Consumer groups to fight AT&T FaceTime restrictions

Reuters

Three public interest groups plan to file a formal complaint accusing AT&T Inc (Dallas, USA) of violating U.S. Internet rules if the wireless service provider goes ahead with a plan to limit use of Apple Inc's (Cupertino, USA) FaceTime application to certain customers.

The groups -- Free Press, Public Knowledge and the New America Foundation's Open Technology Institute -- gave AT&T notice in a letter on Tuesday that they plan to file a formal complaint with the Federal Communications Commission, unless the No. 2 U.S. mobile provider changes its policy.

Emerging Asia-Pac telecoms revenues to grow by $94 billion to 2016

Telecoms retail revenues in emerging Asia-Pacific markets are forecast to increase from $229.7 billion in 2011 to $323.7 billion by 2016, according to a new report from Analysys Mason.

Growth will be driven by the adoption of data services on smartphones and other mobile devices, with 3G and 4G connections accounting for 46% of the total by 2016.

The study looks at Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan and Thailand, noting that China and India account for 68% of the region’s population, 64% of active SIMs and 75% of retail revenues.

Time Warner to sell Clearwire stake

Time Warner Cable (New York, USA) intends to sell its 7.8% stake in mobile broadband provider Clearwire (Kirkland, USA), according to Dow Jones Newswires.

The cable operator has made clear its plans in a regulatory filing and also notified other Clearwire investors, which have the option of purchasing all or part of the stake.

Time Warner paid around $550 million for its interest in Clearwire back in 2008, but the shares would fetch only about $73.3 million at current prices.

Deutsche Telekom submits bid for Croatian 4G license

T-Hrvatski Telekom (Zagreb, Croatia), the Croatian operator controlled by Germany’s Deutsche Telekom (Bonn, Germany), has already applied for a new 4G license just days after the country’s regulator invited bids.

Hakom is to award three blocks of 2x10MHz spectrum in the 800MHz band for use with new 4G services, although no operator will be allowed to own more than one spectrum block.

Bidders will have until October 15 to submit their applications for a 12-year license, making T-Hrvatski look very eager indeed.

Telenor in talks with potential Indian partners: Reuters

Telenor’s chief executive says he is in talks with several potential new partners in India, according to Reuters.

“There are talks in many directions, I can assure you, and many who wish to speak to us as well,” Jon Fredrik Baksaas told Reuters at the operator’s capital markets event.

“There is not really anything concrete to say about this yet, but … we wish to go further in India provided that the framework at last will be in place, and that we also can see a profitability developing on a new investment in India,” he is reported to have said.

Alcatel-Lucent wins broadband deal in Colombia

Alcatel-Lucent (Paris, France) has signed a contract with Azteca Comunicaciones Colombia (Bogota, Colombia) to build a broadband network in the Latin American country.

The operator aims to connect 753 municipalities and bring high-quality TV, video, voice and high-speed data services to millions of consumers and business users.

As a major supplier on the project, Alcatel-Lucent will deploy broadband infrastructure in some 216 of those municipalities.

Apple snubs emerging mobile payment standard

Reuters

EBay Inc (San Jose, USA) Chief Executive John Donahoe often quotes a merchant saying NFC stands for "Not For Commerce" - and dismisses the prospects of Near Field Communication technology used to turn cellphones into mobile wallets.

He got some support this week from Apple Inc (Cupertino, USA), which did not embed NFC chips into the iPhone 5.

Vodafone helps Dutch councils slash costs, emissions

An M2M-enabled waste-management scheme involving Vodafone (Newbury, UK) is helping local councils in the Netherlands to slash their carbon emissions by up to a fifth and save thousands of euros in collection costs.

Working with Mic-O-Data (Hassinkweg, the Netherlands), a Dutch waste-management company that claims a 30% share of the market, Vodafone has fitted 6,000 ‘connected’ bins with SIM cards that transmit regular updates, notifying refuse collectors when bins are filling up or if they have not been properly closed.

Rogers to spur M2M development with Vancouver initiative

Rogers Wireless (Toronto, Canada) has announced the opening of a new innovation center in Vancouver aimed at promoting the development of M2M technologies and applications.

Located in the Wavefront national center of excellence for wireless commercialization, the Rogers Wireless Innovation Center will allow business customers and developers to try out the latest M2M technology and enterprise mobility applications.

Tata Motors launches new telematics service

Tata Motors (Mumbai, India) has launched a new fleet telematics service it claims will help commercial vehicle fleet owners boost their productivity and profitability.

Branded Tata FleetMan, the service will initially be introduced on new tractor-trailers but is set to become available on Tata’s entire medium-sized and heavy commercial vehicle range in the coming months.

Tata says the service will be extended to existing vehicles through aftermarket fitments.

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