Verizon Is Interested in Acquiring Yahoo’s Assets, CEO Confirms

by Istvan Fekete on February 9, 2016

Verizon-logo-bigSpeaking on CNBC’s Mad Money, Verizon CEO Lowel McAdam confirmed the carrier’s interest in acquiring at least some of Yahoo’s Internet assets, as it plans to move further into digital media.

“We said on this show a month ago in December we would look at it. I think their board is being very responsible in how they’re doing this,” McAdam said Friday. “We have to understand the trends that we’re seeing in some of their results now, but then at the right price I think that marrying up some of their assets with AOL under Tim Armstrong’s leadership would be a good thing.”

Last month, Verizon CFO Fran Shammo declined to say whether the carrier was considering a purchase of Yahoo, saying that “you cannot talk about something that’s not up for sale.”
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Dissension Brews in the Android World over Ad-Blockers

by Matt Klassen on February 9, 2016

ad blockIt seems there is some dissent in the Android world over the presence of ad blocking software, as Samsung’s decision last week to open up its mobile web browser to ad-blockers was met this week with Google’s decision to begin removing select ad-blockers from the Google Play store altogether.

There’s an interesting dynamic at play here, as within the Android ecosystem itself we are starting to once again see two major players who make money in vastly different, yet undeniably symbiotic ways, going head-to-head, with Samsung now working to improve the user experience on its devices (where it makes its money), with Google responding with efforts to maintain its own revenue stream, advertising.

Not only that, but this entire Android family feud, as it were, is couched within the larger issue of mobile advertising and the exponential rise of ad-blockers, as a full consumer revolt against intrusive, annoying, and generally pointless advertising continues to brew.

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BlackBerry to Lay Off 200 Employees in Canada and the US

by Istvan Fekete on February 8, 2016

blackberry-logoBlackBerry will lay off 200 employees from its Waterloo headquarters and a manufacturing facility based in Florida, US. The cuts are part of the company’s turnaround plan plotted by CEO John Chen.

The layoff is smaller than initially reported by Canadiantech blog MobileSyrup, whose sources had talked about the possibility of a major, 1000 job cut, which would have represented roughly 35% of BlackBerry’s estimated workforce.

Instead, BlackBerry issued two statements, the first denying the above media report and describing the affected as a “small number of employees”, and the second containing the “magic number” of approximately 200 employees being laid off.

“As BlackBerry continues to execute its turnaround plan, we remain focused on driving efficiencies across our global workforce,” the company statement reads. This means finding new ways to enable us to capitalize on growth opportunities, while driving toward sustainable profitability across all parts of our business. As a result, approximately 200 employees have been impacted in Canada and Florida. It also means that BlackBerry is actively recruiting in those areas of our business that will drive growth.”
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Sprint Hopes Less Customer Service Staff is the Right Way Forward

by Matt Klassen on February 5, 2016

layoffs-laid-off-downsize-job-cuts-100597766-primary.idgeWhen Sprint announced earlier this month that it was taking a unique approach to cost-cutting, transforming its network infrastructure by pursuing more cost-effective tower locations and deploying cheaper, more efficient small cell technologies, you just knew that the carrier’s money-saving measures would have to include more familiar means of increasing cash flow, and so with that, the company also announced that it has initiated significant layoffs, from its customer service department no less.

According to reports, Sprint has cut more than 2500 jobs, including axing five vice presidents, and the vast majority of those jobs, some 2000, have been cut from the company’s customer care centre (who needs customer care anyway?).

Now we’ve known for a few years now that Sprint has been bleeding money, a problem made worse by the fact that it has long been playing catch-up in the nationwide network race. The company is now in the midst of a multi-year turnaround strategy, one that will see Sprint radically alter how it does business, and apparently part of that new strategy is having less people to deal with customers…great idea.

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Cisco Creates Comprehensive IoT Portfolio with Jasper Acquisition

by Jeff Wiener on February 5, 2016

cisco_the_internet_of_things_h8qcpLegacy technology companies like Cisco now stand at a crossroads; abandon the old way of doing things and find different roads to growth through new technologies like cloud computing, and/or the Internet of Things, or watch their once dominant core business quickly become antiquated and obsolete.

To that end, Cisco is leveraging its familiarity with networking to evolve into a new role in today’s technological world, providing the backbone for the growing IoT market, and with that, the company announced earlier this week that it is purchasing Jasper Technologies Inc, a tech start-up that provides arguably one of the best connectivity platforms for disparate connected devices, for a cool $1.4 billion.

Not only is Jasper a leading IoT platform for connecting multiple devices, such a cars, wearables, or e-readers, but Jasper also allows devices to connect and manage content delivery over multiple networks, meaning Cisco now stands as probably the first one-stop shop for the world’s IoT needs.

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Canadian Telecom Sector to See “Limited Growth” in 2016, Says Study

by Istvan Fekete on February 4, 2016

rogers-telus-bellAfter examining the short- and medium-term economic and profitability outlook for Canada’s Telecommunications Industry, a new report from the Conference Board of Canada authored by Kristelle Audet claims the telecom sector will see “limited growth” this year.

The report suggests that the slowdown will be caused by uncertainty in the Canadian economy, weak job prospects, and high levels of debt.

As detailed in the 12-page report, the Canadian telecom sector will likely grow 1.4% this year, up from 0.4% in 2015. A foreseeable result is that wireless carriers will adjust their pricing, which will trigger another limit from subscribers, as they will likely reduce the number of services they subscribe to, to keep their costs within the “affordable” range.
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Cisco Predicts Exponential Increase in Mobile Data Traffic by 2020

by Matt KlassenFebruary 4, 2016

Global mobile data traffic will experience an exponential increase over the next four years, a report from Cisco claims, and by 2020 more people will have access to mobile phones (with some measure of online access) than to electricity, cars or even running water. According to the report, by 2020 there will be approximately 5.5 billion […]

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Deutsche Telekom and Nokia Achieve 10G Speeds in Lab Tests

by Istvan FeketeFebruary 3, 2016

Deutsche Telekom and Nokia have announced the successful accomplishment of a laboratory trial demonstrating how XG-FAST, a new fixed ultra-broadband access technology, can be used by service providers to meet the growing demand for high-quality Internet services delivered over their existing copper networks. The laboratory trial was conducted at the end of 2015 by Nokia’s […]

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Crowd-Sourced Study Ranks T-Mobile Top among US Wireless Carriers

by Matt KlassenFebruary 3, 2016

There’s no question that efforts to parse the debate about America’s best wireless carrier are clouded by a great deal of noise, as each company touts itself as the fastest, most comprehensive, most reliable, and the most powerful. But somewhere amongst the claims, the hype, the marketing, sits the truth about who holds top spot, and […]

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Sugar Mobile Launches Wireless Plans for as Low as $19/Mo

by Istvan FeketeFebruary 2, 2016

Sugar Mobile may be the only option for Canadian customers looking for affordable wireless plans. The carrier offers plans for as little as $19 per month in a market which has recently seen its major players raise their monthly bills by $5. Analysts say that if Sugar Mobile is successful in convincing Canadians to join […]

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