Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: MTS boosts operating profit in Q2; Elisa paves the way for 5G in Tampere; UK's health service hit by another bout of ransomware.
The European Commission should find out today what Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) intends to do to comply with a Commission order to desist from unfairly favoring its own comparison-shopping services ahead of those of its rivals in its search results. As Bloomberg reports, the Commission has already slapped a €2.4 billion ($2.9 billion at current exchange rates) fine on Google for the alleged practice, but even this monster penalty could grow if any changes proposed by Google are not implemented by the next deadline date of September 28. If this deadline is missed, the Commission could fine the search giant 5% of its daily revenue for each day it fails to comply with Brussels' demands. (See Eurobites: Google's Q2 Gouged by EU Mega-Fine and Eurobites: EU Fines Google $2.7B Over Shopping Shenanigans.)
A strong contribution from its Ukraine business helped Russia's Mobile TeleSystems OJSC (MTS) (NYSE: MBT) boost operating profit by 16.4% year-on-year to 23.9 billion Russian rubles ($406 million), on revenue that rose 0.7% to RUB106.8 billion ($1.81 billion). On the strength of this performance, the operator is revising its Group OIBDA guidance to more than 4% growth for 2017, though it is lowering its capex forecast to RUB75 billion ($1.27 billion) because, it says, of the stronger than anticipated ruble. Earlier this year MTS told Light Reading that it is in the throes of reinventing itself as primarily a software company, systems integrator and application developer in a bid to move on from being just another connectivity-focused telco. (See Russia's MTS to 'Sacrifice' Connectivity in Software Rebirth.)
Finnish operator Elisa Corp. says that over the next six months it intends to pave the way for 5G in the Tampere region with the upgrade of the network in and around the city. Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd will play a major role in the project, replacing the existing basestation technology with its more up-to-date equivalent. The upgrade is being presented as part of the "Smart Tampere" program, which is intended to bring Tampere residents improved digital services, particularly those relating to healthcare, traffic management and energy.
The UK's National Health Service (NHS) suffered another cyber attack on Friday, the BBC reports, with a health board in Lanarkshire, Scotland being hit by a new variant of the Bitpaymer ransomware. Back in May, the NHS felt the brunt of the global WannaCry attack, with 16 of its divisions being afflicted and some emergency patients having to be moved to alternative hospitals. (See Global Ransomware Attack Strikes 70K Systems (& Counting).)