Eurobites: UK's silver streamers log on in lockdown

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Nokia and Safaricom combine to connect schools in Kenya; Elisa Estonia launches hybrid Android TV service; TymeBank heads for the Philippines.

  • The restrictions on travel and, you know, actually doing stuff brought about by COVID-19 have led to a surge in so-called "silver streamers" in the UK, according to a Deloitte report. The report says that the proportion of UK consumers aged between 65 and 75 that have access to a video streaming service such as Netflix or Amazon Prime has leaped from 36% in 2020 to 57% this year. And these more mature couch potatoes have also been investing more in devices on which they can indulge their streaming habit – in the 12 months to July 2021, 19.2 million such devices were bought in the UK, an 8% rise on the previous year.

  • Nokia has teamed up with Safaricom and a number of other organizations to connect around 90 schools to the Internet in Kenya as part of a government program to get a broadband connection to all the country's schools by 2030. The schools benefiting from this phase of the program will use Nokia's FastMile 4G fixed wireless access (FWA) broadband offering to provide reliable connectivity over Safaricom's 4G network. School closures in Kenya in 2020 meant that children had to stay at home for up to nine months, leaving them reliant on remote learning.

  • Elisa Estonia has launched a hybrid Android TV service powered by a combination of technologies from NAGRA, Technicolor, Tech4home and 3SS. The service, which features Google Play Movies and TV, Amazon Prime Video, Viaplay and YouTube among a total of more than 150 channels, is available via DVB-C (cable), DVB-T (terrestrial), IPTV and on all OTT platforms.

  • TymeBank, a South African digital banking operation, is exporting its business model to the Philippines, via its sister company GoTyme. The approval of the license application, which is the first part of a three-step process, comes after TymeBank secured international investment in February this year. TymeBank had notched up 3.5 million customers in South Africa at the end of July this year.

  • UK altnet CityFibre has begun work on its £62 million (US$85.4 million) rollout in the north-eastern English city of Sunderland. Construction will be carried out by MAP Group on CityFibre's behalf, and it is envisaged that the project will be completed by 2025.

  • Another UK altnet, Neos Networks, says it has completed its partly government-funded public sector fiber project in Perth, Scotland, two months ahead of schedule. Three council data centers and 31 public buildings – including schools, leisure centers and sheltered housing – were hooked up over the 19.5km network.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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