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Ring! Ring! Hot News, 3rd December

In Today’s Issue: 3.3bn Mobiles, Open VZW, 3UK sues the world, Peter Erskine spends more time with his money, another WiMAX outbreak, Japanese data prices tumble, Dutch fibre prices untumble a tad, Saudi Mobily buys huge IP network, Vodafone and Telefonica and adverts, Lithuanian and Brazilian IPTV, rapid withdrawal from Iraq, Nokia’s cool tools, sinister stalkerware from Google, and Telco 2.0 Recommends: the best of the blogs.

Telco 2.0 Strategy

3.3bn mobile subscribers worldwide

Telco 2.0 Comment: And that’s still only 50 per cent world penetration. The big question is now just how close to the world adult population it’s possible to push; is more than 75 per cent achievable?

Verizon ends lock-in; “any application, any device”.

Telco 2.0 Comment: There is much more detail here. We like this bit: “Unless people bring in home-made devices…”

3UK sues everyone over MNP.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Slowly, slowly, the barriers are coming down. Ofcom demands faster number porting; 3 sues all other operators for the same. It’ll come, though; don’t you wish the UK had done what the Finns did and set up a joint numbering company?

Erskine quits

Telco 2.0 Comment: Peter Erskine resigns from O2 - certainly the £17.7bn sale to Telefonica was the deal of the century from O2’s point of view…

Broadband Connectivity

More WiMAX: this time it’s UK Broadband

Telco 2.0 Comment: PCCW’s little-known UK subsidiary has been offering rather expensive 1MBits/s service in London with UMTS-TDD for a while. Now, though, they have got the restrictions on their licence lifted and it’s WiMAX time.

HK breaks out the WiMAX spectrum.

Telco 2.0 Comment: And in Hong Kong as well, it seems…

Dutch munifibre op bought out.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Brunssum’s hybrid fibre/coax op gets snapped up by @Home, with the result that prices for all-inclusive Internet, phone and TV go from €10 a month to….a princely €15.

7.2MBits for the price of 3.6 from EMobile in Japan.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Prices tanking worldwide - E-Mobile goes up a notch in HSDPA, prices stay the same.

Mobily invests in big IP infrastructure to back its HSDPA network.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Probably backhaul fibre next, too.

Hungary: broadband subs up, PSTN subs down.

Telco 2.0 Comment: It’s going to happen.

Content 2.0: Advertising and Attention

Vodafone, Telefonica buy into mobile ad platform.

Telco 2.0 Comment: To be watched closely. What is intended isn’t clear, but it’s something they both need to try. We shall see if it’s the beginning of the great ads boom, or just some really annoying spam.

Lithuania gets IPTV.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Incumbents, eh? They love IPTV.

Brazilian telcos can buy TV stations.
Telco 2.0 Comment: Which is, at least, an answer to the question of what to show on the IPTV…

Digital Politics and Regulation

Arcor suing DTel.

Telco 2.0 Comment: The usual regulatory strife about competitive access to fixed lines. There’s really only one way to fix this - surgery. Nurse, the structural separator please!

Orascom pulls out of Iraq.

Telco 2.0 Comment: You wonder why telecoms people care so much about regulation and politics? Orascom weren’t held back from building a GSM network across central Iraq with incredible speed by power cuts, unidentified gunmen, or US Air Force electronic warfare. But the Iraq Communications and Media Commission finished them with a stroke of the pen. This also means Vodafone’s indirect stake in Iraq just got bigger - for some reason Arun Sarin doesn’t talk about it much.

Tech Disruptions

Killer developer tool: power monitoring.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Nokia is still the most geek-friendly of vendors - what is more important in mobility than battery life? You can’t optimise without measurement, so now, if you’re developing an S60 application, there’s a tool to monitor the gadget’s power consumption in real time.

New beta version of Google Maps Mobile.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Not only is it native Symbian C, rather than J2ME, but it’s got a new and powerful location function using Google’s own cell-location database. But do you really want to send Google your stalker address?

Useful mobile search…

Telco 2.0 Comment: The other Martin likes a search engine for mobiles that also lets you produce short URLs. Fine, until you remember that TinyURL itself had a major DNS furt last week…

N95 gets an OS update.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Faster! Bigger! User-reconfigurable menus!

Telco 2.0 Recommends:
Brough Turner concludes CDNs continue cheaper; O’Reilly Radar: phones mutating into unphones, the other Martin in a pool of acronyms, Dean Bubley whinges about WiFi, Wired: Ed Zander, an industry mourns, Google zaps sploggers.

Apple won’t be able to stop you doing that with a software update…

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