Europe is at serious risk of failing to meet its smart-metering targets for 2020, according to a new paper from Berg Insight.
Authorities in the region are aiming to cover 80% of electricity customers with smart meters by 2020, but those plans have taken several hits over the last few months.
For a start, Germany’s government has decided not to mandate the rollout of smart meters, while deployments have been delayed in a number of countries, including France.
Indian IT giant Wipro says it is teaming up with Swedish telecoms operator Tele2 on the development of new products and services for the M2M market.
The companies say their partnership is aimed at developing solutions that will reduce costs and open up new revenue streams for M2M customers.
The deal is the latest in a series of M2M moves by Tele2 (Stockholm, Sweden), which operates telecoms networks in several European markets.
KPN has unveiled a new personal emergency response system for health care clients – the latest in a series of M2M moves by the Dutch telecoms incumbent.
It describes its MySafeGuard product as a “comprehensively integrated solution” that will meet the growing need for more freedom and independence among clients at health care institutions.
The product essentially comprises a device equipped with an alarm button, and uses mobile technology so that health care professionals can immediately determine the exact location of the client.
VimpelCom is mulling a potential sale or merger of its Italian mobile business, according to the UK’s Financial Times newspaper.
The operator – whose biggest market is Russia – is reportedly in discussions with Hutchison Whampoa about the future of Wind (Rome, Italy), its second-biggest subsidiary and Italy’s third-biggest mobile operator.
Qatari incumbent Ooredoo has launched what it claims is the first 3G network in Algeria, where it is the smallest of the country’s three mobile network operators.
In a statement, Ooredoo (Doha, Qatar) – formerly known as Qtel – said it had switched on its network in the country’s ten biggest cities just hours after getting the final regulatory sign-off.
Although it promises its 3G services will be available “at no additional cost”, the operator requires customers to procure a second 3G-enabled number (which it will supply) and add this to their SIM cards.
The French government will act to ensure telecom operators provide decent service as they roll out cut-rate plans for new high-speed 4G broadband service, a minister for digital issues said on Sunday.
Low-cost operator Iliad (Paris, France) this month added 4G service to its Free Mobile offers without raising the price, putting pressure on leading telecoms companies Orange (Paris, France), Vivendi's SFR (Paris, France) and Bouygues Telecom (Paris, France) to follow suit with competitive offers.
Orange is reported to have joined a price war in France’s nascent 4G market, offering the high-speed service to customers on its low-cost Sosh tariffs for no additional charge.
The move follows similar announcements by Iliad (Paris, France) and Bouygues (Paris, France), meaning Vivendi-owned SFR (Paris, France) is the only mobile network operator yet to slash fees for access to its 4G network.
But according to Dow Jones, which reported on the latest development, analysts expect SFR to follow suit in the near future.
The European Commission (EC) is to invest €700 million ($965 million) in 5G research and development in a bid to improve the competitiveness of the region’s mobile communications industry.
The plans form part of the EC’s Horizon 2020 program, which will see a total of €6.2 billion injected into eight Public Private Partnerships in areas deemed to be of strategic importance to Europe.
Sweden’s TeliaSonera has announced several acquisitions aimed at boosting its presence in the country’s high-speed broadband market.
In a statement, the operator said it had spent a total of SEK473 million ($72 million) on controlling stakes in fiber players Zitius, Quadracom Networks and Riksnet.
UK operator EE has signed a roaming deal with AT&T allowing customers of the US telecoms giant to use 4G services when travelling to the UK.
The operator also promised that further roaming deals would be announced early next year.