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Eurobites: Phone-Paid Services Hit Prime Time in UK

Paul Rainford
8/21/2019

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Deutsche Telekom digs into the IoT market; Kudelski Group revenues slump in H1; Porsche teams up with Apple Music; Telenor completes DNA deal.

  • The value of the "phone-paid services" market in the UK -- the market for services, such as online gambling and charity donations that are paid for by smartphone -- rose by 17% in 2018-2019 to £630.9 million (US$765.1 million), according to new research from Analysys Mason. Operator billing was found to be the fastest-growing spending channel, with an increasing number of content providers offering operator billing as an option, backed up by growing consumer confidence in this method of payment.

  • Deutsche Telekom has introduced a new range of pre-activated SIM cards aimed at the Internet of Things market. The SIMs can be used in sensors, trackers and other IoT devices, and throughout the European Union -- particularly useful in the context of pan-European logistics applications. There are a range of pricing options available -- for full details click here.

  • The contracting "legacy" digital TV market is taking its toll on Kudelski Group, the Switzerland-based media content protection specialist. Its half-year financials reveal that revenues are down 6% year-on-year to $400.6 million, while the company recorded a net loss for the period of $20.4 million. Kudelski says it is now attempting to shift its business away from low-margin technology and toward higher-margin "advisory services."

  • Porsche, the iconic German car manufacturer, has teamed up with Apple to bring what it says is the first ever full integration of Apple Music streaming service in any vehicle. Its forthcoming Taycan electric sports car, which hits the showrooms in September, will feature a touchscreen display in the, ahem, "Porsche Advanced Cockpit" that will allow Apple Music subscribers to stream away to their hearts' content, using three-year complimentary in-car data.

  • Norway's Telenor has completed its €1.5 billion ($1.66 billion) acquisition of a controlling interest in Finnish mobile operator DNA. The deal comprised two separate agreements with DNA's two largest shareholders, Finda Telecoms Oy and PHP Holding Oy, which held 28.3% and 25.8% of DNA respectively. (See Eurobites: Telenor Buys DNA for Finnish Foray.)

  • The bosses of Nokia, Telenor and Telia were among the bigwigs meeting this week in Iceland at a gathered called The Nordic CEOs for a Sustainable Future, which sounds a bit like the dullest Marvel comic you could possibly imagine. Rajeev Suri, Sigve Brekke and Johan Dennelind were among the corporate heavy-hitters meeting with the prime ministers of the five Nordic countries to discuss a smorgasbord of issues ranging from climate change to workplace diversity.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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