What's up with... Orange, EdgeMicro, Twitter, ETSI

via Flickr © Jangra Works (CC BY 2.0)

via Flickr © Jangra Works (CC BY 2.0)

  • Orange starts to open its shops in France
  • EdgeMicro adds more micro data centres
  • Twitter employees may stay home for good 
  • ETSI launches standards specification group for Euro Track & Trace

Lots of juicy news in today's telecoms buffet - just help yourself!

  • Orange opens up: The France-based telco is starting the process of opening its shops with many already open for business in the major French cities (thanks, Orange says, to the voluntary mobilisation of its employees). By the end of May it  plans to have opened almost all of its outlets in France.Back to normal then? No. Appointments to engage with sales staff must be booked ahead; staff are to be equipped with protective masks; hand sanitizer is available to everyone and the sales terminals will be cleaned after each customer visits. Other telcos in Europe will be watching closely. 
  • Network edge data center specialist EdgeMicro has raised $5 million to fund the launch of “several additional micro data centers” in the US. The company, which is in the early stages of turning up its points of presence  - read about it here - has identified about 50 Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities across the US where it plans to build its network edge facilities.

  • Twitter has become the first big tech to allow its remotely working employees to do so indefinitely, according to this piece in the New York Times. Twitter won’t re-open most offices before September and employees can choose whether or not to come into the facilities when it does. This move is expected to be matched by some other big tech companies who have  thousands of screen-based employees. Already,  Facebook and Google have allowed most of their employees to work remotely until the end of this year, but if (as many observers expect) it turns out that after several months experience of home working many employees want to continue with it, employers will probably appreciate the cost-lowering implications and actively go with the flow.

  • Covid tracking & tracing standards: ETSI is embarking on a new Industry Specification Group in response to the pandemic and various European governments’ desires to set up a workable, Europe-wide track and trace system. The group, Europe for Privacy-Preserving Pandemic Protection wants a framework that different projects can work under. It stresses interoperability as a major objective. “A primary challenge is collecting, processing and acting on information about citizens’ proximity at scale, potentially representing tens or hundreds of millions of people. This must also be achieved without compromising users’ anonymity and privacy, and while safeguarding them against exposure to potential cyber-attacks,” says the standards body spokesperson.  Hmm..  no word on how long ETSI thinks it might take to reach a workable standard solution.

  • Nokia has started to contribute to the SONiC open source initiative that is led by Microsoft. SONiC is developing a Linux-based operating system for data centre operators.

  • India’s Vodafone Idea is now using a common hybrid telco cloud platform for its IT and network applications, enabling greater automation and the potential for more efficient capex and opex returns.

  • Cloud-native network assurance software vendor Radcom reported a year-on-year increase in first quarter revenues to $8.3 million, reiterated its full year sales target of $35-38 million and highlighted its involvement in the launch of greenfield mobile operator Rakuten Mobile.

  • Network analytics and security specialist Allot reported a 16% year-on-year increase in first quarter revenues to $29.3 million, reconfirmed its full year sales guidance of $135-140 million and painted a relatively rosy picture of future demand.

  • US operator C Spire has agreed to a multi-year extension for the supply of Openet’s Policy Manager and Evolved Charging solutions.

  • The business services arm of network operator AIS has teamed up with IBM Services to develop a suite of cloud managed services for enterprises in Thailand.

  • ​​Indonesian operator Indosat Ooredoo has awarded Ericsson a five-year deal that will see the Swedish vendor deploy its Operation Engine, which uses “automation, machine learning and AI technologies to enhance network performance and user experience,” according to the vendor. Ericsson will also manage Indosat Ooredoo’s network operations center and field maintenance activities across Indonesia.

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