Our story

A blast from the past

It all started with...

The story of Faroese Telecom started in the village of Vestmanna in 1905 when farmer, politician, and businessman Ólavur á Heygum was granted permission to establish a telephone connection between the village of Vestmanna and Tórshavn.  

A year later, Færøernes Amtskommunes Telefonvæsen (county of the Faroe Islands’ telephone service) was granted a concession from the Faroese Parliament to supply telephone service in the Faroe Islands. Subsequently, the corporation, today known as Føroya Tele (Faroese Telecom), was established.  

Later, Færøernes Amtskommunes Telefonvæsen became Telefonverk Føroya Løgtings (Telephone of the Faroese Parliament). Ólavur á Heygum’s telephone connection between the village of Vestmanna and Tórshavn was consigned to the Faroese Parliament, and all telecommunication extensions were placed under the new public institution. 

The first telephone exchange was located in Anton Degn’s residential property on Tinghúsveg in Tórshavn. Thereupon, Anton Degn also became the first telephone company manager in the Faroe Islands. 

In 1930, most villages in the Faroe Islands were connected through telephone connections. The residents in the islands of Suðuroy are, however, still not connected with the rest of the country, and are dependant on radiotelegraphs between the village of Tvøroyri and Tórshavn. 

In 1954, the first overseas telephone connection was established. The telephone connection was between the Faroe Islands and Denmark, and was established by Ríkistelefon-tænastuni (the national telephone service), which was a part of the Danish Post- and Telegrafvæsnet (postal- and telegraphic service).  

The connection between the Faroe Islands and Denmark was established by shortwave radio transmission. At the time, it was only possible to establish two concurrent connections between the telegraph station in the Faroe Islands and the station at Lyngby Radio.  

In 1955, the service expanded, and it was now possible to have four concurrent conversations. And in 1975, companies in the Faroe Islands were able to make direct calls to the majority of countries in Europe. Previous to this, it was necessary to reserve overseas conversations through Ríkistelefonina (the national telephone). 

In the late 1980s and early 1990s, mobile phones were introduced in the Faroe Islands. Hereafter, Faroese Telecom began providing mobile services. As one may recall, mobile phones were not remarkably portable in their early days and were accordingly most suitable for cars, boats or ships.  

In 1992, mobile phones became smaller and more portable, and people were able to bring them along in their pockets or handbag. 

In 1996, Faroese Telecom started providing a connection to the Internet and the ”World Wide Web”. In the beginning, it was a dial-up connection. Previous to this, the University of the Faroe Islands had had exclusive access to the Internet, but the general population was now able access to the internet as well.  

In the late 1990s, Telefonverk Føroya Løgtings (telephone agency of the Faroese Parliament) was reconstructed from public institution to a public joint-stock company and was renamed Føroya Tele (Faroese Telecom). 

In the summer of 2002, Televarpið, a TV content provider, was established as a subsidiary company of Faroese Telecom. The aspiration was to provide digitized TV to the Faroese nation.

In 2005, the activities in Faroese Telecom were divided into a parent company, FT NET, and daughter company, FT Samskifti. The aim was to ensure full transparency between the network and the service, to ensure equal access to the system under the same conditions for all providers. 

In 2014, Faroese Telecom revolutionized the Faroese telecommunications marked by introducing Ver. The ambition was to give all Faroese people the possibility of a high-quality, authentic and individually customized mobile plan. 

A year later, Faroese Telecom entered an agreement with the global provider Huawei about providing exceptional and unmatched mobile internet in the Faroe Islands. And with these means, the entire mobile internet was replaced with exceedingly fast 4G LTE.  

Today, the mobile internet provided by Føroya Tele is considered one of the best in the world.