first_img Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea David de Gea has arguably been Manchester United’s player of the season.The Spanish keeper has been the stalwart of the side who have defended excellently this term, and without him in goal, United would likely be much further down the Premier League table.He put in another brilliant performance for Louis van Gaal’s side on Wednesday evening, ensuring United won their FA Cup quarter-final replay against West Ham by a 2-1 scoreline.The 25-year-old pulled off a series of top class saves, including a run near the end of the game when it appeared as if the Hammers were set to equalise.Following the performance, United fans took to Twitter to react to De Gea’s outstanding display, and we collect some of the best responses below… 1last_img read more


first_imgMinister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh has tonight announced that two Milford schools – Loreto Community School and Mulroy College – have been approved for large scale projects to build new classrooms.The announcement will need a total of 17 new classrooms between the two schools.Minister McHugh said “It is an honour, as a Government Minister, to be able to share news like this with the schools and to the local community around Milford, Fanad, north Donegal, the Letterkenny area and everywhere families are sending children to these schools.” Loreto and Mulroy have been approved for the large scale projects by the Building Unit in the Department of Education and Skills under its additional accommodation programme.Minister McHugh said: “I was in Loreto and Mulroy on the morning the Leaving Certificate results came out. Obviously, the entire focus was on the teenagers, their hopes and plans for the future.“And now just a week or so later we are able to bring news of multi-million euro Government investment in our schools which I have no doubt will give everyone associated with the schools a massive boost and another goal to aim for.“I have spoken to both principals – Margaret O’Connor in Loreto and Fiona Temple in Mulroy. I am sure they cannot wait to share the news and get down to work to see these projects come a reality.” The decisions on the additional accommodation projects are based on a number of factors including the increasing and projected enrolments in the schools,Minister McHugh said: “Loreto Community School has been approved for 11 new classrooms which will includes the replacement of five prefabs with permanent rooms, one technical graphics classroom, two science labs and prep area, one art room and two special education teaching rooms. New toilets and a locker area will also form part of the plan.“Mulroy College has been approved for one mainstream classroom, two special education needs rooms and three special education teaching rooms, as well as toilets. The Department is also awaiting a revised roof replacement design which will be considered at a later date.“It is a fantastic boost to see investment in schools to support increasing enrolments with projections for around 800 students to be in Loreto in the coming years and around 530 students enrolling in Mulroy this year.”Minister McHugh added: “There are a number of other school projects in the pipeline in the county and I hope to be in a position to signal progress on those in the coming weeks and months.” Minister announces large scale projects for two Milford schools was last modified: August 24th, 2019 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:donegalLoretoMilfordMulroyschoolslast_img read more


first_img(Visited 273 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 Lee Berger’s remarkable cache of hominid bones found deep in a South African cave is generating a lot of news, but major questions remain.At one level, it’s a great adventure story: squeezing through narrow cave passages and finding bones all over the floor, so hard to reach that a team of skinny female investigators had to be recruited to map and retrieve them. But at a scientific level, what these bones mean is not clear. Lee Berger (champion of Australopithecus sediba, 12/08/11) has given the bones a new species name within our genus: Homo naledi. He is almost as controversial, however, as the fossils themselves.The bones appear to be from about 15 individuals. No other mammal bones were found there, leading to speculations it was an intentional burial site. The skeletons seem to be mosaics of human and australopith features; some think they fit within Homo erectus. But since no dates have been assigned to the fossils yet, even evolutionary paleoanthropologists are reluctant to draw conclusions.It’s premature, therefore, to evaluate this find. What we can do is draw attention to the variety of opinions in the press.Evolutionary OpinionsHomo naledi, a new species of the genus Homo from the Dinaledi Chamber, South Africa (eLife). This is the lead paper by Berger et al. announcing the find.Geological and taphonomic context for the new hominin species Homo naledi from the Dinaledi Chamber, South Africa (eLife). This companion paper describes the conditions in which the bones were found.Crowdsourcing digs up an early human species (Nature). This news article begins with a photo of Lee Berger smiling