In today's news roundup, EE is cutting jobs, Orange (NYSE: FTE) adds to its shipping fleet, Hibernia Atlantic is talking up its speedy pipes, and the European Commission (EC) has an overactive end to the week. Plus more!
France Telecom has bought Telecom Italia (TIM) 's subsea cable-laying business, Elettra TLC SpA, for about €26 million (US$35.6 million). The French operator is getting two ships, with a few fishing rods and some bait thrown in for good measure. Probably. (See FT Buys TI's Subsea Unit.)
The EC has been busy, unveiling new measures to defend the region against cyber attacks, asking France and Spain to abolish certain "telecom taxes" that have been imposed on carriers, and referring the UK to the European Union's Court of Justice "for not fully implementing EU rules on the confidentiality of electronic communications such as e-mail or internet browsing." (See EC to Boost Europe's Cyber Defences, EC Urges End to Telecom Taxes, and UK in Trouble Over Privacy.)
Hibernia Atlantic has announced plans to build the "lowest latency cable route from New York to London offering High Frequency Traders the unique latency under 60 milliseconds." That's faster than Usain Bolt, right? (See Hibernia Lowers Atlantic Latency.)
It got some flak about delays to the release of its N8 handset, so Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK) is understandably keen to spread the good news about Ovi, its mobile services portal: More than 200,000 are now signing up daily to Ovi, it says, and the Ovi Store app emporium is doing 2.3 million downloads per day. (See Nokia Boasts Ovi Success.).
The French government is considering the imposition of a tax on home broadband, mobiles and landlines to help fund the development of more fiber-based broadband in the country, reports The Connexion. It's an echo of the tax on landlines suggested then quietly dropped by the UK's then Labour government earlier this year. (See Britain's Broadband Tax.)
Hell, they're all at it... It looks likely that the Hungarian government will impose a special levy on the telecom and energy sectors, reports Portfolio.hu, citing daily newspaper Magyar Nemzet.
Three days after Virgin Media Inc. (Nasdaq: VMED) launched its 3D Movies On Demand service, Sky has turned on what it says is Europe's first 3D TV channel, reports The Daily Telegraph. Initial coverage includes the Ryder Cup, so lucky subscribers will today be able watch a dismal parade of golfers in wind-blown DayGlo waterproofs struggle their way around Wales' Celtic Manor course -- IN 3D!!!
Virgin Media, meanwhile, having slightly scuppered Sky on the 3D front, is now claiming that it will invest in its own original 3D content, to supplement its current 3D movie fare, reports The Daily Telegraph.
The Irish Times reports that Aurora Telecom is to build a new 205-mile high-speed fiber link between the cities of Dublin and Galway. The fiber will run alongside an existing gas pipeline and will cost €10 million ($13.7 million).