Ireland’s incumbent telco, Eir, is already feeling the effects of being part of the Iliad stable. The French company’s owner, French billionaire Xavier Niel, acquired Eir early last year and has already launched an internal MVNO, GoMo, to bring some of the price disruptiveness to Ireland that Iliad’s Free Mobile did in France.
Now, Eir is launching 5G under its main brand, with its new owner looking for bold moves to increase its market share – only 19%, compared to 36% for Vodafone and 33% for Three (see Wireless Watch October 30).
Eir is offering mobile and fixed wireless services, initially from 100 cell sites in 10 towns and cities, with 100 more sites to follow this month. The first locations are Dublin, Cork, Limerick, Galway, Waterford, Carlow, Castlebar, Dundalk, Drogheda and Kilkenny.
The telco has upgraded its packet core and user data management (UDM) systems to Ericsson core, charging and subscriber management solutions, initially to support the combination of mobile and fixed, and later to ease migration to a cloud-based core.