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December 12, 2011
Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC), Nokia Networks , Adtran Inc. (Nasdaq: ADTN) and Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) start the week in today's helping of EMEA telecom headlines.
Håkan Eriksson, the highly respected CTO of Ericsson, is taking what could be interpreted as a step towards retirement by relinquishing his current role and becoming the new head of Ericsson's business in Australia, New Zealand and Fiji. Eriksson has been with the company for 25 years, and as well as being CTO was head of Ericsson in Silicon Valley. The change will take effect on Feb. 1, 2012. Ericsson says it will reveal the identity of its new CTO in a separate announcement. (See Ericsson CTO Moves to Australia, Euronews: Ericsson Appoints New EVP, Ericsson: Coming Up for AIR in 2012 and Ericsson Sets the Pace in Q3.)
Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) may be cutting more than a third of its workforce in Germany, according to a report on Telecompaper, citing the Wirtschaftswoche newspaper. This would be the logical extension of NSN's decision to focus on mobile broadband -- 40 percent of NSN's German jobs are in the fixed infrastructure sector. (See NSN Could Lose More Than 17,000 Staff, Analysts: NSN Focus Makes Sense and NSN Unveils Its Kill List .)
While reducing its headcount is a major part of NSN's restructuring process, selling non-strategic business lines is another downsizing tactic being used by the vendor giant. Its latest divestment deal is with Adtran, which has agreed to buy NSN's fixed-broadband access business for an undisclosed sum. As part of that deal, about 400 NSN staff will transfer to the U.S. access technology specialist, which is intent on building an international presence to add to its existing North American business. (See Adtran to Buy NSN Broadband Biz, Adtran Reports Q3, Adtran Doubles FTTH System Capacity and Adtran Expands Carrier Ethernet Portfolio.)
The latest instalment of the ongoing patents bunfight sees a German court ruling in favour of Motorola Mobility LLC in its allegation that Apple used one of Moto's licensed wireless technologies without permission in its iPhones and 3G iPads. Apple, not surprisingly, has said it will appeal. (See Making Sense of the Handset Patent Plays, Apple vs. Android Patent Spat Goes Global and Euronews: Samsung/Apple Circus Hits The Hague.)
Openreach , the last-mile access unit of U.K. incumbent BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA), has announced the latest phase of its fiber rollout, adding a further 178 exchanges to the program. The company says that this will add another 1.8 million homes and businesses. (See BT Rolls Out More Fiber , Euronews: BT Speeds Up FTTX Rollout and BT Ramps Up Its FTTX Speeds.)
Telefónica UK Ltd. , which trades under the O2 mobile brand, is offering what it says is the first smartphone leasing service in the U.K. Under the terms of the scheme, the iPhone 4S is available -- with no upfront fee -- for £55 (US$86) a month, a sum that includes insurance, 750 voice minutes, unlimited SMS messages and 500MB of data. However, it being a lease, the handset has to be relinquished at the end of the 12-month contract.
The cheaper version of Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK)'s "saviorphone," the Lumia 710, goes on sale in Taiwan today, and is due to be rolled out to other markets over the coming weeks. The Lumia 710 costs €270 ($376), compared to the 800 flagship model, which sets customers back €420 ($585). (See Euronews: Crunch Time for Nokia's Lumia and Nokia Ships First Windows Phone to Europe .)
Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading
Paul is based on the Isle of Wight, a rocky outcrop off the English coast that is home only to a colony of technology journalists and several thousand puffins.
He has worked as a writer and copy editor since the age of William Caxton, covering the design industry, D-list celebs, tourism and much, much more.
During the noughties Paul took time out from his page proofs and marker pens to run a small hotel with his other half in the wilds of Exmoor. There he developed a range of skills including carrying cooked breakfasts, lying to unwanted guests and stopping leaks with old towels.
Now back, slightly befuddled, in the world of online journalism, Paul is thoroughly engaged with the modern world, regularly firing up his VHS video recorder and accidentally sending text messages to strangers using a chipped Nokia feature phone.
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