Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Ericsson collaborates with Turkcell on 5G; Com Hem has a healthy second quarter; Apple Pay arrives in UK.
Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) has set up a cloud lab in Aachen, Germany, which the vendor hopes will help operators and others better execute their digital strategies and create industry-specific cloud-based applications. Ericsson's customers will be able to participate in the testing of cloud, virtualization and MANO (management and orchestration) technologies on a test bed built with Ericsson products and services. (See Ericsson Plans Cloud Lab in Germany.)
Elsewhere on Planet Ericsson, the company is collaborating with Turkcell Iletisim Hizmetleri A.S. (NYSE: TKC) on 5G R&D in Turkey, with Turkcell CEO Kaan Terzioglu and Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg signing on the dotted line to make it official. Could this be anything to do with President Tayyip Erdogan's recent pronouncement that his country should skip the whole 4G thing and move straight to 5G instead?
Second-quarter earnings at Swedish cable operator Com Hem AB increased 3.1% year-on-year to 583 million Swedish kronor (US$68.3 million), on revenues up 4% to SEK1.24 billion ($145 million). The number of subscribers grew by 6,000 to 894,000. Approximately 40% of Sweden's households are now connected to Com Hem's network, according to the company. (See Com Hem Reports Improved Q2.)
Apple Pay, Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL)'s mobile payment system, arrives in the UK today, though, as the BBC reports, not all Britain's major banks are geared up for it yet. Owners of iPhone 6 phones and Apple watches will be able to use the system, which is based on NFC technology, and in most cases the maximum allowed on any transaction will be £20 ($31).
Orange (NYSE: FTE) has taken its 'Fab' startup accelerator program to Spain. Under the terms of the scheme, qualifying startups will be hosted for three months by Orange Spain, receiving mentoring, a workspace and access to network of Orange contacts. The first two areas of focus for the scheme are the Internet of Things and NFC.
South Africa's MTN Group Ltd. has a new CEO, replacing Ahmad Farroukh, who resigned last week to join Etihad Etisalat Co. (Mobily) , with Mteto Nyati. As Reuters reports, Nyati joined MTN last year as chief enterprise officer.
Vodafone Ireland has upgraded its 4G network to offer speeds of up to 225 Mbit/s to customers in the country's five largest cities.
Telefónica has taken the hand-brake off Drivies, an app which the operator hopes will encourage better driving and reduce the cost of car insurance for those that use it. Available on Android and iOS, Drivies detects speeding, distractions due to the use of mobile phones (to check on Drivies, maybe?) and "abrupt driving behaviours."
— Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading