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AT&T gets approval for spectrum purchase while Verizon deal faces investigation

AT&T has been given the go-ahead to acquire spectrum from Qualcomm

US operator AT&T has been granted approval from regulators for its plans to go ahead with a $ 1.93bn deal to acquire spectrum from Qualcomm, just days after its planned merger with T-Mobile USA collapsed.

AT&T will purchase 6MHz of spectrum across the country in the 700MHz band, as well as another 6MHz of spectrum in five major metropolitan areas: New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Unlike the T-Mobile merger, the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC), ruled that this purchase “would not result in competitive harm that would outweigh the public interest benefits of this transaction”.

AT&T announced its plans to buy the spectrum in December last year, just weeks before announcing the much larger-scale proposed deal to acquire T-Mobile USA for $ 39 billion, with both deals stimulated by a shortage of spectrum in the country.

Meanwhile, rival Verizon Wireless is to have a spectrum deal of its own investigated by authorities. The US Justice Department has confirmed that it is looking into a spectrum deal struck between Verizon Wireless and three US cable companies, and analysing any anti-competitive effects it may have on the telecommunications industry.

The operator recently announced plans to spend $ 3.6bn on 122 Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) spectrum licences from SpectrumCo, a joint venture between cable companies Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks, in a bid to boost its LTE offering.

The cable companies also announced that they have entered into several agreements with Verizon, providing for the sale of various products and services.

However, there are concerns that the deal creates a relationship between companies that had been competing, which could be perceived as anti-competitive to the rest of the market. – telecoms industry news, analysis and opinion

LION Universe signs deal to Distribute the HD and Full HD Naked Eye 3D LION Phone in Nigeria, the Largest Telecommunications Market in Africa

SAN DIEGO , Oct. TPT Global Tech (OTCBB:TPTW) announced today that its Smartphone division, LION Universe signed a distribution deal with Midas Touch Logistic Options Ltd. (MTLOL) Nigeria to distribute their Full HD and Full HD Naked Eye 3D (no eye wear)andnbsp;Smart phones in the country of Nigeria , Africa . Femi Adediran is the MD/CEO ofandnbsp;Dynamite Foods Limited, an emerging food company that is currently making waves in Nigeria . He is the President, Midas Touch Logistic Options Limited (MTLOL), an investment group for visionary minds and he is a Managing Partner at Tombake Nigeria Limited. This transaction marks LION Universe’s second recent African distribution expansion deal into the African market. Recently LION Universe signed a deal to Distribute its Smartphones into the Gambian West African market. TPT Global Tech recently completedandnbsp;the purchase of LION Universe Technologies assets, a Los Angeles-Based Mobile Technology think tank.andnbsp; The LION smart phone is the first Full HD Naked Eye 3D technologysmart phone ever launched in the United States . LION Universe mobile 3D technology is Patent pending. With a business model built on innovation and progress starting with the LION phone, the company produces high-quality and easy-to-use cellular phones with wide appeal. The LION phone was designed for consumers looking for portable and affordable cutting edge technology. LION Universe’s first generation phones come equipped with full high definition resolution screen for better viewing. The Full HD Naked Eye 3D LION smart phone is perfect for watching movies, playing games, even editing photos or videos. Click here for more.

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Alcatel-Lucent signs $750m deal with China Mobile

Alcatel-Lucent has signed a €750m one-year deal with China Mobile

Alcatel-Lucent has signed a €750m one-year deal with China Mobile

Infrastructure vendor Alcatel-Lucent has signed a €750m one-year deal with China Mobile. The vendor will supply the technology for the Chinese operator to move to an all-IP network and enable the deployment of NFV technology on its network and cloud based services.

The deal sees Alcatel-Lucent provide China Mobile with wireless technology such as lightRadio 4G TD-LTE overlay and upgrades to existing networks. The vendor will also supply its lightRadio Metro Radio Outdoor (MRO) and IP Networking kit, such as Evolved Packet Core (EPC), IP routing technology and next generation optics transmission, as well as fixed ultra-broadband access technology, such as GPON and professional services.

The two firms have a long standing relationship. In December last year, the vendor announced it will deploy small cells for China Mobile’s TD-LTE network.

“This is a significant achievement of Alcatel-Lucent and essentially makes us a key technology provider in virtually every aspect of China Mobile’s growing mobile ultra-broadband network,” said Michel Combes, CEO of Alcatel-Lucent.

