Struggling US mobile operator Leap Wireless has reported a widening of second-quarter losses owing to debt repayments and dwindling revenues as its customer base shrinks.
The operator – recently the target of a $1.2 billion takeover bid from AT&T (Dallas, TX, USA) that has yet to secure regulatory approval – saw its net loss grow to $156.4 million for the three months ending June 2013, from $46 million in the year-earlier quarter.
Revenues, meanwhile, shrank by 7% over the same period, to $731.5 million.
Ericsson and STMicroelectronics have announced the completion of the process to split up ST-Ericsson, the troubled mobile chip joint venture they founded in 2008.
Having reported a sequence of losses since it came into existence, ST-Ericsson (Geneva, Switzerland) was marked for closure by its parents in March this year after failing to attract interest from prospective buyers.
Reliance Communications, India’s third-biggest mobile operator, has reported a 33% decline in profits for the three months ending June 2013, to INR1.08 billion ($17.8 million), despite growing revenues by 1%, to INR53.15 billion, over the same period.
The sales improvement comes amid a lessening of competition in India’s mobile market and follows encouraging signals from Bharti Airtel (New Delhi, India), the country’s leading player, and Idea Cellular (Mumbai, India), another rival.
T-Mobile Austria has filed a challenge to the terms of an auction due to be held in September for frequencies that will enable operators to build fourth-generation (4G) networks, its lawyer said.
The move may create uncertainty around the auction for the 4G Long-Term Evolution (LTE) networks, which aims to raise at least 526 million euros ($698 million) and is necessary before 4G networks can be rolled out nationwide.
Spain's biggest telecoms operator Telefonica signed a deal with No. 4 provider Yoigo on Thursday allowing it to use its rival's superfast mobile Internet frequencies in exchange for access to its broadband assets.
Telefonica (Madrid, Spain), the only operator in Spain that does not currently provide 4G services, will have full use of Yoigo's (Alcobendas, Spain) superfast spectrum, while the smaller player will now be able to compete in the attractive market of bundling fixed-line and mobile telephone services.
The Czech telecoms regulator has had talks with potential bidders in an auction of mobile spectrum frequencies besides those that took part in an aborted sale in March, the office said on Tuesday.
The Czech Telecommunications Office (CTU) expects to start a new auction of frequencies to build fourth-generation mobile networks, marketed as 4G LTE, by the middle of August.
AT&T has reported a 2.1% drop in net income for the three months ending June 2013, to $3.82 billion, as rising costs ate into its revenues.
The telecoms giant flagged a 1.6% increase in consolidated revenues, to $32.1 billion, thanks to strong sales of wireless products including smartphones and mobile data plans.
The company boasted net contract additions in its postpaid wireless business of 551,000, up from just 296,000 in the three months ending March and 320,000 a year earlier, and said the performance was its best in a second quarter in four years.
Spanish operator Telefonica has agreed an €8.1 billion ($10.7 billion) takeover of E-Plus, the German mobile operator owned by KPN of the Netherlands.
By merging E-Plus with its own German subsidiary, Telefonica (Madrid, Spain) expects to become the largest operator in the country, overtaking both Deutsche Telekom (Bonn, Germany) and Vodafone (Dusseldorf, Germany).
The transaction is to be financed through a mixture of cash and stock in two phases but includes a total cash payment of €5 billion and a stake in the resulting company of 17.6%.
Europeans are suffering because EU member states are taking too long to award valuable spectrum needed for mobile broadband services, according to European Commission vice president Neelie Kroes.
In a statement released this week, Kroes said nearly half the EU’s member states have missed January 2013 deadlines set for the award of 800MHz spectrum.
Despite criticizing the laggards, the European Commission has “reluctantly” agreed to nine of the 14 requests for further postponement.
After five years of blistering growth sales of high-end smartphones have hit a plateau and the $2 trillion industry - telecom carriers, handset makers and content providers - is buckling up for a bumpier ride as growth shifts to emerging markets, primarily in Asia.
While carrier subsidies have helped drive sales of high-end devices in mature markets, the next growth chapter will be in emerging markets where cost-conscious users demand cheaper gadgets and cheaper access to cheaper services.