BT's £12.5 billion takeover of Britain's biggest mobile group, EE, will mark the phasing out of the Orange and T-Mobile brands in the UK, with BT thought to have no interest in revitalising the high street names.
As the Financial Times reports, EE is also responding to the UK's demand for faster mobile internet by focusing solely on 4G mobile deals – at the expense of 3G contracts, which will no longer be pushed out to new customers.
The move is said to signal the changing of technologies in the British mobile market towards mobile data provision, as opposed to simply voice and text messages.
"Responding to this demand, we will in the coming weeks focus exclusively on offering new and upgrading customers our great value range of 4G plans. EE will continue to serve customers on Orange and T-Mobile plans," EE said.
BT remains deep in talks to formally agree the acquisition of EE from Orange and Deutsche Telekom; completion of which will spark one of the largest shake-ups in the British telecom sector, with operators awakening to the advantages of becoming a quad-play provider,
People au fait with the talks say the deal could be finalised in time for the group's third-quarter results next week, with BT believed to have not uncovered any major issues during the due diligence process.
The merger is not without opposition, however, with rivals such as Vodafone expected put forward an argument to regulators that the combination will affect business in the UK because BT provides the fixed-line access to many mobile masts around the country.