Iliad ticked off the 21st consecutive quarter in which it has led the field for mobile customer acquisition, as sales jumped seven percent in the first three months of the year.

The company signed up 240,000 new mobile subscribers, taking its customer base to 12.9 million.

The number of 4G customers hit 6.3 million as average monthly data usage jumped by 20 percent to 6GB in the quarter.

Free Mobile’s market share remains at 18 percent, but the operator expanded its 4G population coverage past the 80 percent barrier.

There was also growth at its broadband arm, which added 66,000 customers to hit 6.45 million in total.

The company said it was now the second biggest FTTH operator in France with 369,000 subscribers.

Customer growth helped to push up revenues by seven percent to €1.22 billion. Sales of broadband services grew five percent to €698 million, thanks to what Iliad described as a differentiated offering and “best-in-class subscriber relations services”.

Mobile revenues were up 9.3 percent to €529 million although growth slowed versus 12 months due to a decrease in the use of text messages.

This has not stopped Free Mobile from offering unlimited 4G data to customers on its €15.99 per month tariff, as it first announced in March.

The company cited research that showed three quarters of French people think unlimited 4G will become “essential”.

Iliad did not share earnings or profits for the quarter.

EBITDA rose 12.5 percent to €1.7 billion last year, while profit for the period jumped by over 20 percent to €403 million.

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