Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Keymile lands FTTB deal with Wobcom; BT Sport offers OTT monthly pass; KPN sells consulting arm; Deutsche Telekom nurtures 5G startups.
MTS has become the first Russian operator to join the Telecom Infra Project (TIP), the Facebook-led initiative to spur innovation, cut costs and boost competition in the network equipment sector. The operator plans to participate in the organization's project groups specializing in open radio access networks, backbone networks based on open architectures and unified standards, as well as general-purpose processing platforms based on software-defined networking and network functions virtualization. TIP already counts more than 500 members from around the world in its ranks, including network operators, technology providers and systems integrators. (See TIP Takes Off in Amsterdam and Facebook's TIP Is Desperate to Add Friends.)
Wobcom, a regional fixed-line operator in Germany, has chosen Keymile's MileGate 2042 FTTB offering to deliver close-to-2Gbit/s Gfast-based Internet to apartment buildings.
Pay-TV players are increasingly having to offer more flexibility to attract those put off by the expense and commitment of long-term contracts. Now BT Sport is getting in on the act by offering OTT customers monthly passes to its fare for £25 (US$33) a month, which is considerably cheaper than rival Sky's NOW TV equivalent. The content can be accessed via the BT Sport app on Apple and Android mobile devices, online via btsport.com, Samsung smart TVs and via a number of other routes.
KPN has agreed to sell its consulting business to Cegeka N.V. for an undisclosed sum. KPN Consulting employs 750 people and provides a range of services in areas such as ICT strategy, cloud and data analytics.
Deutsche Telekom has launched a 5G-specific innovation program, which will select ten to 15 startups who will get the chance to test and develop their ideas on DT's live network for the duration of the three-month program. Any startups out there wanting to get involved can apply here.
In other DT news, its Telekom Security arm is opening a security operation center in Singapore. As from today, a crack Telekom team will monitor data whizzing around the Asia-Pacific region, searching for anomalies and malware.
iPlayer, the OTT catch-up service that is a repository of TV programs broadcast by the BBC, has stopped working on some Samsung smart TVs. As the BBC (ironically) reports, those affected have been advised to download a software update, but the update has been found not to work on some older Samsung models, and the unfortunates who own them will have to wait until next year for a fix that works.
Belgium's Proximus has done a deal with RMB (Régie Média Belge) for the launch of "addressable" (or highly targeted) advertising on television. The agreement allows RMB to use Proximus's advertising platform to launch, manage and report on targeted TV campaigns, via TV set, PC or smartphone.
UK broadband provider and energy company SSE Energy Services has chosen Massachusetts-based Pegasystems to help with a spot of digital transformation at its SSE Retail Telecoms arm. Pegasystems will provide help with, among other things, workflow management and automation, not least with the "onboarding" of new customers.