4-8 May: Your guide to what’s happened this week in the media, entertainment and technology industry.

Streaming sees 57% rise during lockdown

Streaming increased 57% globally in March compared to the same month last year, according to new figures from Conviva.

In the firm’s Q1 2020 State of Streaming report, Conviva found growth was led by Europe, up 70%, and the Americas, up 57%.

It comes as many European countries begin to ease lockdown restrictions that were introduced to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

Vodacom begins 5G rollout in South Africa

Vodacom has begun the deployment of 5G mobile technology in South Africa, casting an eye on both the mobile and mobile broadband markets.

Vodacom is making use of 50 MHz in the 3.5 GHz band to launch 5G services in Johannesburg and Cape Town according to Telecoms.com.

“Vodacom’s 5G launch in South Africa comes at an important time as it will help us improve our network efficiency during the COVID-19 national state of disaster,” said Shameel Joosub, Vodacom Group CEO.

Cinemas begin reopening as lockdown eases

Cinemas in several countries including Hong Kong and Australia are set to reopen following the Covid-19 pandemic.

Forbes writes that Hong Kong chief executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-Ngor gave cinemas the go-ahead on Tuesday to begin showing films on Friday, though local governments are implementing a slew of social distancing guidelines for safety reasons.

Australian cinemas are looking to reopen in July, according to a report in the Sydney Morning Herald, with Christoper Nolan’s new blockbuster Tenant set to be one of the major titles in theatres.

Merged Viasat Consumer and Canal Digital to be branded as Allente

The joint venture between Viasat Consumer and Canal Digital which recently gained approval from European authorities is to be named Allente.

NENT-owned Viasat Consumer is to be combined with Telenor’s satellite pay-TV unit Canal Digital into a new joint venture.

The closing of the Nordic operation will be called ‘Allente’, and will offer TV distribution via satellite, streaming and other services including IPTV solutions and fibre broadband via open networks to a total of 1.2 million customers in Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland.

The merger received approval from European authorities earlier this week.