Vodafone, Microsoft launch European e-mail service

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Cell phone giant Vodafone Group Plc said on Monday it had launched a European mobile e-mail facility with Microsoft Corp., marking the latest move by mobile service providers to make it easier for customers to get messages on the move.

The collaboration also highlights the increasing competition as competitors work to muscle into the wireless e-mail market dominated by Research in Motion, the maker of the BlackBerry e-mail service.

Vodafone said from March it will deploy Windows Mobile 5.0-powered devices to corporate and small and medium sized business customers in France, Germany and the UK.

The service will be available to corporate and small business customers in other countries later in the year.