Microsoft's patent arsenal nets it millions from Android and Chrome ODMs

Microsoft says it has over half of the global Original Device Manufacturers (ODMs) for Android and Chrome smartphones, tablets and other devices under license following a recent deal with one of the largest contract electronics producers in the world.

Microsoft has the ability to defend around 78,555 patents and collects millions of dollars in licenses from ODMs serving seven major mobile organisations.

Following a recent deal with the Taiwanese firm Compal Electronics, the tech giant now has more than half...

By Matt Henkes, 25 October 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Devices, Industry, Licensing, Smartphones.

Billions for new EU broadband funding plan

The EU will this week announce plans for an €9.2bn broadband rollout project across the continent as part of a huge infrastructure development project that is expected to create hundreds of thousands of new jobs over the next few years.

The scheme forms part of a €50bn infrastructure finance package for Europe, modernising digital, energy and transport networks across the continent.

It is hoped that the broadband package will stimulate further investment in projects like rural broadband, where...

By Matt Henkes, 17 October 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Cabling, Europe, Fiber Optic.

Apple gets the nudge on Samsung in patent wars

As Apple and Samsung continue to circle each other in the ring over a number of alleged patent infringements, the lawyers in the Californian corner may have landed a couple of jabs that could lead to victory, in this round at least.

As you have no doubt read, Apple is obstructing the release and continued sale of various Samsung products, fighting a bruising 20 cases across 10 countries on the grounds of design patent infringement on a number of features built into its iPhone and iPad devices.

A number of...

By Matt Henkes, 14 October 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Devices, Government, Industry, Mobile, N America.

Blackberry service improves but brand damage is done

Blackberry assured its users that services across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and India were ‘operating with significant improvement’ this morning, following a disastrous three day outage.

Users of Blackberry’s messaging and email services worldwide have been experiencing severe disruption since the 10 October, when a core switch failure within RIM’s infrastructure at its data centre in Slough, Berkshire in the UK caused the system to fall over.

Unfortunately for Blackberry,...

By Matt Henkes, 13 October 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Africa, Consumers, Devices, Europe, India, Industry, Mobile, Smartphones, SMEs.

O2 to trial mobile VoiP calling app

Telefonica’s commercial mobile operator O2 has announced that it will begin the UK trial of a new branded mobile VoiP application that will allow users to make calls and send texts via WiFi.

The app will enable users to make and receive calls using their own number to any UK mobile or landline number. Callers will be able to use it from anywhere in the world, provided they are calling a UK number.

Similar to T-Mobile’s US Bobsled service, which recently updated its service to include US and...

By Matt Henkes, 12 October 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Europe, Mobile, N America, OTT Services, VoiP, WiFi.

Steve Jobs: A legacy of innovation

Steve Jobs has died at the age of 56, following a lengthy battle with pancreatic cancer.

Tributes have been pouring in for the Apple co-founder and visionary with President Barack Obama stating that Jobs was the embodiment of the American dream. Having announced his resignation on August 24, 2011, Jobs maintained a presence as chair of the Apple board, however, it appeared to signify the beginning of the end.

Early career

Steven Paul Jobs’ career has seen him take the Apple brand from a small...

By Matt Henkes, 06 October 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Industry.

Kindle Fire turns up heat on competition

Amazon has finally unveiled its new colour tablet, the Kindle Fire, as it prepares to lock horns with a number of industry leaders on various fronts in what is a ferociously competitive market.

The new device, already being touted as stiff competition to the market dominance of Apple’s iPad, will be available to purchase for roughly $300 less than the cheapest Apple equivalent.

Kindle is already a well established brand, with the new Fire model standing on the shoulders of several generations of popular...

By Matt Henkes, 29 September 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Apps, Consumers, Content, Devices, Industry, Marketing, N America, Wireless.

Wrangles and challenges ahead of UK LTE auction

The UK mobile operator three has warned that it may run out of data capacity in built up areas if LTE spectrum auctions do not take place next year as expected.

The bidding process designed to fairly distribute 4G frequency space for rapidly rising data consumption among consumers is earmarked for 2010. However, Three’s CEO David Dyson warned that the timetable was already slipping.

"There is a huge financial...

By Matt Henkes, 27 September 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Big Data, Consumers, LTE, Mobile, Smartphones.

French regulator grants LTE licenses to all 4 operators

All four of the main French mobile operators have been awarded licenses for blocks of fourth-generation mobile frequencies following the first round of auctions that have set a high bar for the industry, with bids totalling €936m ($1.28bn).

Telecoms regulator ARCEP said France Telecom and soon-to-be new mobile player Iliad put in the highest bids to win the two largest blocks of 20 MHz; SFR and Bouygues Telecom were given smaller blocks of 15 MHz.

The auction has been hailed as a success by the French...

By Matt Henkes, 26 September 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Devices, Europe, Industry, Infrastructure, LTE, Mobile, Networks, Operators.

Samsung woos developers as TV app marketplace gathers momentum

Samsung’s seems to be taking measures to give its TV apps marketplace the characteristics of an accelerating snowball, launching a $100,000 developer challenge as it nears 10m applications downloaded since going online in 2010.

