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Wireless

The Fiscal Cliff Could Kill Super-WiFi

December 13, 2012

One of the most amazing turning points in technology advancement has been the US Government’s decision to allow unlicensed spectrum to be used in the form of WiFi. Instead of taking the short-term gain of revenue via spectrum auction, it was released for free for everyone to use. As a result, cable companies can compete wirelessly with 4G providers and they need no private spectrum to do so.

The point is, unlicensed spectrum has truly revolutionized technology and productivity. Think this through – even the companies who sell “competitive to WiFi” 4G service are benefiting from WiFi. Consider carriers often wheel in large-scale WiFi equipment to sporting events and other venues because of cellular capacity issues.

Michael Robertson's New Dar.fm

December 11, 2012


Michael Robertson is one of the most interesting people in the tech world having burst onto the scene during the dotcom days with the launch of MP3.com which allowed users to store their CD collection in the cloud. Now a commonplace concept, at the time the record labels weren’t sure what to do about the company so they defaulted to what they do well, suing the startup into oblivion. Of course it didn’t help that Napster was popular during the same time and brought major attention to how new technologies were robbing record labels and artists.

Talk about being a visionary.

T-Mobile Finally Gets the iPhone

December 7, 2012

While spending time in a T-Mobile and Verizon store in the same city recently I couldn’t help but notice the customers at the Verizon stores were dressed better and seemed far more affluent. This makes sense as T-Mobile offers cheaper service and it is common for people who can’t afford an AT&T or Verizon data plan to unlock an iPhone from AT&T and activate it on T-Mobile. They then access data when WiFi is available for free.

The latest research I found from Strategy Analytics has the spread in ARPU or average revenue per user between these two carriers at $11.45 per month or almost $140 per year.

In Windows 8, Microsoft Has a Winner

December 5, 2012


Samsung has a winner with its Microsoft Windows 8 powered ATIV Smart PC Pro 700t (XE700T1C, a device which is part Ultrabook and part tablet in one. I consider it to be the perfect combination of both worlds, allowing users to do everything they need with a single device. There is no longer a need to wait till you get to a secondary computer to do “real work” as this one does all the things you might need. It has a full array of ports allowing you to plug in a memory stick or hard drive.

Sonos Adds iOS iTunes Playback

December 5, 2012

If you have a Sonos streaming stereo system and you download your music to a PC in your home then it is fairly simple to get access to all your stored music throughout your home. If however you download music to a PC which isn’t connected to your home network or directly to an iOS device you weren’t able to stream this music through your Sonos components without a wireless dock designed for an iPod or iPhone to plug into.

Sonos has just updated its software allowing your iOS devices to stream their music to your Sonos components over WiFi. Wireless iTunes Playback is compatible with the iPhone (3GS or later), iPod touch (4th generation or later), or iPad (2nd generation or later) running iOS 6 or higher and works with DRM-free music in MP3 or AAC format.

While this all sounds great in-theory, after updating all Sonos components throughout my home and updating the Sonos App on a 4th gen iPad and iPhone 5, get an error trying to stream music from either device.

11 Reasonably-Priced Tech Stocking Stuffers & Hanukah Gifts

December 3, 2012

If you’re looking for some reasonably priced stocking stuffers and Hanukah gifts for the kids or adults who have never grown up, you might want to consider some of the following. I just bought at least one of each.

Boogie Board $34

This is a reasonably priced gift for an electronic whiteboard which doesn’t need batteries.

WebRTC Conference & Expo Kicks Off

November 28, 2012

I am at the WebRTC Conference & Expo here at the South San Francisco Conference Center and the mood at the show is positive. What I have heard over and over from telecom equipment vendors, call center vendors and software vendors is that WebRTC is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity in the telecom space.

At a cocktail party sponsored by Google and Plantronics many people told me that the handset players are in trouble while the headset vendors have a great opportunity. This of course explains why Plantronics has taken such an active role at this conference and in this space.

I will update you with more as the event progresses - here are some photos of the show for your viewing pleasure - The person at the podium is Phil Edholm who has partnered with TMC and Crossfire Media to host this conference.


 






Satechi uCharger Charges Your iPad via Computer

November 16, 2012

Satechi Has Produced Some Innovative Accessories in the past and one of great interest to me is the uCharger Hi-Speed ESB Charging Adapter which uses software to tell your computer to up the amperage of the USB port in order to facilitate more rapid charging. This small USB dongle plugs into your computer and allows you to press a button to toggle between modes. Blue is for all of USB charging except the Galaxy Tab and Red is for all kinds of USB charging except the iPad.

USB 2.0 specifies a unit load of 100 mA with a maximum of 5 unit loads per device or 500 mA.

Google and Dish Were in Talks to Launch Wireless Biz

November 15, 2012

Some time back I commented on rumors of a Sprint takeover by Google and at the time many thought the idea was crazy. Fast forward a few years, tens of thousands of Android devices and a Motorola Mobility acquisition later and now Google is reportedly in talks to launch a wireless service with a number of companies including Dish Networks. As you may recall, Steve Jobs too wanted to launch a wireless network and if Google is seriously exploring this option this means Apple has to be doing the same.

The next frontier of advertising revenue for Google is mobile and if carriers and Apple decide to lock the company out of this lucrative market (even partially), then they have no choice but to own the wireless pipes.

Mobile Profits are Skyrocketing as 67,000 Are Laid Off

November 15, 2012

Mobile is not your father’s tech space.

 

Over the past two years, profits from the top eight mobile vendors has risen from $5.3 billion to $14.4 billion for a whopping increase of $9.1 billion and all this while over 67,000 people have been laid off in the technology. How is this possible you ask? I posited a similar query two months ago regarding Corning’s shares losing value – even while they supply Gorilla Glass to much of the booming mobile market.

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