SKT to build LoRa network for CAT
Thailand’s state-owned CAT Telecom selected South Korean operator SK Telecom (SKT) to build an Internet of Things (IoT) network in parts of Bangkok and in Phuket province.

Under the agreement, SKT will deploy LoRa-based networks in central areas of Bangkok and the entire island of Phuket starting in April.

CAT will first launch a LoRa-based vehicle location tracking service and then roll out additional IoT services, including smart metering and street lighting services.

The companies will also deploy a LoRaWAN in central areas of Bangkok, including the Grand Palace, to offer an IoT-based location tracking service for tourists.

China deployed nearly 1M base stations in 2016
China’s telecoms operators installed 926,000 base stations last year, bringing the industry’s total to 5.6 million, according to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT).

The number of 4G base stations increased by 861,000 last year, taking the total to 2.63 million units, or 47 per cent of total base stations, reported.

WeChat sees surge in Chinese New Year giving
WeChat users sent more than 46 billion digital red packets (electronic versions of the traditional red envelopes containing money) over the Chinese New Year period that ran from 27 January to 1 February, Xinhua news agency reported.

The number of digital red packets sent via WeChat, owned by Tencent, increased by 43 per cent from a year earlier, Xinhua said. WeChat is China’s most popular messaging app.

Qualcomm, TDK set up Singapore venture
US-based Qualcomm and Japan-based TDK set up a joint venture in Singapore under the name RF360 Holdings, which will enable the chipmaker’s RF front-end (RFFE) unit to produce fully integrated systems for mobile devices and fast-growing segments, such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and automotive applications.

The business being transferred to the venture is part of TDK’s surface acoustic wave (SAW) business group.

With RF360 Holdings, Qualcomm will be positioned to design and supply products with end-to-end performance and global scale from the modem/transceiver all the way to the antenna in a fully integrated system, said Qualcomm SVP Cristiano Amon.