Showing posts with label Poland. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Poland. Show all posts

Monday, April 25, 2022

Ericsson's factory in Poland hits 5G milestone

Ericsson has produced one million 5G radio products at the Flex Tczew factory in Poland. 

The main products manufactured in the Tczew factory are basebands and radio modules, which combine to form the 5G base station.

In April this year, Ericsson will also start production of the latest generation of radio, the dual-band Radio 4490, which consumes 25% less power and is lighter than the current product.

"Nearly three years ago we decided to expand the production of 5G radios with our production partner Flex in their Tczew factory. Today we have reached a significant milestone with the millionth 5G radio product rolling off the production line” says Martin Mellor, Head of Ericsson in Poland. “This is a proud moment for us, and I would like to thank our hardworking team and our partner Flex for making it happen. In a very short time Tczew has become one of the company's main production operations, supporting our customers with 5G network rollouts across Europe."

Monday, November 22, 2021

T-Mobile Polska to deploy Ciena for 500–800G wavelengths

 T-Mobile Polska will deploy a coherent optical solution from Ciena for its high-performance, flexible 800G network. 

Specifically,  T-Mobile Polska is deploying Ciena’s WaveLogic 5 Extreme coherent optics over a 6500 fully flexible colorless, directionless, and contentionless photonic system. The carrier plans offer a new long-distance 400 Gigabit Ethernet (400GbE) service to its enterprise, content provider, and wholesale customers.

Ciena said its solution will be used to provide high-capacity 500Gbps–800Gbps wavelength connectivity, low latency, and reliability, making it possible to transport services such as 5G, cloud, and data center interconnect (DCI) at a lower cost per bit. Additionally, encryption capabilities allow for secure transmission of sensitive financial and government data.The network is managed by Ciena’s Manage, Control and Plan (MCP) domain controller, allowing for operational efficiency and quick turnup of new services.

“There’s increasing demand for ‘big pipe’ connectivity throughout Poland, and our innovative coherent optical solution is helping T-Mobile Polska roll out the high-speed services that a digital economy requires,” states Virginie Hollebecque, Vice President and Leader of EMEA at Ciena.

Sunday, October 31, 2021

UPC Poland picks Juniper for PTX10008 core router

 UPC Poland, Liberty Global’s largest revenue-generating operation in Central and Eastern Europe and Poland’s largest cable TV operator, selected Juniper to provide a new, 400G-ready network to power its UPC Poland’s international core infrastructure. UPC Poland’s network provides broadband internet, digital television, mobile and digital telephony (VoIP) services to millions of consumers and a range of 1 Gbps business voice and data services. 

The deployment features Juniper's latest generation PTX10008 Series Router. The first network node has already been successfully deployed in Poznan, with another in Warsaw to follow. A further three nodes will then be rolled out to create a nationwide infrastructure to underpin UPC Poland’s digital transformation.

“Increasingly, service providers need to balance cost, capacity and performance with sustainability factors in their networks. UPC Poland’s deployment demonstrates that less can be more with intelligent solutions that combine physical and virtual innovations to deliver the dynamic, responsible network of the future,” stated Brendan Gibbs, Vice-President Automated WAN Solutions, Juniper Networks.

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Orange multi-core fibre with Infinera ICE6 800G

Orange Polska, in collaboration with Infinera and InPhoTech group, demonstrated the ability to transmit 11.2 Tb/s using multi-core fiber and Infinera ICE6 800G technology. 

The multi-core fiber, which was developed within the InPhoTech group in cooperation with the Maria Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin and with the support of the Photonics and Fibre Optics Cluster, allows transmission in seven parallel cores simultaneously.

The experiment used two channels sending data at a speed of 1.6 Tb/s, in each of the 7 cores simultaneously. This gave a total transmission of 11.2 Tb/s. The quality of the signal measured by such parameters as Q-factor and bit error rate (BER) was fully compliant with the applicable standards.

“At Orange Polska, we know how important technological innovations are, and we are constantly testing new, advanced telecommunication solutions. We also know that the demand for high-speed transfer is growing rapidly, and the pandemic-driven spread of remote online work, learning and commerce has further accelerated this growth. In the near term, the next challenge in this area will be the deployment of the 5G technology. That’s why we’re constantly investing in the development of our infrastructure, while keeping a watchful eye on the R&D activities of industry manufacturers that could help us deliver reliable services to our customers in the future,” said Piotr Jaworski, Management Board Member in charge of Network and Technology.

“We are delighted to have partnered with Orange and Infinera to achieve record transmission. We are a pioneer in the development of next-generation multi-core optical fibres. By combining our product with Infinera’s innovative technology and testing them in Orange’s innovation lab, we were able to demonstrate record-breaking data capabilities,” said Tomasz Nasiłowski, Ph.D., President of the Board of InPhoTech.

“Thanks to our tests, we already know that the transmission capability in seven-core C-band fibre is as high as 296 Tb/s. These are record numbers, but not the end of our capabilities. Using the entire transmission spectrum, i.e. all available bands – our fibre will be able to achieve throughputs at the level of petabits per second (Pb/s) or thousands of terabits. I am glad that our Polish optical fibre is becoming a real answer to the global telecommunication barriers,” said Krzysztof Witoń, CEO of IPT Fiber responsible for the deployment of multi-core fibre optics.

