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T-Mobile US goes gaga for Wi-Fi calling, AT&T to launch in 2015

Now that Apple has announced Wi-Fi calling as one of the major new features of the iPhone 6 series, multiple mobile carriers are scrambling to support the tech, with AT&T announcing that it will offer it for the first time starting next year. T-Mobile in the US and EE in Europe were the two carriers mentioned when Apple …
Neil McAllister, 12 Sep 2014
Smartphones

Blockbuster book lays out the first 20 years of the Smartphone Wars

Review David Wood, one of the founder executives of Symbian - and the one who saw it through to the bitter end - has written a book. A very big book. Smartphones and beyond: Lessons from the remarkable rise and fall of Symbian tells the entire story from Symbian's conception, to world domination, to its rapid demise, and it must be one …
Andrew Orlowski, 12 Sep 2014
Apple Watch

Apple Watch will CONQUER smartwatch world – analysts

Apple is set to be the biggest player in the smartwatch market, Canalys analysts have predicted. But its reign may be temporary, as competitors will inevitably storm Cupertino's barricades armed with cheaper wristputers to steal away the unfaithful. Canalys predicted that "wearable band" shipments will grow 129 per cent between …
Jasper Hamill, 11 Sep 2014
Angry woman on mobile

This flashlight app requires: Your contacts list, identity, access to your camera...

A global survey of more than 1,200 mobile apps has discovered that the vast majority (85 per cent) fail to provide basic privacy information. The global survey faulted apps for accessing large amounts of personal information without adequately explaining how they were collecting, using and disclosing personal information. Almost …
John Leyden, 11 Sep 2014
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Get thee to YouTube, Turnbull tells community TV broadcasters

Australia's federal government has announced the outcome of its consultation into community broadcasters, and its decision is: give back the spectrum and learn how to post on YouTube. While upper bands of TV spectrum are in demand among mobile carriers (something bound to increase as consumers shift to higher-capacity 4G …
Ford Focus embedded into Edinburgh basement

ACCC gives thumbs up to TPG's NBN fibre-to-the-basement raids

Australia's Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) has to do nothing about junior telco TPG's plans to compete with the nation's government-mandated monopoly telephony network provider NBN Co, but is still pondering whether other telecoms retailers should be allowed to resell services running on TPG's infrastructure. TPG plans …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Sep 2014
Vodafone on Piccadilly

Shades of Mannesmann: Vodafone should buy T-Mobile US

Comment When Deutsche Telekom bought One 2 One on the 6th August 1999 I sat in the press conference at the Dorchester hotel and heard the company say “We are the Germans. Today Europe, tomorrow the world”. The boss also reprimanded a journalist for switching off a ringing phone. “Answer it, where do you think our money comes from?” …
Simon Rockman, 10 Sep 2014
Smart home

Holy sentient blender, Batman: Telefónica to trial AT&T's Internet of Home Stuff in Europe

Telefónica will be trialling AT&T’s home security tech in Europe as the US firm tries to get its foot in the door of the Internet of Stuff. The Spanish company is licensing the tech for limited trials on this side of the pond, after which it will decide if it’s worth signing up for a longer term. The trial will be a version of …
NBN Co Customer premises equipment

NBN Co says Melton test not valid, likely uses processes developed there anyway

Far from being an “unrepresentative” document based on bad data, the NBN Co internal presentation which leaked last week was the outcome of five months' work, instigated to create a benchmark for future fibre rollout areas. The furore – Vulture South could even go as far as to call it a kerfuffle – began with the leak of an …

Net neutrality protestors slam the brakes on their OWN websites

Those who log into their favourite websites today may notice that things seem a bit... slow. It's not a service outage or a shoddy connection, but a coordinated protest in support of net neutrality provisions in the US. A group called Battleforthenet is organizing the campaign in which participating sites plaster their pages …
Shaun Nichols, 10 Sep 2014
xfinity wifi

Comcast using JavaScript to inject advertising from Wi-Fi hotspots

Comcast has begun injecting adverts onto the computers of users who sign up for its public Wi-Fi network, although the company prefers to use the term "watermark" to describe its efforts. The ISP operates over 3.5 million Wi-Fi hotspots around the USA and people who sign up for home or work internet can choose to add them into …
Iain Thomson, 10 Sep 2014

