3G telecom on the way

Telenor, NetCom, Tele2 and Broadband Mobile have won licenses to built Norway's third generation mobile telephone network.

The network will be based on the Universal Mobile Telephony (umts) standard, which allows handset users to transfer pictures and video, surf the Internet, pay bills and send e-mail in addition to talking the old fashioned way. The license holders must pay a one-time fee of USD 21 million (NOK 200 milllion) as well as USD 2.1 million (NOK 20 million) or more yearly for the privilege of constructing a network expected to cost them a total of between USD 530 million (NOK 5 billion) and USD 740 million (NOK 7 billion). Three other companies bid unsuccessfully for the licenses: Orange Norge, BusinessNet and Reach.