“The success of the ICE6 trial with Orange and InPhoTech highlights the tremendous value provided by Infinera’s innovative 800G solution, which can seamlessly and effectively perform across standard fiber and new fibers like InPhoTech’s innovative multicore fiber,” – said Jan Peters, VP Business Development Infinera.

NTT demos 118 Tbit/s transmission on multi-core fibre

NTT, together with six partners, KDDI Research, Sumitomo Electric Industries, Fujikura, Furukawa Electric, NEC and Chiba Institute of Technology (CIT), announced a demonstration of what is claimed as the highest transmission capacity of 118.5 Tbit/s using a multi-core fibre with four optical paths within the same diameter as currently used fibre.NTT noted that a conventional glass diameter of 125 µm in accordance with the international standard enables...

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Google Cloud region opens in Warsaw

Google Cloud activated a new region in Warsaw, Poland.

The Google Cloud Warsaw region has three availability zones and offers a portfolio of key Google Cloud products, including Compute Engine, App Engine, Google Kubernetes Engine, Cloud Bigtable, Cloud Spanner, and BigQuery.

Warsaw joins the existing 24 Google Cloud regions.

In 2019, Google announced a strategic partnership with Poland’s Domestic Cloud Provider (DCP), which was founded jointly by PKO Bank Polski and the Polish Development Fund.

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Poland's PLAY deploys ADVA's timing solution for 5G-ready network

PLAY, the leading mobile phone network in Poland with over 15 million subscribers, has deployed ADVA's Oscilloquartz timing solution to provide LTE Advanced services throughout Poland and prepare its network for 5G.

The PTP grandmaster with dual integrated GNSS antenna enables Play delivers resilient and accurate Precision Time Protocol (PTP) frequency and phase synchronization. PLAY is migrating its radio access network from GNSS RF antennas and coax cables to standard copper and fiber Ethernet cabling. ADVA’s long-term partner NAVI also played a key role in the project.

“This deployment is about taking our RAN infrastructure to the next level. ADVA’s versatile and compact devices are easy to install in a wide range of outdoor locations. And, with low-touch provisioning and power over Ethernet, installation is even simpler and more cost-effective,” said Michał Ziółkowski, CTO, Play. “This solution delivers the extremely precise timing required for next-generation connectivity. With the OSA 5405 ensuring accurate and robust phase synchronization, we can offer unique LTE Advanced services and prepare for the 5G future.”

Sunday, September 29, 2019

Google Cloud region planned for Warsaw

Google is looking to open a new data center region in Warsaw to better serve the enterprise market in Poland and the broader Central and Eastern Europe. The new Google Cloud region will have three zones to protect against service disruptions, and will launch with a portfolio of key products, including Compute Engine, App Engine, Google Kubernetes Engine, Cloud Bigtable, Cloud Spanner, and BigQuery.

Google has formed a strategic partnership with Poland’s Domestic Cloud Provider (DCP), which was founded jointly by PKO Bank Polski and the Polish Development Fund. DCP become a reseller of Google Cloud services.

Google Cloud customers are currently served by 20 cloud regions and 61 availability zones.

“This is an important moment for the Polish economy. We are very proud to partner with Google Cloud and to see them bring a new cloud region to Warsaw. Global enterprises are already building their competitive advantage on Google Cloud and now we will be able to offer customers in Poland the same advanced technology available worldwide,” said Michał Potoczek, CEO of Domestic Cloud Provider. “We believe in a multi-cloud strategy. A Google Cloud region, together with our own infrastructure, will allow us to build hybrid services which will bring even more value to our customers.”

Monday, September 2, 2019

U.S. and Poland sign 5G Pact

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki signed a 5G cooperation pact that call for all network equipment vendors to be given a “rigorous evaluation”, including whether they are controlled by a foreign government, and be subject to “independent judicial review”.  Huawei is not mentioned by name.

The Trump administration is pushing U.S. allies to impose a ban on Huawei.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Poland's PSNC deploys ADVA 100G in PIONIER R&E network

ADVA Optical Networking announced that the Poland's Poznań Supercomputing and Networking Center (PSNC) has deployed the FSP 3000 equipped with 100 Gbit/s core technology into its PIONIER network for the research and education community.

PIONIER, a major European R&E network, links high-performance computer centres in five cities across Poland, as well as providing onward connectivity to the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland.

The new 96-channel 100 Gbit/s coherent long-haul solution provided by ADVA and installed by its local partner Alma is designed to enable Europe's scientific community to share large volume data sets and collaborate using high-bandwidth applications. The ADVA solution provides a new fully redundant GMPLS-based network connecting Polish supercomputing centres located in the cities of Poznań, Gdansk, Warsaw, Krakow and Wroclaw.

The new network offers 96 channels and supports reach of more than 3,466 km without the use of signal regeneration. In addition to ADVA FSP 3000 core transport technology, the solution employs the vendor's colourless, directionless and flexgrid multi-degree ROADMs, which serve to establish remote cross-connections at the optical layer to improve availability and simplify operations.

ADVA noted that PIONIER was one of the first national academic networks in Europe to implement its own 10 Gbit/s dark fibre network, and following the latest upgrade all links in the meshed infrastructure are able to transport 100 Gbit/s capacity. In addition, based on the modular design of the FSP 3000, the network can be scaled to 400 Gbit/s capacity and beyond in the future.

