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Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream
Everything about Broadband Policy, Network Infrastructure, Voice, Video and Data Services, Devices and Applications for Managing our Planet
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Time for an ‘All of the Above’ Spectrum Strategy | Mobile Future Blog

Time for an ‘All of the Above’ Spectrum Strategy | Mobile Future Blog | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The U.S. is the world leader in deployment of 4G wireless networks. From President Obama to his Federal Communications Commission Chairman, national leaders are touting the central role of this next-generation infrastructure to our economy.

 

Over the past four years, direct U.S. employment by wireless carriers has grown almost 6 percent annually. Overall wireless innovation supports nearly 3.8 million American jobs and contributes nearly $200 billion to the U.S. GDP. And the next wave of innovative networks alone could add $151 billion to our GDP over the next four years and create 770,000 U.S. jobs.

 

Consumers rely on mobile communications in every aspect of their lives. There are now more mobile subscriptions than people in the U.S. One in five Americans now use a handheld device to access the Internet on a daily basis and mobile data traffic is expected to grow 100-fold over the next 10 years.

 

Only a small portion of spectrum is currently allocated to the wireless web. Yet the FCC predicts that demand for wireless connectivity could surpass existing capacity as early as next year, with massive deficits soon to follow, resulting in unreliable service and higher connectivity costs.

 

The Administration has proposed efforts to address the spectrum shortage, but many will take substantial time to implement. So it is critical that the government also take immediate steps, with tools readily available today, to provide relief to consumers and our economy in the short-run.

 

Simply put, the U.S. needs an 'all of the above' strategy to meet our nation's growing appetite for mobile Internet services. And, here are several concrete steps that our leaders can make this year to help avert 'comm-mageddon.'

 

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City Sets Up Nonprofit Corporation to Oversee Technology Projects | NYTimes

City Sets Up Nonprofit Corporation to Oversee Technology Projects | NYTimes | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Scalded by scandal, cost overruns and embarrassments in some of its most ambitious computerization efforts, the Bloomberg administration has hit upon on a new remedy: outsourcing such projects to a new quasi-governmental entity that will operate free of the usual city procurement rules, salary limits and legislative oversight.

 

The new entity, its proponents argue, will provide a bureaucratically powerful, highly skilled, centralized overseer for the kind of technology projects that have bedeviled this administration for years, and that have raised questions about one of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s perceived strengths as a billionaire who made his money through technological innovation.

 

Deputy Mayor Caswell F. Holloway, who spearheaded a review of the city’s technology woes, said the new entity could save taxpayers millions of dollars by reducing the city’s reliance on highly paid outside contractors for project conception, development and execution. “There is no reason why every agency in the City of New York should be going out and getting that from consultants,” he said. “The city should have an ability to do this.”

 

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Suddenlink Defends Its Broadband Bit Counter | Light Reading Cable

Suddenlink Defends Its Broadband Bit Counter | Light Reading Cable | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Suddenlink Communications says it's happy with the performance of its broadband byte-counter and investigates potential discrepancies whenever possible.

 

But some customers have been logging complaints on Broadband Reports, saying that the measurements of their router logs, on occasion, do not match up with Suddenlink's usage meter. One user claimed a severe discrepancy during a day this month in which the customer's router tallied 2.22 gigabytes while

 

Suddenlink's meter showed usage of 23GB. Another claimed that the operator's meter counted data during a power outage.

Suddenlink's residential cable modem customers have become increasingly sensitive about broadband usage ever since the company installed a monthly usage cap last year that charges extra when a customer exceeds it. Customers who take a tier offering more than 30Mbit/s downstream are allotted 350GB per month. If a customer exceeds that monthly ceiling three times,

Suddenlink charges $10 per for each extra bucket of 50GB. (See Suddenlink to Fit Broadband Caps, Overage Fees .)