Virgin Media hit by MORE YouTube buffering glitches

Virgin Media has been battling another round of YouTube buffering glitches on its cable network. Register reader Michelle D’israeli flagged up the latest technical cockup with Google's video-sharing service. She told us that problems first appeared last Thursday (4 September). Subscribers moaned about YouTube being crippled …
Kelly Fiveash, 9 Sep 2014
Seond screen is one thing at home, but watching one game while visiting another is obessive

Ericsson punts superfast picocell... for indoor not-spots

Ericsson is big on little cells. The new RBS 6402 is an indoor cell aimed at giving mobile coverage within what Ericsson calls “smaller buildings and venues”, but you might think of as still being pretty big – around 5,000 square metres. What makes it special is that it’s the first picocell to support carrier aggregation, which …
Simon Rockman, 9 Sep 2014

15 MEEELLION malware-infested mobiles worldwide – report

Incidences of malicious software (malware) being identified on mobile devices rose 17% in the first half of this year, according to a new study. A report by French communications giant Alcatel-Lucent estimated that approximately 15 million mobile devices worldwide could be infected with malware. The report said that the mobile …
OUT-LAW.COM, 9 Sep 2014
Checking london streets

Who us, SHARE infrastructure? Networks reject gov proposal

A governmental proposal that would require the UK mobile phone networks to share infrastructure has been shot down in flames. The idea proposed by culture secretary Sajid Javid, which would remove any need for competition between the mobile networks on the basis of coverage, has been rejected as “unworkable” according to a …
Simon Rockman, 8 Sep 2014

Straight to video: Facebook to add 'view counts' to autoplay newsfeed vids

Facebook has apparently watched video views explode since the free content ad network decided to set them to play automatically on its News Feed. The Mark Zuckerberg-run company said on Sunday that an average of more than 1 billion vids had been watched every day since June this year. However, there's a potential side-effect to …
Kelly Fiveash, 8 Sep 2014
Monopoly testing

Vodafone calls for pan-European testing standards

Petek Ergul, head of networks at Vodafone, doesn't just have big plans for better mobile coverage. She claims Voda is actually rolling them out across the UK, with specific team working on “World Class London”. While The Register Monopoly Pub Crawl surveyed 28 locations in London, Ergul wants to see a pan-European standard. She …
Simon Rockman, 8 Sep 2014
NBN FTTN cabinet

NBN Co correction: We're rubbish at broadband rollout and NEVER improved

NBN Co has issued a press statement assuring media that in spite of what looked like a favourable assessment of its fibre-to-the-premises rollout procedures, things really were dreadful until the new government commissioned the Strategic Review. Or perhaps things weren't dreadful, but they're really, truly, definitely better now …
cloud

Nokia Networks joins NFV party

Nokia has joined World+Dog, pitching a Network Function Virtualisation (NFV) platform and announcing that it will be going live with a “major operator” by the end of 2014. In particular, the incredible shrinking Finn is touting its “telco cloud” solution's support for voice-over-LTE, which it reckons will help carriers automate …
NBN Co logo

'Serious flaws in the Vertigan report' says broadband boffin

Rod Tucker, a laureate emeritus professor at the University of Melbourne, IEEE fellow, and networking researcher has posted an article that offers very heavy criticism of the Vertigan Review's cost-benefit analysis of Australia's National Broadband Network (NBN). Tucker's beef is with analysis provided by Communications Chambers …
Mobile phone stolen by pickpocket

Thieves steal more iPhones than any other handset, warns UK government

Apple iPhone owners in England and Wales are the most likely group of citizens to have their handsets snatched by thieves, the UK government warned today. Whitehall published its first Mobile Phone Theft Ratio report (PDF) on Sunday morning. It comes after Home Secretary Theresa May said earlier this week that the government …
Kelly Fiveash, 7 Sep 2014

iPHONEY: Fake iPhone 6 images splattered over Chinese internet

A video and photos have appeared on Chinese websites purporting to be "real" shots of the iPhone 6 – just days ahead of Apple's latest iStuff showcase on September 9. Vulture Weekend notes that this is potentially pure tittle tattle and understands only too well that on the internet nobody knows you're a dog. Yada yada ... But, …
Kelly Fiveash, 7 Sep 2014