“We have worked side-by-side with China Mobile throughout many developments in mobile technology, including the development of 4G TD-LTE.  We are continuing that close collaboration as China Mobile moves to the next level of ultra-broadband through NFV supporting future cloud applications and services.”


LTE Asia 2014 will take place on the 23rd to 25th September at the Marina Bay Sands, Singapore

Ericsson outlines high hopes for Technicolor deal

Ericsson plans to acquire Technicolor's broadcast services division

Ericsson voiced its intention to become the “glue” holding broadcast, IT and telecoms services together, as it announced plans to acquire the broadcast services division of Technicolor for €19m ($ 25m).

Technicolor provides production, postproduction, and distribution services to content creators, network service providers and broadcasters. The firm’s broadcast services division provides play-out services, live production support and media asset management services.

Valter D’Avino, head of managed services at Ericsson, told that the firm is making the acquisition because it believes that the broadcast, TV and telecoms sectors are converging, in terms of the end user experience.

“Whatever the technology is used to reach the end user; it could be tablets, PCs, smartphones, TVs –but at the end, a significant part of the capacity is used up by video transmission in the mobile networks. This is true on the fixed line side as well, and we are seeing a convergence between these sectors,” he said.

“We believe that we can combine telecoms and IT at the same time. Traditionally, telcos have been served and handled by traditional telco players while IT services have been served by traditional IT players and now broadcasters as well, so we can be the glue, from the services viewpoint, between broadcast, IT and telcos.”

Although Technicolor’s broadcast services division operates in just the Netherlands, France and the UK, Ericsson said that its expertise in managed services and its global scale will entice firms to outsource broadcast services to it worldwide.

“We are present in more than 180 countries, selling managed services in US, China, Asia-Pacific and Africa. This combination can represent a good mix that can convince businesses to outsource even more than they had been planning to. Today, there is a vast amount of customers doing this internally and the market is extremely fragmented,” said D’Avino.

He added that, following this deal, which is expected to be completed mid-2012, Ericsson has no plans to make any more acquisitions in the broadcast space, and aims to grow this side of its business organically.

Technicolor added that the transaction will also contribute to contribute to its focus on reducing its debt level and allocating capital investments to its other activities.

The firm’s broadcast services division has 900 employees managing services to more than 200 channels in France, the UK and the Netherlands. The transaction also includes a potential earn-out based on 2015 revenues of the broadcast services activity of up to €9m, and is subject to the relevant customary regulatory administrative approvals and consultations. – telecoms industry news, analysis and opinion

Reliance Jio signs tower sharing deal with Bharti Infratel

Reliance Jio has signed an agreement with Indian telecom tower infrastructure provider Bharti Infratel

Reliance Jio has signed an agreement with Indian telecom tower infrastructure provider Bharti Infratel

Indian operator Reliance Jio Infocomm has signed a tower sharing agreement with local infrastructure provider Bharti Infratel across the country.

In December last year, Reliance Jio Infocomm announced an infrastructure sharing agreement with Bharti Airtel, Bharti Group’s operator subsidiary. The two agreed to share their inter and intra city fibre networks, submarine cable networks, towers and internet broadband services. At the time, they added that they will also look for other opportunities to share assets in the future.

Reliance Jio, which holds a Pan India Unified License, said that the agreement is in line with an earlier comprehensive telecom infrastructure sharing arrangement between the two firms, which is aimed at avoiding duplication of infrastructure in order to preserve its capital and minimise the firm’s environmental footprint.

“The agreement will help us with the faster roll out of our services across the country,” commented Sanjay Mashruwala, managing director at Reliance Jio.

D S Rawat, CEO at Bharti Infratel added that the firm’s vast footprint and high network uptime levels will offer faster access to market and lower operational costs to Reliance Jio.

“The agreement would also benefit our existing customers with lower rentals and energy charges as a result of additional sharing,” he added.

Vodafone awards global deal to Samsung for Project Spring

Global broadband revenues to continue rising

Vodafone is investing in global infrastructure

UK-based operator Vodafone has tapped up Korean manufacturer Samsung for a global framework agreement, to deliver 2G, 3G and 4G infrastructure across the Vodafone Group footprint.

The framework agreement supports Vodafone’s organic investment programme, Project Spring, which is designed to accelerate its plans to establish stronger network and service differentiation for its customers. Earlier this week the operator also signed up Ericsson.

Vodafone is making significant investments in its global network infrastructure. As we ll as Project Spring the company’s Carrier Services division recently revealed that it is currently investing heavily in MPLS and by the end of the year will have what it claims is the world’s largest physical MPLS infrastructure.

