U.S. announces national security investigation into Chinese telecom companies

On Thursday, the U.S. House of Representative Intelligence Committee announced it was launching an investigation into the threat posed by Chinese-owned telecommunications companies working in the U.S., including Huawei (Shenzhen, P.R.C.) and ZTE (Shenzhen, P.R.C.).

The investigation comes after a ten month preliminary review of Chinese communications companies was conducted by the committee staff.  The preliminary review suggested that there was a national security concern of “the highest priority” and that a more extensive investigation should be conducted.

Tension simmers between Verizon, Vodafone

Reuters

Tension between Vodafone (London, England) and Verizon Communications (New York) over their joint venture in the United States has eased and the success of new partnerships could determine if that relationship goes any further.

Investors pressuring Alcatel to replace CEO

Reuters

Investors are losing patience with Alcatel-Lucent (Paris, France) Chief Executive Ben Verwaayen's performance and are pressing the ailing telecoms equipment maker to replace him, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.

Citing unnamed sources familiar with the matter, the newspaper said Alcatel-Lucent officials had informally approached potential outside successors to Verwaayen, though "no official outreach" had taken place.

France Telecom sees consolidation in Portugal market

Reuters

Consolidation of the Portuguese telecoms market may happen faster than expected if the state-owned bank decides to sell its holdings as part of a countrywide push to raise cash, a France Telecom (Paris, France) executive said on Thursday.

France Telecom has said it plans to leave the Portuguese market, where consumers have been hit hard by an austerity drive, but the company said in October that no talks had taken place because it was difficult to sell in the current environment.

Vodafone eyes KPN Spanish mobile unit

Reuters

Dutch telecom firm KPN (The Hague, Netherlands) has opened the books at its Spanish operations to prospective buyers, including Vodafone (London, England), a person familiar with the situation told Reuters on Tuesday.

KPN's chief executive, Eelco Blok, said in May he would refocus KPN's international mobile division, including expanding Ortel, its mobile phone business which targets immigrants, and would cut inefficient operations outside the Netherlands, Germany and Belgium.

India telecom market needs consolidation says exec

Reuters

Competition in India's mobile market will remain intense, with the overcrowded 15-player sector in need of consolidation to lift margins, a senior executive at market leader Bharti Airtel Ltd (New Delhi, India) said on Wednesday.

Sanjay Kapoor, Bharti's chief executive for India and South Asia, also said the company saw an increase in the uptake of third-generation (3G) services it launched earlier this year, although mass adoption of premium services would take time.

Alcatel-Lucent combines telecom network and cloud

On Thursday, Alcatel-Lucent (Paris, France) introduced a public cloud model that is specifically tailored for service providers to use inside their networks. The CloudBand aims to first design the network using cloud technology, and second, use the service provider’s network infrastructure to deliver these cloud services.


According to Alcatel-Lucent, when designing and building the network using the Cloudband, providers can place specific architectural elements into the cloud, which makes them easily accessible for monitoring actual usage. 

Huawei buys Symantec stake in JV for $530 million

Reuters

Huawei Technologies (Shenzhen, P.R.C.), the world's second largest telecoms equipment maker, plans to buy Symantec Corp's (Sunnyvale, Calif., U.S.A.) 49% stake in Huawei Symantec (Hong Kong, P.R.C.) for $530 million in a joint venture between the companies that provides security solutions for corporations.

The agreement is subject to regulatory approval, but analysts and company executives foresee few hurdles as the joint venture is based in of Hong Kong. The deal is expected to close in the first quarter of 2012, Huawei said in a statement on Tuesday.

Report: carrier VoIP equipment market down 12% in 3Q11

Market research firm Infonetics Research (Campbell, Calif., U.S.A.) on Wednesday released excerpts from its third quarter 2011 Service Provider VoIP Equipment and Subscribers market forecast report, which showed that the global carrier VoIP equipment market lost the 12% it gained in the second quarter of this year, with a 12% decline to $441 million. Overall, the year-over-year VoIP equipment market is down 15%, although the VoIP services market continues to grow.

Mobile market growth dives in third quarter

Reuters

Cellphone market growth slumped in the third quarter, with the grim economic climate prompting consumers to cut back or delay purchases, particularly in Western Europe, says research firm Gartner (Stamford, Conn., U.S.A.).

Global sales of all mobile phones grew an annual 5.6% in the third quarter to 440.5 million phones, down sharply from 16.5% growth in the previous quarter.

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