Free now second-placed in French fixed-line market

Free IliadFrench service provider Iliad Telecom/Free has taken second place in the country’s broadband internet market ahead of SFR, with 6.3 million high-speed and very high-speed customers.

Free recruited 123,000 new fixed line subscribers in the first half of the year, equal to the amount recruited for the same period last year. Additions were driven to some extent by discounting, with fixed ARPU falling slightly to about €34. ARPU for customers with the advanced Freebox Révolution set-top and gateway was flat at €38. The company said its fixed-line revenues nevertheless increased by 3% to €1.3 billion.

Free added 400,000 mobile customers over the same period, despite a decline in the overall market. The company had over 12 million mobile customers at the end of June, turning in revenues  of around €1 billion.

Free said its TV service now offered over 500 channels, including over 170 HD channels and 70 channels with catch-up functionality.