Monthly Archives: July 2014

Liberty Industry News – July 29, 2014

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UK consumers benefit from balanced and affordable broadband
The United Kingdom has one of the world’s most aggressively competitive broadband ISP markets and a new report from Point Topic helps to put this into some context by showing how we compare with other major countries and the variance of our tariffs. In terms of entry-level tariffs, we are ranked 7th in the world, albeit behind some odd front runners including Sudan, India and Belarus etc.


HTC may be launching the One M8 for Windows
As if HTC’s naming conventions for its flagships weren’t already awkward enough it looks like it might now be launching a flagship Windows Phone handset with the same name as its Android one. More specifically we might soon be getting an ‘HTC One M8 for Windows,’ which is a bit of a mouthful.
TechRadar UK


Good mobile signal tops young house buyers’ priorities
45 per cent of 18-35 year-olds rank mobile signal as the most important consideration when buying a new property, followed by crime (21 per cent), transport links (18 per cent) and schools (17 per cent). Among buyers aged 55 and over, mobile reception was considered less important, but 26 per cent still rated it as the most crucial factor.
Mobile Marketing Magazine



enterprise technology


Amazon throws its might behind 3D printing revolution
Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer, has launched the 3D Printed Products store, a marketplace with more than 200 unique print on-demand products, many that can be customised by material, size, styles and colour variations, and personalised with text and image imprints. With Amazon’s muscle, the marketplace can be considered to be one of the largest online places to discover 3D printed products.


Mozilla appoints Chris Beard as new CEO
Mozilla has installed a fulltime CEO to replace the controversial Brendan Eich, who was ousted earlier this year. Eich’s political views were the source of controversy then and Mozilla was forced to apologise for not considering the views of its users and the community when it hired him. Then, a temporary CEO was appointed, and that was the one time chief marketing officer Chris Beard.


Microsoft faces monopoly investigation in China
A Chinese investigation into Microsoft is probably targeting its “monopoly” of the country’s operating systems market, state media have said, after the US software company became the latest foreign firm to go under Beijing’s scrutiny. Microsoft confirmed in a statement late on Monday that it was under investigation in China, without disclosing details.
The Guardian



media news


Sarah Palin launches subscription based online news service
Sarah Palin, the former governor of Alaskan and Republican vice presidential candidate, has launched her own subscription-only news service, which she says that she will oversee personally. The channel bills itself as a “direct connection” between Palin and her supporters, with her own political commentary and the chance for viewers to participate in online chats with Palin.
The Drum


Facebook to separate messaging from main app for all ‘within days’
Facebook is reportedly putting the final nail in the coffin of messaging via its main app. After successfully getting European users to download the new Messenger app in April, the social network will now move all remaining users across within days. “In the next few days, we’re continuing to notify more people that if they want to send and receive Facebook messages, they’ll need to download the Messenger app,” the company said in a statement.
Digital Spy


Puma hails low-key World Cup marketing for ‘excellent’ football sales
Puma has hailed its low-key World Cup push for “exceeding” sales targets for the event as it prepares to unveil its global marketing campaign to reassert its sporting credentials. The German business opted against a marketing blitz in favour of a blend of real-time marketing and the appearance of brand ambassadors such as Mario Balotelli to get cut through during the cluttered World Cup period.
Marketing Week


Great company, plenty of laughs and a rooftop BBQ in the sunshine!

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Last Wednesday we had the pleasure of celebrating Liberty’s 32nd Liquid Lunch in glorious sunshine with the drinks flowing and sausages sizzling on the BBQ.



On The Rooftop Bar at The Driver the Liberty team were joined by media and analysts from a wide variety of industries to share an evening of fun, laughter and some impromptu dancing!


At Liberty, we take great pride in our lasting relationships with media and analysts and it was lovely to all get together and let our hair down.


It was a highlight for us to be able to introduce Scott Beaver, a member of Liberty’s expanding team in the US and to properly welcome Liberty’s newest team member in the UK, Katie Finn.


After a fantastic evening, it was back to reality the following day at Liberty Towers – with one or two funny anecdotes and a freezer full of much needed ice lollies!


