Archive for the ‘MOVERS & SHAKERS’ Category


Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013


WASHINGTON Mon Dec 2, 2013 3:24pm EST

A photo illustration shows the Microsoft logo displayed on a Nokia phone in Vienna September 3, 2013. REUTERS/Heinz-Peter Bader

A photo illustration shows the Microsoft logo displayed on a Nokia phone in Vienna September 3, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Heinz-Peter Bader

(Reuters) – U.S. antitrust regulators have approved Microsoft Corp’s deal to buy Nokia Corp’s mobile phone business, the Federal Trade Commission said on Monday.

The approval, which was expected, was dated November 29.

The next step will be for the companies to win approval in Europe for the proposed $7.3 billion transaction.

Two people familiar with the matter told Reuters on November 22 that the transaction was headed for unconditional approval in Brussels. The EU competition watchdog has set a December 4 deadline for its decision.

Nokia had in September agreed to sell its devices and services business and license its patents to Microsoft after failing to recover from a late start in the smartphone sector.

The purchase underscores Microsoft’s push into the competitive consumer devices market, where it faces fierce competition from market leader Samsung Electronics and Apple.

Nokia shareholders in mid-November gave a thumbs-up to the sale of what was once Finland’s biggest brand, at one point worth 4 percent of the national GDP.


Henry Sapiecha

black diamonds on white line


Friday, April 12th, 2013


Biggest smartphone ever: The Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3.

If you liked the big screen of Samsung‘s Galaxy Note smartphones, the company has something even more massive coming. The Samsung Galaxy Mega line, which will hit Europe in May, is led by a monstrous 6.3-inch phone – the biggest smartphone yet.

Earlier this year, China’s Huawei unveiled a 6.1-inch phone, but the Galaxy Mega beats it by a fraction of an inch. Samsung’s gigantic phone shows the race to build the biggest smartphone has taken on a similar flavour as the competition to build ever-larger flat-screen TVs in the last decade.

Little brother: The Samsung Galaxy Mega 5.8.

Little brother: The Samsung Galaxy Mega 5.8.

Importantly, the Galaxy Mega phones do not include a stylus (the “S Pen”) – a hallmark of the Galaxy Note line. They’re also not pure tablets, since they’re equipped to connect with mobile networks.

The Mega line is led by the gargantuan 6.3-inch Galaxy Mega 6.3. Samsung oddly didn’t opt for a full HD screen at that size, giving it 720p resolution. It’s powered by a 1.7GHz dual-core processor with 1.5GB of RAM, and runs Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. It’ll be available with either 8 or 16GB of built-in storage, which can be supplemented with a microSD card.

The “little brother” in the line is the Galaxy Mega 5.8, which is even lower resolution at 960×540. The CPU is a 1.4GHz dual-core design, also with 1.5GB of ram and Android 4.2. While the Mega 6.3 can connect to 4G LTE networks, the 5.8 is HSPA+.

Samsung says the Galaxy Mega is for customers who want the “most out of one device” that brings both quality and value. They also sport new capabilities: S Travel provides trip information as well as local guides and resources, and Story Album lets users create albums of events, store moments in a timeline and quickly publish print copies of albums.

The phones have many of the features that exist on previous Galaxy devices, including Group Play, which can share content to other Galaxy phones and tablets on the same Wi-Fi network, and multi-screen capability, which lets the user run and interact with two apps on the screen at the same time.

Also included is Air View, where the screen reacts to a fingertip hovering above it by, for example, opening a drop-down menu or showing preview text in an email.

Samsung says the global launch of the Mega phones will roll out “gradually”, arriving first in Europe and Russia in May. There is no information yet on an Australian or US release


Henry Sapiecha


Monday, February 27th, 2012


The announcement this week that Deutsche Telekom’s T-Mobile USA unit plans to launch LTE services in most of the 50 largest metropolitan markets over the next two years means that all four leading US mobile operators will have commercial LTE networks up and running by the end of 2013, several years ahead of earlier expectations.

After lagging well behind their European counterparts in the rollout of 3G services in the early 2000s, US network operators, led by Verizon Wireless, the joint venture between Verizon Communications and Britain’s Vodafone group, have led the rollout of commercial LTE services, spending billions of dollars in recent years on upgrading network infrastructure.

For their part, the major handset makers are rushing to deliver LTE smartphones, remembering perhaps that Motorola’s delay in offering 3G handsets during the last technology transition was a major factor in its subsequent crisis and split-up.

Since Verizon Wireless, the largest US mobile operator by subscriber numbers, first launched its LTE network at the end of 2010, its rivals including AT&T Mobility and Sprint Nextel have accelerated their own LTE rollout plans in a helter-skelter effort to retain customers and remain competitive.

For example, Sprint Nextel, which currently resells Clearwire’s WiMax 4G service, is investing heavily in an infrastructure upgrade project called “Network Vision” that will enable the third-largest US wireless carrier to launch LTE services in selected markets this summer.


Clearwire itself has also announced plans to deploy LTE technology alongside its existing WiMax network and offer the service on a wholesale basis to regional network operators and new industry entrants.

However, the precise timing of the US network operators’ LTE announcements has been driven in part by their particular requirements and spectrum holdings. Verizon Wireless, for example, needed to move to LTE because its older 3G network, based on a technology called CDMA, was running out of steam.

