Telecom operators Bharti Airtel and Nokia on Monday announced that they would expand the deployment of 4G technology across nine spectrum circles in India, as the country prepares itself for the next boom in mobile data demand.According to sources quoted by the Economic Times, the contract is roughly pegged at Rs 3,350 crore (about $500 million). Through this contract, Airtel will expand and ramp up 4G capacities to counter the threat of Reliance Jio.According to the contract, Airtel would extend its 4G technology in three new circles of Gujarat, Bihar and UP (East). It also entails expansion of 4G capacities to six other spectrum circles of Mumbai, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, Odisha, Punjab and Kerala.Read: Reliance Jio blames Airtel for call drops”We are pleased to continue to leverage Nokia’s leading radio access technology and services expertise to expand 4G capacity and coverage and increase the quality of service for subscribers,” Airtel said in a statement.The new deployment would give Bharti Airtel more access to faster mobile internet and better coverage. Under this deal, Nokia would also gain access to 3G network in eight of the circles as part of the roll out.Nokia will deploy its 4G technology across nine of Bharti Airtel’s circles in India including the regions of Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Rest of Bengal, Odisha, Mumbai, Maharashtra, Kerala and UP East.”We have a long history of working with Bharti Airtel and with this latest agreement we have become the largest supplier of 4G for the company. This network expansion will provide the capacity, coverage and speeds the company needs to meet the next wave of data demand in India,” Sanjay Malik, head of India market at Nokia, said in a statement.The Bharti Airtel stock was trading at Rs 299. 90 at around 10:38 a.m. on Tuesday, down 0.45 percent from its previous close on the Bombay Stock Exchange.
A collected photo shows the TSC area of Dhaka University. Long run tea stalls of this area are forbidden to sit any more from Tuesday morning.The tea stalls in front of the Teacher-Student Centre (TSC) of Dhaka University have been shut down.On Monday night, the owners of the tea stalls were asked to move elsewhere, according to the tea sellers.They said they were stopped when they tried to open their stalls on Tuesday morning.However, the university’s proctorial body did not say the reason for this, they added.TSC director AM Mohiuzzaman told Prothom Alo that he was unaware of any such directive.Proctor Golam Rabbani said there was no specific directive concerning the tea stalls at TSC. However, the tea and food served at these stalls are unhygienic, he observed.
Rohingya refugee. Photo: Syful-IslamRepresentatives from Bangladesh and Myanmar will meet on Tuesday to discuss the repatriation to Myanmar of more than 6,500 Rohingya Muslims trapped on a strip of unclaimed land between the two countries, Bangladeshi officials said.“It is about taking them back to Myanmar,” relief and refugee repatriation commissioner Mohammad Abul Kalam, told Reuters on Monday. “They are on the zero line and actually on the Myanmar side.”However, several officials contacted in neighbouring Myanmar said they were not aware of plans for a meeting, which Kalam said would take place on the ‘zero line’ near a place called Gundum.A spokeswoman for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), which will not be involved in the talks, said the agency was concerned the Rohingya may be forcibly returned to Myanmar without due consideration for their safety.Nearly 700,000 Rohingya have fled Myanmar’s Rakhine state and crossed into Bangladesh since last August, when attacks on security posts by insurgents triggered a military crackdown that the United Nations has said amounts to ethnic cleansing, with reports of arson attacks, murder and rape.Buddhist-majority Myanmar denied the charge and says its security forces are fighting a legitimate campaign against ‘terrorists’ it blames for the attacks on the security forces.The vast majority of Rohingya who fled are in camps at Cox’s Bazar on the southern tip of Bangladesh, but several thousand who arrived in a buffer zone along the border are now stuck.Bangladesh security forces have been instructed not to let these Rohingya cross the border, and many of them have said they would rather stay there to avoid becoming refugees in Bangladesh.The no-man’s land, which is about the size of 40 soccer pitches, used to be an area of paddy fields, but is now dotted with the tarpaulin and bamboo shacks of displaced Rohingya.NO TIMELINE FOR RETURNS“We are concerned about the reports of pressures directed at this group of people at the border,” said Caroline Gluck, UNHCR Senior Public Information Officer at Cox’s Bazar.