A revived and refreshed Informer greets you today after a month off that included exploring the delights of France. It’s a very diverse country, offering contrasting experiences such as camping in the Dordogne, wine-tasting in the Cotes du Rhone and queuing in Disneyland. But one factor remains constant throughout this beautiful and fertile land – rubbish mobile coverage.
Such is the Informer’s commitment to bring you, dear Telecoms.com reader, the latest news from across the world that this week’s A Week In Wireless comes to you from not-so-sunny Stockholm. The Swedes have been excellent hosts and the Informer is delighted to report that the country’s reputation for statuesque blondes is well deserved.
The European Commission’s (EC) plans to abolish retail roaming rates within EU altogether by 2016 could be changed to a watered-down ‘fair-use’ policy instead, according to a draft report seen by the Financial Times.
KPN’s carrier services operation, iBasis, this week scored an LTE signalling exchange and roaming contract from Claro Peru, a subsidiary of America Movil.
Kuwaiti mobile operator Viva on Monday introduced commercial LTE roaming services with neighbouring Saudi Telecommunications Company (STC), marking the first 4G LTE roaming agreement between Gulf operators.
The carrier services arm of Nordic operator TeliaSonera has launched what it claims is the first managed Diameter signalling service, enabling other mobile operators to offer LTE roaming services to their customers. The Diameter Roaming Exchange (DRX) offering from TeliaSonera International Carrier has already been deployed by the operator’s subsidiaries in Sweden, Norway, Spain, Finland and Denmark and will be rolled out to its Eurasian properties in the near future, the firm said.
Indian operators Reliance Communications, Tata Teleservices and Aircel this week announced a three way inter-circle roaming partnership to offer pan-Indian 3G services to their customers.
James Tagg, CTO and Founder of Truphone, talks to MCI about building a next generation global mobile network and disassociating the company from the MVNO label.
The European Parliament’s Industry and Research Committee (ITRE) has voted to approve the telecoms single market package proposed by the European Commission. The package, outlined in September 2013, aims to abolish roaming rates within the EU as well as coordinate spectrum assignment across the region. It also calls for consumer rights to be harmonised across Europe, EU-wide protection of net neutrality and simpler rules across the EU to enable companies to invest more and cross borders with their offerings.
A coalition of 14 European mobile operators has warned of the damaging effects that the European Commission’s plans regarding the abolition of roaming charges could have on competition in the region.
Alon Roth, CEO of Callup, talks to Telecoms.com about rolling out Value Added Services (VAS) as a cloud-based SaaS.
UK operator EE has signed outbound LTE roaming agreements with Orange in France and Spain. EE, which is jointly owned by operator groups Orange and Deutsche Telekom, said that the deals are the first of a series of outbound roaming agreements. The operator intends to announce similar deals in the USA, Italy, Germany, Switzerland and the Netherlands in the summer.
From the summer, Vodafone claims it will offer LTE roaming to more countries than any other mobile operator and it will not charge a premium for such services.
The European Commission has published research that suggests Europe’s mobile operators are missing out on business from 300 million customers by charging roaming premiums within the EU. The research forms part of the EC’s continuing drive to end EU roaming charges.
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.
Indian carrier services firm Tata Communications has announced that its network is now ready to supply VoLTE services to operators connected to its IPX.
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.
The carrier services arm of Telecom Italia, TI Sparkle, has announced an LTE roaming peering agreement with wholesaler iBasis, a subsidiary of Dutch operator group KPN.
US operator AT&T has signed an LTE roaming agreement in the UK with EE. The agreement was announced just days after the US firm inked a similar deal in Canada with Rogers Communications.
As the European Commission’s push to bring down roaming rates across the region gains traction, French operator group Orange has devised an offer aimed at tourists travelling to France, in a bid to combat bill shock.