triumphantly outside Rising Star Cave where the bones were found. Ewen Callaway describes how Berger recruited cavers to excavate the room deep inside the cave, and gives some preliminary opinions of other paleoanthropologists.New human species discovered (Science Magazine). Veteran hominid news reporter Ann Gibbons describes the process of finding the fossils, giving Lee Berger a chance to assure readers that his expedition”isn’t a media stunt.”South Africa’s new human ancestor sparks racial row (PhysOrg). Some South Africans are taking offense at possible racial overtones to the evolutionary claims made about Homo naledi.From the archives: The scientist behind those controversial new hominin fossils (Science Magazine). Michael Balter asks “Why is this enthusiastic paleontologist so controversial?” and points to a 2011 feature story about Lee Berger.New Human Ancestor Elicits Awe—and Many Questions (National Geographic). Jamie Shreeve discusses frustration over not having dates for the bones, and perplexity of how they got there. The possibility of radiocarbon dating is discussed.Mystery Lingers Over Ritual Behavior of New Human Ancestor (National Geographic). This entry begins with artwork of creatures with human-like bodies but ape-like facial features carrying their dead into the cave for burial. Writer Nadia Drake discusses whether ritual behavior over death of kin is unique to humans.Human Evolution 101 (National Geographic). Nadia Drake takes advantage of the news about Homo naledi to ask leading questions like, “Why are scientists certain that human evolution happened?”12 Theories of How We Became Human, and Why They’re All Wrong (National Geographic). Balancing out Drake’s positivism, Mark Strauss recounts the many ideas about human evolution that have fallen by the wayside over the years. He doesn’t mention Homo naledi.Opinion: What about Homo naledi’s geologic age? (PhysOrg). Darren Curnoe laments over not having established a geological age for the fossils. “Its just the sort of thing that infuriates many scientists and detracts from an otherwise significant discovery; pity really.”New species of extinct human found in cave may rewrite history (New Scientist). Colin Barras includes photos of the fossils, artwork of the presumed facial features, and a map of the cave chamber where they were found. “ONE thousand four hundred bones, 140 teeth, belonging to at least 15 individual skeletons – and that’s just what was recovered in a single short field session,” he begins.Homo naledi: Unanswered questions about the newest human species (New Scientist). Rowan Hooper briefly discusses the main questions regarding the find. “We don’t even know how old H. naledi was. It could be millions of years old, making it one of the very earliest species of Homo, or only tens or hundreds of thousands of years old, making it a relict species of human that survived into modern times,” he says. “…The team say it may be possible to use isotope testing to age the remains, and that no attempt has yet been made to extract DNA.”Researcher argues that there’s more to the genus Homo than we may think (PhysOrg). This is not specifically about Homo naledi. Joe Miksch discusses the views of Jeffrey Schwarz, who complains, “If we want to be objective, we shall almost certainly have to scrap the iconic list of (genus and species) names in which hominid fossil specimens have historically been trapped and start from the beginning.”Non-Evolutionary OpinionsHomo naledi as Spin Detector (Evolution News & Views). Ann Gauger gives an intelligent-design perspective on the bones, taking issue with some of the initial interpretations, providing quotes that illustrate spin doctoring. Her earlier piece on ENV also concentrates on separating fact from interpretation. Gauger was co-author with Douglas Axe and Casey Luskin of the Discovery Institute book, Science and Human Origins.Scientists dispute ‘new’ species discovery (World Magazine). Casey Luskin gets a quote in Daniel James Devine’s article on Homo naledi, a fairly straightforward account of the find. Luskin comments, “Whenever you hear the word ‘mosaic’ in evolutionary lingo, what that means is this species does not fit very well into our preferred phylogenic scheme.” In World, an ID-friendly Christian news magazine, Devine says that Berger admits “the fossils might be only tens of thousands of years old.” He also points out that “some scientists dispute Berger’s contention that all 1,500 bones came from the same species.”What to make of Homo naledi? More pseudo-scientific claims of human ancestry (CMI). Marc Ambler discusses the flamboyant character of Lee Berger. He notes that all other fossils in the area had been australopiths. Central point is cautionary:One will have to wait and see whether the evolutionary scientific community come down on the side of the remains being Homo, or just Australopithecus. But why label the remains Homo naledi if there is so much indication that these may have been ordinary humans with some unique anatomical variations just as there are variations today between different people groups but all descended from the first two people created by God—Adam and Eve? University of California’s Tim White, who holds a different interpretation of human