Telenor expands Opera partnership to feed its web-hungry customers

Telenor Group and Opera Software today announce a re-commitment and an expansion of their partnership to bring the mobile web to Telenor’s millions of customers. The new agreement between Opera and Telenor goes beyond pure web browsing. It now includes Opera’s email, application store, payment solution and advertising opportunities.

Telenor’s global business units are also gaining more real estate on the browser home screen, which enables a new channel of direct-to-customer communication that helps drive traffic to specific content sources.

“We have already seen rapid uptake of a co-branded version of the Opera Mini mobile browser in our business units, helping our many basic-phone customers experience the internet, sometimes for the first time. We believe this re-forged partnership will open up even more opportunities for our business units and our customers to take advantage of the full benefits of the web,” says Rolv-Erik Spilling, Head of Telenor Digital Services.

Opera was initially selected as a Telenor partner two years ago, due to Opera’s status as a best-of-breed browser on basic phones, in addition to its data compression capabilities that create a faster internet experience for users and a lighter load on the network.

Opera Mini has been a particular success for Telenor’s Malaysian operator DiGi and Bangladeshi operator Grameenphone. Grameenphone’s campaigns resulted in 1.3 million new users of the co-branded Opera Mini in just one year, while DiGi gained nearly half a million new users in just four months. To increase the number of users of the co-branded Opera Mini, DiGi and dtac in Thailand launched campaigns that enabled users surfing with the Telenor co-branded version of Opera Mini to access content from Wikipedia and Facebook at no data charge.

“By creating a service ecosystem around the Opera Mini browser, we are giving Telenor’s global operations more control and more real estate with which to communicate new offers and create campaigns for their customers,” says Lars Boilesen, CEO, Opera Software. “We look forward to seeing even more customers around the world enjoying a great web experience from Opera and Telenor.”

DiGi was also the first operator worldwide to launch Opera’s new web pass concept, where users can buy easy-to-understand data plans in a way similar to how they buy apps. Read more about DiGi’s cooperation with Opera for a “click-to-go” service.