnomen platform provides all the elements required to enable LuXcommunications to launch an innovative portfolio of multimedia and 3G services. Teconomen was also chosen to provide its next generation video mail system in early 2005. This system has allowed the VOXmobile network to provide the first viable video telephony services in Luxembourg.
Services have had to be favourably priced to make an impression on the market and tempt subscribers to a new telecoms provider. LuXcommunications commented: "A key factor in our selection of Tecnomen platforms was our need to differentiate ourselves in a saturated mobile market with strong competition."
The Tecnomen MMSC and video mail are scalable platforms with flexible 'pay as you grow' licensing, allowing operators to invest according to customer demand. The Tecnomen MMSC is fully standards-compliant, adhering to Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) and the Open Mobile Alliance (OMA) standards for MMS. It is fully interoperable with all MMS phones and with other MMSC systems ensuring reliable message delivery. It also enables operators to meet new regulatory requirements, such as Mobile Number Portability.
Comverse Technology Inc were awarded a contract in February 2004 to supply their converged real-time billing system to bill both prepaid and post-paid subscribers to the new 3G network. The billing system uses Intelligent Network (IN) technologies and standards, and is designed to manage millions of active customer accounts simultaneously, authorising in real-time every user request for voice and data services.
Account statistics and service usage data are available in real-time, providing immediate feedback and helping in the development of targeted marketing programs. The system comes with a consistent administrative interface, a single tariff database and the ability to define hybrid accounts that offer the best of both prepaid and post-paid billing. Syniverse also secured a contract in 2004 from LUXcommunication to provide ACCESS S&E GSM clearing house services so that roaming customers could be more easily billed for the services they had received on mobile networks in foreign countries.