News In Brief: Amazon, Claranet, Svyazinvest, Google, Telenor

Amazon has expanded the compatibility of its Kindle reader to Apple’s Mac computers. Kindle for Mac is a free application that offers full access to Kindle Store’s 450,000 books, and builds on similar applications covering the iPhone, iPod Touch, BlackBerry OS, and desktop PCs.

Lower smartphone ASPs are beginning to take their toll on revenue growth. Figures from the NPD Group show revenues grew 21% year-on-year in 4Q09, compared to 37% growth between 4Q07 and 4Q08. The firm states the proportion of smartphones sold for $150 (€168) or less hit 66% in 4Q09, up from 50% in the same period in 2008.
 
Managed services provider Claranet is selling US subsidiary VIA Networks to Canadian hosting firm PEER1 Hosting. Claranet will partner with PEER1 to continue offering services in North America, and says European customer’s managed services won’t be affected by the sale.
 
Russian state telco Svyazinvest has chosen to follow the LTE upgrade path. Under tender rules, the company may only source equipment from Russian vendors, although just which vendors will be considered local is still yet to be settled on.
 
Google is accusing Viacom of secretly uploading clips onto YouTube and then claiming that the videos had been stolen or leaked. Viacom has countered by claiming that YouTube's creators sometimes deliberately uploaded copyright clips themselves.
 
Hungary's second largest mobile operator Pannon, will rebrand itself under parent Telenor's brand name. Telenor owns 100% of Pannon/Telenor Hungary.
 
Net profit at Italian wireless firm Wind Telecomunicazioni fell 20% to €308 million in 2009, as higher taxes and interest terms took their toll. The firm’s tax bill doubled to €273 million, and revenue grew 4.7% to €5.73 billion, Reuters reports.
 
Alcatel-Lucent claims a new 4G wireless packet core offers ten-times the performance of 3G. The 4G core, unveiled yesterday, is compatible with GPRS/EDGE, HSPA, HSPA+ and LTE, and is scheduled to be available in 2H10,
 
Ukraine’s competition commission has approved a merger of OAO VimpelCom and Kyivstar, the Wall St Journal reports.
 
PT Indonesia Comnets Plus (ICON+) has chosen Nokia Siemens Networks to manage expansion of its backbone to Sumatra.
 
Hungarian carrier Pannon will re-brand as Telenor in May. The news comes a day after Telenor launched a fibre-based IPTV service in Nordic countries.
 

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