Light Reading
Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: UK operators welcome data law change; BT has its day in court, and bags a Special One; VDSL2 boost in France.

Eurobites: FreedomPop Heads to Europe

Paul Rainford
7/11/2014
50%
50%

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: UK operators welcome data law change; BT has its day in court, and bags a Special One; VDSL2 boost in France.

  • FreedomPop , the disruptive US wireless service provider that offers free voice, text, and data to its customers, has struck an MVNO deal with BASE , the Belgian mobile operator owned by Dutch incumbent KPN Telecom NV (NYSE: KPN), and plans to launch in multiple other European markets. "We have proved that a freemium model works economically for our company, our network hosting partners and most importantly, the consumer," said FreedomPop founder and COO Steven Sesar in a statement issued by BASE. "We have been getting a ton of interest from consumers across the globe and now along with international carriers like BASE Company we are excited to broaden our footprint to Europe through this first agreement in Belgium." And BASE seems pretty pumped by having the upstart service provider on its network. "FreedomPop is a challenger, just like us, and represents the kind of innovative service model that will deliver both growth and value," said CEO Jos Donvil. FreedomPop will launch in Belgium by offering SIM-based mobile plans (but not devices) that include a "base amount of complimentary data, voice and text each month coupled to a range of value added services and additional low cost options for higher consumption users." A launch date for the service in Belgium has not been set. FreedomPop, which is backed by DCM Capital, Mangrove Capital Partners and Atomico Ventures (run by Skype founder Niklas Zennstrom), launched in the US in October 2012 and has signed up more than 250,000 users. (See FreedomPop Grabs $5M to Support Android Push.)

  • UK mobile operators have broadly welcomed the British government's plan to rush through emergency legislation on data retention, reports the Financial Times (subscription required). After a European Court of Justice ruling in April, operators had been uncertain of where they stood on the issue of retaining customers' personal phone data for possible use by the authorities, and the feeling is that this new legislation will clarify their responsibilities. One source told the FT: "If they hadn't done this, it would have been difficult to carry on holding data." It will be interesting to see if other EU countries follow the UK's lead on this.

  • BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA) has won a UK Supreme Court ruling allowing it to change the prices it charges mobile operators to use its fixed-line network to call "non-geographic" numbers that begin with "08." Bloomberg reports that Vodafone, EE, Telefónica (O2) and 3 had their joint appeal dismissed, though they plan to review the judgement.

  • The fate of the proposed €13.5 billion (US$18.3 billion) acquisition of French mobile operator SFR by Numericable won't be decided until the third quarter, reports Reuters. The competition watchdog will pronounce on that deal and Numericable's proposed acquisition of Virgin Mobile at the same time. (See Eurobites: Numericable Wins SFR M&A Tussle.)

  • Still in France, regulator ARCEP 's expert committee on copper networks has given its approval to the extension of VDSL2 technology throughout Orange (NYSE: FTE)'s French network. See Arcep's release on the matter for more details.

  • Bahrain's Viva has become the latest operator to join the Bridge Alliance, a partnership of 36 mobile operators in Africa and Asia.

  • The European Commission has launched the "Connected Communities" initiative, inviting interested parties to submit their planned projects for connecting towns and cities for a chance to win funding and other support.

  • To some, including himself, he's the Special One. To others he's the Especially Irritating One. Step forward Jose Mourinho, current coach of ritzy English soccer club Chelsea FC and now also, apparently, BT latest star signing for its BT Sport TV channel. In its release, BT says Mourinho will be "acting as a football expert," a description that is bound to go down well with the gobby Portuguese.

    Jose Mourinho: He's only acting, you know.
    Jose Mourinho: He's only acting, you know.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

    (4)  | 
    Comment  | 
    Print  | 
  • Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
    Susan Fourtané
    50%
    50%
    Susan Fourtané,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    7/14/2014 | 11:31:31 AM
    Re: Connected Europe
    nasimson, 

    True. I said many sectors, though. :) What I would like to know is which countries are the ones with more need of a broadband project.

    -Susan 
    nasimson
    50%
    50%
    nasimson,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    7/14/2014 | 11:20:46 AM
    Re: Connected Europe
    Not just healthcare Susan. For MOCC, connected classrooms, citizen journalism, small service oriented businesses, etc., its a must-have enabler.
    Joe Stanganelli
    50%
    50%
    Joe Stanganelli,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    7/13/2014 | 8:33:21 AM
    FreedomPop
    This is cool news as a matter of carrier-liberation (although Europe doesn't face quite the same carrier oppression we do in the US because of the "global" GSM tech deployed in European phones).

