DFMonitor-PRO and public insights, research notes, reports, external articles 2010–2017
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Four year comparative study of unit prices in 4-MNO and in the 4 to 3 consolidated German & Austrian markets
2017
pricing
merger
Germany
Austria
Italy
Denmark
United Kingdom
France
Poland
Sweden
Netherlands
Hutchison
Telefonica
Iliad
Play
Tele2
Vimpelcom

January 2017
The gap between gigabyte prices in the 4 to 3 consolidated Austrian & German markets and prices in 4-MNO markets where no consolidation has taken place had substantially increased by September 2016

Hutchison Austria quadrupled data allowances after national regulatory authority’s intervention on zero-rating video
2016
Austria
Hutchison
zero-rating
data-caps

December 2016
The regulator intervened along the EU net neutrality rules and BEREC guidelines that prohibit differential throttling when the internet-access data cap is exhausted.

Three years after the 4 to 3 merger €25 buys Austrians only half the gigabyte allowance than it did before the merger approval
2016
Hutchison
Austria

March 2016
Before the merger Austria was ranked as the 3rd most competitive mobile market among EU28. Three years after the merger Austria has fallen to the 10th place.

Hutchison has increased prices in Austria by up to 92% after the 4 to 3 merger was approved with Mickey Mouse MVNO remedies
2016
Austria
Hutchison

February 2016
Unit prices (retail price / GB volume allowance) ≠ Unit revenues (revenues / actual GB consumption)

European mobile telecoms - together we stand
2015
Austria
Hutchison
Orange
merger

[External article, The Economist, print edition]
August 2015
Antonios Drossos of Rewheel, a Finnish consulting firm, sees things differently. His firm analysed the prices customers paid in Austria and found some had risen by as much as 80% since the merger. “In any event,” he says, “customers should be getting more for less: the cost of mobile gigabytes has plummeted as operators get more spectrum, pay much less for network equipment and build more cells. The question is how much better a deal they would be offered now if a fourth operator were still in the market.”

EU’s Margrethe Vestager hits out against telecoms consolidation
2015
Austria
Hutchison
Germany
Ireland
Telefonica
United Kingdom
Italy
TeliaSonera
Telenor
Denmark
merger

[External article, The Financial Times, subscription required]
June 2015
Margrethe Vestager, EU competition commissioner, has thrown down a marker of her intent to curtail consolidation in Europe’s telecoms industry by dismissing suggestions that a wave of big mergers is needed to boost investment. Research from Rewheel, a consultancy, suggests that prices rise sharply following merger approvals, citing the tie-up between Hutchison and Orange in Austria. However, telecoms executives retort that price rises tend to be matched by an increase in data capacity or improved services.

Austria becomes battleground in fight over mobile mergers
2015
Austria
Hutchison
merger

[External article, Reuters]
June 2015
"Everyone is having the first real conversation about the effects of the mergers on mobile prices, quality of service, and how to weigh these different objectives." Antonios Drossos, co-founder of Rewheel, thinks the methodology pushed by the big telecom companies is wrong and that remedies in Austria, Germany and Ireland are inadequate to ensure strong competition is maintained.

The 4 to 3 consolidation effect – The Austrian mobile market has fallen considerably behind in competitiveness in EU28
2015
zero-rating
merges
Austria
Hutchison

May 2015
Smartphone tariff price competitiveness snapshots between December 2012 and May 2015. Before the price hikes that followed approval of Hutchison’s and Orange’s merger Austria used to rank as the country in EU28 with the second lowest 4 gigabyte smartphone tariff basket price. Now prices doubled and Austria has fallen to the fourteenth place.

The dubious consolidation economics of Frontier Economics
2015
Austria
Hutchison
merger

March 2015
In its report ‘Assessing the case for in-country mobile consolidation’, prepared for the GSMA, Frontier Economics claimed “...that there is no evidence that prices increased following the merger” in Austria. According to Frontier’s dubious methodology unit prices fall even when consumers are asked to pay more Euros every month to purchase the same amount of goods. The fact is that before the merger, in December 2012, Austrian consumers paid €11 to purchase a smartphone plan with at least 1,000 minutes/SMS and 2 gigabytes. By February 2015 the price has doubled to €22.

New European competition commissioner, new approach to telecoms consolidation?
2015
Germany
Austria
Italy
United Kingdom
Hutchison
Telefonica
KPN
Vimpelcom
WindItaly

[External article, Telecom TV]
March 2015
As competition commissioner, Vestager says that her job is to ensure that European citizens or businesses can enjoy relatively innovative markets at affordable prices.