Thank you to everyone who made it down to The Driver to help us celebrate in style. It was great to be able to catch up with our Liquid Lunch regulars and to have the opportunity to get to know some new faces a little bit better.


We hope to see you all again at our next Liquid Lunch later in the year – it was a delight, as always!

Liberty Industry News – July 25, 2014

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Vodafone suffers slowdown in tough European and African markets
Vodafone fell foul of tough market conditions in the first quarter as a slowdown in Spain and South Africa resulted in another heavy drop in revenue. The world’s second-biggest mobile operator said on Friday the pace of decline in organic service revenue, which strips out items such as handset sales and currency movements, accelerated to 4.2 per cent in the three months to June 30.
Daily Telegraph


Citic Telecom in talks to buy stake in RCom’s subsidiary
China’s Citi Telecom is looking to buyout Reliance Communication ‘s undersea cable subsidiary. The deal, which is in advanced talks to buy for Global Cloud Xchange (formerly Reliance Globalcom), may fetch the Anil Ambani-led telecom company a whopping USD 1 billion. RCOM is likely to sell majority stake in Global Cloud Xchange to Citic, which should start the due diligence for the deal next week.

Money Control


TenTel to launch new low-cost, no-ties offer
A Selkirk-based start-up is aiming to disrupt the UK telecoms market by being the first to offer customers same-day telephone and broadband services without holding them to long-term contracts. Set to launch next month, TenTel says it will offer a unique ‘move-in, turn-on’ service with no enforced tie-ins or hidden extras. The new offer will be aimed principally at customers in rented accommodation. Working in partnership with landlords and letting agents, the company will offer them a commission for each line of data they supply and for each of their tenants who signs up for the service.
Mobile Today



enterprise technology


Government pulls £50 million Silicon Roundabout regeneration fund
The Prime Minister’s office has pulled the £50 million that was due to be spent on the regeneration of Old Street’s Silicon Roundabout in East London. No. 10 told Techworld in March that the government was holding the money until City Hall submitted appropriate regeneration plans, but a spokesperson has revealed that the £50 million has been taken off the table. “Given that a permanent solution for the roundabout will be technically difficult and some way off that money has gone back into general expenditure,” he said.


New research examines businesses’ handling of digital transformation
Although businesses are making the effort to build digital transformation plans, they are not following through by mapping the customer journey, claims new research. Research and consulting firm Altimeter Group published The 2014 State of Digital Transformation to explore the ways in which digital customers differ from traditional counterparts. The report claims that 88 per cent of participants said their organisation was undergoing a formal transformation effort, but only 25 per cent reported that the digital customer journey was mapped out from start to finish ensuring they are reached at every major touch point.


China Unicom, Huawei to work on cloud tech
The cloud platform division of China Unicom signed a strategic cooperation agreement on Software Defined Networking (SDN) innovation with local kit vendor Huawei this week. In a joint statement, China Unicom Cloud Data Company and Huawei said they will foster extensive cooperation conducted in the field of SDN, developing SDN controllers, and deploying SDN-based solutions in datacentre networks.



media news


Mobile gamers rate ads during gameplay ‘breaks’ as least effective
Research into advertisements shown to mobile gamers has found that ads shown during breaks in gameplay action are the least preferred format. The study, carried out by MediaSpike in partnership with Interpret, found that gameplay break ads were preferred by only 11 per cent of respondents, and were ranked as least preferred by 36 per cent. Even banner ads, usually deemed as ineffective, were more preferred at 29 per cent. In fact, gamers reported they were twice as likely to interact with a banner (21 per cent) compared to gameplay break ads (nine per cent).
Mobile Marketing


Mobile ad spending surges with big shift to smartphone, tablet use
The day that eMarketer predicted that mobile ad spending will surpass newspaper and radio ad revenues in 2014 seemed a particularly good time to catch up with the MassTLC’s (Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council) Mobile Summit in Cambridge, Mass. The eMarketer predictions were carried in the Wall Street Journal. The bottom line as carried in the WSJ contends that mobile ad outlays are projected to jump 83 percent this year to nearly $18 billion as newspapers turn in $17 billion and radio is projected to finish the year at $15.5 billion.


