Britain's first 4G service to start at 36 pounds a month

Reuters

Mobile operator EE said Britain's first 4G service will cost from 36 pounds ($57.72) a month under a pricing strategy designed to lure smartphone customers to its superfast network before rivals are able to launch competing products.

Chief Executive Olaf Swantee said the company's tariffs, which range from 36 pounds for 500MB of data to 56 pounds for 8GB, were about 10-20 percent more than for equivalent 3G plans. He said it was a small premium to pay for up to five times faster connections.

Telenor Q3 results beat forecasts

Reuters

Norwegian telecoms firm Telenor reported third-quarter earnings ahead of forecasts on Tuesday.

Telenor (Fornebu, Norway), which has over 150 million subscribers across Europe and Asia, said earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) rose 6.1 percent to 8.796 billion crowns ($1.53 billion), beating the average of forecasts for 8.54 billion crowns.

T-Mobile asks FCC to approve MetroPCS merger

T-Mobile USA has insisted that a merger with MetroPCS would make it a stronger rival to AT&T, Verizon and Sprint without upsetting the competitive balance of the US market.

In a regulatory filing published by the Federal Communications Commission this week, the operator sought approval for its proposed tie-up with MetroPCS (Richardson, USA), the country’s fifth-biggest operator, announced earlier this month.

Mobile competition in Germany hits KPN profits

Dutch incumbent KPN reported declining profits and revenues for the third quarter, with tough competition in Germany’s mobile-phone market largely blamed for the slump.

The operator’s net income fell by 38%, to €250 million ($324 million), compared with the third quarter of 2011, while revenues dropped 3.6% to about €3.1 billion.

Qtel interested in Vivendi's Morocco business

Qtel, Qatar’s state-controlled operator, is interested in purchasing Vivendi’s stake in Maroc Telecom, the largest telecoms business in Morocco, reports the Financial Times.

Thought to be interested in concentrating on its media business henceforth, the French conglomerate is reviewing its ownership of various telecoms businesses, including Maroc Telecom (Rabat, Morocco), in which it holds a 53% stake, and SFR (Paris, France), a French mobile-phone operator.

AT&T will boost pension fund with $9.5 billion equity stake

AT&T said on Friday it will contribute a stake in its wireless business to the company's pension plan worth $9.5 billion in an effort to secure the fund, according to a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filing.

AT&T (Dallas, USA) filed for approval for the proposal with the U.S. Department of Labor on Thursday. It said the move would not significantly affect company earnings.

AT&T's pension plan was underfunded by about $10.2 billion at the end of 2011, a company spokeswoman said.

Verizon third-quarter profit rises, boosted by wireless unit

Reuters

U.S. telecommunications group Verizon Communications Inc posted a 16 percent increase in quarterly profit, helped by higher revenue in its wireless business after it raised data prices and started selling the latest Apple iPhone.

Verizon (New York, USA) said on Thursday it was on track to meet 2012 financial goals, with capital spending for the year expected to be lower than the $16.2 billion total in 2011.

Softbank deal's big on size, small on change

Reuters

It's this year's biggest technology acquisition and the largest outbound deal in Japan's history. But game-changing, it is not.

Softbank Corp's <9984.T> pricey $20 billion bid to buy control of No. 3 U.S. telecoms company Sprint Nextel Corp (Overland Park, USA) marks a bold move by billionaire CEO Masayoshi Son beyond his flagging home market. Some analysts say it hands the U.S. company much-needed firepower to buy peers and build out high-speed networks.

Telefonica hopes for 1.5 billion euros from German sale

Reuters

Telefonica hopes to raise around 1.5 billion euros ($2 billion) by selling part of its O2-branded German subsidiary on the stock market.

Europe's largest telecoms company by revenue has said it could also sell businesses in Latin America as it tries to cut its 58 billion euro debt pile and hang on to its prized investment-grade rating, under pressure from the euro crisis in its Spanish home market.

UK is Europe's superfast broadband laggard: FTTH Council

The FTTH Council Europe has risked embarrassing the UK government by drawing attention to the country’s lack of superfast broadband investment and adoption despite authorities’ bold plans to have “the best superfast broadband network in Europe by 2015”.

In its latest set of FTTH rankings, showing which countries in Europe have the most superfast broadband subscribers, the lobby group singles out the UK as “conspicuously absent”.

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