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Regulation

Eurobites: Italy Wavers on the Huawei Question

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: 5G fun in Bavaria; 6G fun in Finland; IPCom's patents poke at Xiaomi; Ericsson notches up analytics win in Mexico.

  • Has Italy changed its mind on Huawei? Earlier this month the Italian government was denying reports that it planned to ban Huawei (and ZTE) from involvement in the country's 5G network rollout, but today Reuters reports -- citing the Il Messaggero newspaper -- that one part of the coalition government is pushing for a Huawei exclusion. According to the report, lawmakers from the Lega party, which governs in partnership with the 5-Star Movement, plan to call for the government to use its so-called "golden powers" to prevent Huawei from supplying 5G equipment. (See US Won't Work With Countries That Use Huawei, Pompeo Warns and Where Huawei Fears to Tread.)

  • The Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits is launching a "5G Bavaria" initiative, the centerpiece of which is a test center in Erlangen. Here, in combination with other testing environments in the region, companies will be able to put their 5G offerings through their paces both in the lab and in a "real-world" context. And if their tests go well, they can celebrate with a massive beer or six.

  • But as Donald Trump would probably tell you, this 5G stuff is just soooo last year. Finland's Oulu University has teamed up with Oulu city authorities to open a "6G Flagship," which will be showing people what it's up to on the Finland pavilion at next week's Mobile World Congress. And next month 6G Flagship will host the world's first 6G Wireless Summit, to be held at the Levi resort in Finnish Lapland.

  • German patents warehouse IPCom claims that China's Xiaomi is selling patent-infringing smartphones to the UK market. IPCom believes that Xiaomi needs to license IPCom's European Patent 1 841 268, the validity of which, it says, has shown in previous cases against HTC and Nokia. The patent in question relates to how mobile phones gain initial access to a network. A patent license, says IPCom, was offered to Xiaomi on FRAND (fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory) terms, but no reply was forthcoming.

  • Telefónica Movistar México has chosen Ericsson's Expert Analytics offering to help improve its service to subscribers and reduce "churn."

  • Vodafone has launched a new plug-in mobile router for those consumers and small businesses that want high-speed Internet access in areas with fixed-line connectivity. Called the GigaCube, the device allows 4G connectivity, offering speeds of up to 300 Mbit/s, enough to connect up to 20 devices at any one time, according to Vodafone. Data prices start at £35 (US$45.5) per month, while the device itself costs £120 ($156) upfront.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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