Telco 2.0 News Review
Telco 2.0 Top Stories
- Technology Disruptions: HTC profits surge: these certainly are the droids you're looking for
- Google: Eric Schmidt: this isn't a zero-sum game
- Broadband Connectivity: Open ducts slash NBN costs, BBC = British Broadband Corporation?
- Customer Data: Apple plans to feed iAds the iTunes database
- Voice & Messaging 2.0: an innovative 4 million line VOIP project targeting voice spammers
[Reminder from the Telco 2.0 Team: don't forget to check out the 40 leading-edge online video presentations on 'Best Practice' Telco 2.0 strategies, case studies and use cases now available on demand, including:
- CEO BT Wholesale, CEO Ericsson, and CTO Deutsche Telekom on Strategy;
- MIT, Invention Arts, World Economic Forum on the Data Economy;
- Telecom Italia on Augmented Reality and Entertainment Futures;
- AT&T and Oracle on Cloud Services;
- Telenor and Aricent on M2M;
- Nokia Siemens Networks and Buoungiorno on Customer Management;
- O2, Ericsson and Admob on Mobile Advertising;
- plus more on Mobile Money, Voice and Messaging 2.0, Amazon, and Shareholder Value.
NB To watch these videos you will need to register via the embedded links above.]
News: HTC is prospering as never before from its commitment to Android, with net income up 33 per cent on outstanding sales of G1s, Magics, and Evos.
Google CEO Eric Schmidt, meanwhile, attempted to cool down the tension between Google and other major tech companies. He said that Facebook users tended to make significantly more Google search requests, and denied that the relationship between Google and others was a zero sum game. However, he also picked a further row with Apple, accusing them of "rewriting history" about the development of the iPhone and Android. So the net impact of his comments is conflicted to say the least. One of the interviews, we note, confirmed the end of Google's adventure into phone-making - there will be no Nexus Two.
Google has also attained a compromise with the Chinese government. Rather than automatically redirecting searches to the Hong Kong version of Google, Google will now ask users to explicitly choose the Hong Kong version. This was apparently enough for the Chinese government to renew Google's license.
Google has launched a version of YouTube for your TV as a beta, as well as a new version of YouTube's mobile site using HTML-5 rather than Flash. (Yahoo! agrees.)
On the subject of fibre, Australian Minister for Broadband Stephen Conroy says that the NBN project is going to come in significantly cheaper than expected - no surprise, in the light of the agreement with Telstra to swap duct access and PSTN decommissioning for wholesale service. He refused to put a number on it yet.
And Computer Weekly's Philip Virgo responds to a Government consultation, asking what if what we needed was the British Broadband Corporation?
Brough Turner points to a word-frequency analysis of the US National Broadband Plan. The take-home message appears to be that the Plan is surprisingly mobile- and wireless-centric - "spectrum" is the second most used word after "FCC", appearing 79 times more frequently than "dark fibre".
On the other hand, the Plan foresees an end to Universal Service Fund subsidies for cellular operators, with the money being channelled into broadband infrastructure projects. Tellingly, however, the bulk of the USF is currently going to Verizon and AT&T, two integrated fixed/mobile operators with little interest in the rural markets the USF is intended to help.
T-Mobile USA is sticking to its plans for incremental HSPA upgrades; the TMoBlog catches a presentation referring to "42Mbps HSPA in 2011". That implies the use of dual-carrier HSPA, which will obviously need some of that lovely spectrum the FCC is planning to dole out. In comments, it's pointed out that the rate-limiting factor for T-Mobile's current HSPA rollout is the time it takes to blow fibre to the Node Bs - once that's done, the next lot of upgrades will be much faster.
On the other hand, AT&T users might not think this is such a good idea, after a software bug in Alcatel-Lucent HSUPA gear knocked the "U" for Uplink out of the HSUPA. And, come to think of it, the "HS" for High Speed as well, as uplink speeds dropped well below 100Kbps. We feel a disturbance in the Force, as if a thousand ill-advised Flickr uploads cried out and were silenced.
Here comes Apple's customer-data play. The plan is that the new iAd service is going to match ads to customers based on their iTunes preferences and a bank of other indicators drawn from iPhone apps. They've also taken out a patent on a variety of location-based marketing applications. It looks a lot like a very vague, lawyer-driven exercise that would seem to cover a lot of things that have already been done in boring old Europe, but it does seem to suggest the next lot of iProducts will have NFC.
NFC and video calls? Perhaps Apple's Xserve server division will launch an IMS product next.
In the light of iAds, this excellent piece on fiddling social networks for advertising purposes is recommended. Also, the European Court of Justice considers it illegal to buy your competitors' trademarks as Google AdWords, unless it's obvious to the reader that you're behind them.
A survey shows that 52% of Brits with GPS-equipped handsets are "very or extremely concerned" about their devices oversharing their location. Veteran tech journalist Jack Schofield of The Guardian has joined the campaign to make cloud computing services let you take all your data with you.
Of course, you don't need to be Google to place millions of users' privacy at risk - you just need to omit to validate user input properly and always parameterise your SQL queries. Argentine hackers discovered an SQL injection exploit against The Pirate Bay that allowed them to download details of 4 million users.
A student who was fined $675,000 for sharing MP3 files has had the penalty reduced by 90%. There's an interesting interview with the founder of Tommy Boy Records on new business models for music here.
There's not been a mobile malware story in a while. Now there is - NetQin will try to recruit your Symbian S60 device into a mobile botnet.
One notable feature of the Nokia/Symbian world was always the sheer volume of stuff they published - Forum Nokia, Forum Nokia Blogs, S60.com, developer.symbian.com, etc, etc. This week sees the arrival of NokiaDevs.com, which adds yet another website to the fleet and seems to be aimed at publicising their platforms. The current lead story is about an independent app store.
Nokia, meanwhile, got out of the wireless-modem business and promised a "laser focus" on smartphones.
Here's an innovative Voice 2.0 application if ever there was one: a honeypot for telemarketers, using 4 million DID numbers delivered over VoIP to British business-focused ISP Andrews & Arnold. Spammers' auto-dialler programs call them, and stay there for ages, chasing a succession of automated messages and IVR prompts and hopefully running up enormous bills. At the very least, while they're talking to the honeypot, they can't call anyone else.
Their CEO's blog has recordings of spammers arguing with the automated messages, and an outbreak of spontaneous creativity in the comments. The latest idea is to have their Asterisk PBX server sense when there is more than one spammer online, and bridge them into a conference call with each other....and post the recordings on the Web for general amusement.
You could have done this with e-mail 5 years ago, and people have been mocking unsolicited callers for years, but automating it and making the callers talk to each other? That needs the full power of Voice 2.0.
(The same operator has hard words about capacity issues with BT's 21CN upgrade.)
In more serious Voice 2.0 news, Asterisk developer Nir Simionovich sets out to bring you "Google Analytics for telephony". Pre-registration for the beta is open now.
India is the latest country to complain that they can't decrypt Skype calls, and demand that not only Skype, but also RIM and Google Mail, should give them a backdoor. Hackers, meanwhile, reverse-engineer one of the crypto algorithms they use.
Huawei and the Feds are making nice, apparently with a view to Sprint buying Huawei gear. Connected Planet points out that actually, quite a lot of US operators use their stuff, and suggests that the real story might be growing interest at Sprint in LTE.
And Microsoft reorganises in an effort to make something of the Azure cloud.