Archive by Kevin Fitchard

Qualcomm’s controversial royalty policy still unsettled

Qualcomm may have to shell out $891 million to Broadcom over the next four years and fork over licensing rights to its wireless patents, but one key element of Qualcomm’s business strategy has been preserved in their brokered peace: handset vendors using Broadcom chips must still pay Qualcomm royalties. more

T-Mobile supporting embedded SIM cards for M2M

As small as the head of a pin, T-Mobile new subscriber identity module (SIM) cards aren’t designed for any mobile phone you’d buy in its stores. Instead, these SIMs will embedded into telematics modules, where they will mounted into smart meters and other M2M devices around the country. more

T-Mobile: 1 million Android phones sold

Deutsche Telekom revealed one particularly interesting tidbit when it released T-Mobile’s Q1 subscriber numbers Monday: T-Mobile USA has sold 1 million G1 Android phones since the Google-powered device emerged in October. While 1 million is still small compared to AT&T’s sales of the Apple iPhone (AT&T just reported activating 1.6 million iPhones in the first quarter alone), for tiny T-Mobile, its still quite a feat, especially considering its 3G networks are still going through puberty. more

TI: Phone inventory scare abating

Wireless bellwether Texas Instruments said device makers have begun ordering its silicon once again as they’ve plowed through their inventories and are ready to start building new phones. In TI’s first-quarter earnings call Monday, CEO Rich Templeton said that pick-up in orders, by no means, signaled an end to the handset sector’s troubles, but those troubles don’t appear to be mounting. more

Verizon: Calling all LTE developers

Verizon Wireless is getting a head-start on long-term evolution device development, long before its first commercial network is launched. The operator today published specifications for future LTE devices on its open developement Website and scheduled a Webcast for May 13 to answer questions and provide further details. more

Will AT&T have the iPhone forever?

According to the latest reports from the Wall Street Journal, AT&T’s multi-year iPhone exclusivity deal is set to expire at the end of 2010 and CEO Randall Stephenson is negotiating with Apple to extend AT&T’s arrangement for another year. AT&T isn’t commenting on the story, but the report is generating headlines galore, speculating on whether AT&T can keep it’s favored-nation status with the world’s hottest smartphone maker. Those stories, though, overlook the obvious. more

Sweden becoming LTE hotbed

Sweden, it turns out, is the place to be for long-term evolution deployments. Two more operators, Telenor Sweden and Tele2, have announced plans to launch commercial LTE networks in 2010 as a joint venture. This follows on the heels of the TeliaSonera’s January announcementthat it will launch two Scandinavian networks–in Oslo and Stockholm–by year end. more

ABI: Recession could spur interest in netbooks

While few consumer products benefit from a down economy, the emerging netbook could be the exception. The netbook is not just a new device category with room to grow, but also a rather cheap one, which could spur sales during a global recession. According to ABI Research that low price point could make them a viable alternative to pricier full-featured laptops, especially as cheaper operating systems emerge to drive netbook prices down. more

3GPP passes femto standard

The 3rd Generation Partnership Project today published the initial standard for UMTS femtocells, choosing a simplified architecture and highly-utilized protocols that easily integrate with both wireline and wireless operators’ networks. With the standard finalized, the Femto Forum believes it now has the ammunition it needs to convince operators to deploy femtocells in huge volumes. more

MetroPCS replicates the home phone over wireless

With more people cutting the cord, a critical social element of the family home phone is being lost. Individual family members have individual mobile numbers. There is no family line to speak of, so gone are the long conversations with grandma where Mom, Dad and the kids all participate on separate extensions. MetroPCS, however, has recreated the family phone home on wireless.

Along with releasing impressive Q1 subscriber numbers, MetroPCS announced GroupLineSM, a simultaneous ring service paired with conference calling that allows a caller to reach all members of a family plan through a single ‘home’ number. When a call to the group is made, all of its members’ phones ring simultaneously, and those that pick up are dumped into a conference where they can talk no matter where they happen to be. more

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