Tele2's milestones in telephony since 1993
In March 1993, we made the first commercial call from Tele2. A lot has happened since then. We take a look back in our history of telephony, when it all started.
30 years ago, Tele2 challenged the state monopoly and gave more freedom of choice to the Swedish people. We wanted to make things better for customers – everything from prices, service to products. It was now that we laid the foundation for Tele2 as a telecom company.
In March 1993, we introduced international calls as a start and by the end of the year we had taken 10 percent of the market share. A year later, we started offering calls within Sweden. By challenging Televerket, we halved customers' call charges in three years.
As a challenger, we always needed to be one step ahead and innovate ourselves. When we were denied the telephone prefix 002 by Televerket and were offered to use the prefix 007, we saw the possibilities, and the iconic James Bond campaign was launched - license to call.
Comviq was already founded in the 80s and was a first step to break the dusty telecom monopoly with subsidized cell phones, greatly reduced prices on international calls and free calls in the evenings and on weekends. It was a success. In 1987, Comvik (the spelling at the time) was named as the Best Service Company by the Swedish newspaper Dagens Industri. In 1997, Tele2 and Comviq merged and in the same year, we introduced the first prepaid cards on the Swedish market.
We were also the first in the world to build 3G network and invited Telia to collaborate in 2000. Internet got its real breakthrough, and the first smartphones were launched. Together with Telenor, we started the expansion of 4G in 2010 and gained Sweden's best coverage. As the first telecom player, we scrapped binding periods, while the competitors tied their customers on complicated terms. Today, we offer unlimited possibilities with the latest 5G technology.
We have many milestones to tell. In broadband, IoT, TV and play. But more about that another time.
It was thanks to this switch, a Nokia DX200, that the first call from Tele2 could be made. It was inaugurated at Borgarfjordsgatan 16 in Kista and was used until 2017. This huge machine has been in faithful service at Tele2 all these years until recently, when the last two switches were decommissioned. On today's all-hands, Mats Lars Hammarsten (Manager Business Voice Engineering Technology) demonstrated our first switch, Nokia DX200. Today, the technology is handled by a much smaller device that Mats points to the left. Click on the image to watch the All-hands Meeting.
Tele2 marks 30 years since we were founded by Jan Stenbeck and the century-old telecom monopoly ended. Many things have since then and there are so many stories to tell about our heritage. During the year, we will release more articles on the theme. Do you have an anecdote you'd like to share? Tell us! Together we are writing new chapters for the upcoming 30 years