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Apple

Podcast Interview: Oswin Eleanora, Acision

December 3, 2007

In my travels, one of the more knowledgeable players I have run across in the space of telecom – and especially wireless communications is Oswin Eleonora (Oz) the Senior VP Sales and Marketing North America for Acision. You may recall I wrote about Oz and Acision back in July of this year.   I had a chance to pick his brain again regarding Verizon’s open network announcement, the iPhone, the future of wireless, the Open Handset Alliance (OHA), Android, CDMA, GSM and more.   How will service providers differentiate themselves in the upcoming years as networks become more commoditized? Oz has the answer.

iPhone Gets Real Network

November 29, 2007

Many current iPhone users will certainly say it is about time that in 2008, iPhones will run on a proper 3G network allowing true wireless broadband speeds. The reason the device does not currently support 3G is because the battery life of a power-hungry device like an iPhone just wouldn’t be acceptable on a 3G network.

Apparently technology has improved to the point where it is now possible to have the right blend of iPhone size, weight, broadband speed and battery life.

This new device will obviously be a killer as the major problem with the current iPhone is the slow speed of the current AT&T network. This new addition will push many potential “on the fence” customers over to the Apple side.

See Also:   AT&T boss says 3G iPhone in 2008 Apple, AT&T Plan '3G' iPhone for 2008, MarketWatch Reports - AAPL Slips, T Just Firm





Verizon Wireless Opens Up

November 27, 2007

In the history of United States communications, this day ranks right up there with the day of the Carterfone (Wikipedia) decision allowing any device to work on AT&T’s PSTN network. Today, almost 30 years later, Verizon chose to tell the world they will open up their wireless network to devices other than their own.   The news may be even more surprising in light of the fact that Skype has been petitioning the FCC for this exact thing. How often does Skype agree with the carriers?   Another surprise is the fact that Verizon is the first carrier to make such an announcement. Remember, this is the same company that routinely cripples the current devices they sell consumers.   Amazingly, this development is exactly what I have been asking for.

Star Wars VoIP Phone

November 27, 2007

I came across a Star Wars VoIP phone this past weekend while perusing catalogues. I was going to write about it today but apparently either Tom Keating checks his mail more often than I do or he gets access to catalogues faster than me.   As part of the VoIP phone package, you can get an R2-D2 roving webcam. For the Star Wars lover this is a no-brainer gift and the only downside may be the $380 cost which is reasonable if you compare it to an iPhone – basically replacing the cult of George Lucas with the cult of Steve Jobs.   To get really geeky, I wonder if there will be bluetooth connectivity to the famous headphones Princess Vespa used in SpaceBalls by Mel Brooks.

Packet8 MobileTalk

November 20, 2007

Having seen invention after invention and new technology after new technology come along I can say I have begun to appreciate some of the more simple things in life. Don’t get me wrong, I like complex technologies such as the iPhone allowing one to surf the web in a fashion which comes close to a laptop browsing experience.   But I realize that some technologies are too complicated for mass adoption and as such I appreciate simple solutions like Skype which anyone can use.   Having said this, when I found out Packet8 has developed a new solution named MobileTalk which allows long distance VoIP calls to be made by mobile phones I could not help but be excited. Why? Well because I am very much aware of how difficult it is to call international numbers with a calling card.   I spend a good deal of time in the car and it is a nightmare to dial long international numbers including calling card while driving.

