Euronews: AlcaLu Lands New LTE Deal

Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU), Saudi Telecom Co. (STC) and China Telecom Corp. Ltd. (NYSE: CHA) are in the mix for today's pick of the EMEA telecom headlines.

  • Saudi operator STC has chosen Alcatel-Lucent to help it launch the first Long Term Evolution (LTE) service in the Kingdom. The service will cover 11 cities in the country's northern region. STC is clearly keeping its LTE supplier options open, however. (See STC Chooses AlcaLu for LTE, NSN Helps STC Launch LTE TDD, Huawei Wins Saudi LTE Deal and LTE in the Middle East.)

  • STC is also trialling LTE in Bahrain, via its Viva Bahrain unit, reports Telegeography. The report adds that Bahrain Telecommunications Co. (Batelco) completed an LTE trial in December at its Hamala headquarters, with Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) supplying the necessary kit and know-how.

  • China Telecom's EMEA subsidiary is targeting Chinese residents and businesses in the U.K. with the launch of an MVNO (mobile virtual network operator) service that uses the network of Orange UK /T-Mobile (UK) joint venture EE The service will launch in early 2012 (but not quite this early, clearly). (See China Telecom Unveils UK MVNO Plan and Euronews: China Telecom Eyes UK Market.)

  • U.K. broadband provider TalkTalk -- which has had its share of problems in its fixed-line customer service -- is preparing for its push deeper into mobile by poaching Dan Meader from rival Telefónica UK Ltd. (O2), reports Marketing. Meader, who was head of direct trading at O2, will be given the task of creating a fully-fledged handset-and-contract proposition on top of TalkTalk's existing SIM-card-only offering. (See Ofcom Counts the Complaints (Again) and TalkTalk Revenues Down in H1.)

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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