Monday, 27 July 2009

Telenor/Huawei deal sets the trend for USB modem supply contracts

Apologies for the radio silence, I've been on vacation for the last 2 weeks. I should get around to reviewing everything that's happened in my absence.

In the meantime, what grabbed my attention was the announcement that Telenor would be doing a global deal with Huawei to provide 1.3 million modems to its opcos in Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Hungary, Serbia, Montenegro, Russia, Ukraine, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Thailand and Malaysia over the next year.

By my estimates, in that footprint during the next 12 months something like 8-9 million modems will be sold across all operators. With Telenor taking maybe a quarter of the sales it looks like Telenor is committing to Huawei as its main supplier, leaving other vendors to fish around for scraps here and there.

Given how difficult it is to differentiate USB modems it's hardly surprising that an operator would choose to strike such a deal. Prices will be lower and there's little downside from supporting almost exclusively Huawei devices rather a range from multiple manufacturers. I would expect other operators to follow suit and put all their (identical) eggs in one (discounted) basket.


  1. A couple of years ago it seemed that all mobile broadband dongles supplied by the big operators were Huawei. Now it seems there are at least as many made by other manufacturers.

    I have a couple of 3G routers, and I get the impression that manufacturers of these things are having a bit a struggle to maintain compatibility with all the dongles that are available. It looks like one of those areas where standardisation would be beneficial all round.

  2. I agree. Recently Telenor launch 4g mobile network service its awesome work.