Roundup: for the week ending 15 March 2015

A roundup of ICT/technology news from across the Caribbean region for the period Monday 9 March to Sunday 15 March 2015.

Monday, 9 March 2015

Nassau Life: BTC, BEC And Other Public Deceptions

Bahamas – Last spring, I was debating with my friend Frankie Wilson, the architect of the much ballyhooed Bahamian re-taking of control of the Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) from Cable & Wireless… more

Cable Plans Launch Of $60-$100m Pref Issue

Bahamas – Cable Bahamas is planning to imminently tap the capital markets with another multi-million dollar preference share issue, Tribune Business can reveal… more

Gabrielle makes IT

Barbados – It’s true that the old adage which says when life gives you lemons, you make lemonade is a cliché, but still it is one that is more than applicable to Gabrielle Belgrave… more

Could a Major Caribbean Merger Mean the End for Caribbean Broadcasters?

Regional – The build-up was impressive. There was great secrecy, a stage draped in ‘silk’ with silhouetted dancers and when the curtain fell, flashing lights and tech music… more

LIME Caribbean tops in advertising competition

Regional – LIME Caribbean copped a total of seventeen awards to emerge the top performing company, with the most awards won, in the recently announced Caribbean Advertising Federation (CAF)/American Advertising Awards (ADDYs) for 2015… more

OAS Organizes Training Course for Computer Security Incident Response Teams (CSIRTs) in the Americas

Regional – The Organization of American States (OAS) today began a training course on Computer Security Incident Response Teams (CSIRTs) aimed at technical staff responsible for the development and management of CSIRTs from Dominica, the Dominican Republic, Honduras, Nicaragua, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago, at its headquarters in Washington, DC… more

Is electronic and Internet voting suitable for T&T?

Trinidad and Tobago – In 1892, the mechanical lever voting machine was first used in the USA. Modern voting machines are however of the electronic type… more

Power outage knocks out mobile networks

Trinidad and Tobago – Hundreds of mobile customers lost service on both networks this weekend owing to an electricity outage, according to the service providers bmobile and Digicel… more

Tuesday, 10 March 2015 disputes inventory timeline, seeks exemptions

Bahamas – The responses of the Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) to the first consultation document issued by the Utilities Regulatory and Competition Authority (URCA) on proposed infrastructure sharing regulations reveal a deep concern by BTC that any sharing of infrastructure not inhibit its ability to be both competitive and profitable when a second player enters the mobile phone market in May… more

BTC: URCA should ensure new player builds own network

Bahamas – In its response to the infrastructure-sharing regulations issued by the Utilities Regulation and Competition Authority (URCA), the Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) has asked the regulator to require new mobile phone market entrants to build their own networks even while allowing for facilities sharing, to block “certain assets” from infrastructural access and to ensure that BTC isn’t the only company that has to share its infrastructure… more

Cuba’s Tech Start-Up Sector: “People Are Hungry to Work”

Cuba – Even before the recent thawing of relations with the US, Cuba was developing a tech start-up community that has drawn interest from entrepreneurs and industry giants… more

Dominica embarks on major ICT project

Dominica – The Government of Dominica has began works on the refurbishment on a section of the Dominica State College (DSC) to house a Center for Excellence and Innovation for ICT… more

Samsung’s new broadside is curved

Regional – Two weeks ago, at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, Spain, Samsung introduced the latest in its S series, the flagship of its considerable lineup of smartphones… more

Accelerating Entrepreneurship in St Vincent and the Grenadines

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines – Entrepreneurship is getting a boost in St Vincent and the Grenadines… more

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

BTC: Mobile network improvements in the Northern Bahamas

Bahamas – Residents in the Northern Bahamas are enjoying their share of the recent $65M Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) capital investment earmarked for improvements to its landline, broadband and mobile network… more

Phone traced

Barbados – Police Constable Frank Olton was the lone witness when the trial of two men accused of robbing a Government Senator of a cellular phone in October 2011, continued in Supreme Court No. 5 this morning, before Justice Olson Alleyne… more

