Regulatory clearance has been given by the European Commission to the creation of a joint venture between communications group Vivendi and PSA - the manufacturer of Peugeot and Citro‰n cars - to develop third-generation Internet- based in-car services for drivers.
The French groups will set up a 50/50 joint venture called Wappi.
Net-delivered services are planned to include information for motorists relating to maintenance, safety, mobility and navigational aids, leisure and comfort.
The European Commission has cleared the move without imposing conditions because of the strength of competitors in the field, notably Odysline, (owned by Renault), Viasat, (a subsidiary of Magnetti Marelli and Telecom Italia), and On Star, (owned by General Motors).
"The Commission thus concluded that the operation would neither create nor strengthen a dominant position," said a Brussels statement.
Vivendi already provides fixed telephony services through C‚g‚tel, as well as on the mobile telephony market through SFR.