In today’s industry news roundup: Samsung beats its private 5G trunk and looks to IFA; the UK government is ready to impose much stricter security rules on UK network operators; Indian telecom agencies set to consult industry on regulation of digital messaging and voice applications; and much more!
Samsung landed a plum private 5G gig in its home market of South Korea, where it was chosen to provide a range of 5G solutions to five government agencies and private institutions. The agreement is “part of the government’s initiative to advance the country’s private 5G ecosystem, allowing non-telecom operators to build and operate 5G networks using 4.7 GHz and 28 GHz – which are frequencies dedicated to private 5G networks in Korea,” Samsung noted in its announcement of its selection. “Private 5G networks will enable incremental changes across all industry verticals. Applications such as digital twins, autonomous vehicles, AI and AR are just a glimpse of the plethora of use cases that Samsung 5G can bring to life,” said Yong Chang, Vice President of Global Sales and Marketing, Networks Business at Samsung Electronics. “Samsung understands the unique needs of businesses and is able to deliver optimized network experiences. We are delighted to contribute to the development of the private 5G ecosystem in Korea. The vendor is to “provide its advanced 5G private network solutions to a range of public and private sector entities – including energy, security, water resources management, medical services and medical education” . That’s great for Samsung, which introduced its private 5G solutions in October last yearbut if the company really wants to prove itself as a major player in what is shaping up to be a lucrative 5G battleground, then it will have to follow up with major private wireless network deals outside of its domestic market, as one of its main rivals in mobile network equipment Nokia was able to do during the last years. Read more.
The South Korean giant also shared its thoughts on the potential of the “sustainable smart home” ahead of the upcoming IFA (International Funkausstellung) technology fair in Berlin. “By combining SmartThings-based connectivity with appliance energy efficiency technology, we plan to become the #1 energy efficiency brand, expand sustainable efforts through meaningful collaborations, and provide solutions to achieve a Net Zero home,” the company noted in this blog.
The British government has used its powers under the Telecommunications (Security) Act, which became law in November last year, to craft tough new rules for network operators to follow. Described by the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sports (DCMS) as “among the strongest in the world”, the new regulations and the new code of practice, developed with the National Cybersecurity Center and regulator Ofcom, “will improve the UK’s cyber resilience by embedding good security practice into providers’ long-term investment decisions and the day-to-day operation of their networks and services”, according to the DCMS. From October, providers will be subject to the new rules and Ofcom will be able to use new powers to “ensure that providers take appropriate and proportionate steps to meet their security obligations and follow the guidelines of the code of practice. “. The measures, which must be implemented and adhered to by March 2024, include:
- identify and assess the risk to any edge equipment directly exposed to potential attackers. This includes cell towers and Internet equipment provided to customers, such as Wi-Fi routers and modems that serve as entry points to the network.
- Tightly control who can make network-wide changes
- protect against certain malicious signaling entering the network that could cause outages;
- have a good understanding of the risks facing their networks
- ensure operational processes support security (e.g. appropriate board accountability)
For more details, see this announcement from the DCMS.
india Department of Telecommunications (DoT) asked the country’s watchdog, the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI)to launch a consultation process focused on the potential regulation of messaging and voice apps such as WhatsApp and Signal, according to The Hindu BusinessLine. The DoT will also liaise with India’s Ministry of Electronics and Informatics and Ministry of Information and Broadcasting for any consultation. The TRAI has already addressed this issue, having published a document in 2018 titled “Regulatory framework for OTT communication services”, but concluded at the time that no action was necessary. Now, with the country’s major mobile operators, Jio, Bharti AIrtel and Vodafone Idea, pouring billions into their 5G licenses and infrastructure, regulated Communications Service Providers (CSPs) will be more eager than ever to see third-party voice and messaging applications subject to the same rules and regulations: this will be an interesting test for Indian regulators. And it’s worth bearing in mind that, according to the latest TRAI figures, India had over a billion active mobile connections in June and still has very few landlines, so mobile devices are the main means of all types of communication in the country.
Verizon entered into a long-term lease with American Towerthrough which it will be able to continue its 5G network deployments across the passive infrastructure provider’s portfolio of communications sites in the United States. According to the American Tower, the agreement provides “a streamlined and efficient leasing process” and will drive mutual growth and value for years to come. “Verizon continues to build and operate the networks that drive innovation, digitalization and the technological advancements that are changing our world. Effective, long-term strategic partnerships with our vendors are essential to continue advancing the industry and delivering the network our customers rely on,” said Heidi Hemmer, senior vice president of engineering at Verizon. In 2015, the American Tower acquired exclusive rights at nearly 12,000 turns from Verizon.
Let’s stay on the subject of passive infrastructure… Indonesian operator PT Indosat (trader as Indosat Ooredoo Hutchison Next a merger between CK Hutchison Holdings and Ooredoo) is reportedly considering selling about 1,800 towers for about $250 million. According Bloomberg, the move would occur for the telecommunications operator to take advantage of the growing demand for digital infrastructure. No final decision on the actual transactions has yet been made, but interest is expected from companies in the sector, as well as funds in the field of infrastructure. Last year, Indosat agreed to unload more than 4,000 revolutions for PT EPID Menara AssetCoan Indonesian subsidiary of Edge Point Singapore, which is owned by DigitalBridge (then called Digital Colony). This deal was valued at US$750 million.
MTN is continuing its efforts to strengthen its management at the highest level, by recruiting former Orange Christian Bombrun, who will be its new CEO of digital platforms from September 1. Bombrun will succeed Minnie Harris, who will focus on the position of Chief Financial Officer of Digital Platforms. In his statement, the telecommunications operator explained that Bombrun will be responsible for designing, implementing and maintaining the long-term growth and business strategy of the group’s digital offerings. In his 25 years in the industry, Bombrun’s most recent role was as communications and digital manager for Emmanuel Macron’s presidential campaign in France. Previously, he held various management positions at Orange in France and at group level. The move comes about a week after MTN appointed an executive for Business Finance. At the beginning of the year, the group also hired a new part of the Enterprise Business Unit.
fiber manufacturer Corning is of build a new manufacturing plant in Arizona to help meet the needs of network operators who plan to invest even more in fibre-to-the-home networks once the $42.45 billion Broadband Equity, Access and Deployment Program US Government dollars will be allocated to eligible operators. Currently, this funding allocation process is move at a snail’s pace due to a lack of accurate maps that show exactly where network builds are most needed, according to a recent Wall Street Journal report. New Corning plant will focus on supplying fiber needed by AT&T, operator CEOs and supplier told Reuters.
– Staff, TelecomTV