Broadband services now 6 times faster – LIME

British Virgin Islands – Telecommunications provider LIME has announced the roll out of its Superfast Broadband service which it said is allowing most customers to receive up to six times the speed of their existing packages… more

US, Cuba re-establish direct phone link

Cuba – The United States and Cuba have re-established a direct telephone link, the Cuban state telecommunications company said Wednesday, in the latest step toward normalizing ties between the one-time Cold War foes… more

Contract Signed For Renovation Of Centre Of Excellence

Dominica – The Dominica Labour Party Administration continues to manifest its commitment to developing the nation’s human resource, this time, as it prepares to open the much-anticipated Centre of Excellence and Innovation… more

Flag-map_of_Jamaica (By Andriyko_UA, Wikimedia Commons)20,000 Tablets Distributed to Students

Jamaica – Over 20,000 tablet computers have been distributed to students in various institutions to date under the $1.4 billion Tablets in School pilot project… more

Cyberbox expands into electronic gaming

Jamaica – LOCAL Internet Café Cyberbox Lan Centre has partnered with video gaming expert Isaiah-Triforce Johnson in its quest to expand into electronic gaming… more

ICT/BPO Policy In The Works

Jamaica – Jamaica is to create a national information and communications technology/business process outsourcing (ICT/BPO) policy aimed at regulating the sector which is said to be the fastest growing in the country… more

More than 500 arrested under Lotto Scam Act

Jamaica – More than 500 persons have been arrested and billions of dollars in assets seized under the country’s anti-lottery scamming law, since it was passed in 2013… more

Phone towers threaten endangered species’ habitat in Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico – The construction of telecommunications towers threatens to destroy the habitat of the Puerto Rican “guabairo,” or nightjar, an endangered species of bird found only in the southern part of the island, community leaders said Tuesday… more

LACNIC delivers IPv6 training to T&T tech community

Regional – Engineers and technicians seeking to upgrade their network infrastrcuture will benefit from an upcoming international workshop… more

73-year-old graduates in computer literacy

Trinidad and Tobago – Some 312 participants, including a 73-year-old woman, on Monday graduated from a computer literacy class hosted by the National Poverty Reduction and Eradication Programmes Coordinating Unit… more

Thursday, 12 March 2015

BTC brings home silver and bronze Stevie awards

Bahamas – Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) Corporate and Enterprise Sales Team won silver and bronze at the prestigious ninth annual Stevie® Awards for Sales & Customer Service held in Las Vegas, at the Bellagio Hotel, on February 27… more

BTC disputes URCA proposed timelines on access agreements

Bahamas – The Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) has argued that it should take 60 days — not 42 — for an infrastructure provider to conclude an access agreement, 21 days to deny one (not 14) and that the infrastructure provider’s expansion plans ought to be included in costing principles for price setting considerations… more

LIME, FLOW decision next week

Barbados – BY THE MIDDLE of next week Barbadians will know whether LIME and FLOW will get the green light to join forces in Barbados… more

Wilson: BTC Has ‘No Choice’ On Downsize

Bahamas – A leading critic of the Bahamas Telecommunications Company’s (BTC) privatisation has defended its controlling shareholder’s decision to further downsize the workforce, arguing: “What choice do they have?” … more

911 Calls Cross Between Orange Walk And San Pedro Police Departments

Belize – Are you a Digicell customer and are wondering why when making a 911 emergency call to the Orange Walk Police Station your call is directed to the San Pedro Police Formation? … more

Top Businesses In Grenada Exicted About Digicel More!

