China Unicom Ltd. (NYSE: CHU) has had a busy start to the week with news of its impending iPhone launch and a share buyback, while there's 3G and revenue projection news from Thailand, expectations of lower mobile prices in South Korea, and a significant IPTV deal in Taiwan.
Having landed the deal to sell Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL)'s iconic device in China, Unicom today announced that the 3G iPhone will go on sale from October 1 (this Thursday) for 5,000 Yuan Renminbi (US$732.28), with service package prices ranging from RMB126 ($18.45) to RMB886 ($129.71), and handset subsidies ranging from RMB893 ($130.76) to RMB4,253 ($622.64). (See iPhone Heads to China.)
The operator is also set to officially launch its 3G service Thursday, having spent most of this year rolling out its WCDMA network and connecting customers (430,000 3G handset users and 100,000 data card subscribers) to its trial network. (See Unicom Enters Third Phase and China Unicom Plans Massive Capex Hike.)
Unicom, which recently strengthened its ties with Telefónica SA (NYSE: TEF), also announced today that it is buying back the near 900 million shares (about 3.8 percent of Unicom's stock) currently owned by Korea's SK Telecom (Nasdaq: SKM) for about 10 billion Hong Kong dollars ($1.29 billion). (See China Unicom, Telefónica Strengthen Ties.)
In Thailand, True Corp. plc , which offers fixed and mobile services, is feeling the pinch from the economic downturn, and expects its full year revenues to increase by less than 5 percent, reports Reuters.
Meanwhile, the country's National Telecommunications Commission has unveiled plans to hold an auction of 3G spectrum in December, according to Reuters, but it's clear that the process faces opposition, as this Bangkok Post story reveals.
South Korea's three mobile operators -- SK Telecom, KT Corp. , and LG Telecom -- are to lower their tariffs as part of a government initiative to cut costs for households, Reuters reports.
Telco TV systems and services firm Broadband Network Systems Ltd. (BNS) has won a five-year deal with in-building broadband service provider Max Media to provide IPTV services to multi-tenant residential buildings, commercial offices, and hotels in Taiwan. The vendor estimates the deal will be worth US$34 million over the five-year duration. BNS is already active in Taiwan, having landed a deal with national operator Chunghwa Telecom Co. Ltd. (NYSE: CHT) to develop an interactive shopping channel for the carrier's IPTV service. (See BNS, Chunghwa Team Up and BNS's IPTV App Adds a Legacy Touch.)
Find out more about developments in the Asia/Pacific IPTV market at TelcoTV Asia, a two-day event to be staged in Shanghai, October 13 and 14.
Light Reading is spending much of this year digging into the details of how automation technology will impact the comms market, but let's take a moment to also look at how automation is set to overturn the current world order by the middle of the century.
Understanding the full experience of women in technology requires starting at the collegiate level (or sooner) and studying the technologies women are involved with, company cultures they're part of and personal experiences of individuals.
During this WiC radio show, we will talk with Nicole Engelbert, the director of Research & Analysis for Ovum Technology and a 23-year telecom industry veteran, about her experiences and perspectives on women in tech. Engelbert covers infrastructure, applications and industries for Ovum, but she is also involved in the research firm's higher education team and has helped colleges and universities globally leverage technology as a strategy for improving recruitment, retention and graduation performance.
She will share her unique insight into the collegiate level, where women pursuing engineering and STEM-related degrees is dwindling. Engelbert will also reveal new, original Ovum research on the topics of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, security and augmented reality, as well as discuss what each of those technologies might mean for women in our field. As always, we'll also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air and chat board.