Disney has delayed the launch of a ‘family-friendly’ mobile service in the UK, according to

The Sunday Telegraph

.

The media giant announced in April that it would launch a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) using capacity on O2’s network, similar to its existing service in the US.

However, it was subsequently criticised by UK consumer groups who said it should not be marketing phones to young children.

In a statement, Disney blamed a difficult retail market for its decision: “Distribution outlets have been consolidating and there is now increased competition. However, we will keep one eye on the landscape.”

According to The Sunday Telegraph, Disney had already appointed an executive team for the service, which was to use standard handsets pre-loaded with Disney content and games.

Parents would also have been able to customise their children’s handsets so they could only access certain internet sites and phone numbers.

When announcing the service on April 27, Disney received backing from charities and cited an Ipsos MORI survey in which almost two-thirds of parents with children aged 8 to 16 said they would welcome a package designed with families in mind.

So what’s changed in three and a half months?