Unfortunately, most Americans never get to hear such voices. Instead, most Americans rely on the mainstream media to do much of their thinking for them. And right now the mainstream media is insisting that we are not in a stock market bubble… …
Telecoms firms ‘discuss pan-Europe network’ 09/01/2013 14:43 CET
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The European Commission voted on Tuesday in Brussels to end roaming fees for calls, texts and internet in favour of a single telecoms market across the continent.
Concrete details will be agreed upon and published within the next six weeks and the proposals could come into effect as soon as July 1, 2014.
The idea behind the reforms is to encourage a consolidation of European mobile network operators with greater eventual investment in the face of rapid growth in internet traffic.
Neelie Kroes, the European Commissioner for Digital Agenda who is pushing for the changes, said: “I am glad that basic internet is now virtually everywhere in the EU, but we can’t get stuck playing yesterday’s game. The data shows that the biggest problem this year is the lack of investment in very fast networks, and a continuing lack of a real telecoms single market. The problem is clear and our response via a single telecoms market package will be too.”
In a speech last month she said of the reforms: “It’s how we can tell the world that Europe does “get” digital, it is how we can show voters that the EU does listen. Telecoms touches everything – and users are developing massive expectations of it.”
However, telecoms bosses believe their industry is being unfairly targeted, although commissioners argue that operators will gain in the long term as more customers use their phones, and particularly the internet, whilst abroad.
With roaming fees scrapped, officials believe the single market will allow foreign operators to compete for other countries’ customers. This could lead to alliances and mergers, similar to those seen in the airline industry.
Roaming tariffs in the EU have been an important project for the European Commission over the past few years. The cost of making and receiving calls, sending texts and using mobile internet have all decreased since 2007, when excessive charges were originally tackled.
The graph below shows how roaming tariffs have decreased.
Source: EU Commission
Copyright © 2013 euronews
A new joint report from research firms App Annie and International Data Corporation reveals that Android and iOS will continue to eat away at market share once owned solely by portable game consoles like the Nintendo 3DS and the PlayStation Vita. …
A top executive at Apple who was a close associate of Steve Jobs said on Thursday that he had thrown himself into negotiations with the major publishing houses as Apple entered the e-book market because “Steve was near the end of his life.” …
Wants a single European telecoms market …
Smartphones and tablets have been gaining ground in the mobile gaming space for a while now — much to the dismay of Sony and Nintendo — but now Apple is really getting serious about this booming market with iOS 7. The upcoming software update for iDevices is said to have… …
Len Blavatnik, a Ukrainian-born American businessman, together with Summit Partners and Tengelmann Group have injected the money in a cash-for-equity deal in the Russian startup. Lamoda has hailed the deal as “the largest investment ever made in Russian e-commerce”, and the company shows no sign of slowing down. “Lamoda is a dynamic e-commerce company with strong growth and an experienced management team,” Blavatnik said in a statement. The capital injection on the heels of another $100 million Lamoda’s sister site in Southeast Asia, Zaolra, received in March 2013, which was also funded in part by Summit Partners and the Tengelmann Group. In a comment that ruffled a few shareholder feathers in 2011, Lamoda owner Oliver Samwer announced his company needed a more aggressive strategy, and called for, in his words, a ‘blitzkrieg’. The ‘blitzkrieg’ has arrived in Moscow. Lamoda made its Russian ambition a reality in 2011, and has since become a leading Russian fashion site with more than twenty million visitors monthly. The site catalog has over 1 million items, ranging from sporty Nike gear to Lacoste accessories. The Russian site boasts 1 million customers and it also operates a second site in Kazakhstan. Lamoda was established in 2011 through the German startup incubator Rocket Internet, which has made a name for itself in startups with a very simple business model: copy and paste. Take what works one place and transplant it into another market. Lamoda has revolutionized the emerging market business with this simple, yet seemingly impervious model. Next stop, Ukraine? Niels Tonsen, one of the German co-founders and the CEO of Lamoda told TechCrunch he will use the funding to continue the company’s expansion model in the emerging CIS block, citing Ukraine as an example. Tonsen said the company will not chase after new acquisitions, that it prefers to stay with the start up model and build from the ground up. “We have a private label, and we will continue to push into that part,” he said. Blavatnik, an Odessa native, emigrated to the United States in 1978, and is the founder and chairman of Access industries, which is part of Warner Music. As of March 2013 Forbes estimated Blavatnik’s fortune to be $16 billion. With increased internet-access and a booming demand from a growing middle class, startups in Russia and its neighboring countries are piquing the interest of international investors. Both eBay and Amazon have increased their profile in Russia, and in March, South African retailer Naspers bought into Lamoda rival Avito by merging their classified businesses and $50 million in cash. In 2011, fashion rival Ozon picked up $100 million in 2011 from various investors. In September 2012 the company reported a value of $40 to 80 million. Other investments — and a common focus for online fashion sites — may get made in technologies that will help Lamoda offer better visualizations for internet shoppers to pick outfits and looks they’re more likely to keep than return. And like other companies in the Samwer portfolio, Lamoda may work with other Rocket Internet startups. “We’re considering everything that could make sense,” he says. “But some like Payleven, which relies on mobile payments with cards, wouldn’t make that relevant at the moment here.” Lamoda Express Lamoda runs its own logistics operation to deliver products free of charge. Tonsen said that having its own courier network is costly, but is the most effective. “If you are able to offer next-day delivery and a high service level, you really see that those clients give us high scores in customer satisfaction and they come back much more often than they would if we deliver through the Russian post office,” he said. The Russian Post Offices is notorious for tardy deliveries, lost packages, and a convoluted infrastructure. Lamoda operates out of a big warehouse just south of Moscow with a large open office with no cubicles, with fashion models running around. It’s like a constant photo shoot. …