evolution, believes the remains belong to the species H. erectus, named in the 19th century. He is reported as saying that “New species should not be created willy-nilly. In order to claim a new species one has to demonstrate that it’s different from anything that’s ever been known.”Homo naledi, a New Human Ancestor? (ICR). Frank Sherwin gives his initial take on the fossils, ending with a suggestion that the individuals are more ape-like than human-like, pointing to doubts about the intentional burial interpretation. Incidentally, ICR is about to release its new 4-part DVD production on the human body, Made in His Image; click here for trailer and information.Other Human-Evolution NewsAlmost buried in the news about Homo naledi was another major announcement about Homo bones in a cave in Spain. In Science Magazine, Ann Gibbons writes about the new dates assigned to Denisovans, ranging from 50,000 to as much as 170,000 years ago. Gibbons thinks “they help solidify our murky view of Denisovans,” but can such a vast range of dates be plausible for individuals with many of the capabilities of Neanderthals and modern humans? And how much can be learned from a tiny fragment of a pinky fingerbone? “Denisovans occupied Denisova Cave repeatedly over more than 100,000 years,” she claims in a related Science Magazine article without winking a skeptical eye. “Neandertals slipped in as well, and modern humans were the last to live there.”Gibbons also claimed in a recent Science Magazine piece that Neanderthal DNA is shaking up the family tree. But that’s old news. She leaves science for the humanities in “Humanity’s Long, Lonely Road,” speculating this way and that about the relationships of Denisovans, Neanderthals and so-called modern humans (although the differences between all three are slight). Her speculations put modern humans on a long, lonely road as far back as 3/4 of a million years ago. “That would mean that the ancestors of humans were already wandering down a solitary path, apart from the other kinds of archaic humans on the planet, 100,000 to 400,000 years earlier than expected.” It sure took these lookalikes a long time to learn farming.Most curious in the early-man news is Michael Balter’s suggestion in Science Magazine that the “world’s oldest oatmeal” may have been discovered in an Italian cave. Estimated 32,000 years old, that would make it 25,000 years before the invention of farming. One would think they would tire of the same breakfast cereal after two weeks, let alone 25,000 years.New Scientist, meanwhile, drags in climate change to explain “key moments in human evolution.” Climate change becomes an all-purpose gimmick for explaining any evolutionary mystery, but it has a problem: why didn’t all the other species change accordingly? It explains opposite outcomes; therefore, it explains nothing.Eskimos are human, aren’t they? Sure they are. But changes to their stature—genetic mutations and all—occurred rapidly (geologically speaking) due to their high fat diet, Julie Hussin writes in The Conversation. She attributes this to natural selection, but hey: the Inuit can marry Europeans or Chinese and have happy kids.It’s an appropriate time to remember Ian Tattersal and Jeffrey Schwarz’s critical comments in Science Magazine about defining the genus Homo. These veteran paleoanthropologists think their colleagues have been going about it all wrong. There is no simple ancestor-descendent relationship to be found in human fossils. “If we want to be objective, we shall almost certainly have to scrap the iconic list of names in which hominin fossil specimens have historically been trapped, and start from the beginning by hypothesizing morphs, building testable theories of relatedness, and rethinking genera and species.” What does that imply for “Homo naledi“?In conclusion, we remind readers that “the myth of the missing link does science no favors,” as Sean Nee argues in The Conversation. Depending on the traits one focuses on, or one’s starting metanarrative, any story of relationships can be concocted; “we must choose our metaphors wisely, lest we be misled,” he says. “The Great Chain of Being, strung through evolutionary space by Blind Watchmakers, with missing links waiting to be discovered, isn’t going to help us understand infectious disease” or anything else that matters to us. Fossils like those announced by Lee Berger need to be interpreted on their own terms.Update 9/21/15: At Evolution News & Views, Casey Luskin provides a detailed look at four major controversies about these fossils, including their classification, whether they were buried or chase into the cave, whether they comprise multiple species, and more. He provides many quotes from the literature.We provide these links as preliminary coverage regarding so-called Homo naledi. Obviously many questions are floating around, and without dates, even the evolutionists don’t know what to think. If original unfossilized tissue or radiocarbon is found, the evolutionary story will be moot; evolutionists would have to claim, like with Homo floresiensis (the “hobbit”) that the creatures were relicts of earlier evolution, caught in some kind of refugium away from evolving modern humans. That would seem hard to maintain. Rather