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Vodafone UK ditches Phones 4u

Phones 4u loses Vodafone partnership

Vodafone UK has decided against renewing its existing contract with retailer Phones 4u, which ends in February 2015. The news, which sees Phones 4u left with just two operator partners, EE and Virgin, follows Vodafone’s announcement earlier in the year about an overhaul of its UK distribution strategy.

Broadcasters concerned over EC plans for 700MHz

The broadcast community is concerned about allocation of 700MHz

The European Commission this week recommended that the EU safeguard access to spectrum below 700MHz for digital terrestrial television until 2030. But the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) has expressed concern about the early release of the 700MHz frequencies.

Telefonica gets green light for E-Plus buy

The deal will see consolidation in Germany

European carrier Telefónica has cleared the final regulatory hurdle ahead of its acquisition of E-Plus from Dutch operator group KPN. The European Commission has confirmed that the previously announced agreement with Drillisch complies with the agreed upfront conditions.

Ericsson-LG and SK Telecom to collaborate on network virtualisation initiative, 5G readiness the aim

Collaboration in the cloud

Ericsson-LG today announced a pledge with SK Telecom, to cooperate on R&D aimed at utilising Software Defined Networking (SDN), Network Functions Virtualisation (NFV) and cloud, in a move aimed towards preparing the next generation of mobile network architecture.

Apple set to kick start mobile wallet with iPhone launch

Apple's Touch ID fingerprint reader

Multiple reports predict Apple will reveal partnerships with the major credit card providers as part of a new mobile wallet initiative that will be unveiled at the big annual iPhone launch, set for 9 September.

Essar sells Kenyan operation yuMobile

yuMobile will be split in two

Investment fund Essar Group has reached an agreement to offload its Kenyan telecom business to African carriers Safaricom and Airtel for $120m.

$250m sub-sea cable to connect USA to Southeast Asia

$250m sub-sea cable to connect USA to Southeast Asia

Seven carriers this week agreed to co-deploy a submarine cable directly connecting Southeast Asia and the US in a project worth $250m. To be completed by the end of 2016, the cable system will provide an additional 20Tbps capacity, connecting Indonesia and the Philippines to the US with 100G technology.

Opera turns optimisation techniques onto audio

Opera Mini tops 25 mil. downloads

Opera Software’s Skyfire optimisation unit, which the company purchased in 2013, has added streaming audio optimisation to Rocket Optimizer, its NFV-ready video and data optimisation platform for mobile operators.

KDDI drops $270m on Japanese datacentres

KDDI is investing $270m

Japanese carrier KDDI has contracted datacentre specialist Telehouse to build two datacentres in Osaka and Tokyo under a $270m project. Telehouse Osaka 2 will open in August 2015 and Telehouse Tokyo Tama 3 will open in February 2016.

SAP, China Telecom launch cloud datacentre in Shanghai

SAP and China Telecom anticipate huge demand for cloud services in China

SAP and China Communications Services (CCS), a subsidiary of China Telecom Group, have launched a cloud computing datacentre in Shanghai.

ZTE to deliver LTE in Slovakia

SWAN is the fourth player in the market

Slovak operator SWAN on Thursday signed up Chinese vendor ZTE to deliver a nationwide LTE project. The deal includes the exclusive construction of a core CS/PS (circuit-switched/packet-switched) network, and a GSM/LTE and VAS network, involving over 1,100 dual-mode base stations.

Telstra takes Whispir SaaS global

Whispir connects enterprises

Telstra’s international carrier and business services operation has this week made cloud-based rich communication service Whispir available over its international network.

OIF, ONF link up to test transport SDN

The OIF and ONF are working on SDN in the transport layer

The Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF), an industry group uniting the data and optical networking sectors including carriers, component manufacturers and system vendors, has announced a collaboration with the Open Networking Foundation (ONF) which will see the organisations work together with leading telcos and research institutions to test software defined networking (SDN) in the transport layer.

Vodafone Greece takes majority stake in Hellas

Consolidation is underway in Greece

Vodafone has agreed to acquire a majority holding in Greek fixed line operation Hellas Online. The company will purchase 72.7 per cent of the share capital from Intracom Group and World Equities Investments for €72.7m. Vodafone Greece already holds 18.5 per cent of Hellas Online, with the most recent transaction taking its ownership to 91.2 per cent.

China Telecom, IBM focus on SME cloud

The two companies are focusing on SMEs

China Telecom has signed a three-year agreement with IBM to help small and medium businesses in China implement secure, cost-effective and scalable SAP cloud-based applications.

First Firefox device launches in India

The Intex Cloud FX

Indian electronics manufacturer and retailer Intex Technologies has introduced the country’s first Firefox OS-powered device, which it also claims is India’s lowest priced smartphone at Rs1999 (€25).

Microsoft makes Opera default browser on feature phones

Opera Mini tops 25 mil. downloads

Microsoft, now the owner of what used to be Nokia’s handset operation, has selected Nordic software developer Opera to make the opera Mini web browser the default across the company’s feature phone and Asha portfolio.

TeliaSonera, DNA to share network in rural Finland

The deal will improve coverage in rural Finland

The Finnish operation of Scandinavian operator TeliaSonera has agreed a deal with local Finnish carrier DNA that will see the two share network resources and spectrum in the sparsely populated Northern and Eastern regions of Finland.

Nokia loses Here head

The direction of Here is uncertain

Nokia, or what’s left of it, looks to have suffered another blow as the head of its location based services division, Here, quits to focus on his own projects. Nokia’s Here unit was born out of the company’s $8.1bn acquisition of Navteq and was retained as a key pillar of Nokia following the purchase of its handset division by Microsoft last year.

Claro Peru opens up to LTE roaming

Vodafone UK cuts roaming charges for summer

KPN’s carrier services operation, iBasis, this week scored an LTE signalling exchange and roaming contract from Claro Peru, a subsidiary of America Movil.

@telecoms