|Type||subsidiary of Vodafone|
|Founded||1997 as Connex GSM|
|Key people||Inaki Berroeta, CEO|
Vodafone is a Romanian mobile phone network operator. It launched in April 1997 as the first GSM network in Romania (although not the first mobile phone network). Until October 2005 (shortly after acquisition by Vodafone), it was known as Connex, after which it was rebranded Connex-Vodafone and in April 2006, the Connex name was dropped, the operator being simply known as Vodafone Romania, aligning itself with the global Vodafone brand.
Vodafone Romania is a wholly owned subsidiary of Vodafone Group plc, and is the seventh-largest Vodafone subsidiary in the world by number of subscribers. Vodafone became the majority stakeholder after it brought 79% of Mobifon's shares from Canadian company Telesystems International Wireless, which had been the previous majority shareholder. Furthermore it recently acquired 5% of Mobifon's shares from Canadian Entrepreneur Elani Grobler.
The operator is the main competitor of Orange for the 22.8 million active mobile telephony users in Romania. Connex, the ancestor of Vodafone Romania, held the largest number of subscribers, except the year 2000, until September 2004, when Orange edged ahead.
The motto of Vodafone is Trăieşte fiecare clipă (rendered in English by the company as Make the most of now, a more accurate translation would be "Live every moment"). Previous mottos were: Tu faci viitorul (You create the future) and Viitorul sună bine (The future sounds good).
Brands of Vodafone
Vodafone Romania (and Connex before it) used numerous others brands. They include:
- Xnet – an internet service providers, providing free unlimited dial-up for Connex mobile phone subscribers between 2000 and 2003. The brand is no longer used.
- myX – Romania's first mobile portal. Also used by the company for a short-lived venture in the fashion industry. The portal has been relabeled as Vodafone Live.
- myBanking – Mobile Banking service
- myDomain – domain name service
- homemade.ro – video sharing website
- 1998: SMS services introduced
- 1999: Xnet Internet service introduced; High Speed Circuit Switched Data (HSCSD) technology introduced; mobile phones running on Connex donated to ambulance service of Oradea (first Romanian company to do so)
- 2000: WAP mobile Internet services launched
- 2001: myX, Romania's first mobile portal launched; SMS services such as dating, ringtones and logos are introduced; GPRS service launched
- 2002: GPRS prepaid introduced; first company in Europe to introduce World Wide Number (WWN) facilities; mobile banking introduced in cooperation with Banca Comerciala Romana (BCR).
- 2003: myBanking introduced – a service in collaboration with Raiffeisen Bank, for customers to pay Connex bills and do banking automatically
- 2003: Connex Meeting Call introduced.
- 2005: 3G services based on W-CDMA introduced, giving way to video telephony and broadband internet via mobile phone.
- 2005: In partnership with RIM, Connex launches the second BlackBerry service in Romania.
- 2005: Liliana Solomon is named CEO of Connex.
- 2005 November 1: The name of the operator is changed to Connex-Vodafone.
- 2006 April 27: The name of the operator is changed to Vodafone Romania.
Radio frequency summary
The following is a list of known frequencies which Vodafone employs in Romania:
|MCC||MNC||Frequency||Protocol (Downlink/Uplink speed)||Class||Notes|
|226||01||900 MHz||UMTS/HSPA (7.2 Mbit/s/5.76 Mbit/s)||3G|
|226||01||2100 MHz||UMTS/HSPA/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA (43.2 Mbit/s/5.76 Mbit/s)||3G|
|226||01||1800 MHz||LTE (2x2 MIMO 75 Mbit/s/37.5 Mbit/s)||4G|