Conversely, T-Mobile USA has been forced to rely on upgrades to its existing 3G network because it has lacked the spectrum to move to LTE – a problem partly resolved by the spectrum it will receive from AT&T after the collapse of its $39bn takeover bid for T-Mobile at the end of last year.

Nevertheless, the rapid shift to LTE in the US primarily reflects the accelerating adoption of smartphones and the emergence of the mobile internet as a real alternative to desktop internet access.

As AT&T’s network problems in the wake of the launch of Apple’s iPhone in mid-2007 demonstrated, the US carriers needed to upgrade their networks to cope with the mobile data tsunami unleashed by advanced smartphones including those powered by Google’s Android operating system.

Unlike the first generation of smartphones pioneered by companies like Nokia and Research In Motion, the latest smartphones come with easy-to-use touch screens, super-fast processors, advanced mobile browsers and powerful third-party ‘apps’ which are fuelling a surge in mobile data usage.

Underscoring this, Ericsson’s most recent traffic and market data report predicted that global mobile data traffic will grow by 10 times between now and 2016. In the US, the Federal Communications Commission has projected that the nation’s wireless carriers will face a 275 MHz “spectrum deficit” by 2014 if no new spectrum is opened up for use.

LTE technology, based on the same communications protocols as the internet, offers a partial solution to this conundrum because it uses scarce spectrum much more efficiently than older 2G and 3G technologies and therefore offers a mechanism for operators to accommodate much higher data loads. Looked at another way, LTE is a more cost effective mobile technology for data-heavy networks.

As Lyn Cantor, president of Tektronix Communications, which advises mobile operators on how to maximise network efficiency, notes: “The fact that carriers are losing money on the subscribers that are heavy data users is one of the key drivers of the move to LTE to create a scalable architecture that will drive down the delivery costs of data.”

What is already clear is that the shift in the market to LTE has already begun. A recent forecast from Juniper Research estimated that the number of LTE subscribers will reach 428m by 2016 with a surge in growth taking place in 2012.

“This year promises to be a watershed for LTE, as some wireless operators take stock of the economic and competitive environment in their respective markets and consider their rollout options. It may no longer be a case of ‘if’ an operator will launch an LTE network, but the ‘when’ is a different story,” says Mr Cantor.

Meanwhile, LTE pioneers like Verizon Wireless are already looking to migrate mobile voice calls over to their new networks using a technology called Voice over LTE or VoLTE. That will enable them to free up underutilised 2G and 3G spectrum and reuse that for the next generation of LTE called LTE Advanced, which is projected to deliver average download speeds in the 100 megabits per second range, opening up a whole new set of opportunities for mobile operators.


Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha


Monday, January 16th, 2012


Hands on with the Nokia Lumia 900 at CES

More from CES 2012, Sin City, where we’ve briefly had a chance to get familiar with the Nokia Lumia 900, the Finnish corporation’s sacrificial offering at the increasingly cluttered LTE altar to the gods of 4G. The Windows smartphone features a large 4.3-inch AMOLED touchscreen, 8-megapixel camera with a wide-angle Carl Zeiss lens and seven hours of talk time, according to Nokia. First impressions? Really rather good, actually.

Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha


Wednesday, December 14th, 2011

A brief three-page contract  establishing Apple has sold for $US1.59 million at Sotheby’s auction house in New York.

A phone bidder acquired the document, signed on April 1, 1976, by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak and Ronald Wayne. The price, which includes the buyer’s premium, soared past the estimated presale range of $US100,000 to $US150,000.

The contract was initially owned by Wayne, who met Jobs while working at Atari Inc. Wozniak, a friend of Jobs, worked at Hewlett-Packard Co. Jobs enlisted Wayne to persuade Wozniak to join Apple. His success in doing so earned Wayne a 10 per cent share in the new company.

Eleven days after signing the contract, Wayne withdrew from the partnership… The move is documented by a County of Santa Clara, California, statement and an amendment to the contract, both of which were included in the Sotheby’s lot. Wayne received $US800 for relinquishing his 10 per cent ownership of Apple, according to the document. He subsequently received an additional payment of $US1500, according to Sotheby’s.

Based on Apple’s market capitalisation today, Wayne’s 10 per cent stake would be valued at more than $US36 billion.

Jobs died at 56 on October 5.

In an October 7 interview with Bloomberg, Wayne, 77, called Wozniak and Jobs “intellectual giants”, but “also felt it was going to be something of a roller coaster”, adding, “If I’d stayed with them, I was going to wind up the richest man in the cemetery.”

Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha


Thursday, December 8th, 2011

ip.access unveils “unique” portable Advanced Femtocell Concept
Femtocell and picocell manufacturer ip.access unveiled its fully functioning ‘Advanced Femtocell Concept’ (AFC) at the no doubt riotous Femtocells Americas 2011 conference in San Diego on Monday. A relatively new technology, femtocells essentially provide mobile phone network access via a local broadband connection. It’s a technology that might interest homes and businesses in signal-blocking buildings, remote areas, or anywhere where cellular signals are patchy. But how is the AFC different? In a word: portability.

Sourced & published by Henry Sapiecha