 

Suddenlink stands by its meter and how it handles complaints about it. "We have listened to these customers and investigated each and every circumstance in which the customer is willing to share the name and address on the account," Suddenlink spokesman Pete Abel said, in a statement. "So far, we have found that our meter is consistently accurate, as was demonstrated in the tests we ran before we launched this program."

 

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What's up with special access: the $12B surcharge on Sprint and T-Mo? | GigaOM Tech News

What's up with special access: the $12B surcharge on Sprint and T-Mo? | GigaOM Tech News | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Sprint and T-Mobile are rejoicing, as are many other rural telcos and other companies that are reliant on buying access back to the Internet from circuits that are primarily owned by AT&T and Verizon. On Wednesday night the Federal Communications Commission said that it would halt the deregulation of the special access business while it looked at the rates charged by the companies providing the circuits connecting rural telcos and many wireless towers back to the Internet.

 

The FCC is halting the ability of circuit providers to raise their prices while the regulatory agency gathers data on how the prices are set and how those prices affect competitors and rural carriers. The FCC plans to issue a mandatory data request in the next month or two, but that in itself is a long process requiring approvals and comment periods that mean the FCC won’t even have a conclusion on whether or not it needs to reform special access until next year.

 

The issue is esoteric, and is a long time coming given the FCC began its look at the problem in 2009, but it does indirectly affect consumers. Sprint and T-Mobile both pay AT&T and Verizon a lot of money to buy access to those backhaul circuits so they can keep their network running. This means even when T-Mobile and Sprint are doing well, a portion of their proceeds ends up feeding Verizon and AT&T. FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski estimates that special access charges are roughly $12 billion a year industry, which isn’t chump change.

 

As one might expect Verizon isn’t terribly thrilled about the decision. It issued a statement that said:

 

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Code for America nearing goal of government-monitoring apps | Politics | Macon.com

Code for America nearing goal of government-monitoring apps | Politics | Macon.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

In about two months, Macon residents will have new ways to keep tabs on what city government is doing -- and on when the next bus will arrive.

 

Jessica Lord and Zach Williams, two of the three fellows assigned to Macon in the yearlong Code for America program, made a follow-up visit this week to show city officials prototypes of the online applications they’re developing for local use. Nick Doiron, the third fellow, paid a visit in July.

 

Code for America, based in San Francisco, gives fellowships to people specializing in interactive media and various urban issues, then assigns them to specific cities. The men and women work for a year on ways to make local government more interactive and accessible for residents through web-based applications.

 

Macon’s participation is funded by a grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Doiron, Lord and Williams spent five weeks here early this year, meeting with officials and residents, gathering suggestions and information to turn into technology applications for easier government access.

 

Now those talks are about to turn into several practical tools for the public.

 

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Louisiana State Broadband | Louisiana.gov

Louisiana State Broadband | Louisiana.gov | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Welcome to the Louisiana Broadband Initiative website. Did you know that only 60.5% of households in Louisiana have broadband internet? That means over a third of the population is either still using dial-up or a satellite dish or has no internet at all in their homes!

 

In today's age of fast-paced, technological information travel, having no internet or slow internet means you could be falling behind. It is the Broadband Advisory Council’s mission to prevent this from happening. All around the state grant funding is allowing for the construction of new cable lines and towers to make broadband internet more accessible to the public. Areas that once did not have internet access such as the Delta Parishes and Florida Parishes will soon be able to ditch the dial-up and enter the cheaper, high-speed world of broadband.

 

It is our hope that by doing this, cable companies will place a greater investment in competing for business in Louisiana, thus cutting costs and making the internet more easily available for everyone.

 

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Etisalat launches $35,000 prize for broadband innovation | BisinessDay

Etisalat launches $35,000 prize for broadband innovation | BisinessDay | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Etisalat Nigeria has launched a 35,000-dollar prize for innovation in mobile broadband product or service in Africa, a statement by Mr Steven Evans, the company's Chief Executive Officer, said in Lagos on Saturday, said that the prize - ‘Etisalat Prize for Innovation’ - was aimed at encouraging and celebrating valuable innovation in the African market.