The firm is also investing on solutions that will run on this infrastructure and the division’s CEO Brian Fitzpatrick told that Vodafone will also have one of, if not the largest IPX infrastructure in the world, when work is complete.

WeDo scores RA deal with Zain

zain-logoPortuguese business assurance software provider WeDo Technologies has announced a deal with Zain that will see the Middle Eastern mobile operator deploy WeDo’s revenue assurance product, Raid, in Kuwait, Jordan and Iraq.

Hisham Alam, chief technology officer at Zain Group, said: “Improving operational efficiency and ensuring that all possible revenues are collected is critical to Zain’s stakeholders. We have chosen to work with WeDo Technologies in three of our key markets because it … is known as a true market leader within the business assurance and fraud management space.”

The Intelligence 2013 Annual Survey, published earlier this year, highlighted concerns within the industry over revenue assurance and fraud management for services where the operator does not have end to end control. More than half of respondents felt that mobile financial services and OTT content were particular risks.

Meanwhile Integration between different systems was identified as a key issue in revenue assurance and fraud management. Almost 60 per cent of operator respondents to the survey said that a lack of data consistency across different systems was one reason that their organisations do not make the most of their revenue assurance and fraud management functions.

Just less than 50 per cent said that the absence of automated tools to support processes was a problem, 45.3 per cent cited inconsistent procedures and policies across organisations and 41 per cent the lack of accurate and timely information from other areas of the business.

The 2014 survey questionnaire is now live and you can fill it out, and enter the draw to win one of four iPhone 5s’s here

US DoJ insists on amendments to Verizon spectrum deal

Verizon is buying unused spectrum holdings from the four largest US cable operators

The US Department of Justice has given qualified approval to US operator Verizon’s plan to purchase wireless spectrum holdings from the four largest US cable operators, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks and Cox Communications. But agreements between Verizon and the cable operators to offer one another’s services must change, the DoJ said, because the plan as hatched “would have harmed competition by diminishing the companies’ incentive to compete.”

Verizon is set to spend around $ 3.6bn on some 20MHz of spectrum, having struck a deal with the cable operators at the end of 2011. That agreement set out conditions under which the cable companies would be able to sell Verizon Wireless services on a wholesale basis, with Verizon reselling the cable operators’ services. The companies also pledged to establish a research JV aimed at the “development of technology to better integrate wireline and wireless products and services.”

It is these elements of the deal that the DoJ insists must change. It voiced concerns that the cable operators’ services compete directly with Verizon’s own fibre offering (FiOS) in a number of markets in the US and that, should the agreement go unaltered, Verizon would not be motivated to compete effectively with the cable operators in those markets.

“The proposed settlement forbids Verizon Wireless from selling cable company products in FiOS areas and removes contractual restrictions on Verizon Wireless’s ability to sell FiOS, ensuring that Verizon’s incentives to compete aggressively against the cable companies remain unchanged,” DoJ said in a statement. It also said that the proposed JV must be limited in duration, “ensuring that the agreements will not dampen the companies’ incentives to compete against one another going forward.”

The DoJ also approved Verizon’s plan to sell on a significant portion of spectrum to wireless competitor T-Mobile USA. T-Mobile had originally opposed the deal between Verizon and the cable operators, but a separate agreement was announced in June this year that saw the German-owned operator pacified by the prospect of bolstering its own spectrum portfolio.

The deal must also be signed off by the FCC.

DoJ outlined the following additional caveats to its approval:

  • Verizon retains the ability to sell bundles of services that include DSL, Verizon Wireless and the video services of a direct broadcast satellite company (i.e., DirecTV or Dish Network);
  • After five years, the cable companies are no longer barred from selling the wireless services of Verizon Wireless’s competitors, and may partner with other wireless providers;
  • The cable companies can elect to resell Verizon Wireless services using their own brand at any time as provided for under the amended agreements; and
  • Upon dissolution of the technology joint venture, all members receive a non-exclusive license to all the joint venture’s technology, and each may then choose to sublicense to other competitors. – telecoms industry news, analysis and opinion

Telefonica Signs Deal to Sell Czech Republic Subsidiary for EUR2.5 Billion

Telefonica has confirmed the details of the long expected sale of a majority stake in its Czexh Republic subsidiary to local billionaire businessman, Petr Kellner’s PPF Group. Click here for more.


VimpelCom and Cisco Jasper Ink IoT Deal

Russia’s VimpelCom has selected Cisco Jasper to be the Smart Connectivity management platform across its global network operator properties. Click here for more.

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