Also in today’s EMEA regional roundup: Saudi Arabia’s Mobily opts for Ericsson; Ireland’s data center dilemma; Sunrise appoints post-Swantee CFO; Virgin Media’s free broadband boost.
Huawei has written to the Estonian government expressing its opposition to a proposed law that would require telecom companies to seek permission from the state for the introduction of new hardware and software. As Estonian news service ERR reports, the Chinese vendor believes that the bill isn’t fair and would effectively exclude it from the Estonian market. Huawei thinks the Estonian government should talk more and regulate less when it comes to telecom matters. The proposed legislation might not impress Huawei but it will surely gladden the hearts of those making up the Trump administration, who, citing alleged security issues, have been on a mission to persuade Europe to show Huawei the door when it comes to the construction of future networks. (See Huawei Stew Hits Boiling Point.)
Ericsson has signed a wide-ranging deal with Saudi operator Mobily covering transport, core, billing and radio access. According to Mobily, the deal will support it in its efforts to sprinkle “digital transformation” fairy dust on Saudi Arabia’s government and private sectors, and it cites a smart metering project with the Saudi Electricity Company as an example of the kind of thing that will benefit from the agreement.
Still in the Middle East, Abu Dhabi-based Etisalat claims to be the first operator in the MENA (Middle East North Africa) region to deploy open virtual Radio Access Network (Open vRAN) technology in its network. It says the deployment was made possible “with the collaboration of Etisalat partners Altiostar, NEC, Cisco and other leading vRAN technology vendors.” The operator says it “plans to roll out Open vRAN across the UAE to take full advantage of all the benefits that this new technology offers.”
Is the environmental price of being Europe’s data center capital one that is worth paying? That’s the question being posed about Ireland in a Guardian report, which cites a study by the Irish Academy of Engineering estimating that projected data center expansion in the country will require nearly 9 billion (US$10 million) in new energy infrastructure and add at least 1.5 million tonnes to Ireland’s carbon emissions by 2030, an increase of 13% on current levels.
Following last week’s news of Olaf Swantee’s resignation as CEO of Swiss operator Sunrise, today sees the announcement of the appointment of Uwe Schiller as the new CFO, replacing Andr Krause, who has been promoted to fill Swantee’s shoes. Schiller is the current senior vice president of finance and investor relations at Sunrise. (See Eurobites: Swantee Quits as Sunrise CEO.)
Streaming video-on-demand (SVoD) services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video now account for 65.9% of the UK home entertainment industry, according to new figures from the British Association for Screen Entertainment (BASE). The UK home entertainment sector grew by 9.5% in 2019, says BASE, bringing the total market value to 2.6 billion ($3.4 billion).