THE WRAP: Vodafone shake-up, Nokia and Microsoft make out

Vodafone's new CEO Vittorio Colao has wasted little time stamping his authority on the company: amid a raft of other changes announced this week, former France Telecom finance director Michel Combes is Vodafone's the new CEO for Europe, while said Paul Donovan, CEO of the existing emerging-markets group is to leave.

Other changes are afoot at Vodafone too. Its global head of terminals, Jens Schulte-Bockum, told analysts that Vodafone Italy is already experimenting with Apple to deliver a Vodafone-branded "portal experience" via its App Store. It seems likely that Apple will allow the Vodafone portal onto the iPhone, but likely to veto competitive apps from operators.

Nokia shocked already reeling stock markets by issuing a profits warning for Q3. It blamed rivals' price cuts.

The Finnish handset maker promptly snuggled more closely to Microsoft: the company will now offer Microsoft's Exchange ActiveSync email service to all 80 million of its S60 third-edition handsets in the market as a free download.

Nokia also said it was looking to expand through acquisitions of niche companies.

In France, Orange finally got round to adding 3G to its converged, UMA-based Unik offering.

In the US, RIM's BlackBerry accounted for more than half of smartphone sales in Q2 at the expense of Apple and Palm.

Finally, it's been something of a mixed week for Google. On the one  hand the search and online advertising giant has thrown its weight behind a semi-altruistic-sounding, US$750 million (€532.3 million) plan to bring internet access to 3 billion people in Africa and other emerging markets through a new, satellite-based venture, O3b Networks. The other main parties involved are the American media mogul John Malone and HSBC .

On the other, it was obliged to withdraw dodgy terms of usage conditions for its beta version of its new browser Chrome and already security problems have been identified in the prototype browser.

Still, it's nothing compared to the bad week router maker Ciena had. Its shares fell 25% after its CEO commented on the slowdown in Tier 1 operators' spending. Ouch.