Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: BT does data curation; MegaFon borrows to buy from Nokia; Finnish startups.
Five days of intensive pitching earlier this month at an event in Krakow, Poland, has led to a dozen startups being selected to take part in a four-month incubation program that will seek to bring forth software and services able to play a useful role in the Internet of Things. The program, Challenge Up!, is sponsored by Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT), Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) and Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) and will play host to, among other startups: Admetsys, a Danish company that is developing a solution that measures and helps maintain blood sugar levels of diabetic patients; Senic, which is looking to create a "universal dial" for the IoT, allowing users to be able to control smart lights, locks, thermostats or speakers with simple gestures rather than browsing through apps on a smartphone; and ComfyLight, a Swiss-designed smart LED light bulb which includes a presence sensor and connectivity to help protect homes from intruders. (See Cisco, DT & Intel Announce IoT Startup Picks.)
BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA) is to work with US-based Rancho BioSciences on providing cloud-based data curation services to life sciences companies and academic institutions. BT's Connection Science platform will be used to create what the company claims is a secure cloud infrastrucuture for the distribution of clinical data, case report forms and more.
Russian operator MegaFon is borrowing €150 million (US$165 million) from Unicredit Bank Austria to finance the purchase of equipment and services from Nokia Networks .
HERE, another branch on the Nokia tree, has formed what it's calling an Open Mobile Ticketing Alliance, which will look to develop standards that allow people to buy public transit tickets from a single app on their mobile devices in cities all over the world. Other founding members include transportation service providers Scheidt & Bachmann and Thales, and mobile payments provider Verifone Mobile Money.
Some interesting insights into the Finnish startup scene in a post-Nokia phone-making world are provided in this new YLE video, which features an interview with a former Nokia designer, Duncan Lamb. While acknowledging that the Finnish government's support of tech startups could reap rewards, he points out also that it can be a way of keeping "bad ideas" alive.
France's Canal+ Group has chosen Thomson Video Networks 's ViBE EM4000 HD/SD encoder to power the migration of its entire Canalsat satellite offering to an all-HD delivery infrastructure based on the H.264 codec.
— Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading