Archive for April, 2008

Congress asks FCC to explain D-block spectrum failure

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

Congress asks FCC to explain D-block spectrum failure

At a hearing of the House Telecommunications Subcommittee and only a few weeks after the widely acknowledged success of the advanced wireless spectrum auction, all five members of the FCC appeared before Congress to defend the rules surrounding the public safety D-block spectrum that was auctioned, and to explain why the block failed to attract anything beyond an opening bid.

The chairman of the commission was criticised by Republican members of the House panel for imposing conditions stipulating that the winning bidder, in partnership with the Public Safety Spectrum Trust (PSST), fund the build-out of a public safety network. It was suggested that in all likelihood these conditions decreased the value of what would otherwise have been a valuable government commodity.

The FCC defended their decision by claiming that without an enforced private-public partnership there would not be sufficient funds to build the proposed public safety network. In doing so the FCC also blamed Congress for its failure to allocate enough federal funding for the project, thus forcing the FCC to adopt the D-block rules.

When questions were asked about what the FCC intended to do with the as yet unsold spectrum, the FCC chairman said he believed a public-private partnership was still the best option available. Some Republican members of the House committee, however, said they believed the D-block spectrum should be sold to the commercial wireless industry, and that a portion of the proceeds from the sale should then be given directly to the public safety sector. This suggestion was, however, met with disapproval from the chairman of the overarching House Commerce Committee.

Democratic lawmakers also expressed their disappointed that the large incumbent wireless telcos were the big winners in the auction, rather than a new entrant as was hoped.

See also: USA – Broadband Market – Wireless Broadband.

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Canadian WiMAX operator on US horizon

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

Canadian WiMAX operator on US horizon

Canadian wireless broadband operator Craig Wireless has selected Paris-based Alcatel-Lucent to build a new WiMAX network in Palm Springs, California. Alcatel-Lucent will provide an end-to-end WiMAX network solution based on the IEE 802.16e-2005 (Rev-e) WiMAX standard, and will operate in the 2.5 GHz spectrum band. The vendor is also expected to provide base stations, wireless access controllers and an operation and maintenance centre (OMC).

Craig Wireless currently holds WiMAX spectrum in Canada, the US, Greece, Norway and New Zealand.

See also: USA – Broadband Market – Wireless Broadband.

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Spoken Web

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

“Spoken Web”, currently being piloted by IBM’s India Research team, aims to transform how people create, build and interact with e-commerce sites on the World Wide Web using the spoken word instead of the written word. The Spoken Web is the World Wide Web in a telecom network, where people can host and browse “VoiceSites”, traverse “VoiceLinks”, even conduct business transactions, all just by talking over the existing telephone network.

For example, some people don’t require a PC, but they do need access to information such as:

  • Fishermen need weather info before heading out to sea
  • Farmers need to look up commodity prices
  • Plumbers can schedule appointments, set up transfers to partners, use advertisements
  • Grocery shops can display catalogues, offer order placement, display personalized targeted advertisements or reminders

Such locally relevant information is not available for a majority of world population. Computer literacy is not enough for most of the population because there is a need to know what to look for, how to access it and how to use it.

See also:

Technology – IP Techniques 8 – VoIP Applications, ENUM & Addressing

Technology – IP Techniques 9 – VoIP Protocols

Technology – IPv6 4 – Address Selection & Mobility

Technology – Web Development 6 – Webfeed, Podcasting & Client Side Scripting

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Will mobile data outpace WiMAX?

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

Cellular mobile networks have been built for voice services and even more importantly have been finetuned over the years for efficient and effective voice transmission. While both 2G and 3G allow, in principle, for a large range of mobile data services, these networks can never be optimised for that. Voice will remain the killer application for mobile with some data services included as support services and niche market services.

WiMAX and 4G are the real solutions for mobile data but by the time they will be available at mass market levers, it will be called wireless personal broadband.

Who will be the winner or will there be a winner? One thing is certain service and content providers will have to play a far more important role if we ever will be able to make this a successful market place. In this presentation we will briefly analyses the industry.

Paul Budde will present at the CeBIT BuddeComm Theatre at the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre, Darling Harbour, Sydney. CeBIT Australia 2008 takes place from 20-22 May 2008. For more info see:

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World’s first browser-based phone service

Tuesday, April 29th, 2008

Actai Networks, a developer and operator of mobile phone solutions in Europe and Asia, recently launched a web-based telephone service, C2Call, which allows free browser-based international phone calls from Windows, Apple or Linux computers.

C2Call works on all platforms – a temporary Java widget is loaded into a web browser which supports Javascript, there’s no software to download, install or configure, no registration required, and it connects anyone with a headset connected to a PC.

Actai has plans to extend the service to landlines and mobile phones.

For more information see:

See also:

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