than rely on the opinions of experts, go to the original papers and read them critically, asking the kinds of questions evolutionists don’t think about.In a profound new peer-reviewed paper in Theoretical Biology and Medical Modelling, creation geneticist John Sanford and team have shown that human evolution is unworkable anyway. There is simply not enough time, using realistic models of fixation and population size, for the mutations needed to change an ape into a man to have occurred (this is similar to the argument against whale evolution in the new film Living Waters). And that’s only one of numerous falsifications of neo-Darwinism.With unguided mechanisms off the table, the only rational alternative for interpreting the bones from Rising Star Cave will be to start with intelligent design or Genesis 1.last_img read more


first_imgIs The End of the RNA World Hypothesis Near Because Multiple Universes Are Needed for It?by Salvador CordovaA somewhat recent article in Quanta Magazine proclaimed the end of the RNA World Hypothesis. Charles Carter is a longtime critic of the RNA world. He was quoted as saying:Recent papers published in Biosystems and Molecular Biology and Evolution delineated why the RNA world hypothesis does not provide a sufficient foundation for the evolutionary events that followed. Instead, said Charles Carter, a structural biologist at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, who co-authored the papers, the model represents “an expedient proposal.” “There’s no way that a single polymer could carry out all of the necessary processes we now characterize as part of life,” he added.So what is Carter’s alternative? Carter points out that it is necessary for some other things have to be there with the first life along with RNA such as “‘loading’ molecules called aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases.” Er, you mean sophisticated proteins!Theoretical self-replication of RNA (Illustra Media)The various origin-of-life theories were things like “RNA first” or “proteins first” or “metabolism first,”  etc. Few have entertained the idea of “everything first” since that looks too much like special creation. However, Carter unwittingly inches closer to the “everything first” model. How, for example, can one have a protein like an aminoacyl-tRNA synthetase arise without a means of making it and regulating it? In fact, there have to be several of them, not just one since there are 20 amino acids. The best way to make them is to have DNA with instructions to make them, but then where does the DNA come from without proteins, and where do proteins come from without DNA? DNA transcribes to RNA and RNA translates to proteins and proteins synthesize DNA, and the cycle continues. This is a classic chicken-and-egg paradox where one asks, “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?” Under an “everything first” model, obviously the chicken.Charles Carter has been a long-time critic of the RNA world. Though he believes the RNA World hypothesis is just about to expire, bad theories that are dead factually have a way of walking around like the living-dead. Jonathan Wells uses the term “zombie science” to describe such theories. I’m afraid the RNA world hypothesis might not end anytime soon because like other zombie ideas, they are enthralling fictions. [By the way, one of my biochemistry teacher’s favorite shows was The Walking Dead.]Charles Carter has been ignored by most of the origin of life community. Why? He pointed out in an earlier paper in the Journal of Biological Chemistry:Koonin estimates that assembling the replicative fidelity necessary for an RNA-only origin would require multiple universes.But it should be worth mentioning that Koonin accepts the existence of life in our universe as good evidence there are multiple universes! He said so in Biology Direct, where he proclaims confidently that the existence of “many worlds” resolves the problem of the RNA world’s improbability. From that leap of faith, he proclaims:A final comment on “irreducible complexity” and “intelligent design”. By showing that highly complex systems, actually, can emerge by chance and, moreover, are inevitable, if extremely rare, in the universe, the present model sidesteps the issue of irreducibility and leaves no room whatsoever for any form of intelligent design.Koonin is stepping out in faith here, because science has no way of detecting many worlds. He’s basing so much of his anti-intelligent design views on pure speculation. There could just as well be an ultimate Designer, and it is also hypothetically possible there is a single Designer for all the many worlds.I challenge those who reject the possibility of the Christian God and Creator with this thought, “Would you wager a thousand dollars in a casino based on the many-worlds hypothesis being true? If not, then why would you wager your soul?”Salvador Cordova has appeared on National TV, radio shows, newspapers, books and magazines for his work in promoting Intelligent Design and Creation Science. He is a former scientist and engineer in the aerospace and defense industry and presently serves as a professor and researcher in the area of Christian apologetics at small Bible College. He has four science degrees and is working on a PhD. For his previous entries on CEH, see his Author Profile.(Visited 1,044 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more


