Archive for July, 2010

kosovo_flag

Kosovo’s independence is legal, court finds

Kosovo’s declaration of independence from Serbia in February 2008 was legal, the International Court of Justice ruled in a 10-4 vote Thursday.

There were celebrations in Pristina, with fireworks being set off in the capital of Kosovo after the finding was announced, journalist Vlora Rrustemi told CNN.

But Serbia’s Foreign Minister Vuk Jeremic expressed disappointment, saying Belgrade had hoped for a “peaceful compromise solution” that did not create “dangerous secessionist precedents” elsewhere in the world.

The U.N. General Assembly asked the court to clarify the legality of Kosovo’s declaration of independence, based on a request from Serbia, and the court held hearings last December.

Serbia maintains Kosovo’s move for independence was illegal and that it remains a part of the Serbian republic.

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden called the president of Serbia before the court made its announcement, the White House said.

Biden told Boris Tadic that Washington fully supports “a democratic and multi-ethnic Kosovo, and he reiterated the United States’ unwavering commitment to Kosovo’s sovereignty and territorial integrity,” the administration said. More >

facebook_logo

Facebook hits 500 million users

Social media website Facebook has passed the 500 million worldwide users milestone. To mark this achievement, Facebook launched an application dubbed ‘Facebook Stories’. The app is a collection of stories shared by the social networking site’s users about the impact Facebook and their contacts have had on their lives. Facebook Stories users will be able to share their own stories, as well as read hundreds of others, categorized by themes and locations around the world

cosmote

Cosmote to launch pilot LTE network

Cosmote is preparing to launch a pilot LTE network. The Greek operator filed a relevant licensing request for pilot tests to the Ministry of Infrastructure, Transport and Networks. Cosmote intends to launch the pilot LTE network in the Marousi and Chalandri areas (wider Athens area) at its technical & network headquarters locations. One of the biggest advantages of an LTE network is its capacity to operate in multiple frequency bands, offering high-quality coverage at an optimum cost in remote areas, contributing significantly to broadband penetration expansion.

Vodafone

Board shake-up at Vodafone

A leading investor group is calling for a board shake-up at Vodafone because of concerns about the mobile operator’s “strategic weaknesses” and “disastrous” acquisitions record, the Financial Times writes. Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, which has a 0.42 percent stake in Vodafone, will vote against the re-election of John Bond as the company’s chairman and John Buchanan as Vodafone’s deputy chairman at its annual meeting on 27 July, although OTTP expressed support for CEO Vittorio Colao. Noting that Bond has been chairman since 2006, OTTP said: “For at least the last five years, the company has had significant structural and strategic weaknesses, resulting in Vodafone trading at a substantial, persistent discount to its asset value.” After talking with the management and More >

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Televisa-Nextel sole bidder in Mexico’s 2nd mobile tender

The consortium comprising media group Televisa and Nextel Mexico, a unit of NII Holdings, has emerged as the sole bidder in Mexico’s auction of 90MHz spectrum in the 1.7GHz frequency band. The consortium offered the minimum bid price of MXN 180.3 million for 30MHz in the 1710MHz to 2170MHz frequency band in each of the country’s nine mobile operating regions, the Mexican telecoms regulator Cofetel announced. Televisa plans to invest USD 1.44 billion for a 30 percent stake in Nextel Mexico if the partners obtain enough spectrum to deploy a 3G network. Cofetel declared the sale of a second nationwide license deserted. More >

samsung-streaming-bluray

Ultra-Violet: the virtual successor to Blu-ray

The concept of digital content, as proposed by the DECE consortium (digital entertainment content ecosystem), is entering a new phase with a catchy brand name (UltraViolet) and recognisable logo. If it’s up to the 60 members of the consortium, UltraViolet will be the virtual successor to Blu-ray. Besides the name, and with less flourish, the group also commented on the long-awaited technical specifications. The first half of 2010 was apparently not doable, and now we will have to wait for their release sometime in H2.

UltraViolet’s goal is clear and includes the following elements: More >

nokia-siemens-logo

Nokia Siemens wins USD 7 bln deal to build Harbinger network

Nokia Siemens Networks has won a USD 7 billion, eight-year deal to build the LightSquared LTE network in the US, backed by Harbinger Capital Partners. Harbinger announced the contract as well as the new name LightSquared for the venture, which will build a terrestrial wireless network integrated with satellite capacity to provide wholesale backhaul services across the US. Former Orange CEO Sanjiv Ahuja was earlier announced CEO of the new company. The NSN contract, which remains subject to approval by both companies’ boards, includes network design, equipment manufacturing and installation, and network operations and maintenance. More >

g_iphone

Apple quarterly iPhone sales jump 61% to 8.4 mln

Apple reported revenues of USD 15.7 billion for its fiscal third quarter to June, up from USD 9.73 billion a year earlier. Net profit rose to USD 3.25 billion or USD 3.51 per share, from USD 1.83 billion or USD 2.01 per share in the year-ago quarter. The company’s gross margin was 39.1 percent compared to 40.9 percent in the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 52 percent of the quarter’s revenue. Apple sold 3.47 million Mac computers during the quarter, representing a new quarterly record and a 33 percent unit increase over the year-ago quarter. The number of iPhones sold rose 61 percent year-on-year to 8.4 million, and the iPad launched during the quarter accumulated sales of 3.27 million units. Apple also sold 9.41 million iPods during the quarter, More >

cable_and_wireless

C&W warns for weaker FY results on UK govt cuts

Cable & Wireless Worldwide has warned for lower results this year due to the UK government’s budget cuts. The company said results were largely in line with expectations in the first quarter. However, following the new UK government’s emergency budget in late June, non-contracted spending in the UK public sector has slowed very significantly. In light of the downturn in public sector activity, the company has stepped up cost reduction initiatives and now expects lower operating expenditure this year. Overall, C&W predicts somewhat slower growth in EBITDA for the full year to March 2011, More >

telkom austria

Telekom Austria denies MTS takeover speculation

Telekom Austria Group is understood to have established an internal working group to evaluate a possible sale to Russian telecoms company MTS, reports Austrian newspaper ‘WirtschaftsBlatt’ . The report was denied by both Telekom Austria and the Austrian government. The paper said that the Russians had made a concrete offer several weeks ago to acquire Telekom Austria, with Austrian Finance Minister Josef Proell then asking the company to examine the pros and cons of any deal. More >