Instagram to launch a “one-tap photo messaging” service – Bolt
Instagram is set to launch a new service, Bolt, which seems to be a rival to Snapchat by offering “one-tap picture messaging”. A promotional message introducing the service appeared on the banners of Instagram for some users, but then they tried to click through to the Google Play store, it led to a dead end. This is not the first time such an incident has happened – last month Facebook, which owns Instagram, accidentally released its new app Slightshot too early, and had to delete it from the Apple store.
The Drum


Liberty Communications appointed by e-learning start-up Filtered for brand building project

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Liberty Communications, the integrated digital marketing communications agency, today announced that it has been awarded a 9-month PR contract by Filtered, an innovative e-learning platform – launched by edtech firm Excel with Business.

Founded in 2009, Excel with Business provides online testing and training to businesses and individuals for a range of skills including Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint, Web Design, App Design, Basic Accounts, etc. Having grown rapidly over the past two years, the company decided to launch premium learning platform and brand Filtered, which specialises in tailored online training in a range of business disciplines.


Liberty was appointed to support the business in raising awareness of the platform’s unique ability to teach users the critical or most desired components of the course, filtering out the rest to deliver a highly refined and customised syllabus.


Marc Zao-Sanders, Managing Director of Filtered said: “This is a very exciting time for us as we look to embark on our first PR campaign to support Filtered, and our innovative adaptive teaching method.  The edtech market in Europe is still relatively young in comparison to our US counterparts, which presents a huge opportunity for us to grow our business.  What’s more, digital penetration in the education market is still very low so being able to drive awareness of the opportunities and benefits technology offers in this market is the obvious next step for us.”


Liberty’s remit includes positioning Filtered and its senior executives as thought leaders in the education and technology markets and showcase its innovative, cost effective business model and customer service to potential customers in the financial, law, retail and logistics industries.  Liberty will also be supporting Filtered to launch the Filtered Foundation – a separate entity which encompasses the charity Managing Director Marc Zao-Sanders started a few years ago, Access Professions – an online service which matches students with life-changing university- and career-related opportunities.


Dee Gibbs, Founder and Global CEO at Liberty said: “The edtech market is a hive of opportunity and is a sector that we at Liberty are incredibly passionate about. We’re delighted to be working in partnership with Filtered and are keen to use our skills and experience to support their business goals in the UK.”


Speaking about Liberty’s appointment Marc Zao-Sanders continued: “Rarely have I seen such an informed, enthusiastic and genuinely inspiring team come in and present. The quality and creativity of Liberty’s ideas, their existing knowledge of the EdTech industry and the chemistry of the team convinced us that Liberty is extremely well placed to lead our PR strategy going forward.”


Liberty Communications was appointed after a seven-way pitch process, which took place earlier this month.


liberty news

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Cortana will hit the UK in ‘less than two weeks’
Not even the Halo universe is immune from this tough economic climate, so Cortana has taken a second job as Windows Phone’s voice assistant – though only for people living in the US right now.

But she’s on her way to Britain, and Microsoft has confirmed that the developer preview is less than two weeks away.
Tech Radar


Vodafone strikes fibre share deal with Portugal Telecom to reach 900,000 homes
Telecoms giant Vodafone has announced a 25-year deal between its Portuguese subsidiary and Portugal Telecom to deploy and share fibre networks to 900,000 Portuguese homes.

The agreement comes into effect this December, giving each company the potential to reach an additional 450,000 business and residential customers.
City AM


SK Telecom and Ericsson demonstrate potential 5G technology
South Korea was the inevitable location for the first demonstration of a new ‘Elastic Cell’ technology that allows multiple cells to serve a handset simultaneously, thus improving performance at the cell boundary. This technology is likely to contribute to the eventual 5G standard. The demonstration was the result of collaboration between South Korean operator SK Telecom and infrastructure vendor Ericsson. It involves two-way communication between the handset and its serving cell in order to select other nearby cells that can improve network quality at the cell edge, while also silencing superfluous cells that can cause interference.



enterprise technology


HP Autonomy legal case takes religious twist with Vatican deal mystery
HP’s long-running saga over its acquisition of UK software firm Autonomy took another turn over the weekend after evidence relating to a deal supposedly signed with the Vatican came to light. HP has been pursuing legal action against Autonomy for almost two years after it claimed the former management of the company, including CEO Mike Lynch, engaged in improper accounting activities.


