France sells 4G mobile licenses for $1.2 billion

Reuters

France sold off a first batch of fourth-generation mobile frequencies for 1.28 billion, granting licenses to all four major telecom operators in an auction that will structure the market for years to come.

Telecoms regulator ARCEP said France Telecom (Paris, France) and soon-to-be new mobile player Iliad (Paris, France) put in the highest bids to win the two larger blocks of 20 megahertz.

Vivendi's SFR (Paris, France) and Bouygues Telecom (Paris, France) were given smaller blocks of 15 MHz, ARCEP said in a statement on Thursday.

Clearwire talks capacity sale with AT&T, Verizon, others

Reuters

Clearwire Corp (Kirkland, Wash., U.S.A.) is in talks with U.S. wireless operators, including AT&T Inc (Dallas, Texas, U.S.A.) and Verizon Wireless (New York), about selling network capacity while it also eyes raising new funding through equity, debt and vendor financing, according to top company executives.

Clearwire, which needs $900 million in new funding, is also open to selling wireless spectrum, but is not running a sale process, Chief Financial Officer Hope Cochran told Reuters.

Test strategy for the wireless backhaul evolution

The growth of data-centric services driven by smartphone technologies, along with the growth of the social Internet (e.g., My Space, Facebook) and multimedia applications (e.g., gaming, YouTube, etc.), has prompted wireless service operators to shift toward packet-based Ethernet/IP technologies in their access and core networks. The most important drivers for this decision: scalability and cost savings.

Multiservice field equipment and the future of 10G testing: EXFO one-on-one

Today’s telecom field technicians need to be equip with tools that are able to test a variety of technologies, especially as the industry transitions to a converged network infrastructure.  Not only does the equipment need to be versatile, it has to maintain a level of simplicity for technicians troubleshooting in the field.  TelecomEngine got a chance to speak with Karim Fahim, Senior Product Line Manager of Transport at EXFO, to discuss the FTB-1 NetBlazer platform, and specifically Exfo’s new offering, the FTB-880.

AT&T may have to settle for weaker T-Mobile tie-up

Reuters

If AT&T Inc (Dallas, Texas, U.S.A.) fails to convince U.S. regulators that its proposed purchase of Deutsche Telekom AG's (Bonn, Germany) T-Mobile USA should go ahead, the pair may end up having to settle for a lesser relationship.  While it wouldn't be as attractive as an all-out marriage, a network partnership would sidestep the regulatory heat and give the spectrum-hungry companies more capacity to support high-speed wireless services, according to analysts.

Cloud could cut energy data center consumption 31% by 2020

According to a report by research firm Pike Research (Boulder, Colo., U.S.A.), the continued adoption of cloud computing will lead to a reduction of data center energy consumption of 31% from 2010 to 2020.  The energy-efficiency benefits of cloud computing are substantial, says the research firm, and growth in the market will have important implications for both energy consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

Report: LTE surpasses WiMax spending in second quarter

Market research firm Infonetics Research (Campbell, Calif., U.S.A.) on Thursday released excerpts from its second quarter 2011 (2Q11) 2G/3G/4G (LTE and WiMAX) Infrastructure and Subscribers report, which takes a comprehensive look at the mobile and wireless equipment markets.

According to the report, the overall 2G, 3G, 4G infrastructure market continues to evolve on strong footing led by GSM, W-CDMA, and unabated WiMAX and LTE deployments, with equipment spending up 25.2% year-over year (2Q10 to 2Q11) and up 4.5% sequentially in 2Q11.

Sprint discontinues Premier program

On Thursday, Sprint (Overland Park, Kan., U.S.A.) a U.S. mobile operator, announced that it would be discontinuing its Premier program by gradually phasing it out over the next few months.  The Premier program, implemented in 2009, allowed customers of over 10 years or customers who spent a certain amount of money per month on their wireless plan, privileges such as early and discounted phone upgrades and trials of unreleased products.

Clearwire, China Mobile sign 4G agreement

Reuters

China Mobile Communications Corp (Beijing, China) and Clearwire Corp (Kirkland, Wash., U.S.A.) have teamed up to develop high-speed mobile devices and infrastructure, potentially giving the cash-strapped U.S. 4G operator a technological boost.

Shares of Clearwire closed up 7% at $2.73 after the news as investors bet that Clearwire's collaboration with China Mobile, the world's largest wireless operator, decreased the risks around Clearwire's future technology choice.

FCC issued notice for more GPS testing for LightSquared

On Tuesday, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued a public notice stating that more GPS interference tests are needed before LightSquared (Reston, Va., U.S.A.) can begin operations of its 4G-LTE nationwide wireless broadband network.

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