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Samsung makes tentative Tizen launch

The Samsung Z Tizen smartphone

Global smartphone sales leader Samsung has finally unveiled a smartphone running on Tizen – the new, Linux-based, open-source mobile OS that Samsung has been developing in partnership with Intel ever since Nokia threw the towel in on MeeGo back in 2011.

Rostelecom and Tele2 set up joint venture in Russia

Rostelecom and Tele2 Russia have teamed up to create a JV

Russian operator Rostelecom and rival Tele2 Russia have announced the creation of a joint venture, T2 RTK Holding. Rostelecom said that it will contribute “substantially all” of its mobile assets into the joint venture, and Tele2 Russia will contribute all of its mobile assets.

Russia launches high speed, low latency link between Europe and Asia

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Russian carrier MegaFon has announced the commercial launch of an 8,700 kilometre long terrestrial fibre optic trunk connecting Europe and Asia.

MTS teams with Samsung on North-West Russian LTE network

MTS plans to launch its first MTS LTE FDD network in Russia’s Northwest Federal District with Korean vendor Samsung

Russian operator group MTS plans to launch its first MTS LTE FDD network in Russia’s Northwest Federal District with Korean vendor Samsung. The rollout of the network is a part of the three-year agreement signed between the two firms in 2013.

Russia’s Rostelecom deploys “groundbreaking” CDN

Rostelecom has deployed one of the world’s largest operator content delivery networks, courtesy of Ericsson

Russian operator Rostelecom has deployed what it claims is one of the world’s largest operator content delivery networks (CDN). The network sees the deployment of content servers in 30 major Russian cities by Swedish infrastructure vendor Ericsson, which said that the platform will enable Rostelecom to create sustainable businesses in partnership with over the top (OTT) service providers.

VimpelCom Russia boss takes board role

Anton Kudryashov will assume the role of chief group business development and portfolio officer at VimpelCom

European operator group VimpelCom has promoted its Russian chief to the group’s executive board; Anton Kudryashov will assume the role of chief group business development and portfolio officer from October 14, 2013.

TeliaSonera backs Megafon’s Yota acquisition

Russian firm Vimpelcom saw its revenue grow four per cent year on year to reach $23.1bn while net income was $2.1bn; a four-fold increase on the 2011 figure

Russian operator Megafon has announced that it is to acquire domestic competitor Scartel, which operates an LTE network under the Yota brand, for $1.18bn. TeliaSonera, which holds 25.2 per cent of Scartel described the deal as “strategically attractive and value enhancing” for Megafon. Scartel is currently owned by Garsdale, a holding company of Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov, who also controls more than 50 per cent of Megafon.

Moscow to monitor subway passengers’ phones

Moscow’s subway system is set to be equipped with an intelligent security system intended to monitor mobile phones of passengers

The police force covering Moscow’s subway system has proposed to deploy an IMSI (International Mobile Subscriber Identity) tracking system capable of monitoring the location and movement of mobile phones.

MegaFon given green light to acquire Scartel

The move should reduce the cost of LTE rollout

Third placed Russian cellco MegaFon has had its proposal to acquire 4G operator Scartel approved by the competition watchdog.

Six degrees of separation

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It often feels as though the world is getting smaller – a side effect of the increasing density of human networks. The Informer is sure you’ve heard of a popular theory that most people in the world are connected to each other, and Kevin Bacon, by no more than six steps.

Russian operators begin to phase out iPhone

Apple's iPhone has been dropped by MTS and Megafon in Russia

Two of Russia’s largest mobile operators have ceased selling iPhone devices in the country due to the extensive marketing and financial support demanded by Apple. Second and third placed MTS and Megafon have already stopped advertising the device on their online shopping portals.

VimpelCom brings LTE to Moscow

VimpelCom has launched LTE services in Moscow

European operator VimpelCom has launched LTE services in Moscow. The firm’s LTE FDD services are now accessible within the central Sadovoye Ring area of the city. The operator expects LTE services to be available throughout the Russian capital by the end of 2013.

Tele2 sells Russian unit in $3.5bn deal

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Nordic carrier Tele2 has agreed to sell its regional Russian mobile operation to banking group VTB for $2.4bn in cash and $1.15bn in debt.

VimpelCom signs Ericsson’s first managed services contract in Russia

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Russian operator VimpelCom has signed a five-year managed services contract with Ericsson. The Swedish vendor’s first major managed services contract in Russia sees it managing Vimpelcom’s network operations at more than 10,000 sites.

“Strange” Apple LTE policy omits Asian and Russian networks

There are still networks out there waiting for LTE approval from Apple

Apple will next week add another 36 networks to the selection of carriers that are permitted to offer the iPhone 5 with LTE support enabled. Tim Cook, CEO of the handset vendor, made the revelation as part of the company’s earnings call earlier this week. However, the expanded list does not extend to carriers in parts of Asia and Russia.

VimpelCom and Megafon take equal share in Russian retailer

MegaFon and VimpelCom will jointly own handset retailer Euroset

International operator VimpelCom and Russian operator Megafon have taken joint ownership of Russian handset retailer Euroset. Through its fully-owned Russian subsuduary, Vimpelcom has increased its stake in the retailer by 0.1 per cent to now own 50 per cent of the firm. The other 50 per cent has been acquired for $1.07bn by Lefbord Investments Limited, a company owned by MegaFon and Garsdale Services Investment.

Russia ends VimpelCom legal action

Russia's FAS has withdrawn legal action against Telenor

The Russian government has decided to withdraw legal claims against Norwegian operator group Telenor, signaling an end to the long-running dispute over the ownership of affiliate firm VimpelCom. The move allows the international operator, headquartered in Amsterdam but of Russian extraction, to distribute dividends to investors including Russian conglomerate Altimo.

MTS targets ‘unbanked’ Russian market

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Russian telecoms operator MTS is planning to provide banking services to customers that lack a traditional bank account, following an agreement to purchase a 25.09 per cent stake in MTS Bank.

VimpelCom transfers 1,300 staff to Huawei

Russian operator group VimpelCom has signed a managed services deal with Huawei

Russian operator VimpelCom will transfer 1,300 staff to Chinese infrastructure vendor Huawei, as part of a five-year managed services deal.

Smartphone sales to soar as Russia joins WTO

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Smartphone penetration in Russia is set to soar after the country joined the World Trade Organisation (WTO) last week. The country has finally been given membership of the organisation after an 18-year wait, and will benefit from lower charges being levied on imports and cheaper products in shops for Russian consumers.

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