French operator Bouygues Telecom has announced it will offer 4G LTE for free, following a similar announcement by rival operator Free Mobile last week.
 
Bouygues, the country's third-largest mobile operator behind Orange and SFR, said 4G LTE would now be available on all its tariffs without requiring customers to pay extra or sign a new contract.
 
The operator launched its 4G LTE network in October with a free one-month trial.
 
When contacted by European Communications, Bouygues said that it will now offer an unlimited 4G mobile package for €24.99 a month for 3GB of data, down from €29.99 previously. 
 
The spokesperson for Bouygues also revealed that the operator’s cheapest data plan will offer 1GB of 4G data and 180 voice minutes for €14.99 a month.
 
It added that it will not pass on a planned VAT increase that comes into effect on 1 January to its customers.
 
The announcement comes just a week after rival Free revealed that it would not be charging a premium for its 4G LTE service.
 
Iliad’s cheapest 4G LTE plan is priced at €19.99 (which includes 20GB of data), while Orange charges €39.99 per month (including 4GB of data) and SFR €42.99 (including 3GB of data). 
 
SFR was the first French operator to launch 4G in November 2012, with Orange following a month later. 
 
The market in France is one of the most competitive in Europe thanks to Free’s entrance.
 
In the UK, Three is also offering 4G LTE at no extra charge and began rolling out its services last week.
 

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