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Eurobites: Safaricom Looks Beyond Kenya

Paul Rainford

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Vodafone Egypt opts for Openwave Mobility video knowhow; Nokia's 5G riposte to Ericsson; Intel sees chance of EU fine reprieve.

  • Mobile operator Safaricom Ltd. is considering expansion beyond Kenya for the first time, with neighboring countries in east Africa at the top of its hitlist, the Financial Times reports. According to Safaricom Chief Executive Bob Collymore, ecommerce and mobile payment platforms are largely untapped markets in many African countries, and it is these that would form the focus of any such expansion.

  • Vodafone Egypt , which has 40 million subscribers in the Middle East, has gone with Openwave Mobility Inc. 's NFV-based software to improve its users' mobile video experience. Openwave Mobility's cloud-based platform manages HTTPS, Google's QUIC and Facebook's 0RTT video delivery protocols.

  • In what could be seen as a riposte to Ericsson's 5G-related announcements on Tuesday, Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK) is trumpeting additions to its AirScale Remote Radio Head portfolio and its Flexi Zone small cells as offering operators a "sustainable path to 5G."

  • The European Commission has been dealt a blow by the European Court of Justice, which has ordered that a €1.06 billion (£970 million) fine for chip giant Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC), issued by the Commission in 2009 for alleged antitrust infringements, be re-examined. As the Daily Telegraph reports, Intel was accused of bullying manufacturers into buying their chips from Intel rather than its rivals.

  • Swiss operator Salt SA says its "4G+" technology now reaches 45% of the population, with numerous antenna sites having been updated over the summer. The technology is based on the aggregation of at least two different radio frequencies and allows data transmission rates of up to 300 Mbit/s, says the operator.

  • The European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) is to host the second in its series of NFV interoperability Plugtests events in Sophia Antipolis, France, from January 15-19, 2018. Supporting open source communities include ETSI OSM (Open Source MANO), OPNFV, OpenStack and Open Baton.

  • The GSM Association (GSMA) is predicting a 1.8 trillion Internet of Things (IoT) revenue opportunity by 2026, basing its forecast on figures published by analyst firm Machina Research. The Americas region will account for about a third of that revenue, says the GSMA.

  • UK mobile operator EE has unveiled the first of four new-style stores, which, the operator claims, will offer customers a more "immersive" shopping experience. The "Showcase" stores will, among other retail bells and whistles, trial an in-store video calling service which will put customers in touch with experts elsewhere to deal with issues that are beyond the wit of those employed in the store. The first Showcase store is located in London.

    If this guy can't help you, better get on the video phone.
    If this guy can't help you, better get on the video phone.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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