Nytex

In Brief: EC plans EUR 3 billion fine against Google 

The European Commission is preparing to fine Google around EUR 3 billion for abusing its dominant position in the search market, the Daily. Officials in Brussels are putting the finishing touches to a seven-year investigation of the company and are expected to announce the sanctions within weeks. This would be the EC's highest competition fine to date, surpassing the EUR 1.1 billion against Intel. The Officials aimed to make an announcement before the summer break and could make their move as early as next month. As well facing as a heavy fine, Google will be banned from continuing to manipulate search results to favour itself and harm rivals.

***Yangtze Optical Fibre and Cable (YOFC) has announced a number of new contracts as it expands its global market to telecommunication regions which have been historically underdeveloped. The largest international optical fibre cable manufacturer by volume revealed a number of new African contracts in its announcement.The company has been growing since it carried out an initial public offering (IPO) in Hong Kong in December 2014. It has already set up joint ventures in Myanmar,Indonesia, and South Africa. All of these governments want to close the digital divide between themselves and the rest of the world.

***The top US cable providers had a strong start to 2016, adding over 1 million subscribers in the first quarter. In total, cable operators added 1.06 million broadband subscriptions in the first three months of the year, marking the third time in the past five quarters that cable companies exceeded 1 million net broadband subscribers. Cable providers accounted for 111 percent of the three million net broadband additions over the past year.Comcast led the ranking with 438,000 net adds in Q1, followed by Time Warner Cable with 327,000, Charter with 155,000, Suddenlink with 30,000 and Mediacom with 29,000.

***Brazil's Ministry of Communications published an ordinance that opens the selection process for municipalities for the My Smart City programme, an evolution of the Digital Cities program. Interested municipalities can compete in three categories according to the size of their population.The My Smart City programme aims to modernize the management of municipalities,by installing a high capacity fibre-optic network infrastructure to connect local public bodies and provide public points of free internet access to the population.The programme also includes actions in the area of Internet of Things, using technology to monitor services such as lighting,traffic and safety.

***Iran could have operational MVNOs by March 2017, according to a timeline set out by the deputy head of the country’s Communications Regulatory Authority (CRA). The official said that ‘nearly 50’ requests for MVNO concessions have been assessed, of which ten were rejected. Meanwhile, a further ten companies have been given permission to sign contracts with one of Iran’s national mobile operators, and final working permits are expected to be issued by July this year. Based on previous statements by regulatory officials, the applicants included a mixture of fixed line telcos, domestic banks and international operators, with 32 foreign companies from 18 different countries submitting paperwork.