In 4 to 3 consolidated markets average mobile internet access prices rose by up to 56%
2015
Germany
Austria
Hutchison
Telefonica
KPN
DeutscheTelekom

March 2015
In 4 to 3 consolidated markets and in a market where consolidation is on the making the average price of the 5 gigabyte mobile internet access basket rose by up to 56% while the lowest available price rose by up to 68%. In markets that went from 3 to 4 operators and in a 4-player market where consolidation was blocked the average price of the 5 gigabyte mobile internet access basket fell by up to 37% while the lowest available price fell by up to 40%.

Slovenian telecom regulator orders mobile operators to stop zero-rating
2015
Slovenia
zero-rating
TelekomSlovenije
TelekomAustria

January 2015
Slovenian regulator has found that zero-rating internet apps is violating the non-discrimination clause of the Slovenian national net neutrality law.

The European Commission unlawfully approved Hutchison’s acquisition of Orange in Austria by knowingly accepting ‘ineffective' commitments
2015
Austria
Hutchison
Orange
merger

January 2015
The Commission was well aware at the time it approved the Austrian merger (December 2012) that Hutchison’s Final Commitments (MVNO wholesale access) could not remove the competition concerns entirely.

UPC Austria finally launches as an MVNO on Hutchison’s network
2014
Austria
Hutchison
Orange
merger
Libertyglobal

December 2014
Two years after the merger of Hutchison and Orange the European Commission’s presumed “effective” MVNO remedy is finally implemented – and as we predicted it is proven toothless

Net neutrality is about the price of open internet access, more and more EU governments realize
2014
zero-rating
Netherlands
Poland
Slovenia
Hungary
Greece
Slovakia
Luxembourg
Austria
Bulgaria
Irelands
Estonia

December 2014
On the 27th November 2014, last Thursday, on the European Council the representatives of the 28 EU Member States discussed, among other topics, the proposed Europe-wide regulation of net neutrality. The Dutch representative stressed that the regulation should explicitly ban vertical price discrimination of specific internet services, content and applications. Slovenia, Hungary and several other Member States have endorsed the Dutch proposal and asked for the explicit ban of price discrimination in the context of the net neutrality regulation.

The consolidated Austrian mobile market in Q3 2014
2014
Austria
Hutchison
TelekomAustria
DeutscheTelekom

September 2014
The price of mobile internet in Austria, following the 2013 hike, surged again in Q3 2014. A profound structural change is in the making in the Austrian mobile data access market.

Hutchison Three – No longer a challenger?
2014
Austria
Hutchison
TelekomAustria
DeutscheTelekom

September 2014
The price of mobile internet went up notably in the UK during the 2H of 2014. The price of mobile internet also went up notably in Austria after the 4 to 3 mobile operator merger. The Austrian competition authority has already opened an investigation.


Competitive mobile markets bolster take up, says study
2014
release
pricing
Iliad
United Kingdom
Finland
Austria
Germany
Ireland
United States
Vodafone
Orange
Telefonica
DeutscheTelekom
Iliad
Tele2
Hutchison

[External article, The Financial Times, subscription required]
March 2014
Rewheel is launching a tracker of prices, performance, spectrum use, consumption and adoption across Europe, which includes 1,404 smartphone and data-only tariff plans offered in 43 countries from 145 operators.

Austrian telecoms auction squeezes smallest player
2013
Austria
Hutchison
TelekomAustria
mobile-first
spectrum

[External article, Reuters]
October 2013
Telekom Austria paid a high price for new spectrum in a fourth-generation telecoms auction that may pay off if it reduces a competitive threat from smaller rival Hutchison Whampoa's H3G. Rewheel quotes inside.

Post-consolidation price hike in Austria
2013
Austria
Hutchison
Orange
merger

September 2013
In this flash report we follow up on our EU27 mobile data cost competitiveness report May 2013 by reflecting on three recent market developments: consolidation in Austria (prices went up by over 60% on average), the planned acquisition of KPN E-Plus in Germany and EU's single telecom market regulation.

Austrian takeover is a touchstone for telecoms dealmakers
2013
Austria
Hutchison
Orange
Iliad
merger

[External article, The Financial Times, subscription required]
February 2013
Once the merger was crowned and three operators were left standing, it took a matter of days for something rare and unusual to jolt Austria’s cut-throat mobile phone business: prices started to rise. “We warned that prices would rise,” says Theodor Thanner, Austria’s competition regulator who questioned the EU approving Hutchison’s takeover of Orange last year. “Our forecast has been fulfilled”. Citing Rewheel research.

Mobile data usage in Finland
Effectiveness of MVNO remedies
Tight oligopoly markets in EU28
EU's first 700 MHz spectrum auction
DFMonitor in the international media
Reducing Wireless Competition in Europe
The New York Times (editorial)

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