Ring! Ring! Monday News Analysis, 29th October

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Portals, Partners, and Platforms

Apple: sorry, we don't accept money. Seriously; you can't buy an iPhone for cash. Unless you're a telco, in which case Apple may be after as much as $400 in revenue-sharing for each gadget.

Telco2.0 Comment: There are a couple of interesting things here. First up, the relationship between Apple and AT&T; handset subsidies have landed in North America with a vengeance. One wonders how long AT&T will stick it; if they have any choice. Secondly, Apple's increasingly desperate efforts to keep control of the devices - they have started refusing to sell iPhones to cash buyers, presumably so they know where their customers live. [Business idea: French law prohibits sales of locked devices. Stock up on iPhones there and re-sell them around the rest of Europe and/or re-import them to the US!]

O2 and Orange, meanwhile, plan to recoup the Apple Danegeld from data charges.

Digital Product Innovation

We mocked it, but it's true: 3UK is indeed doing a special Skype phone.

Telco2.0 Comment: It makes sense for an application with no business model and an operator with no business model to get together, we think.

Telco2.0 Strategy

Arcor minority shareholders to go for €400m?

Telco2.0 Comment: Vodafone pursues its agenda of matching the OTT players' ability to integrate multiple services from different suppliers by acquiring more things it can bundle. But €400m?

Digital Politics and Regulation

Sprint forced to unlock gadgets.

Telco2.0 Comment: Whilst Apple struggles to keep the iPhone locked up, Sprint got sued, and is now legally obliged to unlock anyone who wants to churn away. Can anyone see the inconsistency here?

Telcos win cable court case.

Telco2.0 Comment: Interesting case. Major US telcos win a court battle against the common practice of the developers of an apartment block signing an exclusive deal with a cable-TV MSO; good news for Big Tel, but pretty horrible for anyone who wants open-access, as the precedent presumably applies to anyone who wants to wire up a new building with fibre or require developers to hook up to a public fibre network.

Verizon: it's better to be feared than loved

Telco2.0 Comment: OK, so you've been forced to stop calling your clapped data tariff "unlimited" and everyone hates you for giving the secret service all your data. What would you unhesitatingly choose to do? Yup, offer to give everyone's data to advertisers without their explicit consent - that'll learn'em. See Keith Wallington 's comments at Telco2.0...

Not that it seems to be profitable, though...

Technology Disruptions

Sprint says its mobile WiMAX is building a platform for innovation.

Telco2.0 Comment: Or maybe just a really big bit pipe. We hope it's the former.

And mobile phones really could kill you...if you're in North Korea.

Cap'n Gordon Cook has the fear, meanwhile, about IPv4 exhaustion. So do the good folk at RIPE, it seems:

And ARPANet pioneer Larry Roberts is threatening a Bandwidth Apocalypse. Seems the only way to stave it off is to buy the new kind of router he invented - funny that. The NANOGers weren't impressed.