ADVA previously announced in September 2015 that it had partnered with PSNC to trial 400 Gbit/s coherent data centre interconnect (DCI) technology. The trial was conducted over 385 km of fibre between research centres in Poznan and Warsaw and involved the FSP 3000 CloudConnect platform. For the trial, the CloudConnect was configured with two 200 Gbit/s wavelengths operating at 16QAM within an optical super-channel; it also featured ROADMs and hybrid amplifiers.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Update on the telecommunications market in Poland - Part 5

Profile of T-Mobile Polska, the 4th largest mobile operator

T-Mobile Polska is a subsidiary of Deutsche Telecom of Germany and the fourth largest mobile operator in Poland, serving over 10.6 million mobile customers. The company claims to provide a full range of telecommunications services to both private and business customers. In 2015 TMP acquired the fixed network and services of GTS Poland, thus enabling it to offer a full range of ICT services. T-Mobile customers also have access to a full range of financial services as part of its parent's banking services. Mobile Polska covers nearly 100% of Poland’s population with its 3G and 4G networks and currently employs around 4,400 people. For the calendar year 2016 it reported revenue of Euro 1,488 million and net profit of Euro 201 million, down from Euro 1,544 million and Euro 350 million, respectively, in 2015.

More specifically, in Q4 2016 T-Mobile Poland reported 10.634 million mobile customers, down 11.8% compared to 12.057 million at the end of 2015. This decline included the loss of 587,000 customers in Q4 2016 due mainly to the disconnection of unregistered prepaid users. Despite Q4 2016 revenue up 4.8% to PLN 1.723 billion; EBITDA margin fell by 1.8 points to 34.7%.

In mid-November 2016, T-Mobile Poland announced a limited commercial launch with the support of Samsung of VoLTE and VoWiFi but said that by the end of March 2017, it hoped to make the service available on a broader range of up to 500,000 terminal devices.  As previously reported, in early December 2016 T-Mobile Poland and Orange Poland extended their original cooperative agreement for radio access network sharing, originally signed in 2011, to include base station sharing for LTE services using the frequency blocks that they each separately obtained at auction in the 800 and 2600 MHz bands.

In early January 2017 Orange Poland announced that its LTE network, consisting of over 8,500 base stations using 800, 1800 and 2600 MHz band spectrum and at over 140 basestations 300 Mbit/s services using tri-carrier aggregation, had reached coverage of 99% of the population. In late January T-Mobile Poland announced changes in its business segment aimed at increasing the focus on customer care and its quality including strengthened management and making the Department of Business Customer Care the direct responsibility of a board member. In early February, the European Investment Bank published a request by T-Mobile Poland for Euro 250 million of co-financing investments in a mobile broadband infrastructure project in Poland expected to cost Euro 550 million.

Profile of UPC Poland the leading Polish cable operator

According to the $20 billion sales-level, 45,000 employee, 50 million homes-passed Liberty Global international TV and broadband group (with operations in over 12 European countries and the Caribbean and South America), UPC Poland is the largest of its operations in Central and Eastern Europe in terms of revenue, and the largest cable TV operator in Poland. UPC Poland, which as of the end of September 2016 projected revenue of $393.8 million for all of 2016, at that time passed 3.1 million Polish homes and provided video, broadband Internet and digital (VoIP) telephony services, including 2.9 million service subscriptions (RGUs) to 1.4 million customers split as follows: 1.2 million video RGUs; 1.1 million broadband RGUs; and 632,000 fixed telephony RGUs. According to the company, its network is 98% upgraded to two-way capacity, with almost all of its homes passed served by a network with a bandwidth of at least 860 MHz.

In late October 2016, UPC Poland agreed to acquire, for $760 million in cash, the cable operations of Multimedia Polska, the third-largest cable operator in Poland. However, that proposed merger is still the subject of a regulatory inquiry by Polish anti-monopoly authority UOKiK, whose analysis has so far shown that in many municipalities, the joint share of UPC and Multimedia Polska exceeds 40% for the pay TV and Internet market, a threshold which the competition law defines as a dominant and anticompetitive position.

According to Multimedia Polska's Q4 2016 financial report published in mid-March, its revenue were down 1.1% YoY to PLN 176.346 million compared to PLN 178.285 million in Q4 2015. Of the total, revenue from video services amounted to PLN 90.454 million, revenue from the Internet amounted to PLN 55.399 million, revenue from telephony amounted to PLN 22.073 million, and other revenue amounted to PLN 8.419 million. The total RGUs as of December 31, 2016 were 1.692 million, up 2% compared to the end of 2015. During Q4, the company increased video subscriptions by 20,300 to 868,000, and broadband customers rose by 7,100 to 537,400, while in telephony there were a total 266,600 customers.

The group had 783,200 customers at year-end, down from 790,000 at the end of Q3 2016.

Summary and commentary - economy strong, political stability in danger

Poland's economic situation for the moment looks extremely healthy, though much of it currently comes from external inputs such as foreign remittances and EU subsidies, which may not be sustainable beyond a medium-term horizon. However, Poland's political climate is blustery to say the least For the first time for many years Poland's rightwing Prawo i Sprawiedliwosc (PiS or Law and Justice Party), led by Jarosław Kaczyński, has an overall majority in Poland's Lower House, the Sejm, and is taking a strongly authoritarian approach to government, which has included the passing of a bill which seriously undermines the powers of Poland's Constitutional Court*. Together with attacks on the media, including the firing of about 60 politically suspect journalists from state television, the preparation of a bill which would limit the access of the media to the proceedings of the Sejm, and a remarkable episode in mid-December  in which opposition protests against the proposed restrictive media bill erupted into semi-violence in the Sejm, and as a result the government moved a planned session for the vote on the state budget for 2017 to another hall, with both journalists and opposition delegates banned from the session.

The EU has publicly raised questions about these anti-libertarian moves by the PiS. More recently, the Polish government has reacted with outrage to, and described as a deliberate humiliation of Poland by the EU, the re-election on March 9th as President of the European Council of Donald Tusk, a Polish politician still regarded as the de facto leader of Poland's main Opposition Party. Tusk led neo-liberal opposition party Civic Platform (PO, Platforma Obywatelska) from 2003 to 2014 and was the Polish prime minister from 2007 to 2014, and is detested by the PiS. Poland, as stated earlier, leads the four-nation Visegrad Group and has historically tended to ally itself with the UK and also look towards the U.S. politically rather than Germany. With Britain leaving the EU and Donald Trump looking to reduce the U.S.'s expensive overseas entanglements, and with a truculent and resentful Russia on its flank, Poland is beginning to feel dangerously isolated.

*   The changes introduced by the ruling Law and Justice party (PiS) require a two-thirds majority of the 15 judges to support a ruling for it to be valid, and also stipulate a quorum of 13 judges for rulings to be valid.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Update on the telecommunications market in Poland - Part 4

P4, operating as Play (continued)

According to UKE's report on the Polish communications market in 2015, P4 had the largest share in the market for bundled services in terms of the number of subscribers, with 30% of subscribers purchasing the service from that operator, up from 10.6% in 2014. Also according to UKE, P4 ranked third after Orange Polska and Polkomtel in terms of its share of fixed and wireless Internet subscribers, with a market share of 7.6%, up from 7.0% in 2014.

On January 6th UKE reported 1.75 million users had taken advantage of MNP in 2016 and the company, which had gained most from the scheme, was Poland's second largest mobile operator. P4 gained a net 295,241 new users from other networks to reach its market share of 25.8% by subscribers, and 23.6 % in terms of revenues. P4 also made a meaningful mobile market share gain in terms of subscribers in 2015 compared with 2014. On January 13th P4 announced that its LTE network, using carrier aggregation technology, covered 1,378 municipalities with at least 1,000 inhabitants.

On January 17th, local Polish news-source reported informed as saying that P4, which historically depended on roaming agreements, primarily with T-Mobile Polska (but also with Orange Polska and Polkomtel), intended to expand its own network coverage with about 2,000 new locations by 2018/2019. This would give it a similar number of base stations as Polkomtel and significantly reduce the difficulties of having to rely on competitive networks. 

Polkomtel, operating as Plus

To recap, in January 2014 Reuters reported that Polish media group and leading national DTH operator Cyfrowy Polsat, majority controlled by Polish billionaire Zygmunt Solorz-Zak, had agreed to a PLN6.15 billion ($2.01 billion) share issue to buy mobile provider Polkomtel in a share-swap based on purchasing a controlling stake in Polkomtel's holding company, Metelem, giving the latter's owners a 45.53% stake in the enlarged group. The merger of Cyfrowy Polsat with Polkomtel was designed to significantly help to alleviate the latter's debt burden. The deal closed in May 2014. The impact of the deal was described as follows In the Cyfrowy Polsat annual report for 2014, published in March 2015:

-    "By adding the operator of Plus network to Cyfrowy Polsat Group, it has become the biggest media and telecom group in the region, servicing 6.1 million contract customers and providing a total of 16.5 million pay TV, mobile telephony and LTE Internet services, as well as one of the biggest private Polish enterprises with the capitalisation of PLN 15 billon… total consolidated revenue of Cyfrowy Polsat Group in 2014 was PLN 7.4 billion, with EBITDA of PLN 2.7 billion and profit at PLN 292.5 million".

According to the UKE report on the Polish communications market in 2015, Polkomtel:

·         Had a 22.6% subscriber market share of the Polish mobile services market, but a remarkable 27.9% share by revenues.

·         Had a 9.2% subscriber market share of the combined fixed and wireless Internet market, up from 8.8% in 2014 (Polkomtel has virtually no position in the Polish fixed-line market).

·         Had an almost dominant position in interconnection revenue, with a market share of 38.5%, more than half as much again as P4, the second-placed player with a market share of 23.0%.

·         Had an 8.1% subscriber share in bundled services, up from 6.6% in 2014.

(NB: It should be noted that Cyfrowy Polsat and other subsidiaries of the company also participate independently in some of the same markets as Polkomtel.)

On January 20th Polkomtel and Cyfrowy Polsat, which had introduced a 300 Mbit/s mobile data service in the first half of 2016 based on LTE Plus Advanced aggregation technology, announced the LTE Plus Advanced network of Group Cyfrowy Polska covered more than 15 million inhabitants (40% of the population), while its standard LTE coverage was approaching 100% of the population.

On February 2nd Poland's UOkIK announced that it was fining Cyfrowy Polsat and Polkomtel a total of over PLN40 million for misleading advertising campaigns concerned with smartDOM and Power LTE products (both service packages offered by Cyfrowy Polsat and Polkomtel), all of which focused on the slogan 'Power LTE – LTE Internet with unlimited data'. PLN 30.7 million of this will be paid directly by Polkomtel. UOkIK is also requiring the two companies to publish details of the decision on their websites and explain it on TV.

On February 14th Cyfrowy Polsat and Polkomtel/Plus announced a new phase of communication of their smartDOM strategic bundled services offer, which would include up to nine household products and services that customers would be able to combine and thus obtain a significant reduction in their collective annual costs of running a home. Apart from mobile telephony services offered by Plus, as well as Cyfrowy Polsat's DTH , the other options include electricity supply, banking services, insurance services, security services for homes, as well as the sale of telecommunication devices, home electronics and household appliances. On March 1st it was announced that natural gas supply for homes would be added to the program.

(Errata: the reference in Part 3 to Orange Polska's 40% share of mobile revenue was meant to refer only to its revenue from outgoing voice calls. For total mobile revenue, Orange's share was given by UKE as 26.7%, 1 point below its previously quoted subscriber market share of 27.7%.)

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Update on the telecommunications market in Poland, the EU's sixth largest economy - Part 2

Update on the telecommunications market in Poland, the EU's sixth largest economy - Part 2

Recent major Polish regulatory announcements

Court rejects Polkomtel appeal against award of frequencies to T-Mobile and P4

In September 2016 an administrative court in Warsaw dismissed an appeal by Polkomtel against decisions by the UKE regulator over the award of frequencies in the band 1800 MHz to the operators P4 and T-Mobile Poland in the 2013 tender.

Europe challenges Polish regulator over 800 MHz allocation

In late September 2016 the European Commission queried UKE's allocation of 800 MHz LTE spectrum in 2016 to the fixed-wireless provider and MVNO Sferia, which it pointed out belonged to the same group of companies as cellular operators Polkomtel and Aero2, and pay-TV firm Cyfrowy Polsat.

Poland to achieve 42% broadband coverage in 2017

In early December 2016, UKE published its work-plan for 2017 which included increasing broadband coverage to 42% by the end of 2017, completing international negotiations on the liberalisation of 700 MHz spectrum and a review of six markets subject to ex ante regulation.

UKE starts process to invalidate 2007 auction of 1800 MHz spectrum

On January 26, 2017 UKE announced that it had started a process to invalidate the results of an auction of frequencies in the 1800 MHz band carried out in 2007. This is a complicated situation; in October 2007 CenterNet bid PLN128 million for frequencies in the 1710-1730 MHz band, but declined the paired band between 1805 and 1825 MHz. This was later won in a separate tender process by Tolpis, a joint venture between Italian ISP Eutalia and Telekomunikacja Kolejowa, which agreed to pay PLN102 million. The start-up subsequently took on the name Mobyland before being bought by another domestic new entrant, Aero2.

On March 1st it was announced that both CenterNet and Aero2, owned by a company called Midas, would become part of the Cyfrowy Polsat group, which also includes mobile network operator Polkomtel. In August 2009 Mobyland and CenterNet had signed a letter of intent to share usage of their 1700/1800 MHz spectrum for rolling out LTE services, going on to launch Poland's first 4G service in September 2010.

At the time of the auction, the outcome was disputed in court by second-placed bidder T-Mobile Poland (then PTC). In July 2009 the Warsaw Administrative Court ruled that the participants in the original October 2007 tender were not treated equally and that the result should be annulled. UKE launched a successful appeal, but T-Mobile continued its legal battle.

According to Polish newsite, while UKE now appears to be ready to cancel the auction result, the regulator is unlikely to force Aero2/CenterNet to hand back its spectrum or shut down its LTE network but will probably negotiate with all parties involved to settle this and other separate disputes, including the result of the 2015 tender for 800/2600 MHz 4G spectrum auction, the result of which has also caused some controversy.

UKE deactivates another 12 million unregistered prepaid SIMs

In early February UKE announced that following the expiration of the February 2nd deadline for registration of mobile SIMs, it had deactivated about 12 million unregistered prepaid ones. Telecom Paper, an authoritative news source, suggested that although the deactivated SIMs nominally accounted for 31.3% of all issued cards it is possible the effect on the official mobile subscriptions numbers base might be quite small as Polish operators are believed to typically report only the number of their active users to UKE. Previously, T-Mobile in the third quarter of 2015 deactivated 3.84 million unused accounts.

UKE ends mobile operator obligations related to wholesale market for SMS termination

On February 2nd UKE announced that following approvals by the European Commission and Poland's anti-monopoly authority UOKiK (Urząd Ochrony Konkurencji i Konsumentów) of its proposals to end the regulatory obligations of 2010 imposed on mobile operators on the wholesale market for SMS termination. it had decided that no further regulation was justified, and the obligations would cease to apply after a 90-day transitional period.

Regulator reports weak response to offer of free 1 MHz channels

On February 20th UKE reported weak response to its offer of free 1 MHz simplex channels in the range 5.875 - 5.925 GHz in five locations of Poland's most northerly province of Pomerania. Only one application was submitted for one location and no applications were submitted for four locations.

Parliament makes Ministry of Digital Affairs responsible for personal data registers

In late February the Polish parliament introduced a law which made the country's Ministry of Digital Affairs responsible for overseeing Poland's key personal data registers due to the perception by the country's ruling Law and Justice Party of increased threats for national IT systems and the lack of an entity to coordinate personal data protection at government levels.

