AT&T to Extend Gigabit Service to 11.7 Million Locations within Four Years of Acquiring DirecTV

by Istvan Fekete on July 6, 2015

AT&T and DirecTV have announced another short-term extension of their merger agreement, but what really matters for customers is the result. And to be honest, the predicted results sound really good: 11.7 million customer locations will have access to a 1 Gbps fiber-to-the-premises (PTTP) service when the deal closes. It will take some time, though.

“With approval of the transaction, AT&T will deploy FTTP so that its FTTP footprint will include a total of 11.7 million customer locations (the “Build Plan”),” wrote AT&T in an FCC filing. “This Build Plan will be completed within four years after the merger’s closing.”

This means that during the next four years AT&T will provide the FCC with ongoing progress reports on its “Build Plan”, showing the locations it is extending its Gigabit service to to fulfill the Plan where not funded by Connect America Fund (CAF) grants.
[click to continue…]

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • FriendFeed
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • PDF
  • Ping.fm
  • Reddit
  • RSS
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • Twitter
  • Wikio

{ 0 comments }

How Technology Changes Us: Our Reliance on Smartphones is Creating “Digital Amnesia”

by Matt Klassen on July 6, 2015

The more we depend on smartphones for communication and life management, the more such devices will alter us as human beings, and researchers are concerned that these changes–wrought largely from a growing dependency on technology–will have a deleterious impact on us as a species.

In fact, according to a recent study by software and cyber-security firm Kaspersky Lab, the convenience afforded to us by our digital devices and their ability to provide instantaneous information is beginning to take a serious toll on our own natural abilities to learn, memorize, and recall information.

Simply put, not only is our dependency on smartphones changing the ways we interact, communicate, and operate in this world, it’s changing us as a species as well, robbing us of natural skills and abilities that the human race has honed over incalculable generations.

[click to continue…]

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • FriendFeed
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • PDF
  • Ping.fm
  • Reddit
  • RSS
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • Twitter
  • Wikio

{ 0 comments }

The End is Nigh for Traditional Telecom: BT Plans to Scuttle Landline Service within 10 Years

by Jeff Wiener on July 3, 2015

For several years telecom operators have struggled to compete with non-traditional over-the-top communication service providers like Apple and Facebook, as the increased migration towards internet-based services has left traditional telcos with expansive telecommunications infrastructure that no one wants or needs to use. Seeing that the end is near for traditional telecom, operators are now looking towards a complete shutdown of plain old telephone service, scuttling the old way of doing things in hopes of levelling the playing field going forward.

The first real step towards putting traditional telecom out to pasture was made this week by British telecommunications operator BT, when it officially asked British regulatory body Ofcom to loosen restrictions regarding the obligation to provide landline service. The move, The Telegraph reports, comes as part of a larger campaign that will see BT scrap plain old telephone service altogether, and migrate all customers to comparable Internet-based services by 2025.

While there’s no question that many still cling to their landline phone service, BT is urging regulators to change antiquated regulation to keep pace with the changing market; as BT’s Mark Shurmer, director of regulatory affairs, explains, allowing telcos to better compete with non-traditional communication providers, “rather than clinging on [to an obsolete technology] until the last user dies.”

[click to continue…]

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • FriendFeed
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • PDF
  • Ping.fm
  • Reddit
  • RSS
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • Twitter
  • Wikio

{ 0 comments }

Smartphone Kill-Switch Now Mandatory in California

by Matt Klassen on July 3, 2015

The mobile kill-switch is now in full effect in the state of California, putting thieves on notice that, going forward, new phones will not be worth stealing (old phones, well that’s another matter entirely). Having passed legislation last summer, the state of California’s somewhat controversial mandatory kill-switch requirement came into effect on July 1st, in what legislators hope will be a significant defence against mobile theft.

By allowing users to remotely brick up their device, that is, make it unusable, it offers mobile users significant peace of mind, knowing that even if their device goes missing, their personal information will be inaccessible. Further, the anti-theft software is designed to make the actual theft of smartphones pointless, as thieves will no longer be able to unlock these devices, wipe their memories, and send them overseas for black market sale.

Now granted the kill-switch is not the answer to mobile security, but it is part of the solution. The unfortunate reality is that there is no one ironclad method of protecting our information or our devices from theft, but the more solutions we deploy, the more difficult it will be for ne’er-do-wells to access our information, meaning the more unlikely they’ll even try in the first place.

[click to continue…]

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • FriendFeed
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • PDF
  • Ping.fm
  • Reddit
  • RSS
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • Twitter
  • Wikio

{ 0 comments }

AT&T Says Competition has Gone into Overdrive in the US

by Istvan Fekete on July 2, 2015

There is a huge difference between how smaller carriers and incumbent players view the state of the wireless industry in the US. Fact is, there’ll never be a consensus, simply because of the market share they control. The latest statements from AT&T and the Competitive Carriers Association (CCA), which represents smaller carriers, just underscore this fact.

AT&T argues that “competition has gone into overdrive”, while the CCA wants the FCC to find the industry not effectively competitive and to take the necessary steps to remedy the situation.

“Mobile providers are competing fiercely on price, offering a wide variety of new data plans and promotions, such as shared data plans, equipment installment plans and offers aimed at providing incentives for customers to switch carriers,” AT&T wrote in its filing. “Indeed, hardly a week goes by without a provider responding to the latest offers in the marketplace with new and better service plan options, lower prices and special promotions.”
[click to continue…]

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • FriendFeed
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • PDF
  • Ping.fm
  • Reddit
  • RSS
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • Twitter
  • Wikio

{ 0 comments }

Sprint Offers Simplicity with its “All-in” Mobile Plan

by Matt Klassen on July 2, 2015

As the mobile market has shifted away from the extended binding contract model towards subsidizing phones through a monthly leasing plan alongside service fees customers are often left trying to parse through pages of marketing jargon in an effort to find out just how much they’ll be paying for phones, promotions, features, and service, leaving many frustrated and confused.

In an effort to continue to differentiate itself in the wildly competitive—and sometimes downright ludicrous—American mobile market, Sprint has decided to offer the customer something often advertised but rarely delivered: simplicity. The company announced this week that it will offer an $80/month “All-in” plan, including both service and smartphone fees, a boon for those customers often frustrated by hidden fees and overly complex pricing plans.

The unfortunate irony for customers, however, is that despite Sprint’s attempt at simplicity and openness the devil of this particular plan still lies firmly in the details, meaning that even something as simple as simplicity seems just a little too complicated for Sprint.

[click to continue…]

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • FriendFeed
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • PDF
  • Ping.fm
  • Reddit
  • RSS
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • Twitter
  • Wikio

{ 0 comments }

Cisco to Acquire OpenDNS for $635 Million

by Istvan FeketeJuly 1, 2015

Cisco has announced that it will acquire OpenDNS for $635 million. OpenDNS is a privately held security company based in San Francisco providing advanced threat protection for any device, anywhere, anytime. The company says the merger will benefit Cisco’s Security Everywhere approach by giving it visibility and threat intelligence from OpenDNS’s cloud-based platform. OpenDNS has found [...]

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • FriendFeed
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • PDF
  • Ping.fm
  • Reddit
  • RSS
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • Twitter
  • Wikio
Read the full article →

Bell Canada to Bring 1 Gbps Services to Toronto This Summer

by Istvan FeketeJune 30, 2015

Bell Canada has announced that it will jump on the 1 Gbps fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) bandwagon, as it plans to launch such a service in the Toronto market as part of a $1.14 billion investment in its network. The (FTTH) network will serve 1.1 million Toronto homes and businesses, with 50,000 premises getting access as early as this summer. [...]

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • FriendFeed
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • PDF
  • Ping.fm
  • Reddit
  • RSS
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • Twitter
  • Wikio
Read the full article →

Digital Disruption Threatens to Topple Corporate Giants

by Matt KlassenJune 30, 2015

Once thought untouchable atop their thrones of corporate power, questions are now being asked whether many of the titans of the business world will be able to survive the transition to the digital age, as such lumbering behemoths threaten to be swept aside by smaller, more agile, tech savvy competition. As Reuters journalist Eric Auchard [...]

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • FriendFeed
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • PDF
  • Ping.fm
  • Reddit
  • RSS
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • Twitter
  • Wikio
Read the full article →

Apple Pay Causing Top-to-Bottom Reinvention of Banks and Traditional Business Models, CIBC CEO Says

by Istvan FeketeJune 29, 2015

Following the announcement of backing for Rogers’ Suretap digital wallet initiative, Victor Dodig, chief executive of the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, has spoken about the effect technology and new players such as Apple are having on the banking system: They are causing a “top-to-bottom reinvention” that leaves banks with two options. One is to [...]

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • FriendFeed
  • LinkedIn
  • Live
  • PDF
  • Ping.fm
  • Reddit
  • RSS
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • Twitter
  • Wikio
Read the full article →