The Weekly Wrap 15, March 24, 2017: Vodafone/Idea! 5G spectrum! Zero rating!

Weekly Wrap 15

Weekly Wrap 15 features John Tanner and Tony Poulos discussing the news highlights from the week that was.

For the week ending March 24:

It was the week that India’s mobile market consolidated further with the expected merger of Vodafone India and Idea Cellular, with Vodafone taking the biggest stake in the venture valued at $23.2 billion.

It was also the week that Hong Kong’s Communications Authority finally unveiled plans to allocate 5G spectrum in the 3.4-3.7 GHz, 26 GHz and 28 GHz bands in 2019. It’s good news for mobile operators, but for satellite operators occupying the 3.5-GHz band, it could add new fuel to the fire of its long-running global battle to keep terrestrial cellular out of the extended C-band.

Speaking of long running battles, Tony and John also look at this week’s tie-up between SK Telecom and Niantic’s Pokemon GO, which includes a zero-rating offer for players that may not play well in Korea where net neutrality is supported by the regulator.

And finally, it was the week that the US and the UK announced security rules for select airports in the Middle East and North Africa requiring travelers to put their laptops, tablets and other electronic devices besides smartphones into checked baggage – which Tony and John agree is more irritating than effective as a security measure.

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