Eurobites: VMO2, Accenture combine on private networks

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Three UK accentuates the negative; Airtel earnings hit by Nigerian currency crash; Arm looking strong in Q4.

Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe

May 9, 2024

3 Min Read
VMO2 billboard
(Source: Maureen McLeanAlamy/Stock Photo)
  • Virgin Media O2 has teamed up with Accenture for a private-networks push in the UK, with VMO2 supplying the 5G connectivity and Accenture bringing its Edge Orchestration Platform to the party. It is anticipated that a range of industry sectors will be targeted with potential applications, with "computer vision" AI for product quality control monitoring of equipment cited as a factory-floor example of how such private networks could make a difference.

  • VMO2 has also struck a subscription management deal with Amdocs which will see the converged operator using the Amdocs Subscription Marketplace software to help its customers keep track of what they have signed up for, streaming services wise.

  • Three UK is almost comically desperate to accentuate the negative in the presentation of its first-quarter results, focusing on "challenging economic conditions" making life difficult rather than celebrating a 9% year-over-year rise in revenue, to £664 million (US$828 million). The downbeat slant on things is, of course, intended to help make the case for its proposed merger with Vodafone – the two operators argue that if they are forced to continue as separate companies they will be barely viable, but if their merger is approved the UK in particular and the world in general will be a much happier place.

  • Currency devaluation in Nigeria hit Airtel Africa's full-year earnings, with revenues down 5.3%, to $4.97 billion, in reported-currency terms. Loss after tax was $89 million, a figure largely the result of "foreign exchange headwinds," according to the operator.

  • It was a different story at Arm, the UK-based chip design company: Fourth-quarter revenue was up 47%, to $928 million, as licensing and royalty cash from strong smartphone-related sales poured into the coffers. Actual chip shipments, however, were 10% down year-over-year, mainly, says Arm, due to the impact of "inventory correction" in industrial IoT.

  • Turkcell and Nokia have agreed a deal to enable new "developer-created use cases" for consumer, enterprise and industrial applications in Turkey. Through Nokia's Network as Code platform and the Turkcell network, developers will be able to build new applications using APIs and software development kits.

  • BT has landed a £70 million ($87 million) managed services deal with two police forces in southwest England, namely Devon & Cornwall Police and Dorset Police. Frontline officers, says BT, will benefit from a range of services that support body-worn cameras, vehicle radio systems and access to real-time information for community policing.

  • Saudi Arabia has been accused of murderous ruthlessness in its approach to the rollout of its Neom smart city project, a vastly ambitious scheme which has been at the center of numerous connectivity-related announcements, including a deal with STC for the operation of a 5G network. As the BBC reports, a former Saudi intelligence officer now in exile in the UK claims he was ordered to evict villagers to make way for The Line, part of the Neom project, with one of the villagers, Abdul Rahim al-Huwaiti, subsequently shot and killed for protesting against his eviction.

  • Sky, the UK-based purveyor of pay-TV and more, is to launch a new sports channel in August offering, it claims, 50% more sports coverage than it currently does. Sky Sports+, as the channel will be predictably called, will be able to show up to 100 sports concurrently via live streams. The channel will be available to existing customers at no extra cost.

  • Dutch operator KPN is offering information sessions on AI to visitors to its stores, claiming that there is a growing thirst for such knowledge on the part of its customers. The sessions begin in Amsterdam but will ultimately be available throughout the Netherlands.

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About the Author(s)

Paul Rainford

Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

Paul is based on the Isle of Wight, a rocky outcrop off the English coast that is home only to a colony of technology journalists and several thousand puffins.

He has worked as a writer and copy editor since the age of William Caxton, covering the design industry, D-list celebs, tourism and much, much more.

During the noughties Paul took time out from his page proofs and marker pens to run a small hotel with his other half in the wilds of Exmoor. There he developed a range of skills including carrying cooked breakfasts, lying to unwanted guests and stopping leaks with old towels.

Now back, slightly befuddled, in the world of online journalism, Paul is thoroughly engaged with the modern world, regularly firing up his VHS video recorder and accidentally sending text messages to strangers using a chipped Nokia feature phone.

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