Thursday, April 10, 2008

Virgin Mobile India launched as a joint venture between Virgin Group and Tata Teleservices

Virgin Mobile opened its virtual doors in India. Virgin Group's "partner in crime" is Tata Teleservices, which is part of the large India-based Tata Group. The new mobile operator is the "first nation-wide youth focused mobile service" and the "first CDMA service where all customers will be on RUIM (SIM)-based phones."

Now the weird part. Even though Virgin Mobile doesn't own the infrastructure they don't call the new service an MVNO. Apparently, virtual operators are not permitted in the "world's fastest growing mobile phone market," hence Richard Branson refers to the joint venture as "a brand extension" plan. The difference is that both companies — Virgin Mobile India and Tata Teleservices — have the freedom to work with other partners and enter into similar agreements with other players. This may translate into Sir Branson launching another, "Still a Virgin?" mobile operator with some other, possibly GSM carrier at some point in the future. ;)


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