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Nokia Gets Record LTE 4G Connection in Tests
Wed, 09 Jan 2008 11:06:14 +0000
Nokia recently announced a very impressive success in a real-world test of their 4G. We are talking about LTE (long-term evolution) wireless technology. Nokia performed this test in an urban area using the 2.6GHz spectrum, which was able to achieve peak download speeds of 173 Mbps, coming up more than previous controlled trials. As you can imagine this is quite impressive and the 3G Partnership Project that Nokia is a port of claims that the results actually confirm the fact that LTE can be a very good combination of scalability, bandwidth range and low power use that users are looking for in a 4G service.
A prototype base station was installed by Nokia at the top of the Heinrich Hertz Institute building in the middle of Berlin in order to test LTE. This is one location that shows interference and usually degrades bandwidth. The first test had many users connected to this new base station and gave the 173 Mbps credibility if considered a real world peak. Nokia also tested this LTE station with using terminals in vehicles that were 1 km away from the station. According to Matthias Reiss, Nokia can demonstrate that LTE actually meets the expectations users have for the new technology. To make it even better, the company also has proof that future LTE networks can function on an existing base station site and mobile phone operators can build LTE networks without having to get new antenna sites. If all this is true (and it most likely is), we might be witnessing the future of mobile phone networks in Nokia’s 4G LTE variation. All wireless vendors want to make the switch from 3G to 4G as easily as possible and we might have the solution here. Even Verizon announced that they want to join the LTE camp so we are dealing with constant rise when talking about support.
Nokia Offers Free Music for Every Device Bought
Wed, 09 Jan 2008 10:34:33 +0000
At the 2007 Nokia World Conference in Amsterdam, the company announced something that might tilt the balance of sells their way. Nokia unveiled the “Comes With Music Program”, which offers something that was not seen in the past. You basically get to choose free music from millions of artists, both current, past and that will appear if you purchase any Nokia device. The best part of it all is that you get to keep every single song for as long as you want, for free.
According to Anssi Vanjoki, Executive Vice president and General Manager of Multimedia at Nokia, the company wants to establish a music experience that people are looking for. This means all the music they might want with unlimited downloads to a PC or mobile device. To make it even more interesting, Nokia claims that there is so much music available that everyone will find something they want while also rewarding the artist that created the song.
It seems that Nokia obtained a deal with Universal Music Group and is in talk with all of the major record labels. According to UMG, there is a good working relationship established with Nokia and their Comes With Music program. It was stated that this move is one that will help people in discovering new artists while also getting to have access to the huge Universal catalog offered. The real problem is that we do not know how Nokia can back this up financially. We still do not know much about how the program will be implemented but we can say that there is a lot of press support for this. On the other hand, it is hard to say whether or not the consumer will care much for this program because there are different ways to get free legal music services. For instance, SpiralFrog seems like a similar option.
Unlocked iPhone Sold in Germany for $1,500
Wed, 09 Jan 2008 10:09:28 +0000
Germany is the first company to offer it 100 percent legally while we are still struggling in the US. We are talking about the possibility of purchasing a factory-unlocked iPhone in the country for the price of $1,500. This comes as we see customers from US fighting with many firmware updates to utilize on their mobile phones on various non AT&T networks.
Deutsche Telekom signed a special deal with Apple in September that saw them being able to sell the mobile phone in Germany. On the other hand they were faced with an attack by Vodafone Inc. because the laws in Germany are very similar to those in France and they do not allow mobile phones to be tied to only one carrier or plan. This means that selling only contracted iPhones is against the law unless the company is also selling unlocked versions.
We saw last month that a French court stated that in order to avoid problems France Telecom’s Orange subsidiary needed to sell the iPhone unlocked, but this only after 6 months from the first release. So they can profit from monopole for half a year. On the other hand, in Germany the law is different because this 6 months period does not exist. We thus see Deutsche Telekom being forced to offer an unlocked iPhone version immediately but it also does mean that they can put a really higher price tag on the device. The unlocked units will not show some features and we are hit with a huge price tag combined with reduced functionality and a possible 3G model in 2008. Apple will surely have some gains from this and we might be faced with just a way to bring in more money. It will be interesting to see how many individuals will purchase the iPhone for $1,500, when it is actually cheaper to purchase it from the US and unlock it in the country, although it might be against the law, we are not sure of that.
Apple Gives the Thumbs Up for iPhone Third Party Software
Sun, 21 Oct 2007 11:13:47 +0000
It was bound to happen and it is better late than never. Steve Jobs, Apple Inc. CEO, recently reported that add-on software for the iPhone will be allowed. This means that outside developers can now create special software for the mobile phone, without fear of not working because of lock problems. This news comes after just last month we noticed Apple warning individuals not to hack the device in order to install unauthorized programs. The reason at that time was that it could render the iPhone “permanently inoperable”. Well, it looks like the company is not afraid of this anymore.
