Source - Alliance News

Telecommunications firm Vodafone Group PLC has signed an infrastructure contract with one of Germany’s largest housing companies to expand fibre-optic internet access to an additional 120,000 flats.

The deal between Vodafone and Vonovia SE was announced on Monday, with service due to be offered beginning in July.

The market segment has been highly competitive for many years.

In 2013, rival Deutsche Telekom AG won a contract with Deutsche Annington - a real estate firm that is now part of Vonovia - to lay fibre optic lines to rental apartments.

As a rule, however, Deutsche Telekom installed conventional copper lines for DSL internet service instead.

UnityMedia, which is now a subsidiary of Vodafone, also sought the contract at the time but lost out to Deutsche Telekom.

In future, Vonovia tenants affected will have another option for accessing the internet via the Vodafone network - and will also be able to subscribe to cable television service from Vodafone as well.

For Vodafone, the supply agreement is a notable success in a difficult market environment. Legal changes which go into effect in July mean that landlords in Germany will no longer be able to charge tenants for cable television service that covers the entire building.

Instead, tenants must look for alternatives themselves or voluntarily join a collective order.

The affected Vonovia tenants can conclude a direct contract with Vodafone at the time of the changeover if they wish to receive TV via the cable network.

Vonovia is in the process of informing the tenants affected by the change about the changeover date and the new offers, the Dusseldorf-based company announced.

However, tenants can also opt to keep their slower DSL internet connection and receive television over the internet from Deutsche Telekom or online services such as Zattoo and Waipu.

source: dpa

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