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Eurobites: We Need 'British Netflix' Now, Says UK Broadcast Boss

Paul Rainford
10/22/2018
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Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: WiFi in the driving seat; European Commission approves Microsoft's GitHub acquisition; Apelo finds a berth in the Balkans.

  • The boss of British commercial broadcaster ITV has warned that the window of opportunity in which ITV and its UK rivals can create a "British Netflix" and compete with the OTT threat is rapidly closing. As the Guardian reports, Carolyn McCall has made the development of a collaborative, subscription-based video-on-demand service involving all the UK's main broadcasters a priority since she took on her current role in January, but so far talks have failed to bear fruit. (See Netflix Tops 130M Paid Subscribers Worldwide.)

  • Car connectivity is at that awkward age when rival technologies are competing to become the de facto industry standard -- think VHS versus Betamax, but on wheels. Now it appears WiFi has got its nose in front in the technology race with the news that the European Commission is preparing to approve and nail down rules for the use of WiFi for car-to-car communication. As Reuters reports, this will be music to the ears of Volkswagen and Renault, who have plumped for a strain of WiFi called ITS-G5 over the 5G-based C-V2X technology.


    Home in on the opportunities and challenges facing European cable operators. Join Light Reading for the Cable Next-Gen Europe event in London on November 6. And it's free for everyone!


  • The European Commission has approved the $7.5 billion acquisition of GitHub by Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT), ruling that their coming together raises no competition concerns because the merged entity would "continue to face significant competition from other players" in the DevOps tools market. Microsoft is banking on its purchase of the open source code repository giving it more clout in the cloud. (See GitHub: Microsoft's $7.5B Cloud Super-Weapon and Microsoft Swears GitHub Independence After $7.5B Acquisition.)

  • Texas-based Alepo has persuaded m:tel, one of the main operators in the Balkan state of Bosnia and Herzegovina, to use its WiFi service management platform to help upgrade its WiFi core. The offering will allow m:tel's "affiliates" to create their own hotspots with revenue-sharing arrangements -- for example, affiliates could create video advertisements and then compensate m:tel based on the number of times they are viewed.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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