Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: UK government puts its cyberneck on the line; Czech telecom watchdog boss checks out; Airtel Africa sees growth; ants, antennas and 5G fear.
Ericsson is teaming up with consultancy company Capgemini to exploit the potential of private 4G and 5G networks in the enterprise sector. Their first customer is Telia, the Nordic operator, which is hoping to "replace a multitude of communications systems with one scalable, future-proof 3GPP solution for 4G and 5G." (See The Role of Mobile Operators in the Private Networks Sector.)
The UK government has boldly declared it has introduced new legislation that it hopes "will protect millions of users of internet-connected household items from the threat of cyber hacks." The new rules "will make sure all consumer smart devices sold in the UK adhere to the three rigorous security requirements for the Internet of Things (IoT)." To find out about the rigorous trio, see this press release. Meanwhile, with all those primed potential hackers in mind, we're going to ask Alexa the meaning of the phrase "red rag to a bull."
Going, going, gone… the head of the Czech telecom watchdog has flounced out of his job in response what he viewed as changes to a planned 5G spectrum auction that risked slowing down the rollout of the next-generation technology. As Reuters reports, Jaromir Novak believes that the last-minute changes to the auction conditions could put off potential bidders.
Airtel Africa increased group revenues by 9.9% to US$2.5 billion for the nine-month period ended December 31, 2019, while revenues for the third quarter increased by 12.8% year-on-year. The news gave the operator's share price a 2% boost to 72.47 pence on the London Stock Exchange on Tuesday morning, though that's still below the 80 pence IPO list price last June. For more details, see this story on our sister site, Connecting Africa.
Germany's ADVA is trumpeting its role in the OpenQKD project, which is aiming to create and test a secure communications network across Europe based on quantum key distribution (QKD) technology. ADVA will provide optical and Ethernet encryptors as well as open line systems for a number of testbed locations.
Not everyone is excited about the arrival of 5G; indeed, a fair few folk see it as about as welcome as the coronavirus. The Brussels Times reports that around 100 concerned citizens and 200 doctors and scientists have been protesting about the technology, the latter group describing it in a letter as "an experiment on humankind and on the environment." One researcher cited a study showing that GSM radiation was harmful to ants, though another boffin refuted this, pointing out that humans tended to be a lot bigger than ants, so the extrapolation wasn't helpful or indeed valid.
UK incumbent operator BT is pleased with itself for having hit its call center "onshoring" target -- a commitment to answering 100% of customer service calls in the UK and Ireland -- a year ahead of schedule. BT also claims that its regional call routing system will ensure that customers talk to their nearest call center.
— Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading