News bytes: Alca-Lu wins VoLTE deal in China

Rob Powell/Telecom Ramblings
11 Aug 2015

Alcatel-Lucent has won a potentially important VoLTE deal in the Far East. China Mobile, the biggest wireless operator in the world, has picked the Alcatel-Lucent's Rapport software to simplify its services onto a single platform. China Mobile will deploy the software in nine provinces as well as the cities of Shanghai and Chongqing.

Is VoLTE really here this time? Ericsson also had a VoLTE win to announce this morning. Telenor Sweden will be using their solution to power a core upgrade enabling them to offer both VoLTE and WiFi calling.

In its earnings report last week, CenturyLink warned that it plans to cut its workforce. They will be eliminating 1,000 jobs across the US, out of 44,400 they currently have on their rolls. While that's not going to be much fun for those affected, it's also no more than the company cut over the prior year, as last summer their headcount stood at 45,500. Now Verizon isn't the only one negotiating with the CWA and other unions without a net. When the existing contract with AT&T expired on Saturday night, workers stayed on as negotiations continued.

With CenturyLink laying off workers and both AT&T and Verizon trying to negotiate concessions, I can't help but wondering if this pot could boil over without much warning. Meanwhile, on another front, AT&T is offering DirecTV customers credits to switch wireless providers -- big, aggressive credits. But war was already the state of affairs in wireless of course.

And in the category of jobs obtained, EdgeConneX has hired a CTO as it continues to add muscle to its management team. Don MacNeil, formerly COO over at XO Communications after a long run at that company, will be taking over guidance of the company's technological vision. Former XO executives have been resurfacing across the industry at a prodigious rate over the past few years. I still marvel at how long Carl Icahn has made that company tread water.

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