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France cracks down on Microsoft; Spotify mulls 2017 IPO


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Next in Tech | Ep. 175: Metaverse Advances

France cracks down on Microsoft; Spotify mulls 2017 IPO


*National Data Protection Commission, the data protection authority in France,served a formal notice tostop it from collecting excessive data from users without consent, Reuters reports.The company has reportedly been given three months to comply with the Frenchlaw and "to stop collecting excessive data and tracking browsing by userswithout their consent."

* Spotifyis planning to go public in the second half of 2017, Bloomberg News reports,citing five people familiar with the matter. In March, the Swedish musicstreaming company raised $1 billion in a funding round — which valued thecompany at over $8 billion — terms of which reportedly allow investors toconvert stakes into shares under a 20% discount to the IPO price.


*British Telecom'sbroadband and telephone services were temporarily down for several parts of theU.K. on July 19, due to power issues with one of the company's internetconnection partners, The Daily Telegraph(London) reports,citing a BT spokesman.  The outage, whichaffected 10% of BT's customers, has since beenreportedly fixed.

*Sky plc revampedthe homepage of its Sky+ connected TV platform with a new look, arecommendations tab and a resume watch function, among others. The pay TVoperator also redesigned Sky+'s services homepage and introduced a viewingprogress bar to inform viewers how much of the program has been watched.

*The Japan Professional Football League struck a 10-year, $2billion domestic broadcasting deal with DAZN, a sports streaming service ownedby U.K.-based sports media firm Perform Group. Under the agreement, theJ.League, DAZN and Japanese telecoms conglomerate will also supply J1 top-division stadiums with Wi-Fi technology.


*ProSiebenSat.1 MediaSE's Red Arrow Entertainment Group acquireda majority stake of 65% in U.S.-based independent production company 44 BlueProductions. 44 Blue Productions co-founders Rasha and Stephanie Drachkovitchwill continue lead the unit.

*Axel SpringerSE-owned news site WeltN24 unveiled a one-year partnership withmusic subscription company Spotify, reportsFinanz Nachrichten. The deal enables subscribers of the WELT DIGITAL Komplettpackage to tap into Spotify's premium service at no additional cost.

*Tele München Gruppe finished 2015 with a profit of €236 million and EBITA of€56 million, reportsMediabiz. According to the group, this represents one of its best results inthe last few years.

*German news TV channel N24, owned by WeltN24, announced that its documentarychannel N24 Doku will officially launch Sept. 17, reportsHorizont. The documentary channel will launch just days ahead of competitorKabel Eins Doku.

*AT&T Inc. andOrange SA signed anagreement to collaborate on open source initiatives to standardizesoftware-defined networking and network function virtualization technologies.The French operator noted in a statementthat aligning on a strategic vision to move intelligence from customer hardwareto the network will help reduce costs and complexity.

*Orange Business Services acquired Log'in Consultants, a specialist in desktopvirtualization integration services that allow users to access their desktopfrom any device. According to a statement,the acquisition strengthens the French telecom's desktop virtualizationactivities in Europe and better supports its multinational clients in theirmigration to the cloud.

*Following the public tender offer initiated by for the shares of GameloftSE, Vivendi has requested the AMF to implement the mandatory the squeeze-out ofthe remaining Gameloft shares not held by Vivendi. The move will be implementedon July 26, the date on which Gameloft shares will be delisted from EuronextParis, Vivendi said in a news release.


*The board of OrangeBelgium appointedMichaël Trabbia CEO, effective Sept. 1. Trabbia, who joined Orange in January2011, succeeds Jean-Marc Harion, who will become CEO at Orange Egypt.

*Orange Belgium acquired 10,500 cable TV subscribers since the launch of OrangeTV two months ago, and aims to reach 30,000 by the end of the year, Standaard reports. Orangealso plans to enhance its TV offer, according to the report.

*Vodafone Group Plcunit VodafoneNederland improved 3G and 4G coverage on Zeeland beaches byinstalling about 30 small masts, TotaalTV reports.Vodafone is reportedly prioritizing investments in Zeeland because of  the Vodafone-Ziggo joint venture. ownsZiggo NV.

* ConnectedTVs are gaining popularity among households in the Netherlands, Emerce reports,citing a report by Dutch institute for viewing research SKO. According to thereport, the percentage of Dutch households with a connected TV increased 16% toa total of 37% over the past year.

* DePersgroep launched Topics, a platform that provides subscribers with a largeamount newspaper articles in exchange for a fixed monthly price, NederlandsMedianieuws reports.Articles from Dutch and Belgian newspapers DeMorgen, Het Laatste Nieuws, Algemeen Dagblad, de Volkskrant, Trouw, andParool will reportedly be availablein the new service.


*Online music streaming company Spotify Ltd. is tailoring its service to cater to localtastes in Asia as it prepares to expand in the region, Bloomberg News reports.The strategy includes adding to its content, such as Korean pop music that ispopular in Southeast Asia, and providing different payment options in marketswhere credit cards are less popular, such as Indonesia and the Philippines.

*Savings generated by group-wide cost cutting helped to elevate 's second-quarter 2016profitability, reportsSydsvenskan. Telia wrote down thevalue of Eurasia-based operations by 1 billion Swedish kronor.

*Ericsson AB CEO HansVestberg is coming under increased pressure to resign. Influential share ownersInvestor and Industrivärden want the group's board to begin the search for areplacement, reportsPrivata Affärer. The board and ownersagree the process must not be rushed.

*Telenor ASA isthreatening to stop all modernization works on its copper network and lay fiberinstead unless the Norwegian government alters the direction of its DigitalAgenda program, reportsNorwegian online technology newspaper Computerworld. Telenor wants the DigitalAgenda road-map plan to include reduced regulation that is more conducive tocapital investment.


*France's Lazard Asset Management took a 5.1% holding in , Telecompaper reports,citing a filing with Italian markets regulator Consob. The transaction couldreportedly signal a closer relationship between Mediaset and French media groupVivendi, which acquired the former's pay TV unit Mediaset Premium.

*Iliad SA majorityowner Xavier Niel reduced his potential stake in Telecom Italia SpA to 6.9% from 15%, Telecompaper reports,citing a Consob filing. Niel vowed to dispose of his share options in theItalian telco, after Iliad agreed to buy assets to be sold from the merger between CKHutchison Holdings Ltd.'s 3 Italia and VimpelCom Ltd.'s Wind Telecomunicazioni SpA.

* Inc.rolled out its grocery delivery service Prime Now in Madrid, Spain,Telecompaper reports.Amazon Premium clients with a minimum order of €19 will be able to requestdeliveries in an hour for €5.90 or in two hours for free.

*Spanish telecom regulator CNMC launched a probe into over its alleged failureto finance European video productions, which is required by the country's medialaw. The Orange unit faces a potential fine of up to €200,000 if found guiltyof the offense, Telecompaper reports.

*Telecom Italia and Hewlett Packard Enterprise unit HPE Services Italia wonthe first lot of the tender for providing cloud computing services to Italy'spublic administration. The five-year contract worth €500 million is expected tospeed up the digitization process in public administration.


* ASlovenian court launched a debt settlement procedure against 's Antenna TV SL, whichowns broadcaster Planet TV, STA reports.The procedure was initiated by Planet TV's part-owner .

*Rostelecom PJSCregistered a patent of its national cloud platform at the Russian FederalService for Intellectual Property, or Rospatent, Telecompaper reports,citing More than 700 information systems, mostly in the governmentsector, are using the telco's cloud platform.

*Orange Slovakia tappedbusiness support systems provider Openet to enable its new in-car Wi-Fiservice. Under an extended partnership between the two companies, Openetprovided its technology to enable Wi-Fi connectivity for Orange Slovakia'smobile network.

* EUCommissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs Pierre Moscovici urged theHungarian government to delay its plan to reduce value-added tax on internetconnections to 18% from 27%, the BudapestBusiness Journal reports.Moscovici said that the tax cut, which will take effect Jan. 1, 2017, is notpermitted under existing EU rules.  


: Tech equities have been somewhat out of favor throughout2016, and a close look at tech-focused ETFs underlines the trend.

: The FCC has ensured there is plenty ofsupply for its historic 600 MHz incentive auction. But there is no way toensure demand.

: In this bi-weekly feature, SNL Kaganprovides a roundup of significant recent regulatory events in Europe.

: Linear networks'serialized dramas this summer have failed to connect with many viewers, who areinstead embracing reality, competition fare and ABC's 'Sunday Fun & Games'block.

: S&P Global Market Intelligencepresents a rundown of board changes in the media and communications industries.

: In this monthlyfeature, S&P Global Market Intelligence provides a roundup of news relatedto over-the-top, video-on-demand and other online video initiatives indifferent Eastern European markets.


: Me-TV leads digitalmulticast networks in 24-hour and prime-time ratings, according to Nielsen datathrough May. However, other multicast networks continue to grow ratings andhouseholds.

: Thailand boasts a high degree of onlineparticipation and engagement among its citizens, with widespread social mediausage and heavy consumption of online video. Increasing connectivity across thecountry, meanwhile, is helping bring more people online.


: EBay has been undergoing several efforts torefresh the brand and improve the platform, and its executives said that asecond-quarter beat is evidence that they are working.

Amanda Kelly, Anne Freier,Koen Pijnappels and Gerard O'Dwyer contributed to this report. The Daily Dosehas an editorial deadline of 7 a.m. London time. Some external links mayrequire a subscription.