Google is reportedly in talks with mobile network Three to create an international roaming network. The move would allow US customers to use their phones internationally at no extra cost as they would be charged the same for calls, texts and data regardless of where they are located. If the talks with Hutchinson - the parent company of the Three mobile network - are successful, Google could gain wholesale access to mobile spectrum in countries such as the UK, Ireland, Italy and Hong Kong.
Google apparently chose Three as the latter's "Feel At Home" roaming service aims to abolish roaming charges for its customers around the world. Google has described the move as a "small scale" project but the plans to abolish roaming charges are likely to be of significant concern to major US networks such as AT&T and Verizon who enjoy higher profit margins than European networks.
Google has already adopted a similar strategy in the US fixed-line market with Google Fiber, which aims to build a Fiber backbone in cities where Internet Infrastructure is lacking and this latest move could shake up the mobile telecoms market. According to sources, Google is unlikely to offer mobile network to British customers as the European market is already very competitive and the EU is currently looking at abolishing roaming charges.