Rebtel, a Luxembourg and Sweden-based start-up that provides cheap international mobile calls, has been blocked in Germany by operator O2.

phone Cheap international calls service Rebtel blocked by O2Rebtel has found a way to take expensive international calls out of the hands of the mobile operators and make them cheaper by using the Internet. The Word Wide Web functions as a rerouting system that connects local calls around the globe. Users receive an alternative number that’s connected to the number they want to call. There go the operator’s margins.

Here’s Rebtel’s side of the story, as expressed on their blog:

The reason why O2 wants to stop Rebtel is pretty obvious. They have very high margins on their international calling and want to stop any threats to that. Their actions violate not only the crystal clear EU-regulations but are also a breach of your contract with O2(!).

The mobile technology company has now started a so-called “race” with O2. Like a true reb(t)el would, they’ve just launched another series of numbers. Which, of course, O2 will block as soon as possible. Although Rebtel’s fighting spirit is admirable and charming, the service does become unreliable for O2 users. We’ll keep you posted on how the race develops.