Roundup: for the week ending 5 March 2017

A roundup of the latest ICT/technology news from across the Caribbean region for the period Monday 27 February to Sunday 5 March 2017.

Monday, 27 February 2017

AG to civil society: Discourage misinformation on bill

Bahamas – Attorney General Allyson Maynard-Gibson has asked all civil society organizations to discourage “overheated and irresponsible accusations and misinformation” regarding the recently tabled Interception of Communications Bill… more

Cable Bahamas hits highest revenues in 22-year history

Bahamas – Cable Bahamas Limited’s (CBL) 2016 fourth-quarter and year-end consolidated results show its greatest ever revenues, topping $180 million with earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of over $43 million… more

Cable Losses Hit $16.7m Amid Wait For Growth Pay-Off

Bahamas – Cable Bahamas suffered a 12.5 per cent increase in annual net losses to $16.658 million for 2016, driven by Hurricane Matthew-related repair costs and the wait for expansion investments to pay off… more

Copper Thieves Hit BTC Lines

Bahamas – THE Bahamas Telecommunications Company has been a victim of “copper theft,” which has caused some disruption in telephone service in Grand Bahama… more

URCA aims to ‘take Bahamas to world’

Bahamas – The Utilities Regulation and Competition Authority (URCA) aims to “take the Bahamas to the world” as a leader in information and communications technology (ICT), its top executive saying: “We have a very good foundation for ICT in the country”… more

URCA preparing for general election

Bahamas – The Utilities Regulation and Competition Authority (URCA) is readying itself for the general election to be called to ensure its rules for broadcasting during an election are sufficient and followed by its licensees… more

Telecoms ‘can lure investors

Barbados – GOVERNMENT IS BEING urged to engage local technology providers when seeking to attract foreign direct investment… more

Union links CBC increase to 10% pay return

Barbados – WHETHER the Barbados Workers’ Union (BWU) will insist on a ten per cent increase in wages for employees at the financially ailing Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) depends on the restoring of the parliamentarians’ pay cut… more

GTT switches on faster Internet service at Essequibo Coast ahead of schedule

Guyana – The Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GTT) Monday (February 27, 2017) rolled out its fixed Long Term Evolution (LTE) ‘lightening fast’  internet service on the Essequibo Coast—four months ahead of schedule—with a promise to revolutionize the way business is conducted between Charity and Supenaam… more

Guyana’s telecoms sector to be fully liberalised before mid-year–Telecoms Minister

Guyana – Minister with responsibility for Telecommunications in Guyana, Catherine Hughes, promises that the sector will be fully liberalized by the end of May, complete with the accompanying regulations and the establishment of the Telecommunications Agency… more

Linden TV licence still in limbo

Guyana – Four and a half years after an agreement was signed for the people of Linden to have their own television station – part of the pact with the then PPP/C government following bitter protests and the deaths of three men in 2012 – the residents of the mining community are still waiting for it to become operational… more

Digicel seeks to save $US100M a year through cost cuts

Regional – Telecommunications company Digicel is targeting savings of  about US$100 million a year as part of  its 2030 global transformation programme… more

Marketing Strategies Today: How Facebook video updates affect your profits

Regional – With the new Facebook video updates, it is quite evident that Facebook is going big on videos this year. The social media network has released four major updates that make watching videos more flexible and engaging… more

Worry Across Region As Digicel Gets Ready To Cut Jobs To Shave Rising Debt

Regional – Digicel triggered jitters across the Caribbean as it announced its plans to slash more than 1,500 jobs over the next 18 months in a bid to cut down its rising debt… more

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Copper theft hurts 600 BTC customers

Bahamas – Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) executives yesterday said it had incurred “significant” financial cost as a result of copper theft over the weekend, which resulted in 600 customers having their services affected… more

New certifications for BTC team members

Bahamas – Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) recently restructured its business division, with a special focus on small businesses… more

GTT launches LTE 4G internet in Region Two

Guyana – Persons living on the Essequibo Coast now have the opportunity to connect, and keep up with the Caribbean, and the world at large, all thanks to the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company’s new LTE 4G internet service… more

STEMGuyana launches Mathematics app

Guyana – A new software application (app), aimed at improving the performance of pupils sitting Mathematics at the National Grade Six Assessment (NGSA) level, was launched yesterday at the National Racquet Centre, Woolford Avenue, Georgetown… more

Big bucks to bring down copper wire thieves

Jamaica – FLOW, a telecommunications firm that has been hard hit by the theft of its copper cables, is offering to pay for information as it seeks to clamp down on the theft and vandalism of its network assets… more