Mobility as Strategic Advantage

November 20, 2007

It is obvious that mobile device proliferation has had a dramatic increase in productivity for knowledge workers worldwide. In addition it is well known the US government and military functions more effectively because it relies on Blackberrys.   It goes without saying that the individual mobility needs of a users varies widely as some mobile workers need optimal web access while others primarily need e-mail access and others may need specific applications.   It is also well known that every mobile device today from Blackberry to iPhone consists of numerous design tradeoffs weighing size, keyboard, connection speed, processor speed and more.   The next point worth considering is consumer choice. For example, if using the best device makes users most productive, then having the greatest access to devices means the best potential fit of personal needs and device which in turn means the most potential productivity. After all, if a user needs access to the best browser, they need a device with sufficient resolution to allow for this.   As different users have different device preferences and needs, it seems obvious that having one dozen devices to choose from is better –from a productivity standpoint – than having four.   If we can agree that having the greatest access to mobile devices can make users most productive then we must further acknowledge that if a country such as the United States has access to the greatest variety of mobile devices it will in turn have a competitive advantage in the world market.   Unfortunately the opposite is true and I was reminded of just how far behind the US is when it comes to mobile phone choice as I read this MSNBC/Forbes article titled Coolest cell phones you can't get in the U.S.   While this article is focused more on consumer-friendly phones, the situation in the business phone market is similar and U.S.

Mobile Advertising Grows to $16.5 Billion

November 18, 2007

I was perusing some articles on mobile advertising recently and was absolutely stunned at how big some analysts think this market will be. According to this TMCnet article, Strategy Analytics predicts the global market for mobile advertising is slated to reach $14 billion by 2011.   ABI Research predicts the global market for mobile marketing and advertising will reach $3 billion by the end of 2007, and expand to $19 billion in 2011.   If we take the mid-way point between the estimates, the mobile ad market will be $16.5 billion in 2011. To put this in real-world terms it means that one-billion users will generate about $16 apiece.   It would seem to achieve this grand vision things will have to drastically change in the way we interact with mobile devices. One would imagine the path we are on at the moment cannot possibly get us to these numbers.   So as sit here looking at the gargantuan estimates above, I just wonder what would have to change to make these numbers achievable.

China and the Busy Weekend

November 17, 2007

It has been a busy weekend so far and it is about half-way over and I didn’t even get a chance to blog. Believe it or not there hasn’t been too much blog-worthy material and writing for the sake of writing makes no sense.   So after spending about thirty minutes focusing on something exciting to share I thought it better to refer you to a couple of MSNBC articles which could be of interest.   Believe me I would like to provide some insight on these stories but I am devoid of strong opinions worth sharing at the moment. Oh Well… Tomorrow is another day.   Both of these focus on telecom in China. I hope you find them interesting.   ·        Apple, China Mobile discuss China iPhone ·        China tests Mt. Everest cell station

Android Developer Contest

November 13, 2007

Question: What is the best way to get your mobile platform to be adopted by developers and subsequently end-users?
Answer
: Pay off the developers   And that is just what Google is doing with their Android SDK. A total of $10 million dollars will be awarded to the best applications in a contest Google recently announced..   Having lived through the application wars of Apple vs. PC and then Microsoft Windows vs. IBM OS/2 I can recall just how important it is the have the application developers behind your platform.   For example in the publishing industry a popular software package for desktop publishers was Quark Express and the company was a loyal Apple developer.

How Network Neutrality Solves the Cable Competition Problem

November 10, 2007

It is obvious to me the cable companies are getting the short end of the FCC stick. In fact I am not sure the FCC will be giving any sort of stick to the cable companies this Christmas. Even the lump of coal Time Warner Cable, Cablevision and Comcast were expecting may not be in the stocking – don’t they know how bad coal is for the environment?  

The cable companies are in deep trouble because FCC Chairman Kevin Martin has decided to regulate cable and in so doing ensure there is more competition. They will for example make sure access to spare channels by other content providers is done at a reasonable cost.

  There is an arcane law on the books called the 70/70 rule which is being used as the basis for the FCC to get involved in regulating this market.   The rule says that if 70% of households in the US have cable access and 70% of those that do use cable, the agency can step in and regulate it.   This is great for consumers in my opinion but is also coming at a time which is incomprehensible to me.   If you want true cable competition, it seems to make more sense to ensure network neutrality is enforced.
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