Ring! Ring! Hot News, 10th December

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In Today's Issue: Asia goes crazy for network sharing, plastic fibre, fixed-line videocalls (yes, really), Opera Mini conquers all, make a widget and win a Nokia N95, UMA gadget with 2GB storage, data centre heists, iFlop, BlackBerry WiFi on a plane, Nokia threatens UGC boom, new torrent tracker tech terror, free music, ads in P2P movies, and Telco 2.0 Recommends...

Broadband Connectivity

Vodafone, Bharti, Idea in monster network sharing deal.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Shared, structurally separated, and community-owned infrastructure is a major industry trend in responding to the broadband incentive problem. This deal is especially interesting due to its sheer size; India is getting a giant shared mobile infrastructure operator, which will probably draw in other carriers.

More infrastructure sharing; Indonesia.

Telco 2.0 Comment: That last one should of course have included outsourced infrastructure. Here again, it's a huge deal: 7,000 BTSs are being sold.

Plastic fibre; could it make FTTH cheap?

Telco 2.0 Comment: Infrastructure is all about pipes and wires, so if you can provide better pipes or bendier wires (as here) you're on to something. Even at "only" 2.5Gbit/sec it's enough for GPON or GigE to the home...

Digital Product Innovation

Fixed-line videocalls in Argentina.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Apparently it's the future. Seriously - we remember this on Tomorrow's World in the 1980s. And the 1970s.

How to tell if Opera Mini is any good?.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Answer: if your phone bill goes through the roof with extra data charges. One more cross on the chart to confirm the mobile Web is seriously coming of age.

Technology Disruptions

Make a widget; win an N95. These people did.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Here's Nokia, embracing the developer ecosystem. Mwah! Mwah! Love the FlashLite, daaarling. Will any of our readers have a crack? And more critically, will any operators work out that Nokia has stolen their future business partners?

New UMA gadget for T-Mobile

Telco 2.0 Comment: They're still as rare as hen's teeth, but this Samsung device looks promising at delivering on fixed-mobile convergence - not least because it ships with 2GB of storage.

Now that's what we call a privilege-escalation attack.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Verizon Business's UK data centre got its technology well and truly disrupted this week; robbers posing as cops got access by claiming there were intruders on the roof, and stole £2m worth of equipment. What's even more worrying is the data on all those drives... It's a rising problem: see also here.

Portals, Partners, and Platforms

Only 30,000 iPhones in France; similar sales in the UK

Telco 2.0 Comment: Give a lonely iPhone a home this Christmas. Come on - look at the heartbreaking glint in its touchscreen. But seriously, folks - it seems that the great iHype has fallen more than a little flat due to iOverpriced. Retailers are claiming that many of them have been purchased but will only be activated on Christmas Day; they've got to say something, and it's tough to blame this on the weather. It'll be interesting to see how the activations go over Christmas, come to think of it; Apple certainly didn't take that risk in the US.

WiFi in the sky; it's back

Telco 2.0 Comment: If you've been missing Boeing Connexion, the WiFi-in-the-sky service, you might be able to get online on JetBlue. Note that RIM is involved; a readymade customer base. When Connexion launched, of course, there was no such thing as a WiFi BlackBerry.

Content 2.0

Nokia: 25% of content to be user-generated by 2012

Telco 2.0 Comment: Time to upgrade those uplinks (even if the figures sound aggressive to us)...

Distributed torrent tracking for high robustness.

Telco 2.0 Comment:..and a new kind of BitTorrent tracker intended to offer resistance against efforts to take it down, through an OpenID-like distributed ID system. Did your network P2P blocker come with a money-back guarantee?

Nokia: stick with us for a year and you can keep the tracks.

Telco 2.0 Comment: and what do you get? Free music with every N-series, with the special feature that if you don't renew after the first year, you get to keep all the tracks. Except that you don't really, due to the DRM stopping you moving them to your iPod when the phone goes out of fashion.

Ads in your P2P video? BT can embed them for you.

Telco 2.0 Comment: Another blow to DRM. If you can drop ads in those codecs, there is no longer any reason for rightsholders to object to P2P. A lot of people will probably object on the grounds that ads in P2P is like putting grit in your tea, though.

Telco 2.0 Recommends: Supply chains; done badly, done well - Amazon well, Happy birthday, SMS, Brough Turner: drowning in comms.

And Nokia gets into the touchscreen game:

And finally, stupid network telco nemesis David Isenberg loses his cat; perhaps we could get him a robot? After all, cats don't improve with Moore's law, yet...