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Vulcan Flipstart, Verizon and YouTube

May 7, 2007

This is a busy news week with announcements and commentary from virtually all areas of communications and technology. Starting small, Gary Krakow has a review of the Vulcan Flipstart which is a company founded by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen. Gary seems to like the device and one feature in particular he draws attention to is the small computer’s ability to be rebooted with a single button. There is a bit of irony in that the Microsoft co-founder “innovated” by allowing a Microsoft computer to be rebooted more quickly.

Wireless 2.0

May 4, 2007

Google, Yahoo, Skype/eBay and others are very interested in ensuring they have direct access to consumers through licensed spectrum. In fact, on March 6, 2007, Google became part of a consortium called the Coalition for 4G in America. It includes Skype, Yahoo, DirecTV, EchoStar, Intel, and wireless services provider Access Spectrum.   One wonders if this isn’t the clearest sign of all these companies are sure net neutrality will not ever be enforced. Then again it could just be a way to hedge their bets.   Chairman Kevin Martin and the FCC should be praised for taking action on the suggestions of the dotcoms and publicly pledging support for increased broadband wireless competition.   See the full story written by BusinessWeek.

Ed Whitacre Jr.

April 27, 2007

Congratulations to Ed Whitacre Jr. for building a great big telecommunications company from an assortment of smaller ones. Certainly in this case the sum was greater than the parts.   Ed is about to retire and he can consider this my retirement present.   While I have perhaps had a rant or two over the years about net neutrality comments made by Mr. Whitacre, there is not a single person who can deny this man has achieved greatness in the world of communications and technology.   Ed Whitacre Jr. put AT&T back together again and left it in great shape.   The Board of Directors has chosen Randall L. Stephenson, AT&T's chief operating officer, to succeed Whitacre as chairman and CEO.   Randall has tremendous shoes to fill and it may be very tough to keep AT&T’s massive momentum going without even more acquisitions. These could consist of content plays such as perhaps satellite radio, internet companies and even advertising networks. Yahoo!

EQO Funding

April 25, 2007

There is no Spring

April 24, 2007

More on The VoIP Patent Mess

April 20, 2007

A number of people in the telecom industry tell me they have looked at the Verizon patents being used against Vonage and they say they have been doing the things that are claimed in the patents before Verizon filed. My sources further claim in some cases there are patents which have been granted to companies which conflict with the patents which Verizon has. Of course this is not unusual but no one has anything to gain from suing Verizon to get the phone company’s patents overturned. They would only do this if they are sued and this won’t happen as Verizon is too smart to sue companies that can overturn their own patents.

InfoWorld on Patent Reform

April 20, 2007

Jangl

April 18, 2007

Michael Cerda is the CEO of Jangl. Michael thinks big. Cerda wants his company to be the biggest thing since Skype. In speaking with him you get the feeling he really wants to leave a mark – something huge.   His VoIP 2.0 company Jangl differentiated itself from others by focusing on spaces such as online dating where they provide Match.com subscribers with a bidirectional anonymous phone number for $6.99/month.   While online dating and associated websites are a nice opportunity the people at Jangl realized they couldn’t take over the world in this fashion.

I Own Google Shares

April 15, 2007

Google/DoubleClick Merger: Expert Opinion

April 14, 2007

Recently I wrote about the merger between Google and DoubleClick and subsequently I decided to get an outside perspective on this acquisition from Tim Vanderhook, CEO and founder of Specific Media a company specializing in behavioral targeting of advertising in its own advertising network.   What is the general impact of this merger?   Google has probably been studying over the past year or so the impact that display advertising has on search advertising. The two are very closely tied together with display ads fueling search ads for advertisers. Because Google has such a dominant position in the latter, they are moving quickly to make the weakest part of their business a strength. This deal is not so much about targeting as it is about display advertising, it is getting more widely understood by advertisers that display advertising is the driving force behind people making searches.
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