SK Telecom claims world's first launch of LTE-Advanced

SK Telecom has stolen a march on domestic and international rivals by claiming to have launched the world’s first network based on LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) technology.

The launch comes just two years after the South Korean company began providing commercial LTE services, and with many operators around the world yet to begin offering LTE to their customers.

Vodafone agrees $10 billion takeover of Kabel Deutschland

Vodafone has agreed a £6.6 billion ($10.14 billion) takeover of Germany’s Kabel Deutschland aimed at bolstering its presence in the country’s broadband and TV markets.

The deal will create a company with combined revenues of €11.5 billion ($15.1 billion), as well as 32.4 million mobile, five million broadband and 7.6 million TV customers.

Vodafone raises Kabel Deutschland offer after rival bid: report

Reuters

Britain's Vodafone Group Plc has raised its preliminary offer to buy Germany's largest cable operator, Kabel Deutschland Holding AG, a day after U.S. media group Liberty Global Plc made a rival bid, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday, citing people familiar with the bid.

Bloomberg reported that Vodafone (Newbury, UK) told Kabel Deutschland (Unterfoehring, Germany) this week that it would be willing to pay 85 euros a share compared with its initial offer of 80 euros to 82 euros for the German company.

Hungary's operators say taxes threaten broadband development

Hungary’s operators have lashed out at moves by the country’s government to impose yet another tax on the telecoms industry, according to a report from Dow Jones Newswires.

Earlier this week, authorities served notice of plans to introduce a new telecoms-specific tax they say cannot be passed on to consumers.

Set to come into force on August 1, the new rules would require operators to pay a tax on phone calls by business customers of HUF3 ($0.014) per minute, up from a current per-minute rate of HUF2 per minute.

Satellite backhaul deal to bring 3G to rural Malaysia

Satellite operator O3b Networks has signed a backhaul deal that will allow Malaysia’s Maju Nusa to provide 3G services in rural and remote parts of the country.

The companies did not disclose details of the financial terms but describe the tie-up as a “multi-million-dollar, multi-year deal”.

That deal comes just days before O3b (St Helier, Jersey) is set to launch its next-generation satellite constellation and will provide “fiber-equivalent capacity” to Maju Nusa (Petaling Jaya, Malaysia), according to O3b’s statement.

France Tel's Richard wins board backing to continue in role

Stephane Richard will continue in his role as chief executive of France Telecom-Orange after winning a vote of confidence from the operator’s board members on Monday.

Richard has been charged with fraud relating to his time at France’s finance ministry five years ago.

Uncertainty over his future at France Telecom (Paris, France) had grown after France’s government, which owns a 27% stake in the operator, said the board would need to consider his position in light of the alleged offences.

Telefonica denies interest from AT&T: report

Spain’s Telefonica has said it has not received an expression of interest from AT&T after the country’s government was reported to have blocked a substantial bid from the US operator, according to Reuters.

Reports from Spanish newspaper El Mundo had earlier indicated that an AT&T (Dallas, TX, USA) representative had spoken to Spain’s government about making a €70 billion ($93.3 billion) offer for Telefonica (Madrid, Spain), prompting authorities to halt the sale of what they consider a strategically important asset.

German minister proposes net neutrality rules to rein in Deutsche Telekom: report

Germany’s government is planning to introduce new ‘net neutrality’ legislation that would prevent internet service providers like Deutsche Telekom from treating content providers differently in terms of connection speeds, according to a report from Dow Jones Newswires.

The rules have been proposed by Philipp Roesler, Germany’s economy minister, who is set to present them before Germany’s government at the end of the current legislative period, according to Dow Jones, citing a ministry spokesperson.

Kabel Deutschland asks Vodafone to raise bid: report

Vodafone may have to increase its bid for Kabel Deutschland to around €11 billion ($14.7 billion) to sway the deal, according to the UK’s Sunday Times newspaper, after the German cable company rebuffed the UK operator’s initial advances last week.

Kabel Deutschland (Unterfoehring, Germany), the largest cable company in Germany, last week turned down Vodafone’s offer of €10 billion and has reportedly said that Vodafone (Newbury, UK) will have to make a higher offer simply to gain access to its books.

TeliaSonera appoints Vodacom's Dennelind as chief executive

Scandinavia’s TeliaSonera has named Johan Dennelind as its new chief executive, saying the current Vodacom executive will take up his new position on September 1.

Dennelind is currently employed as chief executive of South Africa’s Vodacom International (Johannesburg) but has worked in a number of roles in the telecoms industry throughout a 20-year career.

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