“People who fled violence and discrimination in Myanmar should not be forced to return against their will,” she told Reuters in a message sent on Saturday.Bangladesh’s Kalam said there was no timeline for repatriations, that anyone going back must do so voluntarily and that Myanmar must provide a safe environment for their return.“We cannot send them forcibly,” he said.Most Burmese consider the Rohingya as unwanted immigrants from Bangladesh, and the army refers to them as “Bengalis”.Myanmar has said it will accept back people holding “national verification” registration cards. This card, which falls short of offering citizenship, has been rejected by Rohingya community leaders who say it treats life-long residents like new immigrants.A leader of the Rohingya group in the buffer zone, Dil Mohammed, told Reuters in a text message: “Our no-man’s land camp demands are that there must be a safe return, we need security and all basic rights, including citizenship.”He said the group would never accept the national verification card, that its members must be allowed to return to their own homes, paid compensation for losses and damage, and provided with protection from a U.N. mission.Gluck said the UNHCR was concerned that conditions in Rakhine state were not yet safe for voluntary returns, adding, “We urge both governments to ensure that any return is based on informed consent and takes place in safety and dignity.”
People queue for voting in Khulna city. Photo: Focus BanglaVote rigging in Khulna City Corporation elections reached to the extent that even a minor boy was found voting for ruling Awami League-backed mayoral candidate Talukder Abdul Khalek on Tuesday.After visiting several centres in Khulna city, this correspondent found a man coming out of a polling station with his son, a student of class II. Both of the father and son had indelible ink marks on their fingers.Asked about the ink, the man said, ”My son has cast his vote, too.”And the second-grader said, ”I voted for boat and Tipu uncle (the AL-backed ward councillor Ali Akbar Tipu).”Both the father and son were found in front of Nurani Bahumukhi Madrasa centre, under ward 25. A member of the election commission in the centre was also allegedly harassed by the ruling AL influentials.AL-backed candidate Talukder Abdul Khalek visited Platinum High School station under ward No. 11 around 12:00pm. After his visit, around eight to 10 AL activists entered the centre and started ballot stuffing in the presence of presiding officer Sheikh Abu Md Mushfequl Morshed.When some journalists started recording the ballot stuffing scene, the presiding officer drove them away, saying, ”We have some restrictions.”Visiting PTI polling station around 2:00pm, it was seen a voter, Sadia Parveen, could not cast her vote as someone else had already done so.”They said I had already cast my vote and told me to go somewhere else,” Parveen told Prothom Alo.
Tags: The Travel Agent Next Door << Previous PostNext Post >> Travelweek Group TORONTO — The Travel Agent Next Door (TTAND) has announced a new long-term, preferred partnership with TravelBrands, with a special focus on growing sales with Disney Destinations.With this partnership, TravelBrands will provide support in the form of:Training: Ongoing training sessions held throughout the year on product and system training on how to easily book Disney DestinationsIncentives: Offered throughout the yearGiveaways: Pro-active trivia games that were created to keep agents engaged in Disney Destinations product knowledge with TravelBrandsMarketing: Creative marketing initiatives provided to agentsSpecialist Programs: Created to enable agents to sell Disney Destinations with confidence through TravelBrandsFams: Training fam to Disney Destinations’ headquarters in Orlando to gain firsthand experience and trainingIn 2017, TravelBrands added a Disney Destinations microsite on its travel agent platform, which Erminia Nigro, Director Sales, says allows agents to learn everything there is to know about the most popular parks, resorts and cruises.More news: CIE Tours launches first-ever River Cruise Collection“We are providing the information for travel agents right on our platform without having to go anywhere else. All that is needed to do is a simple click on the location of interest and plan away! From accommodations to activities or general information, the microsite has all information required on Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Cruises and Aulani,” she says.Flemming Friisdahl, founder of The Travel Agent Next Door, adds: “Our partnership with TravelBrands is an important one and they have brought forward several initiatives to keep our agents focused on selling Disney Destinations throughout the year.”For more information go to thetravelagentnextdoor.ca or call (416) 367-TAND. Posted by TTAND teams up with TravelBrands to sell Disney Destinations Tuesday, February 13, 2018 Share
Travelweek Group Friday, April 6, 2018 Flight Centre Independent to celebrate 10th anniversary at next week’s annual Meetup << Previous PostNext Post >> Posted by TORONTO — It’ll be a meeting of the minds next week in Toronto, when Flight Centre Independent Agents from nearly every province convene for FCI’s Annual Cross-Canada Meetup.Taking place on April 13-14 at Flight Centre’s flagship Travel Centre in downtown Toronto, this year’s Meetup will feature the launch of new booking tools, new marketing and social media initiatives, and a new fee model that gives agents the ability to customize and better control their program expenses. The weekend will also feature the inaugural independent Partner Appreciation Awards, during which supplier partners chosen by FCI agents will be recognized for their work.“Our partners are extremely important to us at FCI,” said FCI General Manager Lee Zanello. “With Flight Centre’s Preferred Partnerships, not just in Canada but globally, we know they help us offer our agents the most extensive and supportive network in the country. I cannot wait to show our appreciation for all that they do with these upcoming awards.”More news: Beep, beep! Transat hits the streets with Cubamania truckAs FCI turns 10 years old this month, the weekend will also celebrate the January launch of sister U.S.-based brand, Independent by Liberty Travel.“Independent by Liberty Travel has exceeded all of our initial expectations in the first few months,” says Flight Centre Vice President for the Independent Agent Brands in North America, Cameron McLeod. “There is a fantastic camaraderie between our Canadian and US businesses with Canada guiding the way with their 10 years of experience and the US able to contribute heavily with strong supplier relations and technology and systems innovations. It’s a fantastic time for Independent Agents to come on board with the company on both sides of the border.”Flight Centre has three distinct Independent offerings working with individual Independent contractors, small agencies who appreciate the backend support and earning potential offered by a Global brand, and partners who have unique and specific requirements from a host agency.“Our size and strength in the Canadian travel industry gives us the resources to work directly with each agent or agency on an individual basis,” Zanello says. “We aren’t cookie-cutter and we work hard to ensure we have a host solution that is flexible enough to fit pretty much any arrangement.”More news: Visit Orlando unveils new travel trade tools & agent perksAdd to that a company culture that doesn’t take itself too seriously, she adds, “and you get opportunities like this that help people realize they are not just a part of our business, they are a part of our family.”Flight Centre Independent is Flight Centre’s host-agency solution for Independent Contractors and has agents in nearly every province and territory in Canada. It operates as part of the larger Flight Centre Leisure business. Tags: Flight Centre, Sphere
Tags: Azamara Club Cruises Share MIAMI — Azamara Club Cruises is streamlining its branding to Azamara, removing the term ‘Club Cruises’ from its name.The cruise line says the change reflects “a redefined dedication” to the brand’s Destination Immersion concept and its focus on immersive experiences.“Our passion for travel has allowed our Destination Immersion concept to evolve over the last 10 years,” says Azamara President and CEO Larry Pimentel. “Today we expect even greater growth in our on-shore programming as our services improve. Now available for every trip from October 2019 and for all our future deployments, we will provide a unique variety of products carefully selected, reinforcing our identity and our ‘Explore Further’ mantra.”Pimentel added that Azamara is launching the largest selection of pre and post trip land programs in the entire cruise industry. Azamara offers more than 1,700 shore-based program offerings, complementing its immersive approach and reinforcing its commitment to take passengers to the heart of a destination, he