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Eurobites: Arm co-founder warns against Nvidia sale

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Ukrtelecom rolls out broadband to rural notspots; Seacom boosts capacity on African subsea cable; UK politicians sounds TikTok alarm.

  • The co-founder of UK-based Arm has warned that the mooted sale of the chip designer to Nvidia would, if it came to pass, be bad news for both Arm and the UK as a whole. According to a BBC report, Hermann Hauser said: "If it becomes part of Nvidia, most of the licensees are competitors of Nvidia, and will of course then look for an alternative to Arm … It will become one of the Nvidia divisions, and all the decisions will be made in America, no longer in Cambridge." Hauser voted against Arm's takeover by SoftBank in 2016, but he acknowledged that the Japanese giant had done right by the chip designer in keeping Cambridge as the center of its R&D activities. (See Eurobites: Nvidia makes advances on Arm – report and Eurobites: Is it a farewell to Arm for SoftBank?)

  • Following last week's announcement by Ukraine's Ministry of Digital Transformation of a four-year target to get high-speed broadband to the country's rural areas, Ukrtelecom says it plans to roll out "ultrafast" broadband to 2.6 million people over the next two and a half years. The provider claims that this program will raise the Internet coverage from 65% to 85% of the rural population. A second phase of work, the details of which have not been revealed, will bring connectivity to a further 10% of the population. Earlier this year Ukrtelecom announced it had signed an agreement with ICT provider Iskratel and SID Banka to connect rural areas of Ukraine using GPON technology.

    Ukrainians up poles
    Ukrainians up poles

  • Seacom intends to double the capacity on its African subsea cable system by the end of August to meet growing demand for bandwidth on the continent, Bloomberg reports. Tonny Tugee, Seacom's general manager for East and North East Africa, said that his company would add 1.7 Tbit/s to its network, bringing total capacity to 3.2 Tbit/s along Africa's eastern and southern coasts. (See Offshore Bandwidth Sparks Africa Fiber Boom.)

  • A UK politician has called on the country's intelligence services to take a "deep dive" into the software code used by TikTok, the Chinese-owned video app that has taken the world by storm, before any thought is given to allowing its owners to move its headquarters to the UK. As Reuters reports, Neil O'Brien, co-founder of the China Research Group of Conservative politicians, said that that the UK should "welcome investment by TikTok" but cautioned that if there is any state influence in the company's algorithms that would "raise a whole bunch of other questions." The potential for TikTok relocating its headquarters has been raised by President Donald Trump threatening to ban the app in the US, ostensibly because of security concerns. (See Trump call reboots Microsoft's TikTok buyout talks and Introducing TikTok, the latest headache for mobile network engineers.)

  • Ericsson is bolstering its green credentials by signing up to the Pathways Coalition, a group of companies from the infrastructure, utilities, transportation and retail sectors wanting to accelerate the decarbonization of commercial "heavy transport" and reaching the holy grail of zero CO2 emissions by 2050 or earlier, in line with the terms of the Paris Agreement. Ericsson aims to support the coalition through its expertise in "digitalization" and in particular how 5G could open up new opportunities for all industry sectors. Transport is the second-largest source of global CO2 emissions and currently makes up nearly a quarter of all global emissions.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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