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What’s happening among the MEF membership? Here’s your weekly round up of all the latest announcements from the members…

Orange enters the VR space with goggles and app

The virtual reality sector is all to play for – and now Orange is set to enter the market with a major launch.

It will release the VR1 headset and VR 360 app in a number of European countries, with prices starting at €49.99. The VR1 is supplied by Strax, and works with most iOS and Android smartphones.

It comes in black, with in-built headphones, 120 degree field of view and leather face cushion for comfort. The app gives access to 360 video content and games.

“We want to position Orange at the forefront of the VR revolution, creating new virtual experiences for our customers in an effortless manner,” said Yves Maitre, executive VP of the Connected Objects and Partnership team.

The VR1 will be rolled out first in France, Spain, Belgium, Poland and Luxembourg, with other countries to follow.

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InMobi unveils in-app re-marketing tools

Marketers and app developers in the US can now re-target existing users across InMobi’s base of 1.5+ billion devices.

InMobile says the platform could be used in scenarios such as:

  • First Purchases or Incremental Sales – A retail app can target recently acquired users with custom offers
  • Subscriptions – Music apps can showcase a carousel of trending bestseller tracks
  • Incremental Rides – A cab hailing app can retarget existing users during peak office hours and promote ride discounts
  • Level-ups – Gaming apps can re-engage users stuck at a particular level with sweeteners

InMobi believes this is the first app-to-app re-marketing platform that is designed and optimized for mobile.

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Banglalink chooses Infobip’s SMS firewall

Bangladeshi network Banglalink has teamed up with SMS specialist Infobip to secure its text traffic.

The company will use Infobip’s sGate SMS firewall to detect abnormal traffic flows and fraudulent activity. The aim is to help the operator benefit from new revenue and lower costs of SMS service.

“By using sGate we will help Banglalink to reduce SMS threats on its network, and provide insight into SMS traffic which will allow the network to become more streamlined and profitable,” said Silvio Kutic, CEO at Infobip.

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Mahindra Comviva enhances its Zerch contextual marketing platform

Consumers and retailers can access a host of new ‘hyper-local’ commerce features thanks to
Mahindra Comviva.

The company has added new utilities to its commerce app Zerch, which curates information on brands/stores present in retail hotspots like malls.

Its Wi-Fi based technology will now allow consumers to access relevant and real time store information up to 10 feet without having to switch on Bluetooth or GPS. It means stores will be able to push custom marketing messages without investing in any additional hardware.

Srinivas Nidugondi, Senior VP and Head of Mobile Financial Solutions, Mahindra Comviva said, “Imagine merchants being able to target consumers next to their stores with irresistible offers or announce the arrival of a new offering when they are already inside. We feel this is a huge opportunity for brands to differentiate themselves”.

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TIM tests 500 Mbps 4.5G in Turin

Italian mobile operator TIM has just completed a field trial of 4.5G ahead of a major upgrade over the next few months.

The trial, with Ericsson, achieved download speeds of more than 500 megabits per second on a single data connection. TIM expects to commercially launch 4.5G services by the end of this year.

TIM currently offers download speed of 300 Mbps with its LTE-Advanced network in Rome, Milan, Genoa, Turin, Naples, Prato, Verona and Palermo.

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Boku brings carrier billing for music lovers in Switzerland

Spotify subscribers on Swisscom can now pay their subs straight from the phone bill.

Carrier billing specialist Boku is managing the process for the Swiss operator, which will help 6.5 million customers pay conveniently for Spotify Premium.

Boku launched in 2009 with a mission to become the world’s leading carrier billing company. Today it has hundreds of carrier connections and partnerships with merchants including Sony, Spotify and Facebook.

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