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Orange blossoms as subscriber figures swell

France Telecom's Orange gained 2.6 million new customers in the first quarter of 2001, 1.2 million of these in the UK.
Written by John Oates, Contributor

France Telecom's Orange gained 2.6 million new customers in the first quarter of 2001, 1.2 million of these in the UK.

The company claimed the increase was its sixth successive quarter of growth. Orange now has 11 million subscribers in the UK, 7.87 million of these are pre-pay customers. Orange does not include subscribers who have not used their phones for the last three months. But speaking to the Financial Times, Charles Dunstone, chief executive of Carphone Warehouse, cast doubt on the accuracy of figures provided by the network operators. Dunstone estimates that 75 per cent of phones bought through his shops are upgrades rather than new users. In an effort to wean people off 'pay-as-you-go', Orange is offering a new tariff called Everytime, which charges £12.99 a month for 20 minutes of free talk time.
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