says. More news: Sunwing offers ultimate package deal ahead of YXU flights to SNU, PUJThe land program options include …. AzAmazing Journeys: Carefully selected programs with a small and intimate group led by expert guides (average group size from 12 to 18 guests) such as: AzAamazing in Asia: In search of Orangutnan in Borneo; AzAmazing in South America: The Bolivian Salt Flats and Atacama Desert of Chile; AzAmazing in Australia: Rail & Sail in Indian Pacific. Land Journeys: Programs that allow guests to discover cities from different points of view and offer an à la carte travel experience. Examples include: Land Journey in Europe: Norway On the Road; Land Journey in South America: In search of Jaguar: Pantanal; Land Journey in New Zealand: South Island – Alpine Rail & Mount CookStay Local: Programs that allow passengers with limited time to fully discover one and unique destination, in cities including Buenos Aires, Cape Town, Dubai, Hong Kong and Monte Carlo. << Previous PostNext Post >> Tuesday, June 18, 2019 Travelweek Group Posted by Azamara simplifies its branding, drops the Club Cruises
TV and internet advertising is set to fuel continued growth of the overall advertising market in the absence of further economic shocks, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers.Nick George, partner, strategic entertainment and media at PricewaterhouseCoopers told Informa’s Digital TV Summit yesterday that advertising in the UK was expected to grow by 4.8% between 2010 and 2015, with advertising in Germany growing by 3.8% and France by 3.6%. Emerging markets Russia and Turkey would deliver growth of 13.9% and 10.6% respectively, while China would deliver growth of 14.1%.George said he did not expect any growth in traditional advertising in mature markets including the UK, but said growth will be driven by digital advertising and online media. He said he expected digital’s share of the UK advertising pie to grow from 33% in 2010 to 44% in 2015.George cautioned that it was difficult to deliver long-term forecasts amidst continued economic uncertainty, and that the situation could change if the global economic situation worsened significantly.
Dutch telco KPN has launched a new pay TV service in Belgium via its local subsidiary. The service, called Snow, will combine TV, internet and telephony in a bundled offering, competing with existing providers Telenet and Belgacom.The Snow service will be marketed separately from KPN Belgium’s existing mobile telecom offering in the country, Base. The service offers 33 channels including public broadcast channels from France and the UK.Snow went live yesterday and includes French and Flemish options. The French service includes all the channels of UK broadcaster the BBC – BBC One, Two, Three, Four, CBeebies, BBC HD, BBC World News, BBC Entertainment and CBBC – as well as France 2, 3, 4 and 5, TF1, LCI and TV Breizh from France, Belgian Francophone channels La Une, La Deux and La Trois, RTL TVI, Club RTL, AB3, MCM één, Canvas, Ketnet, OPTV, Trace Sports, Viacom’s MTV, Nickelodeon and Nick Jr, Disney, Disney Junior and Disney XD, Turner’s CNN and Cartoon Network, National Geographic Channel and Discovery Channel.The Flemish version excludes France’s public channels but includes Flemish public channels, OP12, VTM, VTM Kzoom, 2BE, Vier, Vijf, Vitaya, Acht, Jim and TMF.Ian McDonough, senior vice-president and general manager EMEA, BBC Worldwide Channels, said: “The BBC channels are well-known for setting the standard for high quality television and this is another exciting chapter in the expansion of our portfolio throughout Europe. We are proud to offer so much of our content to Belgian viewers through this new agreement.”A triple-play pack costs €39 a month, while internet and fixed phone together without TV is available for €35. Additional channels are available both in Flemish and French versions either à la carte or in mini-packs, with a kids pack available for €6. Additional multi-screen offerings are available €3, with additional SnowBox set-tops available for second screens for €6 a month.KPN began marketing the service by sending individuals dressed as snowmen to the headquarters of rival services Telenet, Begacom and VOO bearing placards with the slogan “All you need is Snow”.Earlier this week, KPN revealed that it had 1.766 million TV customers in the Netherlands at the end of December, up from 1.4 million a year earlier. The number included just over one million IPTV subscribers, almost double the total for 2011, while Digitenne digital-terrestrial customers declined from 827,000 to 754,000.