Steve Jobs said that the entire crew is excited to create a third party developer community around their highly popular iPhone, thus making it possible for hundreds of possible applications to be available for customers. Unfortunately, all good news comes with a drawback because Jobs also said that we will be able to see a special software development kit (SDK) released only in February. This is in order for Apple to offer what was labeled as “an advanced and open platform”, while also thinking about protection for iPhone users against privacy attacks and various viruses that might appear.
SDK will allow developers to create applications for both the iPhone and the iPod touch and this puts an end to the third party application software war that we have seen recently. We saw Apple being criticized for various reasons and this was just one of them. It will be interesting to see when or if Apple will also allow users to unlock their gadgets without any attached complications like warranty loss. We see users tied to AT&T in US and O2 in UK while a launch in France has been delayed because the laws in the country forbid the blocking of a mobile phone on only one network.
Skype to Launch a Mobile Phone Like Device
Sun, 21 Oct 2007 11:07:58 +0000
Skype is facing some problems at the moment and the latest move the company aims to make stands to fix things a little. We are talking about plans to develop a new product that will turn Skype in a completely mobile solution. This basically means that we are going to have a device similar to a cell phone that will utilize Skype. On the other hand, we need to wonder why bother with this since VoIP was the concept behind Skype.3 Mobile is the UK carrier that is working with Skype on the project code named “white phone”.
It should launch at the end of this month in Italy, Australia, Hong Kong and Britain, with plans to market it in other countries later. We might also expect to see different deals with other carriers or special versions for US consumers.
Skype did not issue an official statement concerning this although the company did confirm that they are collaborating with a wireless carrier (no name was officially given) in order to deliver a new product. They also claim that this move will be a radical step in Internet call mobilization for individuals.
Various wireless carriers resisted the idea of implementing a mobile VoIP solution but this might soon change. We even noticed that some carriers asked manufacturers to eliminate Wi-Fi from mobile phones in order to step users from making cheap phone calls utilizing VoIP. On the other hand, we did not see this happening so we should not be surprised to see this project from Skype becoming popular among consumers. We are dealing with a touchy subject here but if it happens, many individuals will be happy. The US market does seem problematic as VoIP calling capability is disabled in many mobile phones that do have Wi-Fi capability. This fact is not noticed in Europe though, so it does make sense that Skype would launch the cell phone like device there!
Software That Doubles Mobile Phone Memory
Sun, 30 Sep 2007 12:06:38 +0000
A team of US computer scientists claim that they have found a way to double the usable memory of a mobile phone and different embedded systems with the use of software and no modification to applications or Hardware. This was tried a lot of times in the past but it was never used until now because of the huge battery drain that was noticed in the past. Things change as we know have CRAMES Technology (Compressed RAM for Embedded Systems), which uses Linux kernel swapping mechanism to realize which page to compress. Researchers claim that this technology does not use more battery power and the mobile phone only shows a performance loss that can be neglected. There is even a mobile phone being sold that uses CRAMES. That is NEC, but, as usually happens, it is only available in Japan at the moment.
There are a lot of compression algorithms used in different applications lately but it does seem like CRAMES appears with something truly efficient. There is an algorithm, called LZ0, which is used on NEC smartphones and uses CRAMES technology. Lei Yang developed another algorithm that is twice as fast when compared with LZ0 and makes negligible reduction in performance and battery life a reality. This might be included in future NEC smartphones.
The CRAMES technology really appears like something that could be very useful. Who knows, maybe it can also be used for giving the iPhone a 3G capability, although this is just a dream of mine. NEC could gain some sales with the implementation of this technology but it will be interesting to see when it will arrive to the USA and Europe. The Japanese market is filled with technology that appears there first, although the largest market is in America. We just need to get used to this!
Google Announces AdSense for Mobile
Sun, 23 Sep 2007 05:52:24 +0000
It is no secret that Google gets most of its revenue from their Google Adwords platform that allows you to purchase ad space on various web sites. The ads are delivered through Google Adsense and this makes everybody happy. Well, it looks like Google is finally making it official that they want to conquer the mobile phone ads world as well. We all knew it will eventually happen but now the company announced the launch of a new advertising program called AdSense for Mobile. It will be similar to the regular AdSense, delivering contextually targeted ads on mobile website content.
Google claims the obvious in stating that advertisers can link with a growing number of mobile publishers. Their aim is to give customers an enhanced mobile experience that will work better at helping what they are looking for in a more efficient manner. AdSense for Mobile will be targeted towards AdSense users that create web sites that are built for mobile Internet browsers and want to gain money with that mobile content. To put it simply, it is the same AdSense platform, modified to suit the needs of mobile web sites. The service will be available in US, France, England, Germany, Ireland, Spain, Italy, Netherlands, Australia, India, Russia, China and soon Japan.
Although the benefits for publishers and AdWords users are obvious we need to think about mobile phone users as well. The majority is not using their mobile web connection to browse through highly graphical web sites because most pay bills for the service on a per byte pay plan. This leads to mobile phone users turning off images in order to use as less of a bandwidth as possible. Many of them are annoyed at the announcement because this would mean that extra bytes will be added to web sites and if the success of AdSense for Mobile will be similar to regular AdSense, there will be many pages out there that will show Google’s contextual ads.
