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U.K. government backs 3G green light

The U.K. government has given its backing to the European Commission's decision to allow T-Mobile and mmO2 to share third-generation (3G) mobile network infrastructure, and insisted that it has long been in favor of such a move. The EC announced Wednesday that the two operators have won preliminary approval for their plan to cooperate on the release of 3G infrastructure in the United Kingdom and Germany. This joint initiative--which T-Mobile and mmO2 believe will save them more than 3 billion pounds ($4.6 billion) in implementation costs--could speed up the launching of 3G services in Europe.

The deal means that rather than both companies having to spend money unveiling 3G across both countries, they can effectively carve up areas where it makes sense to have just one network. It should benefit customers because the operators will allow each other's customers onto their network in places where infrastructure sharing is in place.

ZDNet UK's Graeme Wearden reported from London.

To read the full story, visit ZDNet UK.