Grenada – Digicel recently unveiled a new line of products under its Mobile Advertising banner that has businesses in Grenada rethinking the way they reach out to their customers… more

Guyana flag (Wikipedia)GT&T blames car crash for downtown disruption

Guyana – Approximately 1,000 GT&T landline and data customers in the downtown Georgetown area are without service following damage to the company’s cable cabinet facility… more

Mandeville Gets Its First Business Process Outsourcing Company

Jamaica – The multibillion-dollar business process outsourcing company, Sutherland Global Services (BPO), is expanding to Mandeville, Manchester, within six months… more

Education’s future is… Digital, connected and mobile

Regional – In today’s digitally connected world, using technology to improve education institutions and processes is not a question of if, but of when and how… more

ICANN, CTU bring Caribbean voices to global Internet policy debate

Regional – This year could be the year to kick some Caribbean stereotypes to the curb. The region has been progressively piping up on the global stage, breaking long-held cultural paradigms in the process, in some fairly unlikely ways… more

TATT: No go on CWC, Flow merger

Regional – It is, for now, a no go for the billion-dollar merger of Cable and Wireless Communications (CWC) and Columbus Communications International, the parent company of cable TV provider Flow… more

BTP Participates In Regional E-Waste Project

Sint Maarten – Bureau Telecommunications and Post St. Maarten (BTP-SXM) represented by Ryan Wijngaarde met with core members of the CSR committee of the Caribbean Telecom Association (CANTO) in Trinidad this week for the kick-off of a regional E-waste project… more

One app to rule them all

Trinidad and Tobago – A funny thing happened to the blink/bmobile yellow pages app. It’s gotten a fantastic upgrade and that’s not hype… more

Sky phones coming to TT

Trinidad and Tobago – IN two months time, local consumers will have the opportunity to purchase smart phones from Sky Devices of the United States. Loaded on these phones will be the first ever Caribbean App Store, which offers great opportunities for local business persons to promote their business on the World Wide Web… more

Friday, 13 March 2015

BTC Staff To Decide By Monday On Severance

Bahamas – BAHAMAS Telecommunications Company employees have until 5pm Monday to decide whether they will accept voluntary separation packages before executives begin “letting people go,” according to Bahamas Communications and Public Officers Union Secretary General Dino Rolle… more

BTC VSEP candidates  get financial advice

Bahamas – Bahamas Telecommunications Corporation (BTC) employees are now considering voluntary separation packages (VSEP) being offered by the company after being advised through in-house seminars on what to do with that windfall should they opt for the package… more

Cable Bahamas offers Bahamians new opportunities to invest

Bahamas – Today, Cable Bahamas Ltd announced that it will be offering a private placement preferred share offering to be opened in a few weeks… more

Others claim to be duped by phone fraudsters

Guyana – Following the revelation of a disabled Mon Repos woman that she had been duped out of $100,000 by a telephone fraudster, other persons have come forward with similar stories… more

Technology minister grants number portability administrator service provider licence

Jamaica – Minister with responsibility for Technology, Phillip Paulwell yesterday (Thursday March 12) granted a number portability administrator licence to Porting Access B V of the Netherlands… more

Telecoms infrastructure as key to Jamaica’s attractiveness

Jamaica – A robust and sophisticated telecoms infrastructure is a key deciding factor for investors considering doing business in Jamaica, according to Yoni Epstein, chairman of Jamaica’s Business Process Industry Association of Jamaica (BPIAJ)… more

ITU Telecom World Young Innovators Competition Call for Applicants

Regional – The ITU Telecom World Young Innovators Competition Entrepreneurship Challenge is open for applications! … more

Talking Caribbean Tech in St Lucia

Regional – St Lucia will be the backdrop to the highly anticipated gathering of the men and women responsible for securing and administering computer networks across the Caribbean… more

Trinidad_and_Tobago Flag…Cable and Wireless eyes disposal of TSTT

Trinidad and Tobago – Cable and Wireless Communications (CWC) on Thursday night confirmed that it looked forward to working with the National Enterprises Ltd (NEL) to agree to a fair treatment of its TSTT shares held by NEL… more

