Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Interoute's container breakthrough; T-Systems peddles AI; ADVA's edge NFV device passes muster; consumer watchdogs bark at online giants.
Italy is to begin trials of 5G in five cities: Milan, Prato, L'Aquila, Bari and Matera. The move, announced by Italy's Ministry of Economic Development, is the country's response to the European Commission's Action Plan for 5G, which called on EU member states to identify by 2018 at least one city where 5G testing could begin. Initially, the government has launched a tender process, and the projects chosen for the trials as a result of that process will start by the end of the year. The cities were chosen on the basis of geographical factors and the availability of certain spectrum frequencies.
Interoute Communications Ltd. has integrated its Global Cloud Infrastructure platform with Rancher Labs' container management platform, the pan-European network operator has announced. According to Interoute, the move will enable enterprise developers to write applications and deploy the code into containers that can then be deployed across Interoute's cloud infrastructure, cutting the time it takes to develop and launch new services. (See Interoute, Rancher Team on Managed Container Platform.)
T-Systems International GmbH , the corporate IT arm of Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT), is to integrate IPsoft's artificial intelligence technology into its cloud-based service offering. According to T-Systems, IPsoft's Amelia platform can accelerate business processes and improve quality of service, thanks in part to its ability to "remember" previous interactions.
Sonera, the Finnish unit of Sweden-based Telia Company , is to provide SD-WAN services to its business customers, initially in Nordic and Baltic countries but ultimately on a global scale.
Belgium-based BICS has signed a partnership deal with Ring4, a provider of smartphone numbers on demand, to support Ring4's expansion into European markets. Ring4 says it has already distributed more than 200,000 numbers in the US, where it was previously known, rather more coquettishly, as RingMeMaybe.
European consumer protection authorities continue to do battle with Facebook , Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) and Twitter Inc. , according to a Reuters report. The authorities in question sent a letter to the online giants in December accusing them of infringing EU consumer protection law and urging them to do more to tackle fraud perpetrated through their respective platforms and requesting action on a number of other consumer-related matters. The authorities met with the offending companies yesterday for what was described by the unnamed source as a "constructive" meeting.