Bluetooth – A door for Mobile Phone Hackers
Sat, 22 Sep 2007 16:17:20 +0000
Bluetooth wireless is becoming a feature that is quite common on mobile devices. Well, users need to know the fact that this can bring security vulnerabilities. This was the announcement made by Symantec.
Thanks to a study by InsightExpress we can see that 73% of mobile device users are not at all familiar with the security risks linked to Bluetooth, including bluejacking, bluebugging and bluesnarfing. According to Ooi Szu-Khiam, senior consultant at Symantec Singapore, DOS attacks are very possible and one individual can even tamper with your phone and listen to your conversations. There are many viruses, Trojans and worms that will attack mobile phones, no matter how seemingly remote they seem. Such threats have destroyed valuable information on personal computers but so far, they are still not advanced enough to attack mobile phones in a similar fashion. Unfortunately, according to Ooi, the rapid evolution of these threats is an “obvious cause for concern”.
Bluejacking is better known as bluespamming. This technique will send an anonymous text message to a mobile phone by utilizing Bluetooth. If you receive such a message you can read it, delete it or even respond, so it is pretty much like e-mail spam. Bluesnarfing can be dangerous because it will allow an individual to have access to information stored on one’s cell phone. The bad part is that you, the user, will have no idea that somebody is tinkering with your info. Good hackers can even find a mobile phone equipped with Bluetooth when the user will put it in “nondiscovery” mode. Bluebugging is even more dangerous as it allows the hacker to gain access to mobile phone commands. Again, it is all done via Bluetooth and the owner will not have a clue as to what is happening. The only good news is that the hacker needs to be in a vicinity of around 10 meters in order to perform any of the three attacks mentioned above. In any case, you can still be a victim in a pub while having a conversation with a friend so it is all quite scary.
No 3G For The iPhone In The
Thu, 20 Sep 2007 08:34:38 +0000
It hardly was a surprise that Apple brought the iPhone to the UK as many journalists and bloggers were already sure that this was what was going to happen at the company’s press conference event in London. Unfortunately, although the actual launch of the iPhone was not a surprise, a big surprise was that the mobile phone still runs on EDGE and not on the highly awaited 3G technology.
Apple CEO Steve Jobs said that the 3G chipsets are “power hogs” and that they do not allow enough battery life for the iPhone to be considered enough. The current version of the mobile phone showcases up to 8 hours of talk time. The introduction of 3G would mean a drastic cut in that battery life time and Apple does not want this. Jobs also claimed that he expects 3G technology to allow sufficient battery life only next year. Once again, this statement was no surprise. The same answer was given in the US as well.
On the other hand, Europe is much more advanced when it comes to 3G technology when we compare it to the US. O2, the carrier that partnered with Apple for iPhone sales, only holds 30 percent of its network on EDGE. Most UK carriers already have large 3G networks set up and this might be an interesting problem for iPhone. If the mobile phone/iPod does not quickly switch to 3G, specialists consider that it will not be as successful in UK or Europe as it is in US. Apple must thus rely on the iPhone’s interface and design as the lack of 3G is the main reason why many individuals will not even consider the iPhone as a possibility. We have to wait and see how everything develops and it will be interesting to see how iPhone sales will go in UK and soon in Germany as Apple is said to unveil their mobile phone there as well in the near future.
Unlocking iPhones – A Profitable Business
Tue, 18 Sep 2007 08:35:35 +0000
As everyone expected, finally a market for unlocked iPhones appeared in Europe and US. I must say that it took a little longer than I expected but we still have it because last week the first software for unlocking iPhones was released. The mobile phone is now free from AT&T and can be used on any GSM network in the world. But not everybody knows how to exactly unlock the iPhone, nor do they have the software needed. This is why people started selling unlocked iPhones. In the US we have sellers on Craigslist that offer such mobile phones for prices varying from $450 to $700. The regular iPhone is $399 so this is quite an extra added tax and a very nice profit for selling one iPhone. If you end up searching eBay you will also notice the same unlocked devices selling for prices ranging between $500 and $600. On the auctions part of eBay UK we can even see such models being sold for as high as $2000. In Germany the highest price we could see is $1,100. Even the actual process of the unlocking is being sold. Individuals are offering to unlock your iPhone for $25 to $50.
Apple is preparing to deliver the iPhone in Europe, probably on Tuesday but US hackers are already selling unlocked versions outside of the country. For instance, one seller on Craigslist claims that he received phone calls from Dubai and India and that everyone is really thrilled at the possibility of owning an unlocked iPhone. For Apple, this means that they should try to land contracts with different continents as well.
Reports showed that hackers managed to unlock the iPhone for use in more than 45 countries in Asia and Europe. The entire process of unlocking the mobile phone is not easy but individuals that can do it are earning bundles of dollars for doing what they do best: hacking.