What’s up with… Intel, VMware, Airhop, ONF, SK Telecom

TelecomTV Staff
By TelecomTV Staff

Jan 13, 2021

Pat Gelsinger,  Intel CEO

Pat Gelsinger, Intel CEO

  • Intel CEO stepping down, VMware’s Gelsinger to take over
  • Airhop joins key Open RAN project at the ONF
  • SK Telecom gets competitive with online-only deals

A new name for the Intel hot seat plus new blood for the ONF’s Open RAN project lead the way in this expensive industry news roundup.

  • Intel has appointed Pat Gelsinger (above), the current head honcho at VMware, as its new CEO, starting 15 February. He replaces Bob Swan, who took on the role full time only two years ago, in January 2019. A message from Gelsinger to Intel's staff has been published here.  Intel, in an effort to head off speculation about Swan’s departure, noted that the newsis unrelated to Intel’s 2020 financial performance. Intel expects its fourth-quarter 2020 revenue and EPS to exceed its prior guidance provided on Oct. 22, 2020. In addition, the company has made strong progress on its 7nm process technology and plans on providing an update when it reports its full fourth-quarter and full-year 2020 results as previously scheduled on Jan. 21, 2021.” Investors, though, see things through another lens, as news of Swan’s exit sent the stock up by 7.8% to $57.43. And naturally, VMware’s backers are gutted: Its share price took a 4.5% hit, down to $136.49. Read this press release for the full details. 
  • Cloud native radio access network software vendor Airhop has become a member of the Open Networking Foundation (ONF) and joined the organization’s Software Defined Radio Access Network (SD-RAN) to help build a “near-real-time RAN Intelligent Controller (n-RT-RIC) along with a set of exemplar xApps for controlling the RAN.” The ONF, you may recall, created the SD-RAN project in August last year to develop specific elements for disaggregated RAN rollouts that have so far not attracted enough focus and attention from the vendor community.
  • SK Telecom is to launch six “online-only mobile plans” on 15 January that offer rates for 4G and 5G customers that are up to 30% cheaper than regular plans, in a move that will become more commonplace as Digital Service Provider (DSP) strategies mature. 
  • Tele2 has expanded its top management team, appointing Stefan Trampus as new Executive Vice President Tele2 B2B and Yogesh Malik as new Executive Vice President CTIO. Malik was most recently CTO at Veon.
  • Spot the connection: The FCC’s Auction 107 of 3.7 GHz C-band capacity for 5G has now reached $80.8 billion after 80 rounds; AT&T is reportedly in talks to secure a $14 billion bank loan to help it acquire additional 5G spectrum, reports Bloomberg, while T-Mobile US is borrowing $3 billion for “general corporate purposes, which may include among other things, financing acquisitions of additional spectrum…” Is this the best use of telco funds? Answers on a promissory note please… 
  • Deutsche Telekom’s research arm, T-Labs, has launched an international competition, the Telekom Challenge, offering €700,000 of prizes to those who can come up with the most innovative ideas for smart, secure home networks. 
  • RtBrick has added its voice to the growing support for the Telecom Infra Project (TIP)’s Open BNG initiative, which, with the support of multiple Tier 1 operators, is developing specifications for disaggregated Broadband Network Gateway architectures. RtBrick, a TIP member, says its cloud native BNG software, isaligned with the Open BNG architecture. It runs as a software container on a Linux operating system on open hardware, with programmable REST-based APIs that expose all of the attributes of the router to higher level systems.” 
  • Just days before he bows out as Chairman of the FCC, Ajit Pai has given a speech outlining how he believes the FCC has helped to make broadband services more available to those in harder-to-reach areas of the US and so help to close the “digital divide.” You can see the transcript of a speech he gave here.
  • Canadian operator Telus has teamed up with RingCentral to enable Canadian small businesses to transition their legacy phone systems to the cloud via Telus Business Connect, an “all-in-one communications solution for message, video, and phone.” See this press release for further details. 

- The staff, TelecomTV

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