UKE outlines possible 5 year -plan including deregulation of broadband access market

On February 27th UKE announced that it had started a consultation on what should be included in the regulator's five year plan, and on March 7th the new UKE president, Marcin Cichy, appointed in September 2016, made the following interim comments:

·       Following the focused deregulation in 2014 of the broadband access market in 76 out of 3,000 communes, in which UKE had assessed true deregulated competition was possible, full deregulation of that market was being considered and would take place before 2021.

·       Spectrum distribution and refarming also being looked at.

·       On that issue, Cichy confirmed that 700 MHz frequencies were unlikely to be auctioned before 2020.

·       There was no plan to increase taxation on telecommunications.

Orange Polska withdraws application to extend its CDMA licence

Early in March 2017 Orange Polska announced that, due to what it considered an excessive price of PLN 115 million being asked for by the regulator, it had withdrawn its application to extend for another 15 years its licence to provide around 27,000 Polish customers with a communications service based on 450 MHz CDMA technology.

The licence had expired in 2015 but had been continued under a temporary agreement with UKE. Following the Orange announcement UKE said it would probably redistribute those frequencies via a tender. Subsequently, Orange said it might consider competing in that tender (the frequencies would have to be freed up for the tender to take place so Orange presumably might find it difficult to use these frequencies for the original fixed wireless service, although there is a chance UKE might now negotiate a lower extension  price with Orange).

Polish Ministry says operators offering TV services must register subscribers

On March 9th the Polish Ministry of Culture announced new regulations requiring operators of cable networks, digital TV platforms, broadcasting services via xDSL and IPTV services to report subscribers for registration with the Ministry within a week of the signing of the contract. Operators will be compensated with a payment per subscription reported but will also be fined if they fail to meet the requirement.

Update on the telecommunications market in Poland, the EU's sixth largest economy - Part 1

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Update on the telecommunications market in Poland, the EU's sixth largest economy - Part 1

Preamble – Poland, a major beneficiary of EU membership, is booming

With a nominal GDP of $467.350 billion in 2016 and a population of around 38 million, Poland is the EUs sixth largest and the world's 25th largest economy. According to the latest IMF forecast Poland's GDP, after an increase of 3.1% in 2016, will grow 3.4% in 2017 more than twice the EU's predicated growth of 1.4% and almost exactly the same as the global growth rate for those two years. By comparison with the rest of Europe Poland, whose GDP per capita is only about 70% of the EU average, is booming, assisted both by net transfers from the EU budget of about Euro 12 billion per annum and also by substantial remittances worth, according to the World Bank, $7.2 billion in 2015 from an excess labour force working  in richer European countries, including notably 2 million citizens of Polish descent living in Germany (many historical remnants of boundary shifts) and about 800,000 working in the UK. The country has a liberalised and diversified economy including a strong net-exporting agricultural sector of about two million farms, which also supports a strong food-manufacturing sector. Poland currently has a female Prime Minister, 53 year old Beata Maria Szydło, vice-chairman of Poland's Law and Justice Party, and is the leading member of the Visegrad Group of central European countries, working on common interests and that also includes Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia.
Although Poland joined the EU in 2004 and is nominally committed to joining the Euro currency group, it has not done so yet and has no specific target date for that accession. Of the four Visegrad countries only Slovakia uses the Euro.

Overview of Poland's telecoms market structure

Poland's main regulator of the communications and postal sector is UKE (Urząd Komunikacji Elektronicznej, or Office of Electronic Communications), and this agency publishes an annual review of the industry which is typically available at the end of June the following year, hence the 2016 numbers will not be published until June/July 2017. However, the Polish market is relatively mature and the following data for the year 2015 published June 2016 allow reasonable estimates for 2016 and 2017, providing major regulatory decisions and other important changes in the marketplace are factored in.

Broadbrush overview of size and structure of communications sector in 2015

Total Polish telecoms market value in 2015 of $10.5bn

The total size of the sector was estimated by UKE at PLN 39.5 billion ($10.477 billion) in 2015, or about 2.24% of GDP, which is rather low compared to OND's typical estimated range of 2.5%-3.5% for most countries (many factors can affect this ratio, including the state of the technology cycle in mobile communications and a fast secular decline in costs for equivalent communications services due to technical maturity and strong level of competition compared typically to an increase in costs in the general economy). The UKE report noted that this was the first growth in revenue in the whole sector in the last couple of years. The Polish communications sector can be described as strongly regulated, quite liberalised and competitive, but extremely fragmented compared to most European countries. In part this may be due to the fact that the regulator has often intervened to oppose consolidation.

14 million Internet users in 2015

Internet penetration percentage per person over the last six half years 2013 to 2015 was as follows: 27.3%, 29.4%, 30.2%, 31.6%, 34.4% and 35.7%, with penetration per household of: 77.7%, 83.6%, 86.1%, 90.0%, 98.0% and 101.6%. In 2015, there were in total 14 million Internet users in Poland - 7.1 million fixed-line and 6.67 million mobile. For mobile access significant growth of 0.9 million in the number of users was observed compared to 2014.

The largest market share, amounting to 30% in terms of the number of users in 2015, was reported by Orange. This is due to the fact that the company provides its services both in the fixed-line and mobile networks. Polkomtel was second with a 9.2% share.