Fox eyes European Sky asset sale
21st Century Fox could agree to sell Sky Italia and its 57% stake in Sky Deutschland to BSkyB in the next two weeks. This, reports Reuters, could help it lodge a higher bid for Time Warner. Just last week, 21st Century Fox confirmed it had made a formal proposal to Time Warner in June to combine the two companies, with reports valuing its bid at $80 billion.
Broadband TV News


Edward Snowden asks global hackers to develop anti-surveillance technologies
Fugitive whistleblower Edward Snowden has asked hackers across the globe to develop technologies to counter illegal surveillance by government agencies. Addressing a hackers conference known as Hackers On Planet Earth (Hope) via video link from Moscow, Snowden said he intends to devote much of his time to promoting easy-to-use counter-surveillance technologies which allow people to communicate anonymously with a high level of encryption.
IB Times


media news


BBC website and iPlayer hit by major problems
The BBC was hit by gremlins in the works this weekend, with the iPlayer service suffering, and the corporation’s website, too. Some users were confronted with error messages when accessing the SpringWatch and World Cup 2014 sections of the site, and videos were also affected on the website and iPlayer. The latter meant that those trying to view programmes including Russell Howard’s Good News, QI and CBBC were unable to see them, according to a report in the Independent. And the Beeb had to reduce its website to a basic version to keep it running more smoothly – indeed, that’s still the case as we write this story now.
IT Pro Portal


Post Office celebrates Sunday branch opening with #LoveSundays campaign
In a print ad, using the tagline, “Mail. On Sunday,” the brand explains that it is listening to customers’ opinions and changing the business accordingly. The ad states, “We’re now open earlier, and later, and on Sundays. And we’re open in other ways too. We’ve listened to our customers and created new ways of doing things. “We want to make our unrivalled network of over 11,500 branches better than ever. So keep your eyes open. This is just the start.”
Brand Republic


Google to change the way ‘freemium’ apps are listed from September
From September Google will no longer be labelling games with in-app purchases as ‘free’, following criticism from the European Commission.  In addition to confirming the way ‘freemium’ apps – those which are free to download but contain paid-for add-ons – are listed will change the Android-owner has agreed to devise new guidelines for developers to avoid encouraging children with approval prompts added to all apps by default.
The Drum

Liberty Industry News – July 11, 2014

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Setanta to launch Irish MVNO this year
Irish sports broadcaster Setanta is in talks with mobile operator 3 about launching an MVNO on its network, it emerged this week. The companies have been holding talks for the past few months and Setanta aims to launch its mobile service by the end of the year, the Irish Times reported, without citing its sources. The MVNO would form part of a service package that Setanta is working on, including TV, phone and mobile broadband, the paper added.
Total Telecom


Silent Circle takes on Skype, mobile telcos with encrypted landline calling
Going up against mobile telecom giants including Skype and Viber, Silent Circle has announced a global encrypted voice calling service on the heels of launching the ‘surveillance-proof’ Blackphone. The company aims to disrupt traditional communication services, whether it be tech firms, telcos or handset makers. The launch of the new service, the Global Encrypted Calling Plan, is likely to be of concern to traditional companies as it is billed as “50 percent less expensive” and, of course, appeals to the security-conscious.


FreedomPop attacks Europe with freemium smartphone plans
FreedomPop isn’t happy selling its free smartphone service only in the U.S., as the company now plans to expand to Europe. It will begin in Belgium, where it wants to test out its new service, TechCrunch reveals. FreedomPop is a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) that purchases bandwidth from Sprint in the U.S, and then offers users 200 free voice minutes, 500 free text messages and 500MB free of data each month.
Yahoo News



enterprise technology


GDS launches crackdown on fake government websites
The Government Digital Service (GDS) has introduced its Thunderclap campaign, a clampdown on fake government websites. According to GDS, using standard search engines to search for Whitehall services can often lead to unofficial websites that charge for things that should be free or much cheaper. The initiative was launched earlier this week, aiming to use social media to raise awareness about misleading websites and encourage users to always use official channels.


