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Eurobites: Telefónica Takes a Step Towards Transport SDN

Paul Rainford

In today's EMEA regional roundup: Telefónica takes a step closer to a transport SDN deployment; a new UK fiber challenger; Altice slides after revenue warning; Vodafone Italia wants some 5G action; MTN trials 5G tech with Ericsson.

  • Telefónica has completed testing Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd 's T-SDN (Transport Software-Defined Network) software, which is intended to make the planning, management and operation of an optical mesh network easier to handle. The Spanish giant hopes that T-SDN can improve the performance of its WDM control plane and improve its network diagnoses. Covering more than 200 locations across Spain, Telefónica's photonic mesh network was introduced in 2009. (See Telefónica Completes T-SDN Software Tests With Huawei.)

  • There appears to be a new altnet kid on the block in the UK fiber infrastructure market: British Fibre Networks, the brainchild of entrepreneur Elfed Thomas, is boldly aiming to connect pure fiber to more than 35% of new homes by 2021. It plans to hook up with house builders to install a pure fiber "aggregator portal" in new homes that can connect with a range of fiber networks, offering homeowners a choice of high-speed broadband suppliers.

  • Shares in Altice slipped yesterday and today, wiping out the gains made earlier in the week when it announced a major restructuring, the Financial Times reports (subscription required). Shares in the France-based operator fell up to 7% in early trading today on the Amsterdam exchange following a similar fall yesterday in the wake of a revenue warning issued during a call with investors on Tuesday. Under Altice's plans, its US business will be spun off while its European operations will be streamlined into three units -- Altice France, Altice International and Altice Pay TV. (See Altice Spins Off US Biz, Rejigs in Europe and Altice Shifts From M&A to European Recovery.)

  • Vodafone Italy has launched an "Action for 5G" startup program, calling for ideas that can help transform the city of Milan into the "European capital of 5G." The program has an investment budget of €10 million (US$12 million) over four years. The initiative is being promoted in collaboration with PoliHub, Milan Polytechnic's tech incubator, and is open to startups, SMEs and social enterprises.

  • South Africa's MTN Group Ltd. has teamed up with Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) to conduct what the vendor claims is the first 5G technology and applications trial in Africa. The trial, says Ericsson, achieved a throughput of more than 20 Gbit/s with less than 5ms latency. It was based on 5G prototype radios and commercially available baseband hardware. For more details, see this story on our sister site, Connecting Africa.

  • German cable company Unitymedia GmbH has tapped Ciena Corp. (NYSE: CIEN) for an upgrade of its network, adding "flexible grid capabilities" and exploiting the vendor's WaveLogic Ai coherent offering to help boost bandwidth.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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