France Telecom – Orange is launching 4G services in the Opera district of Paris in what it says is the first stage of its plan to cover the entire city with 4G by the end of the year. Fifteen other French cities, including Bordeaux, La Rochelle, Chartres and Orleans, will also get the 4G treatment this year, says the operator.
Portugal Telecom has scotched rumors that it is planning to attempt to take control of Brazilian operator Telemar Norte Leste S.A. (Oi). In a statement, PT said that it had "no plans" for such a deal. The statement follows a report in a Portuguese newspaper which said a merger between PT and Oi was being considered by both parties.
Vodafone Group plc, Telefónica SA
and France Télécom are among those being criticized by Access, a New York-based lobby group, for their tardiness in producing promised proposals for standards for operating in politically sensitive countries without violating human rights. The Daily Telegraphreports that, in the wake of criticism of how Vodafone conducted itself during the Egypt uprising and other issues, the operators in question formed The Industry Dialogue on Freedom of Expression and Privacy with a view to setting out guidelines on future operator behavior in such circumstances by the end of 2012. However, no such guidelines have yet emerged. (See Euronews: Feb. 4, Egypt Unplugs From the Internet and Euronews: Jan. 31.)
— Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading