Nokia Corporation NOK recently secured a prime contract from Telefónica, S.A.’s TEF U.K. subsidiary to support the latter’s existing network connectivity as it transitions to cloud architecture. The contract for undisclosed amount also aims to facilitate rendering reliable 5G services to more than 34.1 million customers of the carrier.
In particular, Nokia will deploy its cloud-native Subscriber Data Management (SDM) software to centralize user data into a single, robust and secure User Data Repository. This central register with single point of provisioning will save operating costs and significantly speed up time to market while offering unrivalled scaling capabilities to meet the most stringent requirements. Notably, the SDM software serves approximately 4.8 billion global subscribers and devices, streamlining operations and optimizing services to improve efficiency levels.
Per the deal, Nokia will support subscriber data management for the carrier’s 3G, 4G, 5G networks, along with Voice over LTE (VoLTE), Voice over WiFi (VoWiFi) and Voice over 5G (Vo5G) services. In addition, it will deploy Shared Data Layer, a cloud-native database accessible via industry standard protocols, to enable an open ecosystem and the integration of third party applications.
A few days back, Telefonica inked agreements with Nordic firms – Nokia and Ericsson ERIC – to provide essential telecommunications equipment for the nationwide deployment in Spain. Markedly, Nokia has been Telefonica’s preferred vendor since 2018 and has supported its 5G strategy with trials in the historical city of Segovia in central Spain. To its credit, Nokia is reportedly the only vendor to supply 5G radio technology to all of Telefonica’s 5G operations across Europe.
Nokia is well positioned for the ongoing technology cycle given the strength of its end-to-end portfolio. The company’s deal win rate is encouraging with notable successes in the key 5G markets of the United States and China. 5G revenues are
Microsoft is one of the favorites to buy networking and cell phone company, Nokia, according to a leading mobile analyst firm.
CCS Insight’s predictions for 2021 include the claim that Nokia will be bought by a major U.S. tech company next year, with both Microsoft and Intel named as likely buyers.
Microsoft and Nokia, of course, have history. In 2013, Microsoft paid over $7 billion for Nokia’s handset business in an ill-fated attempt to provide a third alternative to iPhone and Android handsets with Windows Phone. It failed miserably, with the purchased assets from Nokia written off in 2015, resulting in thousands of job losses.
Although Nokia has since re-entered the cell phone business, it’s not that arm of the business that would prove attractive to the potential buyers. Instead, it’s Nokia networking arm that would interest the American giants, according to CCS, with the U.S. government banning telecoms providers from using equipment from Chinese suppliers such as Huawei.
Nokia last week clinched a deal to become the largest equipment supplier to the U.K.’s biggest telecoms provider, BT. That won’t have failed to attract attention on the other side of the Atlantic, according to CCS Insight’s director of consumer and connectivity, Kester Mann.
“We feel that Nokia could be slightly vulnerable to an acquisition,” said Mann.
“Microsoft has taken a real interest in the telecoms space. Already we’ve seen two acquisitions by them this year [Metaswitch and Affirmed Networks]… which is all about getting some expertise in the 5G and telco space and some contacts within industry. We believe Nokia could be a potential target for someone like Microsoft.”
The backlash against Chinese suppliers would also make an acquisition of the Scandinavian firm more attractive to Microsoft and other U.S.