Ethiopia launches 4G mobile service in the capital

African telecoms surging, with subscribers across the continent near 650 million in 2013

Reuters

ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) - Ethiopia's state-run telecoms monopoly has launched a fourth generation (4G) mobile service in the capital Addis Ababa, aiming to catch up with the high-speed communications available in some east African neighbors such as Kenya and Uganda.

Africa's telecoms industry is booming, with subscribers across the continent totaling almost 650 million in 2013, up from just 25 million in 2001, according to the World Bank.

But analysts say high-speed connections are vital to maintaining growth and supporting the wider economy.

China's Huawei leads international patent filings: WIPO

Viewed as barometer of a country's technological progress, China sees double-digit growth in filings

Reuters

BEIJING (Reuters) - Chinese telecom giant Huawei Technologies Co Ltd became the world's No. 1 applicant for international patents in 2014, a United Nations agency said Thursday, underscoring the innovative strides made by Chinese technology companies.

Huawei was followed by San Diego-based chipmaker Qualcomm Inc while Huawei's crosstown rival ZTE Corp, which was the world's leading applicant in 2012, took third place in its number of filings, according to the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

U.S labor board says some T-Mobile policies are illegal

NLRB says 'revise or rescind the unlawful rules'

Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The U.S. National Labor Relations Board ruled that certain labor policies of wireless carrier T-Mobile US Inc were unfair, including some practices that discouraged workers from organizing.

NLRB Judge Christine Dibble said in an order on Wednesday that several provisions in T-Mobile's employee handbook, code of conduct, confidentiality agreement and form asking employee's to comply with unlawful work rules were unfair labor practices.

U.S. trade groups seen leading lawsuits against new Internet rules

CTIA, NCTA and USTelecom expected to challenge FCC's 'Net Neutrality'

Reuters

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) - Trade associations representing large U.S. Internet service providers are expected to take the lead in suing the Federal Communications Commission over its new web traffic regulations, according to several people familiar with the plan.

U.S. telecom and cable firms have said they would challenge the FCC's latest "net neutrality" rules in court. But at least some companies, including Verizon Communications Inc, are currently not planning to bring individual lawsuits and instead aim to participate through trade groups, the sources said.

Boeing eyes satellite deal with tech giant this year

Aims to drive down the cost of satellite comms to compete with terrestrial price points

Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Boeing Co on Monday said it could clinch a deal this year to build a high-throughput communications satellite for top technology companies such as Google Inc, Amazon.com Inc, Facebook Inc or Apple Inc.

Jim Simpson, vice president of business development and chief strategist for Boeing Network and Space Systems, told Reuters the big technology firms were keen to expand Internet access around the world to help them grow.

AT&T-DirecTV merger escapes heat as all eyes on Comcast

Concern that purchase of Time Warner Cable would bolster dominant position in broadband Internet

Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - AT&T Inc's proposed acquisition of satellite television company DirecTV is getting a smooth ride from U.S. regulators and industry rivals, who instead are directing their firepower at a merger deal between the nation's two biggest cable operators.

U.S. Federal Communications Commission filings and interviews with several people familiar with the Justice Department show the $48.5 billion AT&T-DirecTV deal is getting far less attention than Comcast Corp's agreement to buy Time Warner Cable Inc for $45 billion.

T-Mobile takes aim at business market with new cellular plans

Verizon and AT&T account for 87 percent of the $83 billion in wireless revenue from businesses

Reuters

(Reuters) - T-Mobile US Inc rolled out cellular and data plans for business customers, taking aim at a lucrative market segment long dominated by larger rivals AT&T Inc and Verizon Communications Inc.

Companies with more than 1,000 lines will pay $10 per month for each line. Other firms with multiple lines will be charged $15 a line. In both cases, every line comes with 1 gigabyte of high-speed data and allows unlimited calls and text messages.

Orange to boost network investments to fuel recovery by 2018

Follows similar moves by Deutsche Telekom and Britain's Vodafone

Reuters

PARIS (Reuters) - France's Orange will plow 15 billion euros ($15.9 billion) into upgrading networks until 2018 to differentiate itself from rivals in a price war in its domestic market.

Orange, Europe's fifth-largest telecom operator by market value, also said that it would take until 2018 for its sales and core operating profit to exceed 2014 levels.

Ford turns back to Microsoft to build connected-car services

Azure would allow Ford owners to automatically update Sync 3 infotainment system wirelessly

Reuters

DETROIT (Reuters) - Ford Motor Co is turning to one of its early technology partners, Microsoft Corp, to help expand the automaker's connected car services.

Among the features that Ford plans to offer later this year through its new Service Delivery Network is the ability to automatically update its new Sync 3 infotainment system wirelessly. The service will run on Microsoft's cloud-based Azure platform.

Eighty percent of global merchants fall short on card data security compliance

Report of data from 30 and 5,000 firms finds only 20 percent to be fully compliant

Reuters

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Four out of five global retailers and other merchants failed interim tests to determine whether they are in compliance with payment card data security standards, putting them at increased risk of cyberattacks, according to a new report by Verizon Communications Inc.

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