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Telefonica reveals a new rebrand Telefonica has announced its new rebrand at the company’s annual general meeting. The company also reelected its Chairman and CEO Jose Maria Alvarez-Pallete to its board for a further four-year term with increased backing from shareholders. The newly refurbished design will be used in the company’s brands under the Telefonica name, but will not replace the Telefonica-owned consumer-facing identities O2 and Movistar. According to the company, the new logo reflects extensive restructuring efforts started in 2019 and is reminiscent of the 1984 logo that also resembled the letter T made-up of small circles. Read more at: https://tinyurl.com/34hwm3ve AT&T gifts boost in fiber speed to its customers AT&T has announced that it is giving its customers a free increase in fiber speeds. The company is increasing its access speeds from 100 Mbps to 300 Mbps, and 300 Mbps to 500 Mbps respectively. The company will continue…

European Commission proposes new AI regulations The European Commission is proposing new rules that would allow it to ban any type or deployment of AI that it considers high-risk. The organization also proposes much stricter rules and limitations on the use of biometric data, such as law enforcement using face recognition. Violation of the rules may result in fines of up to 6% of the offending company’s total global turnover. For the biggest tech companies, that sum could reach billions. The commission’s digital chief, Margrethe Vestager, said: “On artificial intelligence, trust is a must, not a nice-to-have.” Read more at: https://tinyurl.com/5e8wcufu Cisco to invest $100 million to combat climate change Cisco has unveiled plans to invest $100 million over the next 10 years to help fight climate change, using the fund in its name for initiatives aimed at reducing emissions and educating communities. Cisco’s efforts will be global, and funding…

Zoom and Lumen advance their partnership The telecommunications company Lumen is already a partner of Zoom, but Lumen has recently announced that it has advanced the partnership further to introduce Zoom delivered by Lumen. Zoom delivered by Lumen combines the embedded network security capabilities of Lumen with Zoom’s integrated security features to actively protect businesses using their combined services. Shaun Andrews, CMO at Lumen, said: “We’re happy to take this partnership a step further by combining our platforms and our strengths to create Zoom delivered by Lumen. Together, we will help keep families, businesses, schools and hospitals securely connected to the world, and thriving in the fourth industrial revolution.” Read more at: https://tinyurl.com/y4luab48 BT to deploy their global network cloud next year BT has been working on their BT Network Cloud for some time now, since deciding to focus on this cloud-native platform. BT has Network Cloud nodes in the…

Vodafone UK going big on OpenRAN Vodafone UK has announced that they are deploying OpenRAN technology in rural base stations, as a key part of Huawei’s switching strategy. Approximately 2,600 sites in rural Wales and the south-west of England will be converted to OpenRAN by a deadline established by the government. This process will start in 2022 and, as yet, Vodafone has not identified any vendors to assist it in this initiative. The operator wants to be seen as an example of OpenRAN, which increasingly appears to be the most likely source of diversity for telecom providers since Huawei was blacklisted. Read more at: https://tinyurl.com/yybbqu45 Deutsche Telekom partners with Zoom Deutsche Telekom has become the latest service provider to partner with Zoom Video Communications. Deutsche Telekom is now the official reseller of Zoom in Germany. The company offers personalized solutions and contracts to customers of different sizes, and is able…

Apple reveals 5G iPhones Apple waited a little longer than other manufacturers to introduce 5G phones, probably because they wanted to be certain their first 5G iPhones are top class. The company unveiled its new iPhone 12 phones on Tuesday. All new iPhones are built around the fast Apple A14 Bionic chip, they support 5G wireless connectivity, and are protected by a ceramic shield to make the phones more damage resistant. Bringing 5G to the iPhone is a huge step forward for the company, as it will provide a new level of performance for downloads and uploads, video streaming, games, real-time interactivity and more. Read more at: https://tinyurl.com/y6mum7wh Masergy launches Work From Anywhere solutions Masergy, a software-defined network and cloud platform for the digital enterprise, announced two new SD-WAN Work From Anywhere solutions. Masergy’s SD-WAN Secure Home is a lightweight Fortinet Secure SD-WAN device for fast connection via the residential…

Zoom Video Communications, a provider of video telephony and online chat services, and Lumen, a global enterprise technology platform, have announced that the companies will work together to allow Lumen to offer Zoom as part of its Unified Communications and Collaboration Suite. Lumen will deliver improved services based on Zoom’s video-first UC platform to its global customer base. The partnership will provide greater delivery, customer success and managed services to companies using Zoom, in order to provide a unique business experience when using the services. Lumen will also combine the security of its embedded network with Zoom’s built-in security features to actively protect customers that are using bundled services. This collaboration will give Zoom access to Lumen’s customer base, while Lumen will be able to update its UCC offering with a leading video conferencing platform. In addition, this partnership should help Lumen to better compete with Verizon, which…

Zoom, the communications technology company that  provides video telephony and online chat services through a cloud-based software platform, has announced the expansion of its Zoom Phone coverage. Cloud phone services are now available in 40-plus countries and the company has also simplified the telephone service plan for international companies. Zoom Phone now covers more than 40 countries and territories across Europe, North America, Latin America and the Asia-Pacific region. The newly added countries and territories to Zoom Phone support are: Argentina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Chile, Columbia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Hong Kong SAR, Hungary, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Mexico, Norway, Panama, Peru, Poland, Romania, Singapore, Slovakia and Slovenia. Under the Global Select plan, a company can employ local calling in more than 40 countries and territories where Zoom provides Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) services, supporting outbound and inbound calls with integrated telephony features that allow…

Qualcomm invests $97 million in India’s Reliance Jio Platforms Qualcomm has become the latest high ranking sponsor of the four-year-old Indian company, Reliance Jio Platforms. On Sunday evening, Qualcomm Ventures revealed their plans to invest $97 million in Reliance Jio Platforms and to assist that company launch advanced 5G infrastructure and services for their local customers. Furthermore, Reliance Jio Platforms has introduced cut-rate voice and data plans into the Indian telecommunications market, attracting almost 400 million subscribers. This rapid growth has resulted in the company becoming the most successful operator in the world’s second largest market in less than four years since its establishment. Read more at https://tinyurl.com/y9hponyd Deutsche Telekom explores quantum tech with OPENQKD The German operator Deutsche Telekom, in partnership with the OPENQKD (Open European Quantum Key Distribution) consortium, are preparing to research quantum key distribution (QKD) technologies in order to develop quantum-safe data transmission. In spite of the…

Liberty Global and Telefonica to merge their U.K. operations creating the leading fixed-mobile provider in the country Virgin Media, Liberty Global’s cable operator, and Telefonica’s mobile carrier O2 have announced an agreement to merge their UK operations in a 50-50 joint venture between the two companies. This mega-deal is valued at GBP 31.4 billion, with O2 worth GBP 12.7 billion and Virgin Media valued at GBP 18.7 billion. According to the announcement, this combination will create a stronger fixed and mobile competitor in the UK market, supporting the expansion of Virgin Media’s giga-ready network and O2’s 5G mobile deployment for the benefit of consumers, businesses and the public sector. The transaction is expected to close in mid-2021. Read more at https://tinyurl.com/yc42j66f Ericsson ‘talking to advisers’ about selling $1.2bn number portability unit Ericsson’s largest shareholder Cevian Capital has advised the communications equipment supplier to sell its 83.3% stake in the US number portability company Iconectiv, formerly known as Telcordia. For the past several years,…

Google rolls out BeyondCorp for secure remote network access without a VPN Google has launched BeyondCorp Remote Access, a new security service designed to provide remote access to internal systems without using a virtual private network (VPN). This new cloud-native security product is based on a “zero-trust approach” and is founded on a system that Google originally built for internal use almost a decade ago. Google said that when the number of remote connections suddenly increases, the VPN architecture may not be able to handle the load. BeyondCorp Remote Access includes a database of every device authorized to connect, a security certificate installed on that device, and integration with a human resources database containing information about usernames and group memberships. Read more at https://tinyurl.com/ya4hhtsk Zoom adds encryption as it passes 300 million daily users Zoom Video Communications has launched an update of its virtual meetings software, adding encryption and new…