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Vodafone launches full-scale 3G services in Budapest

Vodafone Magyarország Zrt is to launch full-scale third-generation (3G) multimedia services in Budapest as of June 8, telecommunications manager Pál Marchhart said in Budapest on Thursday.

The company will also begin selling 3G-capable mobile phone sets, Marchhart said. He declined to say how much Vodafone had spent on its 3G network, but industry insiders estimate it cost Ft 3 billion-Ft 5 billion. Next, Vodafone will build its 3G network in the area surrounding Budapest, and later in Hungary's other major cities.
Marchhart said no estimates were yet available on the number of subscribers the 3G services would attract, but it would probably not be enough to make the services profitable this year. Vodafone has started offering 3G services in the center of Budapest last December.
Of Hungary's three wireless services companies, T-Mobile, part of the Magyar Telekom group, was the first to introduce 3G applications at the end of August 2005, while Pannon started providing 3G services on a commercial basis last October.