First Coffee for 7 February, 2006

David Sims : First Coffee
David Sims
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First Coffee for 7 February, 2006

By David Sims

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is… well, I’m afraid you might get tired of this in a few days, but right now there simply isn’t any better way to start the morning than Robert Earl Keen’s What I Really Mean:

Nortel is announcing that it has achieved the industry’s first simultaneous uplink and downlink high-speed wireless calls between two mobile devices at uplink speeds four times faster than current UMTS services.

Nortel’s demonstration uses its commercial UMTS Base Transceiver Station and Aeroflex’s TM500 handset simulator to exchange VoIP, videos and files at uplink speeds of 1.4 Mbps.

This achievement illustrates, according to Nortel officials, “the potential viability of next-generation wireless technologies for high-bandwidth applications between mobile devices such as VoIP, video streaming, real-time high-definition mobile gaming and large file exchange.”

High-speed uplinks are particularly valued by media agencies transferring high-definition images and video content from locations with no broadband wireline access.

Nortel’s HSDPA technology is already being rolled out by operators to improve the downlink capacity of commercial 3G networks. Nortel’s HSUPA is expected to be available from the beginning of 2007 and it’s designed by the company to deliver a higher uplink throughput, reduced latency, and higher capacity, with a software upgrade of commercial networks.

Nortel achieved the industry’s first HSDPA mobile call in January 2005.

Nortel and LGE completed the first live test calls using a commercial handset for HSDPA in March 2005. In June 2005, Nortel became the first wireless network supplier to complete the TL9000 registration standard for Quality Management System Requirements and Measurements across its HSDPA, UMTS and GSM wireless infrastructures. You might have noticed the frenzied street celebrations at the time.

Nortel achieved the industry’s first HSDPA call at 3.6 Mbps in December 2005, and industry-first UMTS-HSDPA call in the 900 MHz band in January 2006.

Here’s a nifty little gizmo: Mobile phone users can now see the cost of their telephone call on their handsets while they are on the phone, due to a new service released today by How Much Software, a London-based technology development and marketing business.

“The How Much? service is free and is the first of its kind in the UK,” said Mark Matheson, the company’s Managing Director.

Matheson said the noticed that when mobile phone users are on calls for longer than anticipated they tend to get concerned with how much the call is costing.

So with this new and free service users can “now see the cost of the call immediately while they are on the phone. No need to get a shock when the phone bill drops through the letterbox or be left wondering where all the credit has gone to with a pay-as-you-go phone.”

The name How Much? is drawn from the typical response an individual has when they see a large, unexpected bill, especially for a mobile phone, Matheson said. Evidently Matheson has research somewhere to determine that “10 million people in the UK fear receiving their mobile phone bill, largely due to the unexpected overspill that happens month after month.”

The service is described in full at where information on how to obtain this free service is also found.

How Much Software is the new trading division of FirstView Systems Limited, a software development business based in southwest London and formed in 1993.

A refreshing bit of spam dropped into the In box just now, instead of the usual stock market “tips” or folks just dying to throw $14.8 million stolen by some African kleptocrat into my bank account, here’s the total text received, no attachments:


choreography cavort claustrophobiacoefficient allege camelback cation The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak A friend is not so soon gotten as lost. Nah every big head get sense.

Thank you, your

Maribel Winslow

No, thank you, Maribel, a little surrealism never hurt anyone. And as Dave Barry might say, The Claustrophobia Coefficient would be a great name for a rock band.

Got another love note from yet another burned victim yesterday:

I only wish I had run a search on this company before I placed my order through Amazon. I placed an order on January 12. Caiman claims to have shipped my book on January 13. Today is February 6. I never received my book. After reading everything here, I don’t think they ever even shipped my order. What’s even more funny is that the email I got from them was signed by Claire. WTF? Is she the only person who works there or do they all just use the same name?

That followed another note received a few days earlier:

Yes, Call the number 305-262-4973. I talked to an actual person. I am convinced the company is a scam. The woman on the line said her name was Claire, what? I thought that was a computer. Anyway I should have a refund in 3 days, well see.

Hey, hold your breath. First CoffeeSM’s written a lot about and the terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad customer service they offer. I’ve wondered, as have a few of the burned customers who’ve posted on this blog, why online vendors continue allowing to partner on their sites.

Here on the GlobeTel watch we notice that their huge, blockbuster deal with LLC Internafta, which was supposed to be finalized last week, remains unconsummated.

GlobeTel released a quick note saying it’s given Internafta thirty more days to get its act together.

This should be interesting, as this obscure company has claimed a far-flung WiMax deal in Russia worth many hundreds of millions of dollars. However, as Motley Fool’s Seth Jayson notes, “the real identity of GlobeTel’s Russian investors remains a mystery, and there are those nagging questions about competition and feasibility.

“How is it possible for this unheard-of Florida company, with little track record, to suddenly vault past established equipment makers like Qualcomm, Cisco, Nokia, and Motorola, not to mention powerful multinational telecoms?” Jayson wrote a couple weeks ago. “Especially since GlobeTel seems to have no technological advantage, as evidenced in its regulatory filings, where it explains that the equipment and software it uses are readily available from major suppliers on the open markets?”

Jayson also provides lively reading into GlobeTel’s rather, ah, colorful friends. This reporter has asked GlobeTel CEO Tim Huff for an interview, but Huff has declined.

Yessirree, if they pull this one off that’ll really be one for the books. Let’s see if David can zing Goliath here.

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