Google Ventures to invest £58 million in European start-ups
Google is to invest $100 million (£58.4 million) in European tech start-ups, as it expands its capital funding business with a new base in London. Google Ventures was launched in 2009, and has since invested in over 250 portfolio companies in a range of sectors, such healthcare firms Flatiron Health and SynapDx, affordable solar energy business, Clean Power Finance, and controversial taxi app, Uber.
ComputerWorld UK


Amazon launches wearable technology store in UK
Online retail giant Amazon has launched a store devoted to wearable technology in the UK which features more than 100 different wearable devices including activity trackers, smart watches, smart glasses, and wearable cameras. As well as items from established brands such as Sony, Samsung, Garmin, Jawbone and GoPro, the store will feature products from emerging brands.
The Retail Bulletin



media news


Rise of digital devices drives new viewing habits
Adults around the world remain hooked on TV but the consumption habits of content-hungry viewers are changing rapidly, according to global research consultancy TNS. While our love affair with television endures, TV sets alone are no longer enough to satisfy our appetite for content, driving the growth of online media and ‘screen-stacking’ as a result.
BroadbandTV News


ActionX unveils rich media ad unit
App and cross-screen retargeting company ActionX has revealed a series of upgrades to its dynamic creative engine, including the launch of a ‘Mobile Pop-Up Shop’ rich media unit. ActionX’s creative engine already enables companies to enhance the relevance of retargeting campaigns by featuring personalised products and offers based on user behaviour in mobile apps and on web sites. The Mobile Pop-Up Shop banner delivers a new level of personalisation, expanding from a banner to create a full page of personalised offers and merchandise.
Mobile Marketing Magazine


Vevo renews advertising and content deal with Toyota
Vevo, the online music video and entertainment platform, believes it is continuing to take media spend away from traditional broadcasters following a new seven-figure branded content and sponsorship deal with Toyota AYGO. The 12-month campaign will deliver original content programme commissioning and sponsorship throughout the year across Vevo, starting with ‘Lyric Lines’, launched yesterday. A Vevo spokesperson said the new deal confirms the “continuation of big UK TV ad spend moving to Vevo’s web, mobile, tablet and connected TV platform”.
Media Week


Liberty Industry News – July 4, 2014

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Nokia makes US acquisition
This is not something the industry has seen for a long time but Nokia Networks on Friday announced it has entered into an agreement to acquire US-based network integration and deployment specialist SAC Wireless for an undisclosed sum. Infrastructure contracts in the US are lucrative and SAC claims a national footprint and “proven performance track record working with major telecom operators.”


Huawei gets behind European 5G mobile rollout efforts
Huawei has joined the board of the 5G Infrastructure Association in Europe to help aid the rollout of the next generation mobile technology. Huawei will be represented on the board by Dr David Soldani of the Huawei European Research Centre. The 5G Infrastructure Association represents the interests of the 5G Public and Private Partnership (5G-PPP), a €1.4 billion (£1.14 billion) joint initiative between the European ICT industry and the European Commission. 5G-PPP aims to deliver “ubiquitous super-fast mobile connectivity” across Europe and elsewhere.


Telecom NZ completes acquisition of Appserve

Telecom New Zealand has completed the acquisition of cloud-based services provider Appserve. Both firms had signed a conditional agreement for the acquisition on 18 June. The acquisition is in line with Telecom’s growth strategy, which focuses on investments in data, mobility and cloud services. The acquisition, which was valued at NZD 17 million, will further expands Telecom’s portfolio of cloud services.



enterprise technology


UK government says web filtering needs work
An official government response to a Department for Culture Media and Sport (DCMS) study into online filtering has agreed that while it can be useful it is not as good as it could be. The government response follows a DCMS report from March that looked at child safety online and the means of shutting off child abuse and similar illegal content.
The government said that a lot of work has been done in this area and that a lot of it is successful, however it added that filtering itself is not as accurate as it could be and exists within a system that needs work.


