Eurobites: Tele2 ready to deploy 5G in Latvia


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Also in today’s EMEA regional roundup: Ofcom bans locked handsets; Hyperoptic participates in the smart home pilot; Telesign goes public.

  • Tele2 says it now has everything in place to start a nationwide 5G rollout and 4G upgrade in Latvia after bagging 2x10MHz in the first part of the country’s 700MHz spectrum auction. The operator had previously partnered with Bite to explore the possibility of a shared mobile network and spectrum deal in Latvia and Lithuania, but as the partnership was only partially approved by regulatory authorities, the two companies have decided to end the agreement.
  • From today UK mobile phone companies are banned from selling locked handsets, under new rules set by communications regulator Ofcom. The regulator’s own research found that more than a third of people who decided not to switch networks said having to unlock a handset deterred them from moving, while nearly half of customers who tried to unlock their phone encounter problems such as long delays or loss of service. The new rules also limit telephony and broadband contracts to a maximum of two years.
  • Hyperoptic is participating in an interesting-sounding pilot program, which sees the UK altnet providing a second low-bandwidth connection to every house on a new social housing development in Wales specifically to support smart home equipment. By running the applications on a separate line ?? which is not accessible by the tenant ?? the smart home service can be managed completely separately by the housing or smart home technology provider.
  • The European Union’s antitrust authorities are about to give the green light to the plan to take over Kustomer by Facebook, the awkwardly named supplier of CRM (Customer Relationship Manager) software, according to anonymous sources cited by Reuters. A final and official decision on the deal is expected by January 28.
  • TeleSign, the digital identity specialist which is a subsidiary of Belgian Proximus, goes public through a merger with North Atlantic Acquisition Corporation (NAAC), an “ad hoc acquisition company” (or a blank check company, if you prefer). The deal, worth $ 1.3 billion, is expected to be finalized in the second quarter of 2022.

    ?? Paul Rainford, Associate Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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