UK

Huawei teams with Phones 4U to push own brand

Following on from the recent revelation that Huawei is to follow ZTE into the own brand handset market, the Chinese vendor has announced a partnership with UK retailer Phones 4U to bring Huawei branded devices to market in the fourth quarter.

China Telecom to name UK MVNO host by end August

The European arm of Chinese carrier China Telecom will name the host of its forthcoming UK MVNO play before September, managing director Ou Yan told Telecoms.com. China Telecom Europe will be launching a UK MVNO before the end of Q112, targeting the half a million Chinese living in Britain with a SIM-only, Chinese content offering.

UK broadband speeds up 10% in six months

UK consumers are enjoying a boost in their average broadband speeds, but the gap between actual and advertised speeds has also increased, according to new findings from communications regulator Ofcom.

LTE spectrum auction should deal with UK ‘not-spots’ says panel

An advisory group is calling on the UK telecoms regulator Ofcom to ensure that the LTE spectrum auction scheduled for 2013 deals with coverage ‘not-spots’ across the country. The Communications Consumer Panel is asking Ofcom to enforce coverage obligations on the operators taking part in next year’s LTE spectrum auction for each of the four UK nations; England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The suggestion is that money be retained from the spectrum auction and a reverse auction run in order to provide upgraded rural coverage.

Boost for UK rural broadband after regulator forces price drop

UK regular Ofcom has told incumbent BT that it must reduce the wholesale prices it charges ISPs for delivering broadband services to primarily rural areas. The regulator said that the price reduction of 12 per cent below inflation will make it more affordable for ISPs to offer service to remote areas. It also said that it expects the move to promote competition between ISPs, leading to cheaper prices to consumers. It could also lead to faster speeds, as ISP’s will be able to purchase more capacity from BT Wholesale without increasing costs.

UK 1Gbps fibre service set for September launch

Startup ISP Hyperoptic has announced that it will be launching a 1Gbps fibre optic service in the UK in September. The service is a full fibre-to-the-premises offering and will offer symmetrical 1Gbps speeds for download and upload.

Broadcaster to map UK mobile coverage

The UK’s public service broadcasting organisation, the BBC, has announced that it is to create an independent mobile coverage map of the UK, working in partnership with network analyst firm Epitiro. The broadcaster has developed an Android app in conjunction with Epitiro that, when downloaded by consumers, will feedback data on the availability and strength of signal at different locations throughout the UK.

News Corp. shelves Sky buyout bid

Rupert Murdoch’s media powerhouse, News Corporation, has withdrawn its offer for UK broadcaster BSkyB, amid the phone hacking scandal that has rocked UK politics and the media.

Ofcom launches interactive map of UK’s fixed broadband infrastructure

UK communications regulator Ofcom has launched an interactive map of the country’s fixed broadband landscape, using data provided by communications providers and giving a range of information including the availability of superfast broadband and average broadband take-up.

MLL readies managed backhaul service for UK LTE market

Backhaul specialist MLL Telecom is pitching a managed service offering for UK LTE networks, designed to help operators cope with the incremental data increases they will face one LTE networks are rolled out.

3D TV has backing but lacks impact

Although 3D TV has major support from leading UK service providers like Sky and Virgin, it is not expected to be an instant success. Statistics released this week forecast that less than half of the 11 million 3D TV-ready homes in the UK by 2016 will be active users of the technology.

Regulator approves UK mobile spectrum trading

UK regulator Ofcom, has announced that, from June 20th, mobile operators are permitted to trade the rights to spectrum amongst themselves. The new regulation covers 900MHz, 1800MHz and 2100MHz spectrum and mean operators will be able to bid for the use of spectrum they believe the have greater need for than other operators.

Operators collaborate on m-wallet venture

The UK’s three biggest operators on Thursday launched a standalone m-commerce joint venture designed to provide a single contact for advertisers, marketing partners, retailers and banks to create m-commerce products and services. Cashing in on the m-wallet phenomenon, the will target companies and organisations that provide anything from credit, debit and loyalty cards to membership cards and transport tickets, allowing them to create secure mobile versions of their products.

eBay highlights growing importance of m-commerce

Research released by eBay’s UK operation this week claims that m-commerce could deliver a £4.5bn boost to Britain’s economy by 2016 and a further £13bn by 2021, if nurtured correctly. The research gives the auction house yet more reason to go after Google for allegedly upsetting its mobile activities last week.

O2 tops UK mobile broadband performance study

UK mobile broadband users accessing the web over dongles and datacards are getting average throughput of 1.5Mbit/s, according to research released Thursday by UK regulator Ofcom. But there were significant differences between the five carriers’ performance, with O2 delivering the best performance, and Orange the worst. 3UK outperformed T-Mobile, with which it shares a 3G network.

Orange UK cuts deal with coupon firm

Keeping up momentum after its launch of NFC-based payment services, mobile operator Orange is venturing into another potentially lucrative market – that of vouchers.

Everything Everywhere a big hit with MVNO players

UK network venture Everything Everywhere, a collaboration between T-Mobile and Orange, said Thursday it has won three new mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) – Priyo, The Phone Co-op and RMmobile.

Telefonica O2 UK to support national M2M network

Telefónica’s UK operation, O2, on Wednesday struck a deal with security and smart metering firm G4S to deploy a remote management and monitoring system for a national smart meter network.

Spectrum trading now available in UK mobile market

UK regulator Ofcom has published its proposals for the introduction of spectrum trading in the UK mobile market. The guidelines allow for trading of all 900MHz, 1800MHz and 2100MHz spectrum. This will be the first time that UK operators have been allowed to transfer their spectrum assets to one another, and Ofcom will act as the administrator for all transactions.

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