Mobile services penetration in terms of subscribers down in 2015

The penetration of mobile services in 2015 shrank by 3 percentage points compared to 2014 and amounted to 147.2%. The operators had 56.6 million active SIM cards in their databases and the decline was caused by adjusting subscriber databases to the reality by the telecommunications undertakings. In 2015, the revenue from mobile telephony accounted for 43.7% of the total market value and totalled approximately PLN 17.2 billion.

Mobile operators in order of importance include: PTK Centertel/Orange, Polkomtel/Plus GSM, T-Mobile Poland, CenterNet, Mobyland, plus a number of MVNOs, including P4/Play and Mobile Vikings.

According to UKE, the market leader in 2015 in the Polish mobile market was Orange Polska with a market share of 27.7%, followed by P4 with 25.8%, then Polkomtel with 22.6% and T-Mobile Polska with 20.8%, leaving about 3.1% for other operators.

Fixed line market value declining for 5 years

The value of fixed line telephony in Poland declined steadily from PLN 5.2 billion in 2011 to PLN 3.3 billion, i.e. down 12.8% in 2012, down 13.5% in 2013, down 4.8% in 2014 and down 12.7% to PLN 3.3 billion in 2015. The 2015 value was just 8.35% of the total telecommunications market value, with 5.7 million fixed line connections, split by type of access as follows: POTS - 57%; ISDN - 13.0%; WLR - 14.0%; CATV - 14.1%; and xDSL - 1.9%.

Fixed operators include Orange Polska, Netia, Telefonia Dialog, Telekomunikacja Kolejowa (TK Telekom), T-Mobile Poland and Exatel.

Other markets

Cable TV operators include, in order of importance, UPC Poland, Vectra, Multimedia Polska, Toya and Inea, which serve around 75% of the country's 4.6 million CATV subscribers, with another 400 operators serving the remaining 20%. According to the Polish Chamber for Electronic Communication (PIKE, or Polska Izba Komunikacji Elektronicznej), a trade association that represents about 110 companies including broadband electronic communications operators and the associated manufacturers and distributors of equipment and services, its members serve about 75% of the Polish cable TV market, which makes up about 37% of a total digital TV market of over 12.145 million.

Poland has one of the lowest levels of FTTH penetrations in Europe, with only 140,000 users in 2014 and 170,000 in 2015. This is also, according to UKE, a very fragmented market with the top three service providers in 2015 - Inea, Telefon Dialog and Orange Polska - collectively serving less than 25% of the user base.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Liberty Global to Acquire Multimedia Polska

Liberty Global agreed to acquire the cable business of Multimedia Polska, the third-largest cable operator in Poland, in an all cash transaction valued at PLN 3.0 billion (approximately $760 million).

The PLN 3.0 billion purchase price equates to a multiple of 6.2x Multimedia’s 2015 full-year Adjusted EBITDA2 when adjusted for PLN 124 million (approximately $30 million1) of projected annual run-rate synergies3 derived from revenue and cost-related items.

Liberty Global already operates in Poland under its subsidiary UPC Poland. As of June 30, 2016, UPC Poland passed 3.1 million homes, or around 20% of total households in Poland, serving 1.4 million unique customers who subscribed to 2.9 million cable subscription services.

At the end of the second quarter of 2016, Multimedia passed 1.6 million homes mainly through its hybrid fiber-coaxial cable network, serving 832,000 unique customers who subscribed to 1.4 million subscription services consisting of 643,000 video, 491,000 broadband and 241,000 telephony RGUs. In addition, Multimedia had 54,000 mobile subscribers at June 30, 2016.

Mike Fries, CEO of Liberty Global, commented, “This acquisition will significantly increase our scale in Poland, where we are already the largest cable operator. It will also enhance our ability to invest in cutting-edge products and services for Polish consumers and businesses that will help drive organic growth across our enlarged footprint of over four million premises. Upon closing of the transaction, we will begin upgrading the Multimedia network, after which Multimedia’s customers will be able to enjoy superfast broadband speeds and our next-generation video service Horizon TV.”

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Poland's Polkomtel Readies Voice over Wi-Fi with Nokia

Polkomtel, the Polish operator of the Plus network, has partnered with Nokia Networks to launch Poland’s first public trial of its Wi-Fi Calling+ service. The service lets users make regular calls when connected by Wi-Fi in locations with poor mobile coverage. The common voice core for VoWiFi and voice over LTE (VoLTE) enables a smooth evolution of enhanced voice services going forward.

During the trial period, the Wi-Fi Calling+ service is available to Plus users in Poland and across the European Union. Polkomtel is testing the functionality before its commercial launch, gathering feedback and ensuring its flawless integration and operation in the Plus network.

The service uses Nokia’s voice core technology, including its IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS), Open TAS (Telecommunications Application Server) and Border Gateway (BGW), along with a fully customized end-user application from OptiMobile.

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

ADVA's CloudConnect DCI Carries 2 X 200 Gbps Wavelengths over 385km Span

The Poznań Supercomputing and Networking Center (PSNC) has tested ADVA Optical Networking's FSP 3000 CloudConnect platform to link two data centers at 400 Gbps.

The trial connected research and education centers in Poznań and Warsaw over a 385 km fiber span using the live commercial PIONIER network. PIONIER is a consortium of Polish research and education organizations and its network is operated domestically by PSNC. The ADVA FSP 3000 CloudConnect was configured with two 200 Gbps wavelengths operating at 16QAM within an optical super-channel. The system also featured reconfigurable add/drop multiplexers (ROADMs) and hybrid amplifiers. The company said its DCI technology transported data continuously for 14 hours without any block errors.

