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Get the latest announcements from MEF Members across the mobile ecosystem globally in this weekly review of member news…

Digicel sends supplies to hurricane-ravaged Dominica

Following the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria, Digicel says it has intensified its humanitarian and restoration efforts to get much-needed supplies and technical equipment to Dominica, which was hit by the monster Category Five storm.

Loaded with food items, first aid and hygiene supplies, mattresses, bedlinen, water, as well as technical equipment, Digicel said it shipped off two large vessels from St Lucia yesterday.

Commenting on the efforts and the devastation caused by the two major storms — hurricanes Irma and Maria — over the past few weeks, CEO for Digicel Caribbean and Central America, Vanessa Slowey said: “As soon as we had clearance, we immediately dispatched additional technical, engineering and rigging teams to Dominica, and they are currently working around the clock to restore coverage.”

“It has been a very unfortunate period for our brothers and sisters in the islands that have been affected by both Irma and now Maria. We will continue our humanitarian efforts to help them pick up the pieces to rebuild as best they can, as soon as possible,” Slowey added.

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Twilio Launches Studio, Enabling Companies to Accelerate their Customer Engagement Roadmaps

Twilio has announced Twilio Studio, a visual interface that allows companies to accelerate the development of world-class customer engagement applications. With Twilio Studio, software developers and cross-functional teams can collaborate to build a variety of engagement solutions, such as interactive voice response (IVR) systems, conversational messaging bots, or notification workflows in minutes instead of weeks.

“One of the biggest barriers to innovation is the simple fact that most ideas aren’t ever tried,” said Jeff Lawson, Twilio CEO and co-founder. “With Twilio Studio, all builders across an organization are now armed with the power of Twilio. This allows faster prototype and delivery of new customer engagement experiences with a simple drag and drop interface along with custom code integration. We can’t wait to see what developers and their teams will build with Studio!”

Twilio Studio combines an intuitive drag-and-drop visual editor with a library of omnichannel widgets that handle the underlying communication logic. This allows cross-functional teams to customize communications workflows for their applications, all hosted on Twilio’s serverless technology.

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Orange pre-installs cellular connectivity to aid IoT growth

Orange has partnered on what it claimed is the first Internet of Things module with integrated cellular connectivity and launched a programme aimed at growing the cellular IoT ecosystem.

The French operator is working with distributor EBV Elektronik on producing the module, which combines an integrated SIM, pre-paid data bundle and connectivity across 33 countries and is targeted at manufacturers. Orange will offer four data bundles starting at 10MB, which it said would cover the lifetime or long-term usage of a connected device.

Yves Maitre, Executive Vice President, Connected Objects and Partnerships at Orange, said: “Orange recognises the multiple obstacles that object manufacturers face today to get their products to market. As a long-standing champion of cellular connectivity in the IoT market we are driven to break-down these barriers. By embedding cellular connectivity from the outset and making the pricing simple and attractive we hope to deliver a much-needed boost to the market.

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First Half 2017 Breach Level Index Report: Identity Theft and Poor Internal Security Practices Take a Toll

Gemalto has released the latest findings of the Breach Level Index, a global database of public data breaches, revealing 918 data breaches led to 1.9 billion data records being compromised worldwide in the first half of 2017. Compared to the last six months of 2016, the number of lost, stolen or compromised records increased by a staggering 164%. A large portion came from the 22 largest data breaches, each involving more than one million compromised records. Of the 918 data breaches more than 500 (59% of all breaches) had an unknown or unaccounted number of compromised data records.

“IT consultant CGI and Oxford Economics recently issued a study, using data from the Breach Level Index and found that two-thirds of firms breached had their share price negatively impacted. Out of the 65 companies evaluated the breach cost shareholders over $52.40 billion,” said Jason Hart, Vice President and Chief Technology Officer for Data Protection at Gemalto. “We can expect that number to grow significantly, especially as government regulations in the U.S., Europe and elsewhere enact laws to protect the privacy and data of their constituents by associating a monetary value to improperly securing data. Security is no longer a reactive measure but an expectation from companies and consumers.”

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Oi takes on share trading for China Telecom

Oi’s chief financial officer, Ricardo Malavazi, said that the company undergoing judicial reorganization had signed a confidentiality agreement with China Telecom, which could result in a stake in the Asian group in a possible increase in the Brazilian operator’s capital.

Malavazi told reporters after attending a meeting with analysts and investors in Rio de Janeiro on Friday, September 22. agreement has no time limit. “This agreement is for evaluating possible deals,” said the executive. “It is very early on and … it is an agreement for it (China Telecom) to analyze and decide their interest in Oi. One possibility is to participate (in Oi’s capital increase),” he added. China Telecom prepares the ground in the country. The operator just opened an office in São Paulo.

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