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SoftBank to launch positioning service; Huawei to sell undersea cable business

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SoftBank to launch positioning service; Huawei to sell undersea cable business

TOP NEWS

* SoftBank Corp. will launch a service that uses satellite signals and its network of mobile base stations to help power agricultural machinery, self-driving cars, drones and other equipment. The new offering, which will be a "Real-Time Kinematic" positioning service, aims to provide positioning with centimeter-level accuracy to enterprises in Japan. The service will begin trials in July and will officially launch nationwide in November.

* Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. will sell its stake in the undersea telecom cable business, Huawei Marine Systems Co. Ltd., Reuters reported. Optical telecom network products company, Hengtong Optic-Electric Co. Ltd., said in a stock exchange filing that it signed a letter of intent with Huawei unit Huawei Tech. Investment Co. Ltd. to buy its 51% stake in Huawei Marine Systems through cash and share issuance. The deal is Huawei's first major asset sale since the U.S. blacklisted the Chinese company, the report said.

JAPAN

* NEC Corp. is looking to expand the application of "NEC the WISE" to cancer drug development that will focus on advanced immunotherapy, Japan Today reported. NEC the WISE, a portfolio of artificial intelligence technologies developed by NEC, will initially conduct clinical trials for individualized neoantigen vaccines in collaboration with French biotechnology company Transgene SA.

* NJK Corp., a subsidiary of NTT DATA Corp., agreed to form a strategic and business alliance with Psychic VR Lab, a Tokyo-based virtual reality developer, in a bid to create new business opportunities in augmented reality, virtual reality and mixed reality.

* In other NTT DATA news, the Japanese IT giant formed a partnership with U.S.-based MagicCube Inc. to secure and power the next generation of payments, acceptance applications and devices.

SOUTH KOREA

* SK Telecom Co. Ltd. partnered with drone developer UCONSYSTEM Co. Ltd. to co-develop 5G-based drone solutions, Chosun Biz reported. The telco will work on 5G communications, artificial intelligence-powered video analysis and 4K low-latency video transfer to incorporate the technologies with UCONSYSTEM's drones.

* LG Display Co. Ltd. has temporarily stopped the operation of the E6-1 manufacturing line in Paju, Gyeonggi Province, which was anticipated to roll out OLED displays for Apple Inc.'s iPhones this year, The Investor reported, citing sources. This was done due to technical glitches.

* KT Corp. and Apple's authorized service provider Antz. Co. Ltd. are going to set up one-stop repair service centers in the first half of 2020, covering all devices sold via the telco's sales shops except for Apple products, Digital Daily reported. The two companies expect the integrated service centers to reduce repair lead time and improve service quality.

* KT is exclusively launching Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd.'s Galaxy Jean2 smartphone June 4 for 253,000 won, ET News reported. The KT-dedicated model comes with a 5.8-inch full-screen infinity-V display and three cameras, one in front and two at the back.

CHINA, HONG KONG AND TAIWAN

* Chinese automotive marketplace TuanChe Ltd. agreed to purchase cloud software developer Longye International Ltd. for 200 million Chinese yuan in a cash-and-stock transaction. TuanChe will finance half the deal using a bridge loan of a U.S. dollar equivalent of 100 million yuan. The remaining half will be paid by issuing 8,366,444 class A ordinary shares to Longye's selling shareholders.

* A Chinese court ruled that Tencent Holdings Ltd.'s QQ browser has been illegally gathering users' information, Sina reported. The court ordered Tencent to immediately stop this from their WeChat and QQ accounts through the QQ browser.

* China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology will soon issue licenses for 5G commercial use, the ministry announced on its official WeChat feed, KrAsia reported. The ministry, however, did not disclose the exact date for 5G commercialization.

* Huawei has established a new department that will work on smart car solutions for vehicle manufacturers, Pandaily reported. The department will offer mobility solutions including IT equipment and applications.

* ZTE Corp. announced partnerships with more than 40 telecommunication network operators around the world for 5G development, Yicai reported. The company has put in 3.09 billion yuan in research and development in the first quarter and has attained around 5,000 5G related patents.

* Baidu Inc. has reappointed one of its founding members, Shi Youcai, to lead sales at the company's recently formed unit, Mobile Ecology Group, KrAsia reported.

INDIA AND SOUTH ASIA

* Vodafone Idea Ltd. CEO, Balesh Sharma, has termed the current base price for 5G airwaves in India as "exorbitant," The Economic Times of India reported. He also announced that the telco will work with Sweden-based Ericsson and China's Huawei for 5G-led field trials while dropping Finland's Nokia Corp. for the process.

* Indian telecom minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has set a 100-day deadline for the initiation of 5G trials in the country, The Economic Times reported. Prasad further added that the next spectrum auctions will be held in 2019 and will include 5G airwaves.

* Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd. promoted Sunita Uchil to the role of executive vice president of the company's international co-production and co-development division, World Screen reported. Previously, Uchil served as Zee's chief business officer for international ad sales and global syndication.

SOUTHEAST ASIA

* Thailand's National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission will recall the 2600 MHz band from state-owned broadcaster MCOT PCL, Prachachat reported. The regulator plans to auction it off to telecom companies along with the 26 GHz and 28 GHz bands later this year.

* Go-Pay, the digital payment arm of the Indonesian ride-hailing company PT Go-Jek Indonesia, will launch a mobile credit service for brick-and-mortar retailers next month, Nikkei Asian Review reported. The company expanded the PayLater feature, which lets users pay for transactions on the Go-Jek platform at the end of the month.

* Following a court ruling, Thai telco True Corp. will not have to pay an access charge of 59.62 billion baht to state-owned telco TOT Public Co. Ltd., Krungthep Turakij reported. TOT is still entitled to an appeal within 30 days after the initial ruling.

* GrabTaxi Holdings Pte. Ltd.'s electric scooter service, GrabWheels, is now available in the Terminal 3 of Indonesia's Soekarno-Hatta International Airport. The service is free during the test period, which is expected to take place until mid-2019.

AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND

* Uniti Wireless Ltd. completed the acquisitions of Fone Dynamics Pty. Ltd. and Call Dynamics Pty. Ltd., with the settlement of the Fone Dynamics purchase price to occur with the issue of ordinary fully paid shares, to be made following receipt of shareholder approval. Meanwhile, settlement of the Call Dynamics purchase price occurred, with the issue of 978,100 ordinary fully paid shares, with 50% escrowed for 6 months and the remainder escrowed for 12 months together with an initial cash payment, and the balance payable in 12 months.

FEATURED NEWS

Data Dispatch: Dollar, yen, Swiss franc top G-10 forex in May as investors seek safe havens: Global economic and political uncertainty drove investors into traditional safe havens in May, with the Swiss franc and Japanese yen the strongest-performing G-10 currencies.

FEATURED RESEARCH

Economics of Internet: US TV, radio digital and online ad revenue projections through 2029: Advertisers continue to seek out efficient targeting from digital and online advertising while digital ad platforms for both TV and radio have become more robust, leading to growth in the segment on both sides.

Nozomi Ibayashi, Myungran Ha, Emily Lai, Ed Eduard and Wil Hathaway contributed to this report. The Daily Dose has an editorial deadline of 7 a.m. Hong Kong time. Some external links may require a subscription. Links are current as of publication time, and we are not responsible if those links are unavailable later.