This Week In Tech And Telco: Environmentally Friendly FTTH

Happy Friday, happy February! Welcome to this week’s tech and telco round-up, where we see Net Neutrality being battled for in the courts once again and Telefónica’s green bond thriving.

Two topics that are always making this is list is 5G and Huawei, and this week is no different. Want to know more? Read on.

Huawei faces criminal charges for 23 alleged crimes

More criminal charges against Huawei may lay ahead, following indictments this week covering an alleged 23 crimes.

The indictments were partly revealed this week, with chunks of information being redacted.

There were two separate allegations, one that the company stole intellectual property of T-Mobile US, the subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom, and the other involving sales to Iran in breach of sanctions.

The Iran allegations were against not only Huawei and its subsidiaries, but also against Meng Wanzhou, the company’s CFO and founder Ren Zhengfei’s daughter, who is facing extradition to the US from Canada, where she is on bail.

Huawei said: “The company denies that it or its subsidiary or affiliate have committed any of the asserted violations of US law set forth in each of the indictments, is not aware of any wrongdoing by Ms Meng, and believes the US courts will ultimately reach the same conclusion.”

Telefónica becomes first in telecoms to issue a green bond

Telefónica becomes first in telecoms to issue a green bond with a €1 billion, five-year offering.

The company hopes to offer the greenest network in the market: green bonds are used to fund projects that have positive environmental and/or climate benefits.

The offering was well received by institutional investors, with the demand allowing the coupon to be fixed at 1.069%, up to 25 base points below the initial price indications.

The final book stood at €5.2 billion, equivalent to an oversubscription of more than five times.

More than 310 investors participated, of which more than 80% were international investors and half were green investors.

According to Telefónica, fibre to the home (FTTH) is 85% more energy efficient than the copper network.

In three years, deploying FTTH has saved 208 GWh. This represents a saving of 56,500 tons in CO2 emissions and the equivalent to the carbon captured by more than 900,000 trees.

Green bonds were created to fund projects that have positive environmental and/or climate benefits. The majority of the green bonds issued are green “use of proceeds” or asset-linked bonds. Proceeds from these bonds are earmarked for green projects but are backed by the issuer's entire balance sheet.


Tech firms and US states in neutrality court battle with feds

Tech companies and nearly half a dozen U.S. states are clashing with the Trump administration in federal court over the repeal of net neutrality, a set of rules aimed at preventing big internet providers from discriminating against certain technology and services.

The companies, including Mozilla and Vimeo, want the judges to restore the net neutrality regime.

It was set in 2015 during the Obama administration and repealed in December 2017 under a regulator appointed by President Donald Trump.

The rules had banned cable, wireless and other broadband providers from blocking or slowing websites of their choosing or charging Netflix and other services extra to reach viewers faster.

They were seen to protect consumers and businesses. Unlike in the UK, many US states are only served by one provider which means if connectivity is throttled users cannot simple swap providers.

The case will begin in a federal appeals court hearing today.


Huawei Confirms Launch Of 5G Foldable Smartphone

Huawei confirmed at a pre-Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2019 briefing in Beijing last week that it will unveil a high-end foldable 5G smartphone at the show.

Richard Yu, the CEO of the Chinese company's Consumer Business Group, didn’t let us in on the name of the foldable device or any details about how it would fold—inwards like Samsung's foldable phone with its Infinity Flex display, outwards like Royole's Flex Pai or tri-fold like Xiaomi's foldable prototype—it did say that the upcoming foldable phone will use a new 5G modem, the Balong 5000.

During the presentation, Yu also claimed that Huawei's 5G modem—which will also support 2G, 3G, and 4G—offers wireless speeds 10 times faster than 4G and twice as fast as Qualcomm's 5G modem, the X50.

Vodafone - the UK's most complained about telco

Vodafone was the most complained about telco in two of the three relevant categories, revealed in UK telecoms regulator league tables.

Ofcom has released the latest instalment of its league table for the most complained about telcos in the UK, with Vodafone being awarded the dubious honour of being the UK's most griped about operator.

Vodafone was the most complained about telco in both broadband provision and landline telephone services, where it received 27 and 19 complaints per 100,000 customers respectively.

Topped by Virgin Mobile, Vodafone came third in the mobile category, with 8 complaints per 100,000 customers, significantly more than its MNO rivals Three (4/100,000), O2 (3/100,000) and EE (3/100,000).

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