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VoLTE deployments set to double next year

4G is finding its voice

The introduction of VoLTE is accelerating with 21% of operators currently investing in deployments, and according to the Global mobile Suppliers Association (GSA) the figure is set to double next year. So far a total of 10, of which seven this year, commercial VoLTE-enabled HD voice services have been launched, and the GSA is expecting eight more by the end of 2014.

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.

Telefónica CCDO joins chorus calling for European digital improvements

Eduardo Navarro, chief commercial digital officer at Telefónica

The chief commercial digital officer of Spanish incumbent telco, Eduardo Navarro, Telefónica has used a speech at the EC Innovation Convention in Brussels to warn that Europe needs to redouble its efforts to move to the forefront of the global digital sector.

Telekom Austria CEO foresees increased foreign investment in Europe

Hannes Ametsreiter called the spectrum price a "bitter pill"

The CEO of Telekom Austria, Hannes Ametsreiter, has told Telecoms.com that he expects to see increased investment in the European telecom sector and that some European telcos might see their headquarters shift outside of the region as a result. Telekom Austria is itself part owned by Mexican billionaire and America Movil CEO Carlos Slim, who is reportedly keen to take full ownership of the Austrian incumbent.

Telefónica taps Comarch for OSS project, opens Singapore office

Telefónica's mobile advertising play is now group wide

Spanish operator Telefónica has awarded Polish B/OSS vendor Comarch a contract to supply network planning and optimisation products and services to across the operator’s European footprint. It is the vendor’s first multinational deal with Telefónica and builds on a previous implementation with Telefónica Deutschland, Comarch said.

Kroes outlines controversial “open data” plan for Europe

Neelie Kroes spoke at the GSMA's Mobile 360 event in Brussels

European Commissioner for the Digital Agenda Neelie Kroes has outlined a five-point plan to support the evolution of Europe’s telecoms sector. Part of her plan called for the industry to share experiences, data and infrastructure, claiming that this is the way business must evolve to benefit the industry. She also called on Europe’s telecoms industry to focus now on developing 5G networks, a point that the GSMA’s director general appeared to take exception to.

GSMA report makes policy recommendations for Europe

Anne Bouverot, director general, GSMA

The GSMA has issued a fresh call for policy overhaul in the European mobile sector in a bid to bring the region up to speed with the world’s leading markets. Spectrum harmonisation, the removal of barriers to consolidation and freedom from close regulator control on pricing are essential to the sector’s improvement, the group said.

EC and GSMA at odds over single market reform

The GSMA has put out a statement accusing the EC of not fully understanding how the telecoms market operates

The European Commission is once again pushing its agenda to transform the EU’s 28 telecoms markets into one single market. Research undertaken by the EC found that mobile users across the EU face huge price differences for the same services.

Vodafone restructures European operations

Vodafone nears CWW deal

Vodafone has announced a restructuring of its international portfolio, with the creation of a single European region, which the operator said will “ensure a more efficient and effective delivery” of its Vodafone 2015 priorities.

EC asks German regulator to lower mobile termination rates

Neelie Kroes, vice president of the European Commission

The European Commission has asked Germany’s telecoms regulator, the Bundesnetzagentur (BNetzA), to amend or withdraw its plans to make mobile termination rates (MTR) for operators in the country more than 80 per cent higher than most other EU member states.

Rural communities key to Europe’s superfast broadband target

Europe graphic

Despite all households in the European Union now having access to basic internet connectivity, significant challenges remain before the same can be said of high-speed services, not least of which is the high cost of wiring up rural areas, according to UK research firm Point Topic.

Consolidation, convergence and competition

Alcatel and Regional Telecom to deploy 4G services in Iraq

Calls for consolidation in the European mobile market grow louder by the week and four-operator markets look increasingly challenged. Now, those mobile operators that have already built scale seem to be suggesting that there is no option but to expand yet further through diversification.

Kroes vows to “burn red tape” blocking broadband rollout

Neelie Kroes, European Commissioner for the Digital Agenda

European Commission vice president Neelie Kroes has outlined proposals to cut the costs and bureaucracy involved in broadband deployment, suggesting that the sector could make savings of up to €60bn. Kroes said that she wants to “burn the red tape” that is blocking access for all EU citizens to cast broadband.

SMEs remain an untapped market in Europe

SMEs are an undervalued market

More than 99 per cent of European businesses are SMEs, yet the vast majority plan to change telecoms service provider at the end of their contract period, according to research published recently. The message is that the SME sector represents an enormous opportunity for CSPs to grow their revenues – but it is an opportunity they are not taking.

EC clears 2GHz spectrum for LTE refarming

Neelie Kroes, European Commissioner for the Digital Agenda

The European Commission (EC) has called on all EU member states to make spectrum around the 2GHz frequency band available for LTE services. The paired terrestrial 2 GHz band (1920-1980 MHz paired with 2110-2170 MHz) has been traditionally used for UMTS 3G networks, but the EC wants it to be liberalised for 4G services across the region.

What’s We-Government? Just Tweet the EU

EU1

Trending on Twitter isn’t a traditional political goal. Nor is having a Facebook page with thousands of friends. But that’s exactly the point. The European Commission’s Digital Agenda for Europe doesn’t want old school methods to talk to citizens or to broadcast its views. Instead, it wants to involve every European in critical decisions that will help stimulate Europe’s digital economy – knowing that these decisions are tightly linked to the European Union’s entire future.

EU Parliament approves lower roaming rates

The EU has voted in favour of the creation of a roaming market and reduced rates for roaming

Members of the European Parliament and representatives of the Council and the European Commission have voted in favour of new rules that will lower roaming rates in the EU and see the creation of an EU-wide roaming market.

Orange pledges LTE across Europe by 2015

Orange has announced a commitment to cover Europe with LTE by 2015

International carrier Orange/France Telecom has committed itself to rolling out LTE networks across ten European countries by 2015. France Telecom’s CEO Stéphane Richard made the announcement at a meeting with the European Commission in Brussels this week.

Telefonica launches talent incubator

The innovation deficit is an easy problem to fix, according to Telefónica

Spain-based carrier Telefonica on Wednesday launched a European talent incubator, in a move clearly designed to make the brand seem hip and in touch with young people and the start-up community.

European Commission plans ambitious €100bn fibre project

The EU Commission is looking to attract investment of €100bn to be spent on rolling out fibre broadband across Europe

The European Parliament and the EU’s Council of Ministers is considering a proposal from the European Commission for an ambitious project, worth up to €100bn ($140bn), to fund the rollout of fibre broadband and associated services across the EU.

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