* Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. is in early-stage discussions to license its 5G network technology to some U.S. telecom providers, Vincent Pang, senior vice president and director at the Chinese company, told Reuters. The telecom equipment provider received interest in both a long-term partnership or a one-off transfer, although it would still be "a long journey" before any transaction is finalized, Pang reportedly said.
* Facebook Inc. signed a deal with News Corp. for headlines from The Wall Street Journal and other Dow Jones & Co. Inc. media properties in the social media giant's upcoming news section, according to the Journal. The deal also covers the New York Post, The Washington Post, BuzzFeed News and Business Insider. Facebook will pay a licensing fee to News Corp. for the headlines.
* CNN (US) played down President Donald Trump's threat to sue the network, terming the threat a "desperate PR stunt," Variety reports. Trump, in a letter to CNN, had threatened to sue the network for violating the Lanham Act and making misrepresentations to the public and advertisers about its content.
* Netflix Inc.'s quarterly earnings revealed Wall Street's worst fears had not come to pass, but with Disney+ set to bow in the fourth quarter, its biggest competitive test yet may lie ahead. Netflix's stock initially jumped after it reported earnings Oct. 16 but then seesawed as investors and analysts digested the company's acknowledgment that rising competition from Walt Disney Co. and other deep-pocketed rivals is likely to lead to tougher times in the near term.
Internet & OTT
* The U.S. Federal Communications Commission is set to vote on an item that would qualify over-the-top streaming service as "effective competition" for cable in certain markets, the agency confirmed Oct. 18. Under the Communications Act, if a cable company is subject to effective competition, basic cable rates will not be regulated by the FCC, a state or a franchising authority.
* AT&T Inc. hiked the price for its online television service, AT&T TV Now, Bloomberg News reports. The company notified about 1.3 million customers about the price hike, which will be effective from the next month. Subscribers who were paying $50 a month for the "Plus" package will see prices climb to $65, while those paying $70 for the 65-channel "Max" package will be charged $80 a month.
* Disney is shutting down its Disney Family Movies On Demand service days before the launch of its video-on-demand streaming service, Disney+, according to a post on Comcast Corp.'s Xfinity website. As of Oct. 31, Disney Family Movies will no longer be available through Comcast or any other provider.
* AmazeVR Inc. penned a deal with Atlas V and Felix & Paul Studios to distribute the content of the two studios on its platform, Variety reports. Under the deal, "Gloomy Eyes," the animated zombie tale narrated by Colin Farrell, will be coming to AmazeVR. Felix & Paul Studios will also bring "Space Explorers," "The People's House," "Through the Ages" and "Strangers," among others, to AmazeVR.
* AT&T's Xandr advertising unit acquired clypd Inc., a data-driven TV advertising platform for broadcast and cable TV networks, for an undisclosed sum. As part of Xandr, clypd will accelerate converged buying and selling across addressable TV, data-driven linear TV, mobile and over-the-top channels on streaming video services, according to an official blog post.
* The European Commission granted regulatory clearance to Infineon Technologies AG's proposed acquisition of U.S. chipmaker Cypress Semiconductor Corp. The commission said the deal does not raise any antitrust concerns because Infineon and Cypress have limited overlaps in their businesses and the companies have "credible" competitors.
* Mobile video service Quibi selected T-Mobile US Inc. as its official telecommunications partner for its April 2020 launch, Variety reports. Quibi plans to launch its service April 6, 2020, at $5 a month for a version with ads and $8 for an ad-free tier.
* Disney's "Maleficent: Mistress Of Evil" raked in $36 million to jump to the top spot at the domestic box office for the Oct. 18 weekend, with Warner Bros.' "Joker" dropping to No. 2 with $29.2 million and Sony Corp.'s "Zombieland: Double Tap" at the third spot with $26.7 million, according to Comscore Inc. United Artists Releasing's "The Addams Family" was at No. 4 with $16.1 million, while Paramount Pictures Corp.'s "Gemini Man" took the fifth spot with $8.5 million.
The day ahead
Early morning futures indicators pointed to a higher opening for the U.S. market.
In Asia, the Hang Seng was up 0.08% to 26,740.24, while the Nikkei 225 inched up 0.25% to 22,548.90.
In Europe, around midday, the FTSE 100 was up 0.12% to 7,159.47, while the Euronext 100 was up 0.14% to 1,090.88.
On the macro front
No notable reports are due out today.
Click here to read about today's financial markets, setting out the factors driving stocks, bonds and currencies around the world ahead of the New York open.
Data Dispatch Asia-Pacific: China's new tech board stocks drop after stellar opening: Fewer than a fifth of companies listed on the Science and Technology Innovation Board, or Star Market, were trading above their first-day closing prices by mid-October, S&P Global Market Intelligence data shows.
The Daily Dose Europe: European countries on Libra; ProSiebenSat stake; Italy's digital tax: France, Germany and Italy are preparing measures to block Facebook's Libra, two investors acquired stake in ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE, and Italy approved to impose a 3% tax on digital companies.
The Daily Dose Asia-Pacific: Huawei in 5G licensing talks; SoftBank's WeWork rescue; China Unicom fund: Huawei is in talks to license its 5G network technology to U.S. telecom providers, SoftBank Group Corp. is working on a financing package for WeWork Cos. Inc., and China Unicom is setting up a fund to support the video production and smart devices industries.
The Best Of: Editor's picks: Netflix's growth prospects; Google's new Pixel phones: Stories about Netflix's growth prospects and encroaching competition, and Google LLC's new Pixel phones, laptop and other devices are featured in the editor's technology, media and telecommunications top picks for the week ended Oct. 18.
The Best Of: Most read: AI's large carbon footprint; NBC RSNs' sports betting advertising: Articles about the risks posed by artificial intelligence's large carbon footprint and NBC RSNs' sports betting advertising were among the most read in technology, media and telecommunications news for the week ended Oct. 18.
MarketWeek: Netflix, IBM stumble amid earnings; Alphabet jumps on new Pixel phones: A slew of earnings reports and other activities drove movements in several major tech stocks during the week ended Oct. 18.
Broadcast Investor: Top 50 TV station groups: Nexstar/Tribune deal closure reshapes industry: Our ranking includes the latest pending and completed deals as of Oct. 16, inclusive of the Nexstar Media Group Inc./Tribune Media Co. deal and spinoffs to TEGNA Inc. and E.W. Scripps Co. Other recent deals include Apollo Global Management Inc.'s with Cox Media Group Inc. and Entertainment Studios Inc.'s with USA Television Holdings LLC.
Economics of TV & Film: SVOD services highlight local original strategies: Streaming service executives discuss programming strategies at MIPCOM.
Global Multichannel: 2019 LatAm groups report: América Móvil's new Latin American expansion drive: The largest telecommunications provider in Latin America and the Caribbean has seen subscriber growth stagnate as many markets reach maturity levels, but it is actively expanding via acquisitions in both Central America and Brazil.
Wireless Investor: New: Global mobile index: Kagan provides links to its current and historical profiles of mobile communications markets.
Global Multichannel: Philippines TV market adapting in the face of ad declines: Lower ad placements have impacted the Philippines' leading general entertainment terrestrial networks since 2016, eroding advertising revenues on traditional TV platforms.
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