With the Free the TV Challenge, the firm is hoping to entice developers into working on what it calls ‘converging apps’, that is, solutions that enable interaction between Samsung smart TVs and at least one other device screen, a smartphone, for instance.

Developers...

By Matt Henkes, 23 September 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Apps, Smartphones, Smart TV.

Report predicts further industry consolidation

Almost half of telecoms firms are still facing financial risks associated with past and ongoing economic uncertainties, leading to a further spate of M&A industry consolidation activity, according to a report from the business advisory firm Alix Partners.   

The firm said that despite steady growth in the high-tech sector, a large number of companies were still facing the prospect of default or bankruptcy in within the next two years unless action was taken.

Within the telecoms sector, which...

By Matt Henkes, 22 September 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Asia, China, Europe, Google, Industry, N America.

First ever Cloud Computing degree available

Those interested in learning more about the SaaS, PaaS and LaaS are now able to take a certified university course after the first ever cloud computing course was launched at the University of Washington, last week.Dr. Erik Bansleben, program development director, Academic Programs at the University of Washington, revealed the outline of a new certificate program offered by the university in cloud computing. Topics covered include cloud computing models: software as a service (SaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), infrastructure...

By Matt Henkes, 17 August 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Cloud, Industry, N America.

What does Google gain from its Motarola deal?

In its largest ever acquisition, Google has announced that it will buy Motarola Mobility, the tech giant’s phone division, for a massive $12.5bn, launching the global search leader into the mobile handset market at mach 5 and surely shaking up the Android ecosystem almost beyond belief.

The deal is yet to win competition approval, which may not be entirely plain sailing, and brings Google into direct competition with the raft of handset manufacturers that licence the Android OS, providing the company...

By Matt Henkes, 16 August 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Devices, Google, Industry, Mobile, Smartphones.

Samsung climbs to no. 2 in mobile shipments

Samsung Electronics has climbed to number two in the table of global smartphone sales, say industry analysts, despite declining to release detailed figures on its device shipments.

Releasing its Q2 results, Samsung showed that a drop in net profits of 18% to $3.3bn, largely down to poor performances of the company’s panel TV displays, was offset by strong growth of Samsung’s mobile unit.

Samsung said operating profit in its telecommunications unit more than doubled on the same quarter last year,...

By Matt Henkes, 01 August 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Industry, Mobile, Smartphones.

Missing: 2000 US wireless industry jobs

Despite a booming industry over the past few years, the number of jobs in the US wireless industry has waned, according to figures from the US Bureau of Labor.

In June, citing data from the Bureau, the WSJ reported that the industry recorded 166,000 jobs with US wireless carriers, the lowest figure for 12 years and down on last year by a massive 2000.

However, since 2006 the industry’s overall revenue has rocketed by 28%.

So what’s happened? Wireless operators are making do with less staff, and...

By Matt Henkes, 19 July 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Industry, Research, Wireless.

China's e-commerce giant Alibaba to launch mobile OS

Alibaba, the Chinese e-commerce giant, is believed to be building its own mobile operating system, to be launched later this year.

Suggestions of the project have surfaced in the Chinese press, as well as the Wall Street Journal and through Reuters, though Alibaba, which has operated a dedicated Cloud Computing unit since 2009, has yet to make any official statement on the project.

Quoting an unnamed source, ‘close to the situation’, WSJ...

By Matt Henkes, 06 July 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Asia, Cloud, Mobile.

Asia Pacific to fuel massive IPTV growth, says report

The number of households actively paying for IPTV subscriptions is set to rocket over the next five years, according to research from industry analysts Digital TV Research.

Massive growth in Asia Pacific is expected to drive then number up from 35m at the end of 2010, to over 155m by the end of 2016, with 85m of the additional subscribers from the region. The number of subscribers in China is expected to increase ten-fold, the report said.

By Matt Henkes, 05 July 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Asia, IPTV.

C&W chairman Pluthero seizes company helm

Telecoms giant Cable & Wireless Worldwide has announced that its chief executive Jim Marsh has resigned his position, effective immediately.

The company said that he will be replaced by chairman, John Pluthero, who confirmed that the firm will be ploughing more resources into its cloud computing services.

The embattled telecoms giant has struggled to reverse a downturn in its fixed line business over the last year, blaming a lack of available budget among its business customers as a result of ongoing...

By Matt Henkes, 05 July 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Industry, Operators.

All .com and .net domain sites under US jurisdiction

The US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, (ICE) has said that any website with a .com and .net domain fall within its jurisdiction, regardless of where their servers are based in the world.

Erik Barnett, assistant deputy director of ICE, said that all such sites would be fair game if suspected in involvement of spreading US films, music and other media covered by intellectual property rules; and even sites liking to them.

He said that the agency would actively target sites deemed to be in breach of...

By Matt Henkes, 04 July 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Government.

European roaming charges to be revised downwards

New plans from Brussels could see data roaming charges within the EU sliced by more than half, with travellers also able to select which network to use while overseas.

This week the European Commission is expected to announce proposals for bringing the cost of international voice and data transfer down in to line with national telecom tariffs.

The current price cap on roaming charges was implemented four years ago and revised downwards again in 2009. It was due to expire in July 2012, but will now be extended...

By Matt Henkes, 04 July 2011, 0 comments. Categories: Industry, Operators.