first_imgLiverpool will open their Champions League account in exciting fashion through a home tie with French giants Paris Saint-Germain, with star forwards Mohamed Salah and Neymar clashing with each other for the first time.Jurgen Klopp’s side will host the French champions at Anfield in the first leg of their Group C clash , with the second leg to be played at the Parc de Princes at the end of November.The Reds will be looking to recover from the heartbreak of losing last season’s final to Real Madrid with their current campaign, but fixtures against PSG are only one hurdle in their challenging group stage campaign – set to face the likes of Napoli as well as Red Star Belgrade in one of many ‘Groups of Death’. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Man Utd ready to spend big on Sancho and Haaland in January Who is Marcus Thuram? Lilian’s son who is top of the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! Game Liverpool v PSG Date Tuesday, September 18 Time 8pm BST / 3pm EST TV Channel, Live Stream & How To Watch In the United States (US), the game will be shown on Univision and TNT USA and livestreamed on B/R Live. US TV channel Online stream Univision, TNT B/R Live In the United Kingdom (UK), the game can be watched live on BT Sport 2 and livestreamed through BT Sport Live. UK TV channel Online stream BT Sport 2 BT Sport Live Squads & Team News Position Liverpool players Goalkeepers Alisson, Mignolet Defenders Alexander-Arnold, Clyne, van Dijk, Lovren, Moreno, Robertson, Matip Midfielders Fabinho, Wijnaldum, Milner, Keita, Mane, Henderson, Lallana, Shaqiri Forwards Firmino, Salah, Sturridge, Origi, Solanke Roberto Firmino’s eye injury sustained during the win over Tottenham has kept him from starting, with Daniel Sturridge taking the Brazilian’s place in the lineup. It’s the first Champions League start for Sturridge since March 2012. Jordan Henderson has been drafted into midfield with Naby Keita dropping to the bench, while Dejan Lovren is still missing with an extended injury.Liverpool XI: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, Van Dijk, Robertson; Milner, Henderson, Wijnaldum; Sturridge, Salah, Mane. Position PSG players Goalkeepers Areola, Cibois Defenders Silva, Kimpembe, Kehrer, Meunier, Alves, Bernat, Kurzawa Midfielders Diarra, Nkunku, Rabiot, Marquinhos Forwards Mbappe, Cavani, Neymar, Di Maria, Choupo-Moting, Draxler Veteran goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon is suspended for the tie against Liverpool after being given a three-match European ban following his comments against Michael Oliver during Juve’s Champions League tie with Real Madrid last season.Marquinhos moves into a central midfield role alongside Adrien Rabiot, while Neymar and Kylian Mbappe are back in the lineup after being rested at the weekend. PSG XI: Areola; Meunier, Silva, Kimpembe, Bernat; Marquinhos, Di Maria, Rabiot; Mbappe, Neymar, Cavani.Betting & Match Odds Liverpool are priced at odds of winning 13/10 according to  bet 365 , while a draw is available at 14/5. A win for PSG is up for 21/10.Click here to see all of bet 365’s offers for the game, including goalscoring markets, correct score predictions and more. Match Preview Edinson Cavani Kylian Mbappe PSG Real Madrid Champions LeagueBoth Liverpool and PSG head into their Champions League clash sporting exactly the same domestic form, with the two sides having registered five wins from five fixtures in their respective leagues.Klopp’s side have maintained their best start to a Premier League season with their five-game winning streak, their most recent victory coming through a 2-1 away win at Wembley to Tottenham Hotspur.Liverpool have been named as a strong contender as a title challenger this season after the high-profile additions to their side this summer that saw Alisson, Naby Keita, Fabinho and Xherdan Shaqiri arrive on Merseyside, though they have a tough set of fixtures lying ahead – with fixtures against Chelsea (twice), Manchester City and Napoli looming after their PSG tie.Depending on Firmino’s eye issue, there is a chance for Shaqiri to be included in the squad, prompting Salah to be moved into a more central role, though Klopp also has the ability to call upon the services of Daniel Sturridge, who had an extremely fruitful pre-season campaign.PSG will be keen to bounce back from their disappointingly early exit in last year’s Champions League at the last 16 stage, crashing out at the hands of eventual champions Real Madrid.Edinson Cavani is still recovering from a calf injury sustained during the World Cup finals in Russia , though PSG will be eager to unleash both Mbappe and Neymar onto Liverpool – though the two sides seem relatively matched in attacking threat. Subscribe to Goal’s Liverpool Correspondent Neil Jones’ weekly email bringing you the best Liverpool FC writing from around the weblast_img read more


