Telecoms trade body the GSMA has warned that government efforts to share spectrum usage should “complement but in no way replace” the need for exclusive access spectrum when provisioning mobile broadband services. The body issued a report that assesses two potential licensed shared access scenarios; the first being the release of 50MHz in the 2.3GHz band from 2020 in the EU and the second regarding the release of 100MHz in the 3.5GHz band from 2016 in the US.
To mark Safe Internet Day on Tuesday, Microsoft and Belgian telco Belgacom are teaming up with Child Focus (The Foundation for Missing and Sexually Exploited Children) to deliver workshops in Belgian schools, teaching kids how to navigate the web safely by educating on the potential consequences of their online actions.
While the technological benefits of using software defined networking (SDN) to help operators dynamically provision network applications and services have been well publicised, the economic benefits that the technology could bring are now being articulated.
Only around a fifth of respondents to the Telecoms.com Intelligence Industry Survey 2014 strongly believe that mobile operators are justified in charging LTE roaming at a premium to other roaming services. But even fewer expect that specialist roaming providers will come to dominate the retail roaming market, suggesting that mobile operators will continue to derive vital revenues from roaming, despite pressure on tariffs from competition and regulation.
Cypriot MVNO PrimeTel has said it has secured a licence to become the country’s third mobile operator. With the licence the MVNO plans to roll out a 4G network, becoming a fully fledged MNO, and has pledged to bring new services to market and lower its prices.
Indian carrier services firm Tata Communications has announced that its network is now ready to supply VoLTE services to operators connected to its IPX.
German operator group Deutsche Telekom has acquired the remaining 39.23 per cent stake in its Czech subsidiary for €800m. The group said it was a “natural step” to acquire the remaining stake in T-Mobile Czech Republic from a consortium of investors led by private equity group Mid Europa Partners, as it looks to position itself as a Pan-European operator.
Canadian operator Telus’ employees will soon be able to access buildings on their premises, log in to secure company networks, and share sensitive data using their smartphones.
The joint venture set up by UK’s mobile operators O2, Vodafone and EE — Weve — has announced a partnership with payment provider MasterCard. The two firms hope to accelerate usage of contactless mobile payments at the point of purchase in physical retail stores in Britain.
Croatian mobile operator Vipnet Croatia, a subsidiary of Telekom Austria, has announced that it will upgrade to Canadian BSS solutions vendor Redknee’s latest real time billing solution.
Wifi offload specialist Devicescape has announced that its Curated Virtual Network (CVN) of amenity wifi hotspots has grown 82 per cent year on year to surpass 20 million hotspots worldwide. The firm added that it is on track for that figure to grow to 100 million hotspots by the end of 2017.
French cable operator Numericable has teamed up with IBM to launch a cloud-based service targeted at business customers.
LTE came to market with a price premium but during 2013 the industry saw instances of that premium eroding under competitive pressure. The Telecoms.com Intelligence Industry Survey 2014 set out to see how the industry feels about price premiums that are likely to be attached to LTE roaming and found that less than half of respondents agreed LTE roaming should command a premium.
Saudi Arabian operator STC has renewed its managed services contract with infrastructure vendor Nokia Solutions and Networks (NSN) which will see the Finnish firm continue to provide network planning and optimisation, network and service operations and hardware and software services for STC’s Al Jawal network in Saudi Arabia. The contract covers STC’s GSM, 3G and LTE networks that are within NSN’s footprint.
Dutch operator KPN has recorded a ten per cent year on year drop in revenues for FY2013, as well as a 6.7 per cent drop in net profit. The group added that it is looking to create a leaner operating model by making redundancies over the next two years.
In terms of the benefits Big Data could bring to operators, respondents to the Telecoms.com Intelligence Annual Industry Survey identified customer retention and segmentation/targeting as the clear leaders. Survey respondents were asked to rank a number of potential benefits on a scale of one to seven where seven represented very high potential benefit. Almost 60 per cent of operators and 55 per cent of respondents overall ranked customer retention as six or seven on this scale, with segmentation/targeting drawing the same response from 52.3 per cent of respondents. And so it follows that upselling and internal promotions were seen as the third most beneficial application of Big Data by operator respondents, with 47.3 per cent giving this a high rating.
The United States could soon make M2M connectivity in new vehicles mandatory, following research undertaken by the US Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
After outing mobile operator Vodafone as the only UK operator to have failed to meet telecoms regulator Ofcom’s 3G coverage obligation last year, the regulator has confirmed that Vodafone has now met its requirements.
US operator AT&T has filed a patent to prevent its customers from consuming “an excessive amount of channel bandwidth”.
French operators Bouyges Telecom and SFR have agreed to roll out a shared network covering 57 per cent of the French population. The operators will create a joint venture to manage the shared base station assets and a RAN share covering 2G, 3G and LTE services in the area covered by the network.