AT&T to acquire Mexico's Iusacell for $1.7 billion

Mexico's government earlier this year implemented reforms to shake up its telecom and broadcast market

Reuters

WASHINGTON/MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - AT&T Inc agreed to pay $1.7 billion to acquire Mexico's third-largest wireless operator, Iusacell, as it seeks to grab a slice of a market with lower cellular penetration than the United States and faster potential growth.

Mexico's government earlier this year implemented reforms to shake up its telecom and broadcast market by weakening the dominance of broadcaster Grupo Televisa and billionaire Carlos Slim's cellphone and fixed-line company America Movil.

DirecTV beats estimates on higher fees, loses subscribers

Analysts had expected it to add 66,000 users

Reuters

(Reuters) - DirecTV, the No.1 U.S. satellite TV provider, reported a quarterly profit above analysts' expectations as it earned more from each subscriber in the United States.

But the company, being bought by AT&T Inc for $48.5 billion, lost subscribers for the second quarter in a row to competitors, including cable companies that offer broadband along with video at a discount.

Qualcomm sees more China trouble, faces probes in U.S., Europe

Opportunities have been clouded by an 11-month-old antitrust investigation

Reuters

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Qualcomm Inc warned on Wednesday that an antitrust investigation and problems collecting royalties could harm its business in China next year and it also disclosed new regulatory investigations in the United States and Europe.

China's expanding high-speed 4G network is driving demand for smartphones with leading-edge technology, but Qualcomm's opportunities have been clouded by an 11-month-old antitrust investigation there.

Iraq's cellphone operators to pay $307 million for 3G airwaves: regulator

The 3 mobile operators have been waiting years to begin 3G services

Reuters

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraq’s mobile phone network operators have agreed to pay $307 million each for radio spectrum, enabling them to launch higher-speed 3G mobile internet services in the war-torn country in two months, a senior official at the national regulator told Reuters.

Iraq is one of the few Middle East countries still reliant on 2G networks, which mostly carry voice calls and SMS texts and only the most basic online services, while fixed line internet connections are expensive and unreliable.

Sprint's CEO faces mounting challenges to turn company around

Pledges to reduce annual costs by $1.5 billion, announces 2,000 additional job cuts

Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - When Marcelo Claure took the top job at Sprint Corp two months ago, he faced an uphill climb in turning around the No. 3 U.S. cellular provider. On Monday, it became clear quite how steep that road to recovery will be.

The Bolivian entrepreneur, who was installed as CEO after the collapse of merger talks with T-Mobile US Inc, already faced the task of stemming growing subscriber defections as the company seeks to upgrade its subpar network.

China's Xiaomi to invest $1 billion to expand internet TV content

Burgeoning TV unit includes its Xiaomi TV as well as a set-top box

Reuters

BEIJING (Reuters) - China's Xiaomi Technology Co Ltd [XTC.UL] said on Tuesday it would spend $1 billion to expand its internet TV content as the world's third largest smartphone maker ramps up its push into the living room, and a market estimated to be worth $3 billion.

Xiaomi's burgeoning TV unit includes its Xiaomi TV as well as a set-top box, which both use its software and content. The company is best known for its budget smartphones and tablets that have won it legions of fans worldwide.

Wireless calls between Verizon and AT&T to be carried on data network by 2015

Technology could also allow customers to purchase devices that are not bound to a particular carrier

Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Verizon Communications and AT&T Inc expect to be able to transmit wireless voice calls between the two carriers over high-speed data networks by 2015, the companies said on Monday.

The technology is expected to improve the quality of calls and allow for video calling and voicemail.

The calls would be transmitted using a technology known as Voice over LTE, which repackages voice calls as data and transmits them over carriers' high-speed data networks.

Africa phone tower firm IHS raises $2.6 billion

Deploying towers in Africa is typically more expensive than in other regions

Reuters

DUBAI (Reuters) - Nigerian phone tower group IHS has raised $2 billion in equity and $600 million in debt in what it says is the biggest equity fund raising by an African company this decade.

IHS, the continent’s largest tower company, will use the money to finance infrastructure spending and recently agreed acquisitions, according to a company statement on Monday.

It said the equity funding was from new and existing shareholders, but did not provide further details.

Japan's wireless carriers told to unlock phones starting next year

Govt demands that all smartphones and tablets to be sold with SIM unlocked upon customers' request starting in May

Reuters

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan's wireless network providers are to lift restrictions on which network their subscribers can use, the government said, demanding that all smartphones and tablets to be sold with their SIM cards unlocked upon customers' request starting next year.

The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said on Friday that all smartphones and tablets are to be sold with their SIM cards unlocked if customers ask for it and at no cost to users, from May 2015.

Comcast, AT&T join Verizon to reassure no plans for Internet 'fast lanes'

Critics have urged the FCC to reclassify ISPs so they are regulated more like public utilities

Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Comcast Corp and AT&T Inc have no plans to create Internet "fast lanes" that may hurt consumers' freedom to roam the Web, the leading U.S. broadband providers told the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee chairman in recent letters.

Senator Patrick Leahy last week wrote to top Internet service providers (ISPs), urging them to pledge that they would not enter any so-called paid prioritization deals, in which content companies would pay ISPs to ensure smooth and fast delivery of their traffic.

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