Leap Wireless to sell prepaid iPhone, may hurt AT&T, Verizon


Leap Wireless International Inc will be the first U.S. provider of prepaid mobile services to sell the Apple Inc iPhone, potentially putting pressure on its much bigger rivals to provide cheaper phone or service prices.

The regional operator, which caters to cost-conscious customers who pay phone bills in advance, is joining its much bigger national rivals Verizon Wireless (New York), AT&T Inc (Dallas, Texas, USA) and Sprint Nextel Corp (Overland Park, Kan., USA) in selling the popular device.

Asian nations need to close growing infrastructure gaps, says Alcatel-Lucent

Last week at the World Economic Forum on East Asia in Bangkok, Alcatel-Lucent said by the end of the decade Asia will need to invest $1.1 trillion in its telecom infrastructure to compete in the digital economy.

According to the telecom equipment provider, over the past five years, Asia has added 1.5 billion additional mobile subscribers; yet still more than 25% of Asians live without basic mobile services. Over the next five years governments and business will need to add another 1.3 billion mobile subscribers to bridge the gap, says Alcatel-Lucent (Paris). 

Using personalized videos to explain telecom bills to customers

Telecom operators have recently made a major push in offering personalized services to their customers, primarily in an effort to retain customers and reduce churn. Customer churn is caused by many factors including bill shock and a lack of customer service satisfaction, two points that Idomoo, a personalized video company, has been trying to address in the telecom industry.

AT&T says rural lines sale may be too difficult


On Friday, AT&T Inc Chief Executive Randall Stephenson said that a sale of rural phone lines may be too difficult to pull off because of regulatory hurdles. Stephenson had said in January that the company would review the future of its roughly 20 million rural telephone lines, including the possibility for a sale. But selling the phone lines could be difficult because of their diverse geographic locations, the executive said on Friday in a webcast of a Sanford C.

Verizon to Acquire Hughes Telematics

On Friday, Verizon Communications Inc. announced that it is acquiring Hughes Telematics, Inc (HTI) for $612 million, or $12.00 per share in cash.

According to Verizon (New York), the transaction will expand its capabilities in the automotive and fleet telematics marketplace and accelerate growth in vertical segments. 

Deutsche Telekom launches M2M Marketplace

On Wednesday, Deutsche Telekom launched its M2M Marketplace, which is a platform for manufacturers and dealers to offer their hardware, software, apps and full-package services relating to M2M communication.

According to Deutsche Telekom (Bonn, Germany) in the future it will also offer the requisite SIM cards and SIM chips via the M2M Marketplace.

Huawei, ZTE deny receiving illegal subsidy


China's top telecoms equipment makers Huawei and ZTE denied receiving illegal government subsidies that helped them undercut rivals in recent years, after media reported the European Union planned to take action over unfair trade practices. Action by the EU could spark a trade war, analysts warned.

Everything Everywhere unveils mobile ticketing trial

Last week, Everything Everywhere announced an agreement with Transport operator Stagecoach Group to offer consumers with a way to use mobile phones as tickets for public transportation. The two companies have unveiled the UK's first Government-standard commercial deployment of mobile contactless transport ticketing, which could lead to a nationwide roll out across select bus and rail services in 2013.

Sprint gets $1 billion credit for Ericsson equipment


Sprint Nextel Corp has arranged a $1 billion credit facility to buy network equipment from Ericsson for a high-speed wireless project that will involve the shuttering of its Nextel network next year.

Comcast launches free phone calls over WiFi

On Tuesday, Comcast, a U.S. cable operator, announced a free Xfinity Voice feature that brings mobile voice technologies to the home phone. The new feature, called Voice 2go, allows customers to make phone calls and send text messages for free, when made within a WiFi network, such as in a customer's home or on a public WiFi hotspot.  This new service could potentially cut into wireless mobile operators’ revenue.

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