Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Vodafone shareholders like the sound of a merger with Liberty; German spectrum auction imminent; TeliaSonera makes IoT investment.
Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU) says it has successfully carried out a 400G trial with T-Mobile Czech Republic a.s. , using its 1830 Photonic Service Switch and 400G Photonic Service Engine (PSE) over the 320km stretch of DWDM network between Prague and Hradec Králové. This is just the latest in a series of trials involving AlcaLu's 400G technology. (See Eurobites: Vodafone Spain Checks Out 400G With Alcatel-Lucent.)
A number of major shareholders in Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD) have expressed their support for a plan for the operator to sell off operations in countries such as India, Turkey and South Africa to fund a ₤120 billion (US$185 billion) merger with Liberty Global Inc. (Nasdaq: LBTY), reports the Sunday Telegraph. Reports emerged last week that Liberty Global Chairman John Malone was very much in favor of such a merger. (See Liberty Global Keen on Vodafone Tie-Up – Report.)
Wednesday sees the start of the latest German spectrum auction, with blocks of 700MHz band included in the process for the first time. As Bloomberg reports, Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT), Vodafone and Telefónica SA (NYSE: TEF) will be placing their bids, with some analysts expecting a total of €4.4 billion ($4.8 billion) to be raised by the auction.
Nordic operator Telia Company has invested an undisclosed amount in Springworks, a Sweden-based firm that specializes in building smart interfaces for Internet of Things (IoT) applications.
Is Skype Ltd. a telco? That's the question a court in Belgium in posing, reports Reuters. If the answer is deemed to be "yes," Skype will be forced to hand over customer data to aid a criminal investigation, something the Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT)-owned OTT service provider has initially refused to do.
Accenture has landed a three-year contract worth 180 million Saudi riyals ($48 million) with Etihad Etisalat Co. (Mobily) , reports Arab News. Accenture has been hired to upgrade Mobily's BSS platforms.
UK regulator Ofcom is inviting feedback from operators and other interested parties on its proposals for how additional spectrum resources in the 2.3GHz and 3.4GHz bands will be released. Specifically, Ofcom is putting forward an option that would see the regulator awarding most of the newly available spectrum later this year, or early in 2016, with the remaining frequencies being held back for award at a later date.
Greece's OTE S.A. is beginning a voluntary redundancy program in a bid to cut costs, reports Reuters. It is thought the program will be offered to around 700 employees.
UK mobile operator Telefónica UK Ltd. (O2) suffered a major outage on Monday, with users in the cities of London, Manchester, Bristol, Birmingham and Glasgow, as well as some in Northern Ireland, taking time out from their public holiday to complain about a lack of service, reports The Guardian. Some customers claimed they had had no service for up to five hours.
— Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading