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Fibre up, broadband up, IPTV up in Europe

Broadband World Forum Numbers announced at the Broadband World Forum point to a continued rise in fibre deployments, with the dual conclusions that Lithuania and Norway are the most fibred up countries and that both Hungary and the Ukraine are joining the world's leading 'fibre to the home' (FTTH) economies, with a sudden burst of pace. The report …
Faultline, 03 Oct 2011
The Register breaking news

Google Wallet and PayPal in electro-purse war

Google went live with its hotly anticipated Wallet application on Tuesday, though it will hardly hit the mass market yet – it runs only in the US, on the Sprint network, and on its own handset, the Nexus S. And eBay‘s PayPal – the firm which sued Google when it first unveiled Wallet in June – may be the more important player to …
Faultline, 24 Sep 2011
The Register breaking news

Samsung-Apple patent lawsuit tally hits 21, and counting

Analysis The legal activity around Android continues to mount, with the chief antagonists - Samsung and Apple - increasing their lawsuit tally to 21. And another may follow soon, as Samsung threatens to sue to block sales of the iPhone 5 as soon as it launches, at least in its home country of Korea. Let's face it, this is relevant to …
Faultline, 23 Sep 2011
server room

Intel gets into Comcast product catalog

While Motorola’s announcements at the Cable Show in Chicago last week shows that it has come alive and is hellbent on keeping its major cable customers, in Comcast and Time Warner Cable, the emergence of an Intel chip in an announced set top box at Comcast must set Broadcom firmly back on its heels and send the shivers up …
Faultline, 20 Jun 2011
The Register breaking news

BT to embrace IPTV as it upgrades broadband network to multicast

British Telecom will change the bulk of its broadband network to use multicast routers as from next year – this will mean that full IPTV services, using quality of service protocols, could then be launched for the first time on the BT network. BT has always said that it didn't see the point of building out its network with …
Faultline, 30 May 2011
The Register breaking news

Amazon confirms the terms of its declaration of war on Netflix

Amazon has finally confirmed what was Hollywood‘s worst kept secret: that its Amazon Prime customers will be able to get some online video for free, just like the DVD rental customers of Netflix can get online video for free. To us this looks like an early experiment, and Amazon is thought to have about two million Prime …
Faultline, 27 Feb 2011
The Register breaking news

UK set top maker set to gain from Latin America pay TV surge

Last year in Latin America pay TV growth overtook virtual the entire world, with the revenues from Pay TV in Latin America growing at about $1 billion a month, while the region added some 6.7 million new homes. And funnily enough it is a UK set top vendor, Pace, the number one in the world, which is best positioned to make hay …
Faultline, 20 Feb 2011

Should Apple enter the flat TV market?

Comment In February 2009, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster said what we were all thinking: that if Apple is a part of the consumer electronics market, why doesn’t it produce a TV with Apple TV (and a DVR) incorporated? The first time Faultline predicted this was a full two years earlier, but we’re not followed quite as assiduously …
Faultline, 11 Feb 2011
The Register breaking news

Apple's app store policies: What will they provoke?

Comment There hasn’t actually been a new policy statement, but Apple has clearly made a change in the eReader side of its business - one that immediately affects Sony, which has brought the issue to light. It is likely that the change will also affect Amazon (it can’t really affect one and not the other) and Barnes and Noble with its …
Faultline, 04 Feb 2011
The Register breaking news

Microsoft 'Xbox TV' rumours: Over the Cable Guy's dead body

Xbox TV? We've heard it all before, and this time the rumour has replaced the word Apple with the name Microsoft, but it's essentially the same: saying that it will come to market as a virtual cable operator, delivering TV channels over the internet in return for a monthly fee. Let's just examine that for a moment. Apple, with …
Faultline, 06 Dec 2010
The Register breaking news

Putting the internet into neutral, or neutering the net?

Opinion The usually perspicacious Neelie Kroes, the European Digital Agenda Commissioner, has finally hit a wall in Net Neutrality legislation, perhaps seeing the conflicting sides to the net neutrality argument. These are the same arguments that the US Government and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) have been unable to sort …
Faultline, 21 Nov 2010
The Register breaking news

US smartphones – Once you’ve had Android there’s no going back

Opinion Most people that we meet who are not in technology, wonder at how we keep up with the speed at which technology changes. But technology – and technology markets in particular – are sometimes glacial in the speed of change. Back in around 2002, when we first talked about 3G licences, and ooh-ed and ahh-ed at how much money they …
Faultline, 05 Nov 2010

Apple to buy Sony? Good one!

Opinion We had a chuckle this morning at the idea of Sony being taken over by Apple Computer, an idea that has been flying around the US stock markets, supposedly as a reason for Sony’s share price to rise a miniscule few percent. If the idea had any legs, Sony would have shot up. Apple sits on $46bn in cash and short term securities …
Faultline, 31 Oct 2010
The Register breaking news

Microsoft steers OEMs away from putting Phone 7 on Tablets

Microsoft is usually decisive. There is a saying in contact sports such as American football and rugby – it doesn‘t matter if you make a wrong decision, if you commit to it and do it hard enough, you can make it into the right decision. It works for business too. Decisiveness – even when based on poorly thought-out decisions …
Faultline, 18 Oct 2010
The Register breaking news

RIM opens its PlayBook – tablets clearly set for dominance

Tablets are going to be a lot bigger than everyone realizes. We have been thinking this for the past few months, just after the first murmurs of sales volumes for the iPad, as we began to realize that it was perfectly capable of replacing some desktop PCs, many Notebooks and at least half of all netbooks, along with offering a …
Faultline, 03 Oct 2010
The Register breaking news

Avaya chases Cisco with videoconferencing tablet

Where Cisco goes, Avaya often follows, and the smaller firm has introduced a video collaboration tablet, the Flare, similar to Cisco's recently announced Cius. While market buzz has focused on general-purpose consumer tablets like the iPad, many vendors believe their opportunity will lie in optimizing the form factor for …
Faultline, 17 Sep 2010
The Register breaking news

Apple TV: Third time unlucky, Mr Jobs

Comment This is the day that Apple lost the war for Over The Top content, not only in America, but globally. The winner can’t yet be announced, but this was the shot that Apple had to get it right, and to us it’s bungled it. We got the same story from Apple, Amazon and Sony all at the same time and a similar one from Google. And while …
Faultline, 03 Sep 2010
The Register breaking news

Broadband pricing in US and Europe falls

Broadband pricing in Europe and the US fell €5 a month, on average, as broadband speeds went up by an average of 20 per cent during the last year, says researcher Analysys Mason. This is after a relatively flat period during the past recession, when prices held up. Now the average price paid for a fixed broadband service …
Faultline, 30 Aug 2010
The Register breaking news

Disney throws $763m at social gaming

Disney has thrown over three quarters of a billion dollars to bring it up to Goliath status in the online gaming world, acquiring two and a half year old Playdom, which offers games for social networks – the new buzzword in gaming that has all the VCs on the planet hopping onto investments. Playdom offers Social City, Sorority …
Faultline, 31 Jul 2010
The Register breaking news

Apple not yet dominant enough for anti-trust action

Opinion Apple is rapidly becoming an anti-trust target and right now it is behaving like a badly spoiled child with respect to what it will allow and not allow on any of its platforms. This is reflected in decisions to keep Adobe and any other development environment off its devices, and more recently in its proposed new developer terms …
Faultline, 17 Jun 2010
The Register breaking news

Weather balloons no longer a crazy idea for rural coverage

As the US gets serious about opening up mobile broadband to its entire population, it is hunting for new spectrum options to support that. The UHF digital TV switchover spectrum sell-off brought in around $20bn, and one of the key uses of this 700MHz band will be to support long range radio signals to cover rural America more …
Faultline, 23 Nov 2009
The Register breaking news

Wireless carriers gear up to fight FCC’s net neutrality plans

The US FCC, headed by new chairman Julius Genachowski, wants to apply the same net neutrality rules to mobile networks as wireline systems, to the fury of the cellcos. In the most radical neutrality program ever outlined in the US, the new-look FCC is insisting that wireless carriers should account for their open policies in …
Faultline, 24 Sep 2009
The Register breaking news

How to turn a world leader into a fourth-rate broadband economy

There is an interesting report out this week from an organization in the US calling itself Speed Matters. It is backed by the Communications Workers of America, and it makes a seriously cogent point about US broadband capability. It is in its third year and it points out that US broadband connection speeds have not improved …
Faultline, 27 Aug 2009

Sony to make rechargeable batteries last 4x longer

To read the Sony press release, you’d think that it had virtually invented the Lithium Ion battery in the first place, but now it has come up with a breakthrough next step – with a battery that will survive far more charges and discharges without its performance decaying. Sony says it has come up with a battery which will have …
Faultline, 20 Aug 2009

RealNetworks claims CSS license lets it copy DVDs. Sues studios

RealNetworks is filing an anti-trust action against the major US studios. It says it has a license to use CSS decryption which it obtained legally, and therefore its RealDVD copying software is not only legal, but attempts by the studios to block it amount to anti-trust. It will be interesting to see if a court agrees. Subtly …
Faultline, 21 May 2009
The Register breaking news

Electronics giants raise ruckus over Project Canvas

Project Canvas, the joint venture of the BBC, ITV and British Telecom, must be up to something good considering that some makers of consumer electronics (CE) gear are squealing "foul". The UK's Intellect Technology Association, whose members include Sony, Panasonic, Samsung, Toshiba and Pace, said in a submission to the BBC …
Faultline, 08 May 2009

Subsidized netbook model could sweep away 20 years of PC history

While many stories this week rest on whether or not Apple will bother with a netbook (Steve Jobs has said the iPhone does everything a netbook does anyway, and was reported as saying “We don’t know how to build a sub-$500 computer that is not a piece of junk”), the issue really is whether or not you belong to the school of …
Faultline, 02 Apr 2009

Cisco battles Meltdown with mobile and video

Cisco CEO John Chambers claims to have a ‘playbook’ for coping with recessions, and two of its principles of survival are to prepare for the upturn in order to benefit more than rivals, and to use customers’ own pressures during the bad times to deepen relationships with them. Both of these principles will be tested in the …
Faultline, 13 Nov 2008
The Register breaking news

Advertisers should speak up on where Yahoo assets should be

When thinking about the Google Yahoo deal and why we felt it was out and out anti-trust, we were reminded of an old joke. When it was told to us years ago it was about an accountant, but the punchline was the same. In the accounting version of the joke when the successful accountant was asked what one and one made, he replied …
Faultline, 13 Nov 2008
For Sale sign detail

EC to drag fibre from incumbents' greedy paws

European Commissioner for Competition Neelie Kroes is proposing a radical shake up of telco competition in Europe which she hopes will stimulate aggressive deployment of fibre to the home across Europe - what the Commission calls Next Generation Access (NGA). What she is trying to do right now is get agreement on a Europe-wide …
Faultline, 25 Sep 2008
hands waving dollar bills in the air

Enterprises throw caution to the wind in 802.11n rush

The wireless industry changes at the speed of light and so do the attitudes of its customers. Five years ago, amid the intense nervousness of enterprises about adopting pre-standard fast Wi-Fi standards or insecure - Wi-Fi at all - who would have predicted the carefree abandonment with which corporates are now embracing pre- …
Faultline, 13 Sep 2008

Ericsson ST move helps consolidate wireless chip makers

The announcement this week that Ericsson would merge its Mobile Platforms division into the ST-NXP Wireless business sent shock waves around the industry. The first words on everyone’s lips - especially those of US financial analysts - were: "What does this mean for Texas Instruments?" which of late has suffered blow after …
Faultline, 21 Aug 2008
The Register breaking news

Qualcomm: Interview with a cellular vampire

Analysis The 1976 Anne Rice novel Interview with the Vampire which showed the a sympathetic and softer side of the vampire and which uncovered both the mind-numbing ennui of being immortal and the complete lack of a sense of belonging, and other disadvantages to being uniquely powerful and yet disliked, was the first image that struck us …
Faultline, 18 Aug 2008

Apple's AppStore closes in on $500m in software sales

Analysis Apple is as usual dazzling the market with stunning headline figures that frequently overshadow underlying problems and dissatisfaction with its iconic iPhone and associated services. As bullish analysts say the device is set to sell almost 4.5 million units this quarter on the back of aggressive international expansion, CEO …
Faultline, 16 Aug 2008
The Register breaking news

Mobe operators warn of ruin if regulators set roaming charges

The last thing you want when you get back from a holiday abroad is a £200 hike on your cell phone bill, brought about by what are seemingly invisible roaming charges, and usually because the office phoned you, not the other way around. So the battle between the GSMA, representing cellular operators everywhere, and the European …
Faultline, 11 Jul 2008
The Register breaking news

Third time lucky? Google seeks open access in white spaces

The results of the US 700MHz auction were far from fulfilling Google’s dreams of an open wireless network that would significantly boost unfettered internet usage across the airwaves, and so its own revenues. The search and advertising leader is not giving up on its quest for spectrum to support the expansion of its business …
Faultline, 03 Apr 2008

Verizon makes nice with P2P

From an ISP’s point of view, P2P traffic can appear to be exceptionally daunting. If they choose to block it, as some have accused almost all of the major US ISPs of doing, then their networks would become ghost networks, with virtually no traffic in sight. But if they embrace it, their networks are fast moving crazy places, …
Faultline, 24 Mar 2008
The Register breaking news

Will the US 700 MHz auction be remembered for dismembering wireless?

Faultline has not covered much of the 700 MHz auction, not wanting to read into it too much, and seeing that it is not yet clear how much of it is directly about networks which carry video or other forms of entertainment, which is our chosen territory. But now, as it approaches its end, we find that a review of all the content …
Faultline, 06 Mar 2008
The Register breaking news

Nokia gets the upper hand in global IPR wrestle with Qualcomm

Comment While we are not saying that the long-running battle between Nokia and Qualcomm is actually over - anything but - there are signs that Nokia’s position is a lot stronger than many observers first thought. Last week, the International Trade Commission said it would not review its earlier decision that Nokia did not infringe …
Faultline, 06 Mar 2008
The Register breaking news

Wireless industry slams NAB's white space 'misinformation'

The row over US ‘white space’ spectrum continues, with the newly formed Wireless Innovation Alliance stepping up its campaign to convince the FCC and the industry that wireless devices can be used in these areas without interfering with digital TV signals. The WIA last week accused the broadcast industry, as represented by the …
Faultline, 17 Jan 2008
The Register breaking news

Nokia jumps on mobile ad-wagon

Comment In its bid to bring the full internet experience to the mobile device, Nokia will need to formulate a clear strategy for mobile advertising, an important internet revenue driver, but also an area fraught with risks. Nokia said last week it was devising a platform that would avoid the "unseemly" aspects of conventional internet …
Faultline, 30 Nov 2007

MS drifts towards over-the-top Java services with Musiwave buy

Comment All the coverage thus far about Microsoft splashing out $46m for Musiwave, has been about how the mobile music service supplier has had a dramatic fall from grace, and has cost parent OpenWave some $80m. But perhaps the focus should be on Microsoft buying a company that exclusively uses Java applications, mostly on Symbian …
Faultline, 23 Nov 2007
The Register breaking news

Will Christmas sound the death knell for Atari?

Comment There is increasing concern that the Atari brand is finally on the verge of disappearing, as it concluded a quarter where its losses are bigger than its revenues, which have crashed to just $10.4m. Three years ago, Atari amassed sales of $343m, which fell to $206m last year and $122m for the year just gone. Its belated …
Faultline, 18 Nov 2007
The Register breaking news

Google phone, Google phone OS, Google apps – or just Google Ads

It becomes increasingly hard to work out where the control point in handset design is. Once we all thought it was the hardware, then it was the operating system, and just as we start to think that it’s the service layers above the operating system, then it’s all in the network, an finally Apple comes along and tells us it’s the …
Faultline, 13 Oct 2007
The Register breaking news

Sprint Nextel and Verizon jury trials have Vonage on the brink

Sprint has won a second jury trial over patent infringement against US VoIP service Vonage, in what is an echo of the defeat inflicted earlier by Verizon. The patent numbers used in the Sprint Nextel case versus Vonage could all be about the same patent, the process of mapping a narrowband message, for instance a PSTN network …
Faultline, 06 Oct 2007
The Register breaking news

Doubters fret at Nokia Navteq deal

Comment Nokia has spent the greatest part of its life being misunderstood by US stock analysts, and its move to acquire US mapping company Navteq, for a colossal $8.1bn, at $78 a share, is no exception. Navteq had revenues last year of just $581m but is on track for about $800m this year, with its last quarter up 49 per cent to $202. …
Faultline, 05 Oct 2007
The Register breaking news

There's life in IPTV

Analysis The key reason for Faultline to go to the IBC conference and exhibition in Amsterdam each year is to test the temperature of the entertainment industry, with its 47,000 visitors from over 120 countries and its 1,300 exhibitors. By any standards, but especially European standards, it is a big show. It is of course many shows …
Faultline, 16 Sep 2007
The Register breaking news

Philips looks to build 'huge' video database for video ID service

When Philips Research fell out of the audio fingerprinting business in 2005, it obviously left something of a scar, with the business sold for an unspecified amount, but since it was just as the buyer, audio database specialist Gracenote, had just raised $10.9m, that was taken to be the amount. But talking to Alex Terpstra, the …
Faultline, 14 Sep 2007
The Register breaking news

US municipal Wi-Fi loses its shine

A year ago, hardly a week went by without news of a major municipal wireless project in the US, supporting free or subsidized access and a host of shiny business models. Now hardly a week goes by without news of the death of one of these plans. The San Francisco roll-out, the poster child for the free Wi-Fi movement, largely …
Faultline, 10 Sep 2007
The Register breaking news

Walkman completes Sony conspiracy to hammer iTunes

The newspapers were full of stories during 2004 about how Microsoft or RealNetworks or Napster were going to knock Apple's iTunes off its perch, and time and time again, nothing really happened. Now we have the reverse. There are genuine storm clouds and dark forces gathering around the iTunes and iPod brands and most of the …
Faultline, 07 Sep 2007