Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Ericsson extends connected car deal with Volvo; ASN boosts oceanic research; Nokia's Gfast first Down Under.
Are the UK and Germany about to put the brakes on Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd 's 5G aspirations? That's the possibility being raised by the Financial Times (subscription required), which reports that a US delegation visited Europe this month to warn the countries' respective authorities that they need to be more vigilant when it comes to who is shaping their future telecom infrastructure. Several countries, the US, Australian and New Zealand among them, have already excluded the Chinese vendor from major telecom contracts, citing potential security issues. According to one unnamed official cited by the FT, the "US influence on this [issue] has really intensified recently," while other sources believe the UK's Huawei oversight board is likely to come down hard on the vendor in its next report. (See New Zealand Blocks Huawei From 5G Deal With Spark, Australia Excludes Huawei, ZTE From 5G Rollouts, UK Govt Warns Telcos on Choice of 5G Vendors and US Senators Urge Canada to Ban Huawei – Report.)
Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) has extended its connected car deal with Swedish carmaker Volvo for another five years, allowing Volvo to access Ericsson's Connected Vehicle Cloud (CVC) platform and continue offering digital vehicle services -- fleet management, navigation and "infotainment" among them -- in more than 120 markets worldwide. The vendor says that the deal is the biggest yet for its CVC platform, though it has not disclosed its value.
Briny boffins at Italy's Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucelare are hoping to gain a better understanding of how the oceans work thanks to a new cable infrastructure for its submarine network to be rolled out by Alcatel Submarine Networks (ASN), which is part of Nokia Networks . The cable system will transmit data to shore collected by sensors deployed on the sea bed. This data will then be used by researchers, universities and science laboratories to figure out what's really going on down in the depths.
In other Nokia-related news, the vendor has seen its Gfast-capable Distribution Point Units (DPUs) deployed on NBN Co Ltd. 's fiber-to-the-cabinet network in Australia. According to Nokia, NBN will be the first operator in the world to deliver 212MHz Gfast via in-ground DPUs, typically around 40 meters from customer premises. This, says the vendor, means NBN will be able to effectively double the capacity of G.fast and achieve close to 2Gbit/s aggregate upstream and downstream speeds.
Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD) has teamed up with Sony Pictures to promote the mobile operator's Future Jobs Finder, described as a "gamified" (yes, we know…) digital platform that helps young people better understand their skills and how they relate to future career opportunities. Sony's December release of Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse will be used to draw moviegoers' attention to the platform's potential.
— Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading