Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Telefónica passes M2M milestone; Vodafone offers small cells to rural folk; XMOS attracts $26.2 million Series D funding.
Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) expects its international losses to soar to US$42 million in the third quarter, from $15.3 million in the second quarter, as it launches its service in Germany, France, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, and Luxembourg during September. "This launch into markets with over 60 million broadband households will significantly increase our European presence and raise our current international addressable market to over 180 million broadband households, or 2x the number of current U.S. broadband households," said Netflix CEO Reed Hastings in a letter to shareholders as the OTT video giant announced second-quarter revenues of $1.34 billion, up nearly 37% from a year earlier, and a global subscriber base that has topped 50 million (more details in that shareholders' letter). (See Eurobites: Netflix Takes 1Tbit/s in Paris.)
We have seen the future, and it's smart-arse fridges. Telefónica SA (NYSE: TEF) is trumpeting the fact that it now has more than 250 M2M partners in Europe and the US, including device manufacturers, solution providers, and distributors. One of the particular areas of M2M focus for Telefonica is the connected car, and earlier this year it signed an agreement with carmaker Tesla to bring connectivity to its Model S in Europe. (See Telefónica Boasts More Than 250 M2M Partners and Telefónica: Safety Is Top Connected Car 'App'.)
Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD) has launched a rural femtocell program in the UK, calling on poorly connected communities to apply for 3G access via Vodafone's Open Sure Signal technology. A trial of the technology has seen the connection of 12 rural communities across the UK, from the Shetland Islands in the north to Devon in the south.
A study by Swiss mobile network interconnection services specialist Starhome Mach has found that the recent reduction in European roaming charges has had little effect on whether users choose to turn on their services when roaming. According to data gathered over the past year from its Unity real-time analytics service, 58% of roamers in the European Union are still "silent," while 68% of global roamers are silent too. Funnily enough, Starhome has introduced a Silent Roamers solution that it says will help operators "identify and awaken their roamers." (See Starhome Mach Analyzes Roaming Stats.)
EE , the UK mobile joint venture, annoyed the hell out of some of its subscribers over the weekend, bombarding them with marketing texts as the result of a technical hitch, reports the BBC. One woman got texted 40 times in three days telling her she could add a "magic number" -- that's serious customer experience mismanagement. On a more positive note, The Drum reports that EE has created a bundle specifically aimed at so-called "pop-up" retailers, offering an instant 4G connection for 30 days and other potentially useful products such as the iZettle payment card reader. (For the uninitiated, pop-up retailers open temporary outlets that take advantage of a particular opportunity, then disappear into the night.)
Whither the landline? UK regulator Ofcom 's latest research found that only 12% of 16- to 24-year-olds considered a landline essential. Conversely, 53% of this demographic thought that Internet access via a smartphone was essential, while NO-ONE aged 75 and over agreed. Surely there was one hipster silver surfer out there in love with Facebook access via his/her mobile?