Optical/IP Networks

Eurobites: Nokia welcomes 'fiber-for-everything' world with new 25G platform

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Cevian slashes Vodafone stake; Neos Networks offers more than a connection; TalkTalk completes on SSE broadband deal.

  • Nokia has unveiled what it boldly claims is the "most advanced fiber broadband platform in the world," one fit for what it's calling the "fiber-for-everything" (oh, FFS!) world. According to the vendor, the new Lightspan MF-14 platform extends the upper reaches of its fiber broadband range, bringing "unmatched" capacity, low latency, intelligence, reliability and efficiency. The platform, which apparently falls into "Generation 6" of such things, is already being tried out by customers looking to build 25Gbit/s-capable network in Europe, North America and the Asia-Pacific region. Lightspan MF-14 is being premiered at the Network X event in Amsterdam this week.

    (Source: Paweł Czerwiński on Unsplash)
    (Source: Paweł Czerwiński on Unsplash)

  • Cevian Capital, an activist investor based in Sweden, has "slashed" its stake in Vodafone, according to a Reuters report citing the Financial Times. The thinking had been that Cevian was building up its stake in Vodafone to exert pressure on the mobile giant to move faster on M&A and generally put a bit more pep into its performance. (See Vodafone CEO quizzed on lack of M&A.)

  • Neos Networks, the UK-based business connectivity company, has launched what it describes as a "managed variant" of its dedicated Internet access (DIA) service. Customers can deploy the service to gain access to the Internet over an FTTP/C connection or an Ethernet fiber connection. The service uses devices placed at either end of the line, enabling Neos to perform monitoring operations and provide improved visibility to feed back insights and analytics to support network maintenance and availability.

  • UK fixed-line provider TalkTalk has completed on its acquisition of SSE Phone & Broadband from OVO Energy, bringing approximately 135,000 SSE broadband customers into the TalkTalk fold. SSE Phone & Broadband was acquired by OVO as part of its purchase of SSE Energy Services from SSE in 2020.

  • Forty-three companies operating in the online price-comparison sector have written a joint letter to EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager calling on regulators to police more vigorously Google's dominance of the sector which its rivals say is being perpetuated through how Google presents its home-page search results. As Reuters reports, the letter said the "Commission needs to re-open space on general search results pages for the most relevant providers, by removing Google's Shopping Units that allow no competition but lead to higher prices and less choice for consumers and an unfair transfer of profit margins from merchants and competing CSSs [comparison shopping services] to Google." (See Eurobites: EU Fines Google $2.7B Over Shopping Shenanigans.)

  • Which?, the UK consumer rights organization, is calling on broadband providers to allow customers to leave without penalty if their prices are hiked mid-contract. The call comes as Which? publishes new research that shows people could face inflation-linked increases of almost 14% in 2023. According to Which?, its research shows that the average BT customer would suffer the most, facing a potential annual increase of £113.07 ($127.81) compared to the amount they were paying in January 2022. A number of UK broadband firms – such as BT, EE, Plusnet, TalkTalk and Vodafone – raise prices every April in line with the Consumer Price Index (CPI) plus an additional 3.7% or 3.9%. As the cost-of-living crisis starts to really bite, this policy may no longer be sustainable.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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