UK cloud adoption swells by 61 per cent in four years
Some 78 per cent of UK organisations have formally adopted at least one cloud-based service, giving cloud a mainstream deployment status, an annual cloud research has found. UK cloud adoption has grown by 61.5 per cent since 2010 when the annual study began. The Vanson Bourne annual study, conducted in June 2014 on behalf of cloud industry body CIF, found a 15 per cent growth in cloud adoption over the previous research in September 2013. The industry body estimates the annual growth rate will be 20 per cent by the end of September 2014.
Computer Weekly


Home office breaks up supplier “oligopoly” with G-Cloud adoption
The Home Office has revealed that it is intending to cut costs and size of IT contracts by turning to the G-Cloud procurement framework. Currently, the Department’s two largest technology contracts are with Atos and Fujitsu – which expire in 2016 and they will not be renewed. By turning to G-Cloud, the Home Office is supporting a wider government drive to break up the “oligopoly” of large suppliers dominating public sector work with large, locked-in contracts.



media news


Google continues to dominate UK ad spend
Google remains the UK’s leading digital ad publisher by a wide margin, taking in roughly 40 per cent of UK digital ad spend, new figures from eMarketer reveal. Combining both search and display ad revenue, the search giant is expected to receive £2.9bn in ad revenue in 2014, a 16 per cent increase on 2013.
Mobile Marketing


IPTV subscriptions top 100 million
Global IPTV subscriber numbers topped 100 million for the first time in the first quarter of this year, according to new stats by research firm Point Topic.
The firm said there were 4.6m new IPTV subscriptions during the Q1 2014 period, taking the total number of subscriptions to 100.9m.
Digital TV Europe


Social media increasingly influencing TV viewing
Findings from the latest YouView study census into national television habits for 2014 suggest that social media interaction with Facebook and Twitter are influencing TV viewing habits but risk ruining shows.
The survey found that social media has had a huge impact on our TV tastes with around one in seven viewers now getting TV recommendations directly from it [Facebook (12 per cent) and Twitter (6 per cent)].
Advanced Television


Liberty Industry News – July 03, 2014

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iPhone 6 release date may be later than originally thought
We’re fairly confident that the iPhone 6 will launch in September, but the exact date in September remains under wraps. Previously September 19 was rumoured, but a new rumour points to September 25 for the launch, following an announcement on September 15.


Bill Gates asks telecoms standards boffins to define future of money
Two-and-a-half billion adults in the world don’t have bank accounts, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation thinks it’s got the answer: deliver financial services to mobile phones. And the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) agrees: late in June, it established a focus group to look at Digital Financial Services, saying standardisation is the key to making such services affordable.
The Register


UK could fall behind Ireland as Vodafone rollout 1Gbps FTTB broadband
According to ComReg, the Irish telecoms regulator, 43% of fixed broadband customers in Ireland receive sub-10Mbps speeds. But all that could change after Vodafone teamed up in a 50:50 Joint Venture with state-owned electricity firm ESB to splash €450m (£358m) on a nationwide roll-out of 1000Mbps capable Fibre-to-the-Building (FTTB) technology. We can only hope they do the same here.



enterprise technology


Department of Health bids to make sharing patient data safer
The Department of Health (DoH) has opened up a consultation with the intention to create new safeguards around information sharing within the organisation. The Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Health, Dr Dan Poulter, said that the department wants to establish clear rules around the use of data that could potentially identify individuals circulated by accredited safe havens (ASHs) and the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC).


NSA spying program deemed “effective” by US privacy board
The Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB) has said the NSA’s cyber-spying program has been effective in enhancing the country’s security but has raised some worrying privacy concerns. Following leaks by Edward Snowden that revealed many of the NSA’s methods for acquiring information about people, the PCLOB said in a report that the way it goes about collecting information could push it into “constitutional unreasonableness”, before airing concerns that citizens may be subjected to unnecessary tracking.