Flow Trinidad takeover could be blocked unless CWC divests TSTT stake

Trinidad and Tobago – Today, Trinidad & Tobago’s Newsday paper reports that the Telecommunications Authority of Trinidad & Tobago (TATT) has laid down conditions on the proposed takeover of triple-play broadband, pay-TV and telephony operator Columbus Communications Trinidad (Flow) by rival Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC)… more

Google emails not like Rowley’s Emailgate

Trinidad and Tobago – MORE than a week after police began reviewing a Google file of emails, they have found that none resemble those disclosed in Parliament back in 2013, by Opposition Leader Dr Keith Rowley, in relation to murder and corruption conspiracies… more

Hurdle for CWC deal

Trinidad and Tobago – T&T’s telecommunications regulator yesterday expressed deep concerns about the possible impact Cable & Wireless Communications’ proposed US$3 billion acquisition of Columbus International would have on the competitive environment for the telecom industry in T&T… more

No to Flow

Trinidad and Tobago – No to Flow, unless you sell your 49 percent stake in TSTT… more

Support for TATT move on Flow and CWC merger

Trinidad and Tobago – Holdings company National Enterprises Ltd (NEL), the majority shareholder of telecoms provider Telecommunication Services of Trinidad and Tobago Ltd (TSTT), said yesterday it supports the Telecommunications Authority of Trinidad and Tobago’s (TATT) position that retention of Cable and Wireless Communications’ (CWC) shareholding in TSTT can lead to a “significant lessening of competition”… more

Saturday, 14 March 2015

Bahamas Press Club comments on Freedom of Information Act

Bahamas – The Bahamas Press Club 2014 notes with much interest the recent announcements by the Minister of Education, Science and Technology the Hon. Jerome Fitzgerald, on the progress of efforts to present a Freedom of Information Bill to Parliament… more

Back door open for CWC-Columbus approval

Regional – The Communications Workers Union (CWU) said while the Telecommunications Authority of T&T (TATT) has set conditions for its approval of the proposed merger of Cable and Wireless Communications (CWC) and Columbus International, it has left “the back door wide open” for the transaction to be successfully completed… more

‘We’ll sell TSTT stake’

Trinidad and Tobago – CABLE AND WIRELESS Communications (CWC) yesterday agreed to the Telecommunications Authority of TT (TATT)’s terms to first sell its 49 percent stake in TSTT before buying Columbus Communications, parent company of local cable TV and wireless services provider Flow… more

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Govt giving FTC more teeth

Barbados – GOVERNMENT IS GIVING the Fair Trading Commission (FTC) more power to protect consumers… more of a Partnership Agreement CONATEL-UEH

Haiti – Friday, Jean-Marie Guillaume, Director General of the National Council of Telecommunications (CONATEL) and Jean Vernet Henry, Rector of the State University of Haiti (UEH) signed a partnership agreement protocol between the two institutions in the presence Fritz Deshommes, Vice-Rector for Research, Jean Elie Erol, Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Jean-Marie Altéma, Deputy Director General of CONATEL… more

Government hopes to doubles BPO employment by 2020 — Phillips

Jamaica – A national five-year strategy to double the employment level in the business process outsourcing BPO industry should be submitted to Cabinet over the next few months, according to Minister of Finance and Planning, Peter Phillips… more

Outsourcing can earn US$1b annually — Jamaica lags behind Uruguay

Jamaica – Anupam Govil, outsourcing consultant, thinks Jamaica could more than double its business process outsourcing (BPO) earnings to US$1 billion ($115b) annually, provided the island offers higher skills solutions for clients… more

Telecom-Union Critical Of T&T Regulator’s Response To CWC-Flow Merger

Trinidad and Tobago – The Communications Workers Union (CWU) Sunday said the Telecommunication Authority of Trinidad and Tobago (TATT) has left the “back door wide open” for the British telecommunication giant, Cable and Wireless Communication (CWC) to complete its billion dollar merger with Columbus Communications International (CCI)… more


Image credits:  journalismthatmatters (flickr);  The Eleutheran;   Andriyko_UA (Wikimedia Commons);  Wikipedia;  Wikipedia;