They allowed the 3 to buy O2 in Ireland, despite concerns at national level by ComReg, the Irish version of Ofcom.
The only proviso was that certain numbers of MVNOs would be guaranteed and spectrum reserved for them - virgin, tesco and ID mobile along with 48 and Lyca all live on Three now.
It has taken us from a highly competitive 4 MNOs where 3 was the agreessive innovator on price to just 3 MNOs
Three also are supposed to be spending several hundred million on a "the big upgrade" but so far I'm seeing no benefit. They offer me 2TB per month of 4G that regularly gets about 3mbit/s, so something is being oversold.
Meanwhile Vodsfone has a 5GB cap but connects at about 57mbits on my iPhone