    Is anybody here a FreedomPop customer?  I've been considering switching.
    Susan Fourtané
    50%
    50%
    Susan Fourtané,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    7/13/2014 | 4:52:57 AM
    Connected Europe
    The European Commission's initiative to bring fast broadband to cities and communities is great news. I hope they will receive plenty of good projects to have the chance to win funding.

    Broadband is a necessity for everyone and a must have for many sectors such as healthcare.

    -Susan
    Flash Poll
    LRTV Documentaries
    Sprint's Network Evolution

    7|24|14   |   14:59   |   (0) comments


    Sprint's Jay Bluhm gives a keynote speech at the Big Telecom Event (BTE) about Sprint's network and services evolution strategy, including Spark.
    LRTV Documentaries
    BTE Keynote: The Software-Defined Operator

    7|24|14   |   18:43   |   (1) comment


    Deutsche Telekom's Axel Clauberg explains the concept of the software-defined operator to the Big Telecom Event (BTE) crowd.
    Light Reedy
    Numbers Are In: LR's 2014 Salary Survey

    7|24|14   |   1:25   |   (7) comments


    Our fourth annual Salary Survey paints a picture of who's hiring, firing, earning, and yearning for a change in the telecom industry.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Driving the Network Transformation

    7|23|14   |   4:29   |   (0) comments


    Intel's Sandra Rivera discusses network transformation and how Intel technologies, programs, and standards body efforts have helped the industry migration to SDN and NFV.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Distributed NFV-Based Business Services by RAD

    7|18|14   |   5:38   |   (0) comments


    With the ETSI-approved Distributed NFV PoC running in the background, RAD's CEO, Dror Bin, talks about why D-NFV makes compelling sense for service providers, and about the dollars and cents RAD is putting behind D-NFV.
    LRTV Custom TV
    MRV – Accelerating Packet Optical Convergence

    7|15|14   |   6:06   |   (0) comments


    Giving you network insight to make your network smarter.
    LRTV Custom TV
    NFV-Enabled Ethernet for Generating New Revenues

    7|15|14   |   5:49   |   (0) comments


    Cyan's Planet Orchestrate allows service providers and their end-customers to activate software-based capabilities such as firewalls and encryption on top of existing Ethernet services in just minutes.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Symkloud NVF-Ready Video Transcoding, Big Data

    7|9|14   |   3:41   |   (0) comments


    Kontron and ISV partner Vantrix demonstrate high-performance video transcoding and data analytic solutions on same 2U standard platform that is ready for SDN and NFV deployments made by mobile, cable and cloud operators.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    The Evolving Role of Hybrid Video for Competitive Success

    7|4|14   |   4:09   |   (0) comments


    At Huawei's Global Analysts Summit in Shenzhen, China, Steven C. Hawley from TV Strategies speaks to us about the evolving role of hybrid video for competitive success.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    How CSPs Leverage Big Data in the Digital Economy

    7|4|14   |   4:48   |   (2) comments


    Justin van der Lande from Analysys Mason shares with us his views on how telecom operators can leverage customer asset monetization with big data. His discusses the current status of big data applications and the challenges and opportunities for telecom operators in the digital economy era.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Accelerator for Digital Business – Future Oriented BSS

    7|4|14   |   3:08   |   (0) comments


    Mobile and internet are becoming intertwined; IT and CT are integrating; and leading CSPs have begun to transform to information service and entertainment providers. How should the BSS system evolve to enable this transformation? Karl Whitelock, an analyst at Frost & Sullivan, shares his views.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Orange Tunisia Discusses Multi-Band Antenna With EasyRET Solution

    7|4|14   |   2:45   |   (0) comments


    As new site acquisition becomes more difficult, Orange Tunisia has requested multi-band antenna to support UMTS and LTE innovation. Some things considered include reducing the cost of antenna maintenance and having high reliability antenna and EasyRET solution.
    Upcoming Live Events!!
    September 16, 2014, Santa Clara, CA
    September 16, 2014, Santa Clara, CA
    October 29, 2014, New York City
    November 6, 2014, Santa Clara
    November 11, 2014, Atlanta, GA
    December 9-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
    Infographics
    Packet Design asks network professionals how they handle the cloud, SDN, and network management.
    Today's Cartoon
    Vacation Special Caption Competition Click Here
    Latest Comment
    Hot Topics
    The Municipal Menace?
    Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Utility Communications/IoT, 7/22/2014
    Cisco Puts a Fog Over IoT
    Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 7/23/2014
    Apple Earnings: Strong iPhone Sales, iPad Sales Slump, $7.8B Profit
    Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 7/22/2014
    Salary Survey Report 2014
    Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 7/23/2014
    Facebook: 30% of Users Are Mobile-Only
    Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 7/24/2014
    Like Us on Facebook
    Twitter Feed