Orange names list of partners as it readies 3G launch

LONDON - Orange has named its final list of handset and network partners as the company readies itself for the rollout of 3G services before the end of the year.

The mobile arm of the France Telecom Group, which plans to run commercial 3G services to customers in the UK and France, has announced new deals with Samsung, Sanyo, Nokia and Motorola to offer phones for the launch. They join Sony Ericsson and LG, both of which signed up in July.

The LG U8150, SonyEricsson Z1010, Samsung Z107, Sanyo S750 and Nokia 6630 will be the first handsets to roll out Orange signature 3G services such as video telephony and video downloads.

Florian Seiche, director of devices at Orange, said: "We remain focused on delivering to our customers the best possible user experience and so have carefully selected device vendors who also share this objective."

Meanwhile, Orange has signed two further contracts to boost its European 3G infrastructure as part of the framework agreement with Nokia Networks, Nortel Networks and Alcatel, signed last year.

Orange has agreed to buy radio access network equipment and operational support systems from Nokia Networks for rollout in Switzerland and Nortel Networks in Belgium to build on coverage in the UK with Nokia Networks and in France with Alcatel, Nokia Networks and Nortel Networks.

Orange customers can roam with their 3G devices across Spain, Italy and Germany, as well as the UK and France.

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