T-Mobile Germany will start a LTE pilot network by the end of 2009.
Mobilkom Austria launches its mobile TV services based on the DVB-H standard, and has signed a content contract with Media Broadcast.
Vodafone is planning to buy an additional 12.5% stake in Vodacom (S. Africa) for nearly $2.4bn from Telkom (S. Africa). Vodafone already owns 50% of Vodacom, while Telkom holds remaining 50%. Vodafone is also in pole position to buy Tiscali' s operations in both Italy and the UK for about €1.6bn (unless Tiscali plans to sell separately the two units) ; in the mean time, it is launching its Vodafone Station ADSL product in Italy. It has bought Qatar' s second mobile license for over $2bn. It entered also Ireland's land-line market with the launch of a 2mb broadband service for telephone and data services. In the UK, Vodafone is slashing by 50% the price of its mobile broadband USB modem to £49.
Free (France) commits to deploy fiber in Paris and reach 70% coverage of the French capital.
The three French MNOs (Orange, SFR and Bouygues Telecom) are partnering to promote the NFC (Near Field Communication) technology.
Numericable (a MSO in France) becomes MVNO in France via a deal with Bouygues Telecom.
ONO (cable operator in Spain) is trialling a 100Mbit/s broadband internet pilot, powered by the Docsis 3.0 technology.
Telefonica will sell the iPhone in Spain,
BT will expand 3 Ireland' s network and deploy more mobile broadband services. BT, which was seen as a strong supporter in the Provider Backbone Transport (PBT) camp, has decided to focus its data services strategy on Multi protocol Label Switching (MPLS).
KPN (NL) launches unlimited DVB-H mobile TV service with 10 channels for €10 a month from June 5.
Wind (Italy) plans to sell 10% stake to three private equity (PE) groups for around €1bn.
C&W said it is interested in fixed line operator Thus (UK).
Teliasonera will sell the iPhone in seven countries including Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.
Greek operator On Telecom has unveiled its ON TV IPTV service in the country.
Vimpelcom (Russia) bought remaining 49% stake in regional broadband fixed operator Corbina (Russia) for $404m. Corbina operates in 24 Russian regions, serving 550k residential and 11k corporate subscribers.
MTS (Russia) finally launches 3G in St Petersburg, and targets further roll-outs elsewhere in Russia and the CIS.
Etisalat (UAE) launches 1Gbit/s internet connection for businesses.
SNRT (Morocco) has launched a mobile TV service using DVB-H technology in Rabat and Casablanca. The goal is open the service in 20 cities by end-2009.
S. Africa: Bharti (India) is out, but Reliance (India) is now in talks to deal with MTN. If agreed, the new company will have $70bn in turnover and some 115m subscribers in 23 countries. Another S. Africa operator Telkom has received a bid for its fixed operations from a consortium led by tycoon Tokyo Sexwale, while its mobile affiliate Vodacom would be sold to Vodafone. The South African telecom market in in complete re-organization.