Slower than anticipated demand results in O2 Health being closed down in Britain
Telefonica has announced that O2 Health is being pulled out of the UK market due to slow demand for its services.
The mobile provider has now stopped selling its telecare products, Help at Hand, plus its telehealth offering, Health at Home in Britain. It will also no longer provide further services for either offering to existing customers.
The reason for the services' withdrawal is due to slower demand than expected, O2 Health said: 'e-health is a sector with significant potential and, as such, remains an important priority for Telefonica. However, the uptake of mobile telecare and telehealth in the UK marketplace has been slower than anticipated. For these reasons, the difficult decision has been taken to withdraw these two products from the UK marketplace.'
Telefonica stated it will continue to support existing customers to the end of this year, and will provide full refunds for purchases of Help at Hand devices and its Help at Hand service will be free between now and 31 December 2013 when all support ends. A refund will also be given on unused airtime credit until 31 December and each connected customer will receive £100 as compensation.
For those healthcare and social care providers who have purchased Help at Hand or Health at Home for multiple users, service will continue until 31 December 2013, at which point service from O2 Health will be discontinued.
O2 Health stated: 'We fully appreciate and thank all our customers and partners for the time and investment made in working with us to deliver these products to end users. We recognise that we will need to support you with the discontinuation of the service over the coming months and to that a member of the O2 Health team will be in touch with you shortly to talk through next steps.'
In the UK Telefonica will continue to serve the health sector via its Public sector team which provides core mobile and ICT solutions.