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Amazon’s Twitch to Start Selling Video Games
Twitch, Amazon’s video game streaming site, will start selling games via its platform in the next few months. According to TechCrunch, the games will be made available for download and playing through the Twitch launcher, “software that currently helps Twitch Prime customers redeem their games and loot codes.”
Nokia’s Classic Feature Phone Is Back
Finland–based company HMD Global, which owns the rights to sell Nokia-branded mobile devices, unveiled new phones at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, including a redesign of Nokia’s classic 3310 feature phone. Bloomberg reported that the phones will run on Google’s Android operating system and Google Assist, and will retail for roughly $147 to $200.
China Unicom Offers Unlimited 4G
Mobile service provider China Unicom announced it will offer subscribers “unlimited” 4G data plans that could be used nationwide, becoming the first wireless company in China to do so. Under the new plans, users could pay RMB198 ($30) for 15GB of data per month, or RMB398 ($60) per month for 40GB of data at 4G speeds. Consumption beyond those monthly packages will have data speeds reduced to 3G. eMarketer projects that there will be 637.9 million mobile phone internet users in China by the end of this year.
India’s Ride-Hailing Service Ola Raises $330 Million in Fresh Funding
Business Standard reported that India’s ride-hailing service Ola has secured $330 million in new funding from Japan-based telecom SoftBank Group and two other investors. However, the report also noted that Ola’s valuation had dropped by more than 30%, from $5 billion to about $3.5 billion. Ola is entwined with Uber in a battle for supremacy in India’s ride-hailing service sector.
Asian Markets Will Drive an Increase in Mobile Subscribers by 2020
In three years, the number of unique mobile subscribers worldwide will climb to 5.7 billion, according to “The Mobile Economy 2017” report from GSMA, a group that represents the interests of mobile operators. By then, nearly three-quarters of the world’s population will have mobile service. Growth during this period will be driven by markets in Asia, which will see about 571 million unique subscribers, with 310 million coming from India and 158 million coming from China.
Fairtrade Sales Rebound in the UK
UK sales of Fairtrade goods such as coffee and bananas rose in 2016, the first time they had done so since 2013, according to The Guardian. Revenues from produce overseen by the Fairtrade Foundation, which guarantees a minimum price to farmers and additional payments for use on social projects such as schools or clean water facilities, increased 2% to £1.64 billion ($2.21 billion).
—Cliff Annicelli, Rahul Chadha, Rebecca Chadwick, Rimma Kats
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