first_imgHan Geng, the singer, dancer and actor known as ‘the most influential male celebrity in China’ delivered last Saturday a speech that motivated the new generation of aspiring Chinese business leaders.Han Geng at LSBF Hope EventCredit/Copyright: LSBFHundreds of fans were inspired by the words of one of the most famous and influential Chinese men of our time. The event was hosted in support of the LSBF HOPE Foundation, a charity which aims to give young people the chance to achieve their dreams and career goals.Known as “King of Popularity” and having won the MTV’s EMA ‘Best Worldwide Act’, Han Geng is one of the most influential artists in China. During his speech, Han Geng showed how his way to the top was a story of struggle, fighting and striving to succeed overseas. His fans were able to discover the “man behind the success” and be inspired by Han Geng’s story.The event was hosted at the Westminster Central Hall, one of the most impressive venues in London. Before Han Geng’s speech, the audience had the chance to listen to the Director at LSBF School of English, Fay Drewry, who spoke about the challenges of studying and living in a foreign country, and the importance that English plays in the world today. The audience also watched a fashion show with the creations of students from the London College of Contemporary Arts and from the School of Fashion and Design London.Han Geng was received at the stage by LSBF’s Rector and CEO, Professor Maurits Van Rooijen, who presented him with an Award of Appreciation for his support to the LSBF HOPE cause.Members of the LSBF Board were at the event giving students the chance to learn more on how investing in education can help them to achieve more and take their careers further.The entire amount raised with donations at the event will be reverted to LSBF HOPE Foundation, which will be used for investing in charity schools in China.If you would like to learn more about how to develop you career with LSBF, click here.last_img read more


first_imgViu, the Asian rival to Netflix from telco giant PCCW, has hit six million subscribers in the region.The streaming service, which is both freemium and SVOD, launched in late 2015 and said it had hit four million subs last November. That total has increased sharply in the latest subs announcement as Viu has gained traction in new territories.Viu is now in Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, Oman, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Jordan, Kuwait, Egypt and Bahrain.PCCW in investing in local originals for the service. Its current slate includes a colalboration with Korean celebrity Song Ji Hyo (Running Man). SYS Productions is making fashion series Song Ji Hyo’s Beauty Views.For Chinese-speaing viewers there is romantic drama Margaret And David – Green Bean, in India, Hindi-language dramas Gehraiyaan and Spotlight and Telegu-language pillA and Pelli Gola.“It is indeed very encouraging to see the high engagement with our users who spend almost 100 minutes a day viewing their favourite content on Viu,” said Janice Lee, managing director, PCCW Media Group.“This stickiness helps propel the business of our telco partners, benefits content providers, drives subscriptions and boosts the consumption of online advertisements for advertisers who leverage Viu’s regional platform to reach the millennials who are more receptive to digital advertisements.”last_img read more


first_imgComcast-owned Sky has become the latest UK Telco to make a play in 5G, announcing a November launch for the next-generation technology for Sky Mobile.The initial rollout will include six towns and cities for November, with a wider national rollout of 20 towns and cities by the end of the year. The company plans to take that total to 50 by the end of 2020. Sophia Ahmad, commercial director of Sky Mobile, said “We will be the only mobile operator to be able to combine the launch of next generation superfast 5G connectivity with Sky Mobile’s unique features including Roll, Swap and Watch.”Roll is one of Sky Mobile’s flagship features. It automatically rolls unused data over at the end of each month, and can be kept for up to three years as a data boost or exchanged for money off new devices and accessories. Swap allows users to trade in their phone midway through a contract in exchange for a newer model. Watch is Sky Mobile’s newest feature, giving access to all Sky apps – including Sky Go, Sky Sports and Sky Kids – with zero-rated data and no additional cost.Commenting on the announcement, Paolo Pescatore, media and telco analystat PP Foresight Tec said: “The mobile network operators need to watch out as this move poses a considerable threat 5G represents a significant opportunity for Sky to steal market share. It is becoming harder for telcos to differentiate on connectivity beyond price alone. Sky armed with its innovative mobile features and breath of content is very well placed to compete head on. “For now, from an overall services perspective it seems to be in pole position. However, it is largely dependent on O2’s network rollout. Moving forward you can foresee both companies becoming more closely aligned. The UK will be one of the most competitive 5G markets in the world by the end of this year.”The news comes as O2 and Vodafone announced plans to share infrastructure in order to speed up the rollout of 5G, with BT-owned EE currently the only telco offering the faster service in the UK.last_img read more