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SBD Global/August 8, 2013/Media

Vodafone To Bundle Live English Premier League Football, Music In Spotify, Sky Deals

Vodafone has revealed that it will bundle live EPL football and digital music streaming into its 4G packages "after signing deals with Spotify and Sky," according to Nic Fildes of the LONDON TIMES. The company "will go head-to-head with the rival O2 in launching 4G on the same day," Aug. 29. It will initially launch in London before rolling out to 12 cities -- including Manchester, Birmingham and Sheffield -- "by the end of the year." Vodafone will charge a premium for 4G -- which it said is typically six times faster than existing 3G networks -- "with SIM-only plans available" from £26 ($40) a month (LONDON TIMES, 8/7). In London, Christopher Williams wrote the operator "is hoping to stand out in the market with its new content bundles." Subscribers to 4G "will be offered either free mobile access to Sky Sports Mobile TV or free access to the Spotify Premium music streaming service, for six months." Vodafone's U.K. CEO Guy Laurence said that the BSkyB deal would last for at least the next two football seasons, "but declined to provide further details of the relationship." He defended the rollout plan, insisting Vodafone was "very chilled" about when customers were able to access 4G and that its entertainment packages were a nationwide proposition from day one, even on 3G (TELEGRAPH, 8/7).

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