Saudi Arabia’s telecommunications incumbent Saudi Telecom Company (STC) has emerged as the frontrunner to acquire a 55% stake in Turk Telecom - in a deal reportedly worth around $3.9 billion. Oger Telecom is the majority shareholder in Turk Telecom, but it is currently in dire straits financially - and is willingly to sell off its stake in the Turkish operator. Sources close to both STC and Oger Telecom have claimed negotiations between the two organizations is on-going, but noted that…

Vodacom redeems itself for billing system error

Written on Monday, 04 September 2017 07:32
South Africa-based telecommunications company Vodacom said in a statement that it will give all customers affected by a recent billing systems error a 500MB bundle for free, over and above the airtime and data refunds processed by the company. The system error, which impacted certain prepaid and top up customers, was caused by a configuration change on Vodacom’s prepaid and top up billing system. Vodacom swiftly isolated the problem and rolled the process back. The company worked to ensure that…

Hong Kong’s SmarTone successfully trials LAA with Ericsson

Written on Monday, 04 September 2017 07:01
Ericsson and SmarTone, the leading mobile network operator in Hong Kong, have taken a significant step toward 5G with the successful trial of Licensed Assisted Access (LAA) technology in a live over-the-air demonstration in Hong Kong. LAA allows the use of unlicensed spectrum in the 5GHz band in combination with licensed spectrum. By doing this, subscribers get an enhanced mobile broadband experience with even more capacity and faster speeds while operators make efficient use of unlicensed spectrum resources. “SmarTone is…

Zain Iraq upgrading network to meet growing data demands

Written on Monday, 04 September 2017 06:08
Zain Iraq, a subsidiary of Kuwait’s Zain Group, has selected Ericsson to upgrade its existing network using the Swedish telecom equipment vendor’s virtual Evolved Packet Core (vEPC) offering to meet the growing data demands of its customers in the region. Under this collaboration, Ericsson will modernize the current infrastructure of Zain Iraq’s network by implementing a solution that will enable the operator to quickly introduce new services for customers, while maintaining high performance network requirements. Ericsson will modernize Zain Iraq’s…

Data fuels growth in Thailand’s mobile industry

Written on Sunday, 03 September 2017 11:30
Increased data usage fueled growth in Thailand’s mobile industry in the first half of 2017, according to the National Economic and Social Development Board. Pricing competition in the sector dropped, and overall Thailand’s economy increased by the fastest rate in four years. Thailand’s GDP rose 3.7 percent year-on-year in Q2 2017 after annual growth of 3.3 percent reported in Q1. The country’s three leading mobile operators – AIS, True Move and Telenor-owned dtac – saw service revenue increase 8 percent…
Three of China’s state-run mobile operators have posted positive financial results for the first-half of 2017, after enduring a difficult 2016. China Telecom, China Unicom and China Mobile all made solid gains on their bottom line, largely due to the continued rapid demand for data and 4G uptake. All three entities suffered a decline in earnings during 2016 - but in the first-half of this year they’ve made a combined profit of CYN 77.6 billion ($11.6 billion) compared with a…

Vodafone Australia takes action to deliver better broadband

Written on Sunday, 03 September 2017 10:26
Vodafone Australia unveiled plans to deliver “much needed simplicity” and service innovation for customers connecting to the nbn (“Australia’s new broadband network” replacing parts of the existing phone and internet infrastructure) in a bid to lift the fixed broadband experience in the country. As a new entrant to the fixed broadband market, Vodafone said it’s committed to resisting the status quo and driving change as it makes preparations to launch its nbn service. The service will initially launch in Sydney,…

Ooredoo Myanmar CEO quits following disappointing Q1

Written on Sunday, 03 September 2017 10:06
Ooredoo Myanmar’s former COO, Vikram Sinha, has taken on the role of interim chief executive officer, after former chief Rene Meza resigned. The news comes after Ooredoo Myanmar posted disappointing Q1 results for 2017 with revenues down 13 percent. Ooredoo said in a statement that Meza will be returning to his home country of Paraguay after playing a significant role helping to build Ooredoo’s Myanmar operation the last two years. Ross Cormack held the chief position before Meza took over…
Turkish telecommunications operator Turkcell has announced that it will rollout Narrow-Band-Internet of Things (NB-IoT) in order to support ‘smart city’ applications and innovations which will be introduced in different sectors all across the country. The new technology will be used to transform industries such energy, healthcare and education. The ‘smart city’ applications powered by NB-IoT will enable machines to communicate with each other via Turkcell’s LTE-A - infrastructure. Analysts have suggested that this is the first clear strategy towards 5G…
T-Mobile recently announced plans to roll-out its new 600MHz LTE network in the US, leveraging the massive haul of super-premium low-band spectrum the operator won in the government broadcast incentive auction concluded earlier this year. The announcement came just two months after the company received its spectrum licenses from the FCC. The first of T-Mobile’s 600MHz LTE network sites were switched on in Cheyenne, Wyoming using Nokia equipment. Starting in rural America and other markets where the spectrum is clear…

China Unicom launches commercial Gigabit LTE network

Written on Monday, 28 August 2017 05:52
China Unicom, together with Ericsson, has commercially launched a Gigabit LTE network in China, allowing subscribers to “enjoy the services and benefits available with high-speed mobile broadband data,” an Ericsson statement said. The Gigabit LTE network upgraded by Ericsson will not only provide China Unicom subscribers with an advanced LTE experience and enhanced customer satisfaction, but it will also make full use of network resources and improve profitability, the companies claim. “This remarkable achievement will fulfill our strategy to offer…

Mexican court rules in favor of America Movil

Written on Sunday, 27 August 2017 13:00
America Movil, Mexico’s largest telecom provider, won a victory this month, when Mexico’s Supreme Court ruled on August 16 that the operator doesn’t have to share its network to rivals free of charge. The court said a law requiring the company to allow rivals to use its network for free is unconstitutional. Billionaire Carlos Slim Helu, the world’s fifth wealthiest person, runs the Mexican wireless telecom and pay TV giant, competing against rivals US telecom giant AT&T and Spain’s Telefónica.…
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