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In Brief: EU negotiators agree to coordinate 700MHz use 

The European Parliament, the European Council and the European Commission have agreed on how to coordinate the use of the 700MHz spectrum band, as part of a wider plan to facilitate the introduction of 5G mobile technology by 2020. The agreement, which focuses on the ultra-high frequency (UHF) band (470MHz-790MHz), including the 700MHz band (694-790 MHz), builds on a proposal presented by the Commission in February 2016. It also represents the first deal made under the Digital Single Market strategy, as presented by the Commission in May 2015.As per the terms of the pact, the 700MHz band should be assigned to mobile operators and made available for wireless broadband use by 30 June 2020 at the latest in all EU Member states, although duly justified exceptions are possible until 30 June 2022.

*** Yahoo revealed details of a fresh cyber attack affecting more than 1 billion users. The troubled Internet company said someone hacked into its network in August 2013 and stole names, email addresses, phone numbers, dates of birth, hashed passwords, and in some cases, encrypted or unencrypted security questions and answers. Yahoo said the new attack was identified based on an analysis of data obtained by law enforcement investigating claims by a hacker in July that they had accessed Yahoo user data.
The Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA) has given the thumbs up to the takeover of one of the country’s leading ISPs, Startel Tanzania, which offers services under the brand name Raha, by Liquid Telecom Group, an independent data, voice and IP provider in eastern, central and southern Africa. The Citizen reports that Liquid Telecom issued a statement confirming the acquisition of Raha, marking its entry into Tanzania after a similar recent move in Kenya. Startel Tanzania was formed to provide high speed broadband and internet-based solutions to businesses and consumers in and around Dar es Salaam. It offers ADSL, fibre and satellite connectivity, and also uses WiMAX technology to provide broadband connectivity solutions for SMEs, schools and large enterprises. Raha has over 1,500 businesses on its network. The details of the transaction were not disclosed. Commenting on the takeover, Liquid Telecom chief executive officer Nic Rudnick said: ‘We are very pleased to announce that this transaction has received its final approval. The agreement enables Liquid Telecom to expand its footprint into Tanzania, a growing and dynamic African country.

*** Mobile TeleSystems (MTS), Russia’s largest wireless operator by subscribers, has announced that it has launched commercial 4.5G services, using the ‘LTE-Advanced Pro’ name. The network, which aggregates frequencies in the 1800MHz and 2600MHz bands, has gone live in the cities of Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Ufa and Yakutsk. Theoretical download speeds of 700Mbps are available to end-users, while compatible handsets are expected to be made available by major vendors from early 2017.

*** Sudatel Telecom Group, which has operations in Sudan, Senegal, Guinea and Mauritania, has reported consolidated revenues of USD364 million for the nine months ended 30 September 2016, an increase of 11.4% from the year-ago period. The turnover for the third quarter of 2016 also rose by around 11%, to USD124.2 million, while consolidated EBITDA totalled USD47.9 million, up by 21% year-on-year. Sudatel’s customer base reached 11.9 million at the end of September 2016, an increaseof7%. Sudatel’s CEO said: ‘Sudatel continues to witness strong growth across the markets in which it operates and we are confident that we will outperform our growth pace over the coming period. The company is constantly working on enhancing its services and performance, in order to maximise on net revenues and profits for the company and its shareholders.

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