The telecom department (DoT) has been directed by the telecom tribunal to clear the pending merger of Reliance Communications (RCom) and Sistema Shyam Teleservices (SSTL) in the next two weeks (by the end of the first week of October). The proposed merger has been delayed for nearly two years.
In its mission to achieve its target of 25 billion digital transactions by March 2018, the Government is working on a strategy to promote cashless transactions, and is looking at ways to make digital payments cheaper than cash, and also digitise recurring payments, such as utility bill payments and recharges.
Airtel may be in trouble regarding its Payment Bank, as the Aadhaar-issuing body, Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) has sent notices to Bharti Airtel and Airtel Payments Bank over its retailers allegedly opening payments bank accounts without taking "informed consent" of customers who go for Aadhaar-based mobile SIM verification.
According to the US Justice Department, Telia, the Swedish telecom firm, has been asked to pay fines of nearly $1 billion to settle a bribery case brought by US, Swedish and Dutch authorities. Stockholm-based Telia Company AB, whose securities traded in New York, "corruptly built a lucrative telecommunications business in Uzbekistan, using bribe payments wired around the world through accounts here in New York City," Acting US Attorney Joon Kim said in a statement.
The battle for IUC (Interconnect usage charges) continues since it was lowered to 6 paise. In the meantime, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has said that IUC between operators cannot be considered as a source of revenue, but should be treated as a reimbursement for calls being terminated on a rival network.
The telecom regulator TRAI has extended the last date to receive the comments on the Consultation Paper on Auction of Spectrum in 700 MHz, 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz, 2300 MHz, 2500 MHz, 3300-3400 MHz and 3400-3600 MHz bands.
Sourcing original and local content is on the radar of Amazon Prime Video. Ina latest move, it has announced a line-up of six new comedy series created by some of India’s top comedians. Set to debut on Amazon Prime Video, and produced by OML (Only Much Louder), the new comedy series will run from now till February 2018.
As per the latest forecasts from Media Partners Asia (MPA), Pay TV revenue in India is expected to cross the $10 billion mark in 2017. The Forecasts say that the industry revenues are expected to expand by 10.6% this year, picking up the pace again after a 6.3% growth rate in 2016.
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