Also in today's 'Black Friday' EMEA regional roundup: Turkcell bids for TeliaSonera's stake in Fintur; Polkomtel trials voice-over-WiFi with Nokia; Cosmote achieves 500 Mbit/s LTE; Altice lands rights to English Premier League.
Telefónica and Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. are becoming the best of pals. Building on numerous other relationships in network hardware, software and professional services, the two companies are now teaming up in the data center services market with a global collaboration that aims to persuade enterprises to use Telefónica's cloud services. The Chinese vendor will help to deploy an OpenStack-based platform in eight Telefónica data centers, bringing to the party its experience in China's public cloud market. Telefonica's Open Cloud service will be made available initially in Brazil, Mexico and Chile in the first quarter of 2016, with further markets to follow. (See Telefónica, Huawei Team Up for 5G R&D , Telefónica Bets on IT Transformation and Eurobites: Telefónica, Huawei Get Closer.)
Polkomtel SA is undertaking a public trial of a voice-over-WiFi (VoWiFi) service that will enable its customers to make voice calls over WiFi connections in areas with poor mobile coverage. The operator's vendor partner is Nokia Networks , which is providing its voice core technology (IMS elements, telecom apps server and border gateway), an end-user application from partner OptiMobile and a range of professional services. Ultimately, the Polish operator, which trades under the Plus brand, plans to integrate its voice-over-LTE (VoLTE) and VoWiFi services into a seamless offering. (See Polkomtel VoWiFi With Nokia Networks.)
Greek operator Cosmote is claiming to be the first operator in Europe to demonstrate 500Mbit/s mobile broadband speeds in a live network environment. The headline speed was achieved using Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) LTE-Advanced software that enables three-carrier (20+20+10MHz FDD) aggregation featuring a new 256 QAM modulation scheme. (See Cosmote Demos 500Mbit/s LTE With Ericsson .)
Turkcell Iletisim Hizmetleri A.S. (NYSE: TKC) has made a non-binding indicative offer for Telia Company 's 58.55% stake in Fintur, a holding company for a number of telecom businesses in Eurasia. Turkcell already owns the other 41.45% stake in Fintur and recently said it was looking into increasing its stake following TeliaSonera's decision to quit all of its Eurasian markets. According to a Reuters report, TeliaSonera has indicated that several other potential bidders have expressed interest in buying its Fintur stake, which could drive up the final price that gets paid. (See TeliaSonera to Quit Eurasia, Focus on Europe.)
French cable group Altice is reported to have fought off competition from broadcaster Canal+ for three-year rights to screen English Premier League matches in France. According to a Financial Times report (subscription required), the Patrick Drahi-owned company will cough up around €100 million ($106 million) a year for the rights from August 2016, a much higher sum than the €65 million ($69 million) that Canal+ currently pays annually. Altice, which owns French telecom operator Numericable-SFR , will undoubtedly hope the EPL footage helps to attract customers to quad-play bundles of fixed voice, broadband, mobile and TV services.
Vodafone España S.A. has told Light Reading that it welcomes the recent regulatory ruling that will require Telefónica to open its fiber network to rivals in areas where there is insufficient infrastructure-based competition. A spokesperson said the regulator had "interpreted the market reality properly" by appreciating both the "significant market power of Telefónica … and the existence of different degrees of competitive pressure in the different geographical areas of Spain." Telefónica has put its fiber investments "under review" as a consequence of the draft ruling, although its network already covers about three quarters of Spanish homes. (See Telefónica's Fiber Fix.)
Re: Polkomtel Kruz, the VoWiFi service is part of the package customers pay to the service provider and will constitute the main differentiator in Polkomtel's marketing strategy for attracting new customers. -Susan