Microsoft buys cloud communications software vendor Metaswitch Networks to bolster 5G

Microsoft is acquiring Metaswitch Networks, a maker of virtualized network software and unified communications solutions for operator, for an undisclosed amount. Los Altos, Calif.-based Metaswitch sells software and services designed to run on commodity hardware in private, public and hybrid clouds. Its software underpins voice, data and communications services for fixed, mobile and converged operators.

The move follows Microsoft’s recent acquisition of Affirmed Networks and is meant to add to Microsoft’s line-up for the telecommunications industry at a time when cloud and communications networks are converging.

“As the industry moves to 5G, operators will have opportunities to advance the virtualization of their core networks and move forward on a path to an increasingly cloud-native future. Microsoft will continue to meet customers where they are, working together with the industry as operators and network equipment providers evolve their own operations,” said Corporate Vice President of Azure Networking Yousef Khalidi, in

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Deutsche Bank’s planned tech spend unaffected by global crisis

Deutsche Bank’s ambitious technology plans will not be derailed by the current global pandemic and imminent recession, with technology investments planned to help the bank do much more and cut costs in parallel.

In fact, the company’s reaction to the pandemic, particularly the sudden introduction of home working and reduced travel, has further proven the importance of technology and presented new cost-cutting possibilities.

The bank had already identified the importance of the latest digital technologies for revenue growth. In July, CEO Christian Sewing said the bank wanted to become a technology company and digital leader, with plans to spend €13bn on IT through to 2022. This is in parallel with cost cutting plans, which includes cutting 18,000 staff.

Sewing will tell the bank’s shareholders at its annual general meeting on Wednesday 20 May that the bank remains committed to its technology spending plans. In his speech, he will say:

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Apple acquires virtual reality startup NextVR

Apple confirmed reports on Friday that it has acquired NextVR, a virtual reality company that specialises in broadcasting live events under the virtual reality (VR) format.

NextVR was known for previously inking deals with the National Basketball Association, National Football League, Live Nation, Fox Sports, International Champions Cup, as well as various artists to broadcast sporting events and concerts through its VR platform.

When asked to comment, Apple merely referred to a CNBC report on the acquisition, where it said: “Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans.” 

Meanwhile, NextVR’s website was updated with a note, saying: “We’re heading in a new direction.” 

“Thank you to our partners and fans around the world for the role you played in building this awesome platform for sports, music and entertainment experiences in Virtual Reality.”

Prior to the acquisition, Apple had told

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Harman seeks to bring private member’s bill over contact tracing

Labour MP Harriet Harman, head of the parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights, is seeking permission to introduce the committee’s proposed Contact Tracing (Data Protection) Bill before parliament as a private member’s bill, should it not be adopted by the government.

The proposed bill addresses a number of concerns around the implications on human rights of the UK’s contact-tracing app, which is currently undergoing beta tests on the Isle of Wight ahead of a national roll-out.

“We cannot rely on the current, failed, mishmash of protections that were never envisaged for this situation. We need new legislation,” said Harman. “Government collection of our movements and physical contacts would have been unconscionable before, but now it is happening.

“Big powers demand big safeguards. The government should not resist their assurances being put into law. Parliament completed emergency legislation for new powers. It can do it now for new protections.”

The key

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