Verizon Wireless has taken a beating over the years because its CDMA network is very prohibitive for international travelers. As such, the carrier has released some new resources in an effort to remind subscribers that they’re free to roam the world with their Verizon phones in hand — it might cost an arm, a leg and a few vital organs in some regions, but it can be done. According to the carrier’s new release, there are about 35 countries that use CDMA and have roaming agreements with Verizon. While that figure pales in comparison to the number of countries that support GSM phones, travelers will find that roaming charges for voice calling and even data usage in those countries can be surprisingly reasonable. Then, if you happen to have one of Verizon’s dual-mode world phones that support GSM, you can use the device while roaming in more than 200 countries around the world. You should probably make sure you take your entire Accounts Payable department out to lunch before submitting those expenses, though. Hit the break for Verizon Wireless’ full release and a quick video about international roaming. More →
WIND Telecom SpA announced on Thursday that the shareholders of Russian mobile operator VimpelCom have voted to approve the acquisition of WIND Telecom for $6 billion. VimpelCom said regulators approved the acquisition as well. The deal covers all of WIND Telecom’s assets, which includes Orascom Telecom, a major WIND Mobile shareholder, and VimpelCom will add nine new markets including Pakistan, Bangladesh, Burundi, Italy and Canada to the eleven it already covers. When finalized, the purchase will make VimpelCom the world’s fifth largest mobile Teleco with more than 173 million subscribers. “This is great news for us. Our partner, Orascom, will be even larger and stronger as a financial partner. This gives us more leverage and increased scale with telecom network equipment manufacturers and more importantly, for devices including handsets and tablets,” said Anthony Lacavera, WIND Mobile’s chairman, adding that the purchase will give WIND more access to long distance roaming services. Lacavera said he would provide more information as new details on the acquisition emerge.