Archive for November, 2009

100,000 crappy apps — or a few good ones?

apps.jpg At least in part to counteract some of the Droid excitement of this week, Apple made a point of publicizing that its iPhone app store passed the 100,000 app mark. Might this be the least interesting news in the history of technology? It could be.

How many apps do you use on your desktop? How many Web apps do you regularly use in your browser? How many Web sites do you visit on a regular basis?

In any of these areas, would your life be vastly improved if instead of the handful of useful things you use every day, you suddenly stopped to consider 100,000 additional options?

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Here we go again: ISPs as copyright police

badge.jpg Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement talks are underway today in Seoul, South Korea, with proposals on the table that would force ISPs to watch for and ultimately punish illegal downloaders of copyrighted content. For now, reports on the substance of the talks is limited to a few press reports (see this IDG story as well as an analysis from the Electronic Frontier Foundation). For service providers, the desire to be good corporate citizens on this issue has to be balanced with the practical issue of how to implement such a scheme and the ongoing battles over the outer bounds of net neutrality.

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Cisco does ‘minor’ acquisition, aims to control China set-top box market

cisco.jpg Even Cisco’s “small acquisitions” are driven by big ambitions.

In a deal announced today, Cisco said it will buy the set-top box business of China’s DVN for a total of about $44.5 million to expand its cable TV/video reach in that growing market.

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Verizon doubles its ETF, contracts rise again?

If it can’t win customers’ loyalty through great devices and service, Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VOD, NYSE:VZ) may do so through exorbitant early termination fees. The carrier reportedly is doubling its ETFs — penalties consumers must pay if they back out of their contracts early — from $175 to $350. more

IP, LTE, Ethernet triumvirate drive testing agenda

There’s no doubt that mobile operators have gotten the religion about boosting backhaul capacity — just today Verizon talked about delivering Ethernet over fiber to more than 1000 backhaul sites. Network equipment vendors, in particular Ethernet specialists, are poised to take advantage of this opportunity, but test and service assurance vendors are snapping to attention too.

Today, EXFO, which specializes on test and assurance equipment — and is amping up its focus on IP-related opportunities — announced a new end-to-end assesment solution for mobile backhaul networks with a focus on testing Ethernet traffic.

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Connected Planet Podcast: NBC Universal on policing P2P downloaders

With net neutrality looming, content owners and service providers are challenged more than ever to deal with customers improperly downloading copyrighted content. Connected Planet talks with Richard Cotton, executive vice president and general counsel for NBC Universal, on how he sees this important issue playing out.

Listen this podcast HERE.

Can RCS help operators battle mobile app explosion?

rcs.jpg The success of SMS — and the explanation for why Web-based IM or other would-be rivals have failed to replace it — is that it * just works.*

It took years and many false-starts for that to be the case, but when mobile operators and their vendors worked out how to interconnect and interoperate formally siloed SMS islands, the telephone industry’s most successful modern app was born.

Mobile operators can either figure out how to replicate this success — or they can kiss their ability to delivery mobile services, and the affiliated revenue, goodbye. And that’s where RCS comes in.

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Windstream becoming RLEC, CLEC hybrid

Windstream (NYSE: WIN) CEO Jeff Gardner told me this summer that he wanted to increase the company’s revenue from business customers from about a third of its total revenue to half over the next five years. Today’s acquisition of privately held CLEC NuVox could cut that down to more like two years. more

NSN reorg to slash work force, focus on partnerships, acquisitions

Faced with mounting competitive and financial pressures, Nokia Siemens Networks (NYSE:NOK, NYSE:SI) is launching a major overhaul, reorganizing its business into three divisions, focusing more attention on partnerships and acquisition, and contemplating cutting its work force by as much as 9%. more

Motorola ships 10,000th WiMax base station

Motorola (NYSE:MOT) has shipped 10,000 WiMax access points or base stations, drawing on 35 network contracts globally for the new 4G technology. more

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