Ever pushing above its weight on an international scale, New Zealand has connected over one million households, businesses, schools and hospitals to the government’s Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFB) services. Communications Minister, Amy Adams released the latest quarterly report on the UFB and the Rural Broadband Initiative (RBI) programs, saying: “This means 2.4 million New Zealanders are now able to connect to UFB, which is an outstanding achievement this far into the build.” The report notes that in the last quarter, about…
Following a corruption probe by U.S. regulators, Mobile TeleSystems PJSC, commonly referred to as MTS, Russia’s largest wireless mobile carrier, announced it will sell its majority 50.1 stake in Uzbekistan’s Universal Mobile Systems (UMS) to the Uzbek government. Some sources believe it’s a move by MTS to avoid fines related to the U.S. investigation. “Due to a variety of business reasons and other circumstances, MTS decided to sell its stake in the joint venture UMS LLC,” said MTS vice president…

Facebook is fighting accusations of avoiding $5b in taxes

Written on Monday, 01 August 2016 07:03
Conflict has amounted between Facebook and the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) over claims of tax evasion. Facebook reportedly received a “statutory notice of deficiency” from the IRS in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing on Thursday, July 28. The notice Facebook received only applies to the 2010 tax year. However, the IRS could extend its scrutiny to other tax years and expand Facebook’s federal income tax bill by $3 billion to $5 billion, with additional interest and penalties. Facebook…
AT&T, Verizon, Dish Network, T-Mobile U.S. and Comcast are amongst 62 bidders that have made upfront payments to the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in a forthcoming wireless spectrum auction. The auction will begin on August 16. The FCC has said the price of 126 MHz of television airwaves taken from broadcasters to be sold for wireless use is $86.4 billion. The auction, dubbed the ‘broadcast incentive’ is one of the FCC’s most ambitious campaigns to date. But industry analysts…

US Government pledges $400m for 5G development

Written on Monday, 18 July 2016 07:49
The US Government has taken a significant step to securing the nation’s leadership in the rapidly developing 5G mobile industry, announcing of a $400 million Advanced Wireless Research Initiative led by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to enable the deployment and use of four city-scale testing platforms for advanced wireless research over the next decade. The move follows a decision the FCC on 14 July that makes the US the first country in the world to set aside vast quantities…
The European Commission continues to shine a light upon Alphabet Google and its alleged monopoly abuse. EU regulators brought a third antitrust charge against the online search giant on Thursday, July 14, accusing Google of blocking rivals in the lucrative online search advertising market. The European Commission has once again highlighted the fact that Google, the world’s most popular internet search engine, favors its own shopping service in search results, resulting in an unfair market for its competitors to operate…
The UAE Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) has called on all smart mobile and device users and warned them about playing online electronic games that request for their geographical locations, which could be used against them for criminal activities. The warning was issued in the light of the growing popularity of online games such as Pokemon Go, which according to the TRA, invades the privacy of users and allows criminal elements like hackers to spy on them and know when they…

UAE’s telecommunications sector leads the Arab community

Written on Thursday, 14 July 2016 13:25
The UAE is ranked ahead of all Arab states in the 2015 Networked Readiness Index (NRI) issued by the World Economic Forum, and twenty-third among all 143 countries assessed, moving up one position from twenty-fourth place in 2014. International indices ranking a range of information and communication technology (ICT) indicators demonstrate the robust nature of the UAE’s telecommunications sector and the government’s success in leveraging advances in information and communication technologies to drive economic productivity and social development. Internationally, the…

IBM bets on blockchain in Singapore

Written on Thursday, 14 July 2016 09:53
IBM in conjunction with the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB) and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) is to set up a Center for Blockchain Innovation in Singapore in which IBM researchers will work with government, industries and academia to develop applications and solutions based on enterprise blockchain, cyber-security, and cognitive computing technologies. IBM says the center will also engage with small and medium enterprises to create new applications and grow new markets in finance and trade. The vice president…
The launch of 5G is supported by many major telcos, including 20 that have promised to introduce 5G in the European Union by 2020 under one condition: governments must weaken net neutrality rules. The coalition, including Deutsche Telekom, Nokia, Vodafone and BT, have outlined their plans in a seven-page document called ‘5G Manifesto’ which details how the companies will introduce 5G across Europe over the next five years. But the document also warns that if European governments don’t allow more…
Fifteen communities have joined together as part of a US Ignite Smart Gigabit Communities initiative. The goal is to create a national network of Smart Gigabit Communities that will leverage next-generation Internet and Smart City technologies to keep pace with rapidly changing technology and economic conditions. US Ignite is providing the 15 participating communities with relevant information, education and resources for funding and deployment in order to help realize the new program’s goals. With US Ignite’s help, each community is…

Hong Kong touts itself as Asian ‘Technology Hub’

Written on Thursday, 23 June 2016 06:22
Hong Kong is promoting itself as an innovation and technology hub for companies looking to tap into the Asian market. The Director-General of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office, London, Ms Priscilla To, said: “Entrepreneurs from around the world and renowned research and technology institutes choose Hong Kong as a regional base for developing their ideas and innovations, making use of facilities just across the border to develop prototypes over a few days, and Hong Kong's connectivity and network,…
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