Mae : Wireless Mobility Blog
| News and views on everything wireless and mobile, from WiFi and WiMAX to 3G and fixed-mobile convergence (FMC).

InfoWorld: 700MHz Auction Could End 'Disastrously'

January 23, 2008

700Mhz auction. Does that get your heart racing? It isn’t garnering nearly the same level of excitement as, say, Apple releasing a new product. But the FCC’s auction, set to begin tomorrow, nonetheless is setting off some chatter in the wireless industry.

In-Sta: Revenue Growth for Mobile Business Apps to Slow Somewhat in 2008

January 18, 2008

Wireless service providers may need to engage in some reality-checking during 2008 when it comes to projected versus actual revenue growth associated with mobile business applications. That’s what In-Stat predicted this week in a new report, Wireless Data in the US Enterprise 2007: Avoiding a CDPD Reprise.   The research firm expects revenue growth for this particular wireless sector will end up being about 44 percent from 2007 to 2008, down slightly from 50 percent for 2006 and 2007. Why the slight downturn? In-Stat chalked it up to the services companies actually implement, which tend to be somewhat reduced from plans made by decision-makers.

Macworld Keynote Recap So Far

January 15, 2008

As I write this, Steve Jobs has been keynoting for nearly two hours and it appears most of the surprises are out of the bag at this point. I’m sure everyone out there is busy refreshing real-time blogs from Macworld, Engadget and the like. So here’s a very short and sweet recap of what Apple announced today so far:   1. Almost 20 percent of the Apple OS installed base has upgraded to Leopard.

Texting for Takeout Food: Let Your Fingers Do the Ordering

January 14, 2008

As if ordering delivery take-out food wasn’t already easy enough, USA Today recently reported that soon it may no longer be necessary to even talk to another person on the phone to put in your order. That’s because text ordering is being adopted by more and more national fast-food and other restaurant chains, allowing users to send their requests for sustenance via a cell phone.   Among the chains now offering or looking into offering text ordering: Papa John’s (national TV spots now promote the service), Domino’s (launched last July), Pizza Hut (soon to get started), Quiznos (considering), Dunkin’ Donuts (considering), Subway (considering), McDonald’s (testing in Seoul), and Starbucks (trial underway in London and in one U.S. store).

Radar from Tiny Pictures Enables Free Photo and Video Sharing

January 10, 2008

The other day, a rep from Tiny Pictures, which makes software solutions for mobile devices, got in touch to tell me about Radar. She explained that Radar is a free service that lets mobile phone users share camera phone pictures, videos and attached comments with friends and family. She described the service as a “real time conversation—letting you show the funny, nutty, interesting things that happen to you.”   The capabilities of Radar include a private “channel” and Web address to protect your privacy, allowing only invited friends to see the content you’ve chosen to share. Friends can then comment, either privately or publicly.

Texting the Screen During New Year’s Eve in Times Square

January 2, 2008

Yours truly braved the crowds this year to attend the New Year’s celebrations in Times Square. It was a long day—my companions and I arrived in the city about 11:30, and were in position with a great view of the ball by about 2:00. It was a long wait; you try standing in the same place for ten hours and you’ll understand why everyone was cheering at midnight: the ordeal was over, we could all go home.   One of the things that kept the crowd on my side of the street (we were next to the MTV building) entertained was an MTV-sponsored giant screen on which were displayed text messages from people standing on the street. Mobile phone users simply typed in a special code, and whatever username they wanted displayed, then their message.

Apple Tablet: A Good Idea or a Bad One?

December 28, 2007

An interesting video was posted yesterday on, in which staff reporter Scott Moritz and gadget columnist Gary Krakow discuss Apple’s reportedly upcoming release of a tablet computer with touchscreen.   Krakow’s conclusion was that maybe Apple will come out with a product compelling enough for people to buy it, but given the history of table computers the odds are against Apple.   “Ask any other manufacturer: tablets do not sell,” Krakow said in the video. He noted that people like the idea of working on a flat surface, but when it comes time to type a letter, tablets fall short.

Apple Rumors: Fox Movie Deal, 3G iPhone, Asia iPhone Deals

December 27, 2007

With the Macworld Conference & Expo only a few weeks off, yours truly thought it might be a good time to head on over to AppleInsider and see what’s on tap for current Apple-related gossip. It’s kind of funny how much fuss was made last year leading up to Macworld 2007, mostly speculation about iPhone, and how relatively quiet the rumor mill is this year.   One very likely announcement from Apple at Macworld might be a deal with 20th Century Fox to rent movies on-demand through iTunes. AppleInsider reports that such a deal is in the works, according to a recent Financial Times article quoting “a person familiar with the situation.” Sounds like a credible source to me!   The service would supposedly work like this: users could download a complete movie from iTunes, for a rental fee, but it would only last a set amount of time before “expiring.” Fox would also provide DVD copies of the movies that are copy protected to an extent; these copies would allow the movies to be transferred to a device (e.g.

Nicholas Ciarelli Bows to Apple, Agrees to Shut down 'Think Secret' Web Site

December 21, 2007

One of the biggest stories of this Friday-before-Christmas was a report that Apple and Nicholas Ciarelli, master of the Think Secret Apple rumors Web site, have reached an amicable agreement in which Ciarelli agreed to shut down the site. The site was a source for leaks about Apple product releases, but because it was run by an independent publisher it ultimately was put in a different category than traditional journalistic outlets.   Apple sued Ciarelli in January, 2005, for publishing trade secrets from the company, and now almost three years later the heart of the matter has finally been sorted out. New York Times reported that Ciarelli, a senior at Harvard, was satisfied with the outcome.

ABI Predicts RIM Will Finish Second Behind Nokia for 2007 Smartphone Sales

December 20, 2007

When it comes to smartphone market share, no-one can touch Nokia. But it looks like Research in Motion (RIM), maker of BlackBerry devices, will come pretty close for 2007. That’s the conclusion reached by ABI Research in its research brief, Research in Motion Strategic Review, released Thursday.   ABI is predicting that RIM will end 2007 with 10 percent of the smartphone market, making it the second largest such vendor in terms of device shipments—second only to Nokia.