Video services

Euronews: April 20

Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK) and Virgin Media Inc. (Nasdaq: VMED) get things rolling in today's roundup of news snippets from the EMEA region.

  • Nokia's first-quarter results haven't even been announced yet and it seems the vultures are circling. Bloomberg reports that 19 of its analysts are predicting, on average, that net income will drop to €177 million (US$253 million) from €349 million ($506 million) a year earlier -- a 49 percent decline -- in Thursday's first-quarter earnings call. No pressure, then, Mr. Elop. (See MWC 2011: How Will Nokia Maintain Market Share? and Nokia Unveils Major Revamp.)

  • No such worries, perhaps, at U.K. cable operator Virgin Media, which has revealed operating income is up 58.9 percent to £111 million ($181.5 million) in its first-quarter financials. However, it's not all wine and roses, as the number of new customers signing up to its cable TV service fell by more than 70 percent year-on-year to 10,100, and new broadband signings were down too. (See Virgin Media CEO Disses DSL and ISPs Shamed by UK Broadband Speed Tests.)

  • Zain KSA (Zain Saudi Arabia) increased its first-quarter revenues by 36 percent year-on-year to 1.5 billion Saudi Riyals ($400 million), and reduced its operational losses by 46 percent. Sequentially, revenues were down, but that was because of the surge in mobile usage by pilgrims following the Hajj and Umrah during the last quarter of 2010, said the company. (See Zain To Use AlcaLu Femtos and Zain Saudi Arabia, Moto Sign LTE Deal.)

  • And sweeping the board in the "Tell Us Something We Don't Know" news category comes a new study from U.K. regulator the Ofcom informing us that nearly half of parents with children aged 5-15 who use the Internet at home think they know less about the Internet than their children do. Of course, if they'd asked the children they might get nearer the truth.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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