Physical location of data will become irrelevant by 2020, says Gartner
The physical location of corporate data will become irrelevant by 2020, replaced by a combination of other criteria, according to a Gartner report. Gartner said the location of where companies store data will become “increasingly irrelevant” in the post-Prism era, and will be determined by a combination of legal, political and logical considerations.
Computer Weekly



media news


Twitter struggles to match growth hopes as mobile powers Facebook surge
Twitter will double its UK revenues this year to almost £100m, while Facebook is expected to enjoy a 40 per cent boost to nearly £570m, according to a new forecast. However, Twitter will fall well short of early forecasts of £180m in UK revenues for 2015, as growth fails to match high investor expectations.
The Guardian


UK schools see tablet usage rise
The use of tablets in UK schools is rising, claims the British Educational Suppliers Association (BESA). BESA is a trade association that represents over 300 educational suppliers in Britain, including manufacturers and distributors of ICT hardware and digital equipment to the education market.


Ad industry joins scheme to put creative industries at heart of economic growth
The advertising industry has signed up to a new government initiative to put the creative industries at the heart of economic growth and support young talent. The Create UK scheme was unveiled yesterday (2 July) by Business Secretary Vince Cable, Culture Secretary Sajid Javid and Facebook’s EMEA boss Nicola Mendelsohn. The aim is to double the value of exports from the creative industries to £31bn by 2020 in areas including advertising, gaming, film and animation.
Marketing Week


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FTC broadsides T-Mobile over “bogus charges”
The FTC alleges that T-Mobile received anywhere from 35 to 40 per cent of the total amount mis-charged to consumers for subscriptions for content such as flirting tips, horoscope information or celebrity gossip that typically cost $9.99 per month. According to the FTC’s complaint, T-Mobile in some cases continued to bill its customers for these services offered by scammers years after becoming aware of signs that the charges were fraudulent.


Orange drops French telecoms deal-making plans
Orange has ditched plans to take part in any tie-ups in the French telecoms market, the former monopoly said on Wednesday. Orange said in May it was examining what role it could play in such deal-making, and sources told Reuters that it had held informal talks with third-place mobile operator Bouygues Telecom.


Gigaclear target 50,000 UK rural homes for one Fbps FTTP broadband by 2015
Rural-focused fibre optic (FTTP) broadband ISP Gigaclear has secured private investment worth £7.75 million to help fund the next phase of its growth and a roll-out of 1000 Mbps (Megabits per second) capable Internet access into more areas, which could reach 15,000 premises by the end of 2015 and go much further in the future.
ISP review



enterprise technology

PayPal freezes, then restores account of crowdfunded secure email startup
A secure email startup that has raised more than $328,000 on crowdfunding website Indiegogo saw its PayPal account frozen, then restored this week. Swiss company ProtonMail has been raising money for its encrypted email service since 17 June, having far exceeded its initial goal of $100,000. PayPal is one of the main ways backers can pledge to its campaign.
The Guardian


Government and OU deliver cyber security course
The UK government and the Open University (OU) have partnered to deliver an online cyber security course. Natalie Black, the deputy director of cyber defence at the Cabinet Office, introduced the education programme at the opening tour of Bletchley Park yesterday. According to Black, the aim is to introduce 200,000 people to subject and educate them.


New 42m Government fund for British tech entrepreneurs
The Technology Strategy Board, the UK’s innovation agency – has revealed its ‘Delivery Plan’ for 2014-15 which outlines £42m for digital technologies. The plan outlines the Board’s priorities to ‘develop and nurture the very best of British entrepreneurial talent’.
Tech City News



media news


Mobile advertising to overtake print
A report, from eMarketer, indicates that mobile ad spending in the UK continues to show significant growth and is expected to rise 96 per cent this year to just over £2 billion ($3.16 billion), up from more than £1.03 billion ($1.61 billion) in 2013.


Facebook faces ICO questions over ‘social experiment’
Facebook is being investigated by the Information Commissioner’s Office over its social study on users, to see whether it has broken UK data protection laws. According to a report in the FT, the ICO is probing the experiment, but said it is too early to tell whether the social network has potentially broken any laws.