FLOW partners with Crime Stop to cut theft, vandalism of property

Jamaica – TELECOMMUNICATIONS giant FLOW yesterday signed a memorandum of understanding with Crime Stop, in an effort to combat the long-standing issues of theft and vandalism that have cost it $300 million between 2013 and 2016… more

Digicel Partners With Qwilt to Optimise Over-the-Top Video Content to Improve Quality of Experience for Customers

Regional – Delivering the highest possible video experience to Digicel customers… more

Digicel Selects Affirmed Networks as Strategic Partner for its Global Network Transformation Program

Regional – Affirmed Networks, the leader in virtualized mobile networks, today announced that Digicel, an innovative mobile communications provider with operations in 31 markets, has selected its virtualized Mobile Content Cloud (MCC) solution for deployment across the Caribbean, Central America and Asia Pacific… more

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

2017 BTC directories in stock

Bahamas – The 2017 Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) telephone directories are in stock at all BTC locations. The telephone directories bear snapshots of the beauty of The Bahamas… more

BTC CEO speaks at United Nations, Small Island Developing States symposium

Bahamas – Last week, CEO Leon Williams was a guest speaker at the United Nations, Small Island Developing States symposium at the Melia Hotel… more

CBL posts record USD 180 mln sales in 2016, EBITDA down 16%

Bahamas – Cable Bahamas (CBL) reported revenues of USD 180.6 million in 2016, up 9 percent compared to 2015 and a record annual figure in the company’s 22-year history… more

SSB wants to buy $55 million BTL and BEL shares

Bahamas – The Social Security Board (SSB) intends to purchase $55 million in utility shares, following the reopening of an offer from the Government of Belize which was abandoned last year. The offer is being reintroduced as the new budget year approaches, and amid a possible default on the February payment of the super-bond, with a next big payment to the former owners of Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL) becoming due in just a few months… more

First ICT hub commissioned on E’bo coast

Guyana – Minister of Public Telecommunications, Catherine Hughes, told the residents of Good Hope, Essequibo Coast, on Monday that their initiative to change the name of their Community Management Committee to the Transformation Committee was very apt and in keeping with the Government’s thrust to transform Guyana into a digitally savvy nation… more

Guyana launches4G LTE network

Guyana – Speaking at the launch of the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph (GTT) company’s launch 4G LTE network in Essequibo, Telecommunications Minister Cathy Hughes said the poor internet connectivity had “limited our progress, dampened every possibility for our citizens to get involved in and benefit from all that this technology-driven world has to offer”… more

Flow Teams Up With Crime Stop, Hoping To Put An End To Theft Of Its Copper, Other Infrastructure

Jamaica – Excessive infrastructure theft, particularly of copper, costing anywhere in the region of $300 million, has forced major telecommunications player, Flow, into signing an agreement with Crime Stop, which should see the company saving big bucks from lower instances of vandalism and theft… more

Digicel in Deal with Chinese Firm Under US Probe

Regional – Digicel today begins offering voluntary separation packages as it moves to cut its global workforce by 25 per cent, a week after announcing organizational restructuring and a partnership with a controversial Chinese company embroiled in a probe by the United States government… more

ICT agencies meet after CARICOM heads of government approve single ICT space roadmap

Regional – Following the approval of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) single ICT roadmap earlier in February, the ICT cluster agencies in the region met last Friday to chart the way forward… more

Thursday, 2 March 2017

Getting Serious About Cyber Security

Belize – Cyber crime is the fastest growing form of criminal activity in the world… more

Introduction of STEM in Guyanese school system is a move in right direction

Guyana – Dear Editor, Permit me to laud the Guyanese school system on adopting the STEM Mathematics app in its school curriculum (Stabroek News, February 28)… more

Another financial loss for Cable and Wireless Jamaica

Jamaica – Despite an increase in revenue during the April to December period, Cable and Wireless Jamaica racked up another big financial loss… more

Jamaican cable TV blocks ‘When We Rise’ LGBT docudrama

Jamaica – One of Jamaica’s largest cable TV operators has blocked transmissions of the American LGBT rights historical drama “When We Rise.” … more

Friday, 3 March 2017

Prison Service recruits receive CCTV training

Cayman Islands – Recruits with HM Cayman Islands Prison Service recently received training on how to use the national CCTV network for surveillance operations… more

Friend Glenn Wins Again

Guyana – The Government of Belize has lost another court case in the US Courts, and this time, the country is liable to pay 22 million US Dollars to Glenn Godfrey… more

STEM, wants business sector backing for Grade Six Mathematics app.