“Our DCI technology is helping to redefine the market. It’s completely changed people’s expectations about what’s possible,” said Christoph Glingener, CTO, ADVA Optical Networking. “Our 400 Gbps trial with PSNC is the latest example of this. It’s a landmark event for our FSP 3000 CloudConnect™. Transporting 400 Gbps over 385km at 16QAM and with no errors is a clear indication of how robust and reliable our technology is. In many respects, this is what stands our DCI solution apart. It’s true plug and play. There are very few companies in our industry that can make that statement and mean it. This trial is another clear illustration of why our DCI technology is proving so popular with customers.”

  • In June 2015, ADVA Optical Networking introduced its Data Center Interconnect (DCI) solution designed for Internet Content Providers (ICPs) and Cloud Service Providers (CSPs). The ADVA FSP 3000 CloudConnect, which is available in multiple chassis configurations including four rack units (4RUs), features a 400 Gbps single line card. It can transport up to 25.6 Tbps  duplex capacity per fiber pair from a single rack, delivering 51.2 Tbps of total throughput at 1.4 Tbps per rack unit. It includes amplifiers, multiplexers and all other necessary components .  ADVA said its FSP 3000 CloudConnect has been specifically engineered to scale and there’s no client port lock-in. As new Ethernet data rates emerge, they can be supported by plugging new line cards into the entire range of chassis. Instead of an active backplane, the ADVA FSP 3000 CloudConnect features a modular design that eliminates unnecessary electrical processing. The system offers auto discovery and provisioning of the optical layer. It also supports a range of customizable APIs for programmability, including CLI, REST, NETCONF, and RESTCONF. 

Monday, September 1, 2014

Polkomtel Tests LTE Broadcast with Ericsson

Polkomtel carried out the first test of LTE Broadcast technology in Poland on August 30, streaming the opening game of the 2014 World Volleyball Championship between Poland and Serbia to 300 selected guests and journalists at Warsaw's National Stadium. Ericsson supplied its LTE Broadcast solution.  A total of 300 guests were given LTE Broadcast-enabled mobile devices with a pre-configured application to watch live streaming of the game.

Valter D'Avino, Head of Ericsson's Region Western and Central Europe, says: "Ericsson has been at the forefront of developing and implementing this technology around the world, and it has great potential to grow much further with a wide range of use cases: for example, to send updates and content to connected cars, digital signage or billing boards, as well as public safety and emergency broadcast services."

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Poland Cancels LTE Spectrum Auction

Poland's Office of Electronic Communications abruptly decided to cancel the spectrum auction for licences in the 791-816 MHz band and in the 832-857 MHz band, as well as in the 2500-2570 MHz band and in the 2620-2690 MHz band.  Initial bids were initially due on 13-February-2014, however this period was extended by one day due to technical reasons.  After having made this extension, the President of the Office of Electronic Communications decided to cancel the entire auction because some bidders complained that the auction environment was not stable and predictable, possibly leading to legal uncertainties.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Poland's Netia Tests Coriant's 400G Optical Transport

Netia, Poland's largest alternative provider of fixed-line telecommunications, has tested a 400G DWDM solution from Coriant.

The trials, based on Coriant's industry-leading hiT 7300 DWDM technology, included:

  • Flexigrid ROADMs - to support flexible channel spacing, specifically across 400G in 150GHz superchannels

  • A Flexigrid 400G superchannel signal based on 4 subcarriers
  • The purpose of the trial was long haul transmission of a 400G signal adjacent to 10G (NRZ) signals with several filter widths, namely:
  • Use of standard width filters (ITU -T grid): 100GHz and 50GHz.
  • Use of a superchannel with a channel width of 150GHz. A 400G channel was placed directly between the four 10G channels with 50GHz spacing
  • The trial system consisted of two Flexigrid ROADM nodes (without dispersion compensators) connected in a point-to-point architecture. Each node had a standard amplifier (outgoing signals) and preamplifier (for incoming signals).
Coriant said the test results presented no significant differences in optical performance when varying superchannel width from 400GHz to 150GHz. At the same time the tests revealed that the adjacent 10G (NRZ) channels and Flexigrid 400G superchannel configuration worked properly without any interference with each other.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Poland's Vectra Builds Nationwide Optical Backbone with Cisco

Vectra S.A., one of the leading cable operators in Poland, has built a nationwide fiber backbone using ONS 15454 Multiservice Optical Transport Platform (MSTP).

Vectra’s new network is a nationwide ring, connecting nearly 30
cities around Poland, including Warsaw, Katowice, Wroclaw, Poznan, Radom, Bydgoszcz, Torun, Gdynia and more.  Initially, the network operates multiple wavelenghts at 10 Gbps.

Cisco said the optical network can be easily scaled to 100 Gbps when traffic requires it. The deployed Cisco solution can support 42 x 100 Gbps wavelengths in a single bay.  The 100 Gbps DWDM solution is based on the Cisco nLight coherent optical technology, providing the capability to transmit 100 Gbps wavelengths over fully uncompensated networks, up to 3,000 km optical spans.

Klonex, a Cisco Premier Certified Partner in Poland, designed and implemented the DWDM network for Vectra.