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Emerging market tower specialist raises $630m

Helios has scored several deals in Africa

African telecoms tower specialist Helios Towers has raised $630m in new investment, supporting its claims that there is huge potential in the African market for tower sharing and management.

Dish cries foul over US mergers

Dish Networks's nose appears to be out of joint

US satellite operator Dish Network has submitted an official filing with regulator the FCC, expressing concerns over two of the biggest proposed mergers on the table in the US market at present. Dish wants the pending Comcast and Time Warner Cable, and AT&T and DirecTV deals to go under the microscope.

AT&T partner opens ‘free’ content store

AT&T has unveiled a free content store partnership

Syntonic Wireless, which bills itself as an “AT&T sponsored data provider” unveiled its Sponsored Content Store for AT&T mobile subscribers, pitching an “open marketplace where AT&T wireless customers can access free or premium mobile content without impacting their data plans.”

Bharti sells tower assets in Africa

Qualcomm disputes India's DoT claims that its application for broadband licences were invalid

Operator group Bharti Airtel, which focuses on emerging markets in Asia and Africa, has divested 3,100 telecom towers to Helios Towers Africa for an undisclosed sum. Local reports suggest the deal could raise as much as $2bn.

Google Ventures to invest $100m in European startups

Silicon Europe

Google has announced that it has set up an arm of Google Ventures in Europe and allocated an initial fund of $100m for local startups. The announcement will presumably be welcomed by startups in the UK, where we’re so keen to emulate Silicon Valley that we insert “Silicon” into the name of anywhere a tech startup spends more than a couple of hours.

LG launches cellular wearable for kids

Orwellian fun for all the family

LG Electronics has launched a wearable device designed specifically to help parents track their young children. In order to do this the KizON has a 2G/3G cellular modem, which sets a key precedent in the evolution of the nascent wearables category.

Weve CEO poached by Skrill

Weve a senior vacancy

David Sear, the former chief executive of the Weve mobile network e-commerce joint venture, has been appointed as group chief commercial officer at Skrill Group.

América Móvil announces asset sale to placate Mexican regulators

Carlos Slim needs to dispose of some assets

Mexican telco giant América Móvil has announced it will dispose of a bunch of its Mexican assets in order reduce its overall share of the Mexican mobile market, and thus avoid special regulatory restriction that have come into effect on the back of new laws.

Alcatel-Lucent claims 1 Gbps over copper breakthrough

Broadband speeds over copper are improving

Alcatel-Lucent’s research arm – Bell Labs, has announced a prototype technology that enables copper lines to deliver 1 Gigabits per second symmetrical (simultaneous download and upload) broadband speeds.

Mobile banking to overtake online within five years

Another piece of the mobile wallet jigsaw

Analyst firm Juniper Research reckons more people will be using mobile apps for banking than web-based options by 2019, as the 800 million people who used their phones for banking more than doubles to 1.75 billion in five years.

Vendors develop open source framework for Internet of Things

Vodafone puts faith in machines

A collaboration of industry vendors took form on Tuesday with the inauguration of a consortium focused on improving interoperability and defining connectivity requirements for the billions of devices that will make up the Internet of Things (IoT).

Post Office to get into the MVNO game via EE

Still trusted after all these years

The UK Post Office has announced it will become and MVNO later this year, using the EE network, in a move that couldn’t be more symbolic if it tried.

Tele2 sells out of Norway

oslo-norway

In news that will come as no great surprise, Nordic carrier group Tele2 on Monday agreed to sell its Norwegian business to TeliaSonera for an SEK5.1bn (€500m). It’s been known the company was mulling an exit from the market after failing to win any spectrum in an auction late last year.

Nokia fleshes out network deployment skills with second acquisition

Nice specialises in 3D modelling for network planning

In an acquisition double whammy that took place at the end of last week, Nokia Networks revealed that it picked up a second company, Israel-based Nice Systems, also for an undisclosed sum. The geolocation specialist will give Nokia enhancements in the planning and optimisation of mobile networks, the company said.

Telecom New Zealand invests in app startup

App La Carte builds apps for businesses

Telecom New Zealand’s startup incubator, Telecom Digital Ventures, on Monday made a strategic investment in mobile application developer App La Carte. App La Carte was launched in November 2012 when its founders spotted a gap in the market for businesses and organisations prepared to pay a monthly subscription to use an easy-to-use app builder to put together their own app.

BlackBerry offloads R&D unit to Volkswagen

Connected cars are a hot topic

Although device and software maker BlackBerry has fallen on hard times, it’s long been thought the company may carve a niche for itself in the automotive software space. So it was unsurprising when the company revealed this week that it has sold its European research and development centre in Bochum, Germany, to local auto firm Volkswagen.

Nokia makes US acquisition

Nokia's acquisition gives it a better foothold in the USA

This is not something the industry has seen for a long time but Nokia Networks on Friday announced it has entered into an agreement to acquire US-based network integration and deployment specialist SAC Wireless for an undisclosed sum.

Huawei jumps on 5G bandwagon

Sky said it would use the acquisition to support its mobile activities

Chinese equipment vendor Huawei has been elected to join the board of the 5G Infrastructure Association in Europe at a general assembly held in Bologna last week. The company will be represented on the board by Dr. David Soldani of Huawei’s European Research Centre.

Vodafone survey reveals surging M2M adoption

Erik Brenneis heads up Vodafone's M2M division

600 executives from a broad range of industries were asked about their views on, and plans for, machine-to-machine technology and it turned out that 22 percent of them were already using it – an 80 percent increase on the proportion a year ago.

Qualcomm strengthens WiGig offering with Wilocity acquisition

WiGig, why not?

Mobile chip giant Qualcomm has announced the acquisition of Wilocity, which makes chips based on the much faster 802.11ad wifi standard, otherwise known as WiGig, and plans to throw it into the Snapdragon connectivity mix.

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