Guyana – The widely publicized STEMGuyana Project, launched here last year by a team comprising Atlanta-based Guyanese Karen Abrams and her three children, is engaging the private sector to seek its support for the project’s latest initiative, a National Grade Six Assessment (NGSA) application designed to give support to children preparing for the National Grade Six Assessment… more

Union giving GTT space on redundancies

Guyana – President of the Postal and Telecommunications Workers Union (PTWU), Harold Shepherd says they are giving the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GTT)  some time to reach out to them before they take any further actions to address the company’s  decision to retrench 120 workers… more

Flow Jamaica Losses Double

Jamaica – Cable & Wireless Jamaica (C&WJ), which trades as Flow, posted net losses of $667 million on revenues of $6.8 billion in its third quarter ending December 2016, which reversed the profit earned in that period a year earlier… more

ICT tender: Jamaica needs platform to manage public capex

Jamaica – The Jamaican government launched a request for information (RFI) for a public investment management information system, as part of its ongoing … more

JCF using WhatsApp to tackle sexual exploitation

Jamaica – The Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) is using WhatsApp to tackle the sexual exploitation of children via social media… more

Leaner network

Regional – The telecommunications company Digicel has begun its global voluntary separation programme aimed at cutting approximately 25 per cent of its workforce… more

Government Weighing Options On The Cable’s Future

Saint Kitts and Nevis – St Kitts and Nevis (WINN): Attorney general Vincent Byron is explaining the government’s thinking about the future of The Cable… more

IT Department commended for positive impact on day-to-day operations of Nevis Administration

Saint Kitts and Nevis – Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Finance on Nevis Colin Dore, commended management and staff of the Information Technology (IT) Department in the Nevis Island Administration (NIA), for the positive impact their work continues to have on the day-to-day operations of government… more

Digicel launches Samsung Galaxy S7 Giveaway for March

Saint Lucia – Digicel St. Lucia has launched yet another exciting and cool promotion to coincide with the new month of March… more

CWU demands reimbursement for TSTT workers

Trinidad and Tobago – THE Communication Workers Union (CWU) is demanding that Telecommunications Services of Trinidad and Tobago Limited (TSTT) take immediate steps to reimburse more than 800 retirees 1.5 percent of their monthly contribution… more

CWU: TSTT must pay $36m owed to retirees

Trinidad and Tobago – The Communication Workers Union (CWU) is calling on the Telecommunications Services of T&T (TSTT) to come clean about the company’s two existing pension plan funds and to pay $36,000,000 in outstanding monies owed to retirees… more

Saturday, 4 March 2017

GOB loses US$22 mil to Glenn Godfrey

Belize – The Government of Belize has lost yet another court case in the US—this time it has been denied a motion it filed in January in US Court of Appeal in the Eleventh Circuit, with jurisdiction in Georgia, Florida and Alabama, USA, to dismiss the US$22 million award handed down in favor of Glenn D. Godfrey, a Belizean attorney and former People’s United Party (PUP) Cabinet Minister… more

New free delivery service in Haiti for the Diaspora

Haiti – Friday, RedBarrel, an e-commerce company supported by the Digicel phone company, announced the creation of a new free delivery service of food and household items purchased online by Haitian diaspora customers for relatives in Haiti… more

ICTs eye single Caricom ICT space

Regional – INFORMATION communication technology (ICT) cluster agencies in Caricom member states have begun discussions on developing an integrated work plan among themselves towards the development of a “Single ICT Space” in the region… more

OCM buys into Green Dot

Trinidad and Tobago – ONE CARIBBEAN MEDIA (OCM) has made another strategic acquisition… more

PHONE SWITCH

Trinidad and Tobago – Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley has directed his Cabinet members using the Digicel network for work purposes to switch to locally-owned telecommunications provider bmobile, after police officers disclosed to him that former Strategic Intelligence Agency (SIA) ­director Reshmi Ramnarine is employed at ­Digicel… more

Sunday, 5 March 2017

Malware attack on GWI’s ICT system…Systems up and running, investigation still ongoing

Guyana – After its Information and Communication Technology (ICT) systems suffered a malware attack in late January this year, the Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) has announced that its systems are now up and running… more

Thousands of GTT customers suffer internet outage after hardware malfunction

Guyana – Thousands of Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GTT) Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) customers lost their internet service for several hours yesterday following a hardware malfunction, while Minister of Telecommunications Cathy Hughes voiced concern over the frequency of interruptions… more

BPO is ripe for automation — Fujitsu

Jamaica – As Jamaica sets about creating five per cent economic growth within four years, the Business Processing Operations sector has been considered a lynch pin in meeting that goal… more

 

Image credits:  journalismthatmatters (flickr);  Wikipedia;  The Eleutheran;  Wikipedia;  Wikipedia;  Wikipedia

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