Qtel blames competition, forex for profit decline

Qatari telecoms incumbent Qtel has blamed heightened competition and currency movements for a sharp fall in profit during the first half of 2012.

At 1.35 billion riyals ($371 million), net income was 11.8% down on the figure reported for the first half of 2011, despite a 6.1% increase in revenues to 16.4 billion riyals.

Qtel says the bottom line was hit by adverse foreign exchange movement in Indonesia and Algeria. Excluding the impact of currency fluctuations, operational results showed profit growth of 9%, it claims.

Analyst firm spots funding gap in UK broadband plan

Analyst firm Analysys Mason has hit back at a suggestion by the House of Lords, the UK parliament’s upper house, that the government’s broadband plan should demand every community in the country be within reach of an open-access, fibre-optic hub.

Earlier this week, the House of Lords released a new broadband report that criticized aspects of the government’s broadband plan, saying there was too much focus on speed and not enough on providing universal broadband access.

Lenovo dismisses Nokia bid talk as joke

Reuters

Chinese personal computer maker Lenovo on Wednesday quashed market speculation it was interested in buying struggling Finnish cellphone maker Nokia.

"This must be a joke," Gianfranco Lanci, who runs Lenovo's operations in Europe, Middle East and Africa told Reuters. "There's nothing ongoing."

Shares in Nokia earlier rose up to 17 percent in heavy volumes on market talk that Lenovo may be interested in

Nokia, but gave up most of the gains after Lanci's comments.

Fujitsu, NEC, DoCoMo launch smartphone chipmaker

Reuters

Fujitsu Ltd, NTT Docomo Inc and NEC Corp launched a new company on Wednesday to manufacture smartphone chips as Japanese firms attempt to cut their reliance on foreign-made mobile chips.

The venture pits the Japanese companies against Qualcomm Inc, the world's largest mobile chip manufacturer and leading supplier of core microchips used in fast-selling smartphones and tablets.

Fujitsu will own 52.8 percent of Access Network Technology Ltd, which it previously planned to set up on its own.

Mobile internet demand boosts Allot second-quarter profit

Reuters

Allot Communications , which supplies technology that allows telecoms operators to monitor and allocate bandwidth, posted a forecast-beating rise in quarterly profit as revenues rose more than 40 percent, helped by surging demand for fast internet on mobile devices.

However, the initial positive reaction that sent Allot's Tel Aviv shares 2.7 per cent higher by the close was tempered by concern over deal flow and the company's simultaneous announcement of its second acquisition in four months.

General Motors and OnStar join Pecan Street

General Motors and its technology subsidiary OnStar have announced plans to join the smart-grid project being led by Pecan Street in Texas.

Pecan Street, a non-profit research and development consortia based at the University of Texas, is testing a clean-energy smart grid in a neighbourhood in Mueller, about three miles from Austin. The project has received some $10.4 billion from the Energy Department and about $14 billion from project partners.

Verizon completes takeover of Hughes Telematics

US network operator Verizon has completed its acquisition of M2M player Hughes Telematics, saying the deal will help it to expand its capabilities in automotive and fleet telematics.

Hughes will become a part of Verizon Enterprise Solutions, which already provides M2M services to the automotive, transportation and healthcare industries, among others.

Sensus acquires stake in CAS Tecnologia

Smart-grid vendor Sensus (Raleigh, US) has taken a 15% stake in CAS Tecnologia, one of the largest smart-grid companies in Brazil.

The move will give Sensus exposure to the massive Brazilian market as well as the right to distribute Hermera, CAS Tecnologia’s utility data management platform, around the world.

Report: smart grids shifting to standards-based technologies

According to a new report from Pike Research, vendors are rushing to provide standards-compliant or standards-capable smart-grid technologies, driven by utilities that increasingly regard their communications networks as strategic assets.

Operators, vendors report largely disappointing results

A round-up of the most important results announcements over the past few days.

OPERATORS

Latin American heavyweight América Móvil reported a 45% year-on-year fall in net profit to 13.3 billion pesos (US$1 billion), despite a 9.3% increase in revenues to 191.7 billion pesos. The decline was partly down to the weakness of local currencies, which also drove up the cost of handset subsidies. América Móvil says that with more customers opting for smartphones it is seeing pressure on its margins.

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