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3 enters the SME market

Operator's first tariffs explicitly designed for small businesses
Written by David Meyer, Contributor on

Mobile operator 3 has made its first venture into the world of business telephony by introducing a set of tariffs for SMEs.

3's Office Share Plans allow the employees of small businesses to share voice, text and data bundles under one tariff. Customers will also get free calls to other 3 mobiles plus the use of Windows Live Messenger on their handsets.

Users will also be able to take advantage of 3's recently announced voice and data roaming decision, which allows users to roam between the operator's various international networks without paying any surcharge.

However, business users wanting to take advantage of 3's mobile email facilities will have to add this as a bolt-on, at £2.50 a month for POP3 internet mail (with a maximum 10MB of downloads) and £5 a month for Exchange or Lotus push email (with a maximum of 15MB of downloads).

"With our Office Share Plans we are doing for small business what we did for consumers — offering great value and easy-to-understand price plans," said 3 UK's marketing director, John Penberthy-Smith, on Friday.

Penberthy-Smith noted that 3 already had "a lot of SOHO and small businesses" on its consumer price plans, but suggested that the new tariffs would offer "more flexibility and greater value".

There are five plans available, ranging from £34 (up to 5 handsets) to £154 (up to 20 handsets) per month, with a £15 "monthly sharer member fee" applicable for each handset. The plans are available on 12, 18 and 24-month contracts.

Handsets to be offered on the plans include the Nokia E61, N73 and 6233 and the Sony Ericsson K800i.

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