Zuck: Yo, Mexico! My $19bn WhatsApp could connect THREE BEEELLION people

Mark Zuckerberg wore his special altruistic pants on a trip to Mexico on Friday to flaunt his messaging wares in the country, by claiming that WhatsApp could connect up to three billion people globally. He visited President Peña Nieto in Mexico City on what appeared to be a PR mission to help grow Facebook's business in that …
Kelly Fiveash, 6 Sep 2014

Jony and Marc sitting in a tree ... let's design Apple iThings, BUDDY

Apple's design guru Jony Ive has hired a close friend to join his team in Cupertino. Marc Newson, who has previously worked with Ive on a number of designs for the fruity firm, will be based in Blighty and regularly jet out to California, Vanity Fair reported. The Hollywood-schmoozing magazine quoted Ive bigging up his chum and …
Kelly Fiveash, 6 Sep 2014

Apple inhales DRUGSTORE deals on iPhone payment system, says report

That leaking tap at Cupertino refuses to be jammed ahead of Apple's 9 September launch of new iThings. The latest speculative report says that the fruity company has inked iPhone payment agreements with CVS and Walgreens - the two biggest pharmacies in the US. According to Re/Code, which cites a source briefed on the plans, …
Kelly Fiveash, 6 Sep 2014

You can thank Brit funnyman John Oliver for fixing US broadband policy, beams Netflix

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings thinks Americans owe a debt to British satirist John Oliver for the FCC's tough stance this week on broadband monopolies in the US. Hastings said in a personal Facebook post on Thursday: FCC Chairman Wheeler talks about importance of gigabit for everyone and how fiber and cable can get us there. Much …
Shaun Nichols, 5 Sep 2014
Nokia Lumia 830, showing removable battery

New Lumia mobes nudge Microkia ever closer to biz customers

Pics + Hands On It was strange to see Lumia Windows Phones announced yesterday with Stephen Elop absent – the Canadian was nowhere to be found, for the first time. We spent a bit of time with Not-Nokia’s new Nokias, and the 2014 strategy for Microsoft’s huge new hardware division is a bit clearer. In all, Nokia launched eleven Windows Phone 8.0 …
named data networking

DEATH TO TCP/IP cry Cisco, Intel, US gov and boffins galore

The US National Science Foundation, Cisco, Verisign, Panasonic and boffins from around the world have thrown their weight behind a new “Named Data Networking Consortium” that aims to develop “a practically deployable set of protocols replacing TCP/IP that increases network trustworthiness and security, addresses the growing …

FCC boss Wheeler: Lack of broadband choice is screwing Americans

US Federal Communications Commission chairman Tom Wheeler has issued his most damning indictment of America's broadband infrastructure to date – claiming more than half of citizens have only one ISP in their area offering 25Mbps or faster connections, and that competition has been crippled by a telecoms duopoly. "The simple …
Iain Thomson, 4 Sep 2014
Nokia Lumia 830 group

Microsoft's SELFIE-TASTIC Nokia 830, 730: Complete with DOG SMILE WHITENER

Vid + Pics In the latest instalment of this year's smartphone camera gimmicks, Microsoft’s ex-Nokia division, Microsoft Mobile Devices, showed off some of its own today at the IFA show in Berlin as it refreshed its year-old Lumia midrange and gave details of the next Windows Phone platform update. Two new Nokia-branded models were unveiled …
Power lines

Power station fault cuts electricity, water and internet in Cairo

A massive power outage in Cairo has left the city sweltering in nearly 40˚C heat, without running water or internet services. A Reg reader, who is the chief tech officer at a global conference call provider, told us that the firm’s workers in the city have been without power for around four hours. “Our first concern is for our …
Internet Assigned Numbers Authority - IANA - logo

APNIC receives recovered /12 from IANA

The Asia Pacific Network Information Centre (APNIC) has received a /12 block of IPv4 addresses from the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA). The addresses come from those “recovered” by IANA. Recovery usually comes about when a user decides not to use a block of addresses, or a workable fragment of the IPv4 address space …
Broadcom

Broadcom's new mobe chip claims 650 Mbps

The Wi-Fi world's quest to appropriate the term 5G for itself continues apace, with Broadcom announcing an 802.11ac/Bluetooth combo chip it says will give users download speeds “up to” 650 Mbps. The BCM4358 drops 11ac's 2x2 MIMO capabilities into smartphones, and claims “50 per cent better coexistence performance with Bluetooth …

Comcast merger-bait spinoff to be known as GreatLand Connections

US cable giant Comcast has provided further details on its plans for a spinoff venture designed to coax the Federal Communications Commission to approve its $45.2bn gobble of Time Warner Cable. The company said that the hypothetical spinoff – heretofore variously referred to as SpinCo and Midland Cable LLC – would officially be …
Shaun Nichols, 3 Sep 2014
Cellular basestation antenna

Snooptastic US CELL TOWERS pose man-in-the-middle THREAT

A significant number of cell towers in the US are not what they seem to be. In fact, at least according to a recent report, it’s likely they are snooping on your calls. One of the impressive things about GSM is that despite being a standard that was devised nearly a quarter of a century ago, it’s still pretty secure. If you're …
Simon Rockman, 3 Sep 2014
Cellular antenna. Source: Vxla/Flickr

Ericssson-LG jumps on South Korean cloud to make 5G rain

Ericsson-LG – a joint venture company between the two communications giants – has jumped into bed with Korean telco SKT to build software to control 5G networks. Of course no one really knows what 5G is yet, but we do know that it will have to handle an awful lot of data and so the software will have to live on servers. This is …
Simon Rockman, 2 Sep 2014
Spam

Security rEsrchRs find nu way 2 spot TXT spam

Symantec boffins reckon it's no longer enough to shield e-mail users from malicious email and that spam and phishing over SMS are now worthy of some decent defences. They've even penned a study to back up the proposition, suggesting that SMS spam could be 97 per cent detectable with a false positive rate as low as 0.02 per cent …
Spam

Singapore slings £18k fine at text-spam-spaffing biz owner

A Singapore tuition agency and its director have become the first to be prosecuted and fined under the country’s Personal Data Protection Act (PDPA), which came into force on 2 January 2014. Star Zest Home Tuition, and its director, Law Han Wei, were each fined 39,000 Singapore dollars (SGD) (£18,800 $31,100) by the State Courts …
OUT-LAW.COM, 2 Sep 2014
Shrieking Eel

South Korea's top wireless carrier builds Internet of Eels

Eels, a staple in many world cuisines, are apparently more sensitive to their environment when grown in aquaculture facilities than they are in the wild, so South Korean farmers are turning to industrial automation to give them a hand. Given the inevitable Internet-of-Things-spin, SK Telecom says it's going to implement wireless …

Transparency by Telstra: a good start but not enough

Telstra probably thought it was doing the right thing by joining other big names and publishing a transparency report. Instead, it's become a focus of criticism for, in the eyes of 'net freedom advocates, handing over too much customer information on too little pretext. The carrier's report has led to a headline number: more …
NBN Co Customer premises equipment

Vertigan killed FTTP but the battle for scalable FTTN has not begun

At a conference early this year, I attended a talk by a major Australian industry association. The talk's only good feature was its possible use as a cure for insomnia. I fled the room as soon as it was possible and polite to do so. As I left, I surprised to feel a tap on the shoulder from a representative of the association who …
EU Bods look to future of UHF

Steelie Neelie: Enjoy your EXCLUSIVE UHF spectrum in 2020, mobile operators

Europe’s digital chief presented a report on Monday that sets out a plan to redistribute access to the Ultra High Frequency (UHF) spectrum band. Digital Agenda Commissioner Neelie Kroes said that there were obviously differences of opinion on who should have most access, but she said Europe cannot ignore the needs of the growing …