Google acquires music streaming service Songza
Online search giant Google has acquired streaming music service Songza as it attempts to ramp up its fledgling online music service. Songza creates “expert-curated” music playlists intended to match users’ activities and tastes and the four-year-old service is expected to remain unchanged following the acquisition.
London Evening Standard

liberty news

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Vodafone sells out of Fiji
Vodafone said Tuesday that it has struck an agreement to sell its entire 49 per cent shareholding in Vodafone Fiji to the Fiji National Provident Fund for a cash consideration of FJ$160m (£51m). The move takes Fiji National Provident’s indirect stake in the company to around 79 per cent. In Fiji, Vodafone competed against the only other mobile licensee, Digicel. But the company said that it expects to continue to have a presence in Fiji through a partner market agreement.


Microsoft seizes 22 No-IP domains in malware crackdown
Microsoft has filed a civil case, naming two foreign nationals from Kuwait and Algeria as the masterminds behind a concerted scheme to infect millions of computers with Bladabindi and Jenxcus families of malware. Detailed in a company blog post, the move marks one of the company’s most audacious efforts, its tenth to date, to disrupt what it says is one of the most prolific conduits between hackers and their victims.
Tech Radar Pro


Metronet in £45 million buyouy
The management team of Metronet has led a £45m secondary management buyout of the business, backed by ISIS Equity Partners. Manchester based Metronet (UK) is a business only Internet Service Provider that combines innovative wireless technology with traditional fibre to deliver connectivity solutions from leased lines to complex, multi-site networks across the UK. The company now boasts over 1200 customers from SMEs, to blue chip organisations such as Manchester City Council, Arqiva,, Autotrader.
Comms Business



enterprise technology


HP settles Autonomy dispute litigation with shareholders
HP has confirmed it has reached an agreement to settle shareholder litigation resulting from its 2011 takeover of software firm Autonomy, but warned that the settlement is still subject to court approval.

The global IT giant issued a statement confirming that it and the lawyers for the plaintiffs in three shareholder lawsuits have now reached an agreement that will bring their action against HP to a close.


Hacker raid on energy companies for secrets raises sabotage fears
In yet more evidence of the rising tide of cyber espionage, criminals have gained access to vital systems across potentially hundreds of European energy companies using a sophisticated three-pronged campaign of hacking — potentially allowing them to disrupt energy supplies across the region. The wide-ranging attacks were organised by a group working out of eastern Europe — likely state-sponsored — seem to have focused on espionage, however the intrusions also gave the attackers the ability “to mount sabotage operations against their victims”, according to Symantec.


IBM aims for carbon nanotube transistors around 2020
IBM has announced that it expects to have commercialised its carbon nanotube transistor technology in the early 2020s, thanks to a new design that would allow the transistors to be built on silicon wafers using similar techniques to existing chip manufacturing plants. The semiconductor industry has been working hard for the last few decades on following Moore’s Law, the observation by Intel co-founder Gordon Moore that the number of transistors on a chip tends to double roughly every eighteen months. In recent years, following that trend has become increasingly complex: the ever-shrinking size of the components and the distance between them makes manufacturing difficult, while interference between components must be corrected and designed out.



media news


Google loses US appeal over Street View data collection
The US Supreme Court has rejected Google’s appeal that it has no privacy case to answer over its Street View data collection programme and the internet giant will now face legal action. Back in 2010, Google publicly apologised for accidentally collecting personal data through open WiFi networks while running its Street View programme. The Street View vehicles collected personal data when they drove past the houses of people with unencrypted WiFi networks.
Computer Weekly


BBC board wary of security projects, says info security manager
Asking the BBC’s board to approve new information security projects is usually met with a swift “No”, because data accessibility is seen as a bigger priority, according to the broadcaster’s information security manager, Annamaria Cooper. Speaking at Computing’s Enterprise Security and Risk Management 2014 today, Cooper revealed that while there is a good board “understanding”, there are cultural hurdles at the BBC that always need to be overcome in order to “hook” approval.


Ericsson unveils crowdsourcing platform to encourage cities to get networked
Swedish telecommunications company Ericsson has launched a crowdsourcing platform to map ICT-related initiatives in cities in Northern Europe and Central Asia. The Get Your City Networked project, which includes 22 countries, aims to collect up-to-date and locally relevant information about the cities that will then serve as a tool for the company to explore further opportunities to get people and businesses connected.
The Drum