 

It said that said that the award would be one of the major attractions at the 15th Annual Africa Com Conference, scheduled to take place in Cape Town, South Africa, in November.

 

According to the statement, the award will be in two categories and both prizes would be for driving as well as facilitating mobile broadband use in Africa.

 

It said that the first prize of 25,000 dollars would be for the most innovative product or service launched in the last 12 months and the second prize of 10,000 dollars was for the most innovative idea.

 

''The importance of Africa as a growth market for mobile broadband is clearly evident, as the continent remains the fastest growing telecommunications market in the world. Over the past few years, Africa has witnessed a dramatic increase in mobile broadband connections, mainly due to the surge in mobile broadband connections in Nigeria.

 

''At Etisalat, we believe that the next big thing in telecommunications in Nigeria and Africa in general is broadband and we are pushing this agenda very seriously, being the first to launch a 3.75G network in Nigeria.''

 

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Verizon Wireless Busted for Violating Network Neutrality | community broadband networks

Verizon Wireless Busted for Violating Network Neutrality | community broadband networks | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

In December, 2010, Verizon Wireless began operating its network via C-Block spectrum with licenses it acquired in the 2008 auction. In keeping with net neutrality rules unique to C-Block usage, Verizon agreed long ago that it would not block or limit consumers' ability to tether on their 4G LTE network.

 

Tethering allows a consumer to use a device, such as a smartphone, as a modem to funnel Internet access to an additional device. On July 31, the FCC agreed to end an investigation into whether or not Verizon Wireless had violated this rule. In exchange, Verizon Wireless would make a $1.25 million "voluntary contribution." Verizon Wireless did not admit it broke the rules. The FCC's consent decree requires the practice cease and that Verizon Wireless implement policies to curtail the behavior.

 

The story began in 2011. Verizon Wireless began charging its customers an addition $20 per month to allow them to tether additional devices to their smartphones and called the feature "Mobile Broadband Connect."

 

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IL: New network 'opens the door to so many opportunities' for learning | News-Gazette.com

IL: New network 'opens the door to so many opportunities' for learning | News-Gazette.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Urbana-Champaign Big Broadband may be a high-speed fiber-optic Internet network that's connecting local institutions and underserved households.

 

For local school districts that will be connected through UC2B, the value doesn't necessarily lie in fast connections, but in what that means for collaborations both between their own schools and with other institutions around the community.

 

Officials in the Champaign and Urbana school districts say they're looking forward to finding ways to work with other institutions the network will link them with, including the University of Illinois and Parkland College.

 

Plus, said Julie Anderson, server technician at Champaign schools who has been working closely with UC2B, a faster connection between the district's buildings will mean students will save time logging in or saving their work — leaving more time for actual learning.

 

Many of Urbana's schools are already on a fiber-optic network, said Don Owen, Urbana's assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction.

 

That has meant teachers have had reliable access to high-speed Internet and can stream video without slowing everyone else's connection.

 

"It opens the door to so many opportunities," Owen said, and teachers can do things like teach students on mobile devices because they have access to a high-speed wireless connection within their schools.

 

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Exclusive: Apple-Samsung juror speaks out | Apple CNET News

Exclusive: Apple-Samsung juror speaks out | Apple CNET News | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Apple v. Samsung juror Manuel Ilagan said the nine-person jury that heard the patent infringement case knew after the first day of deliberations that they all agreed Samsung had wronged Apple.

 

Ilagan told CNET in an exclusive interview today that the jury had several "heated" debates before reaching its verdict yesterday. He also said nothing in the deliberation process was rushed and that the jury carefully weighed the evidence.

 

"We found for Apple because of the evidence they presented," Ilagan said. "It was clear there was infringement."

 

Asked to point to some of the more compelling evidence Ilagan said:

 

"Well, there were several. The e-mails that went back and forth from Samsung execs about the Apple features that they should incorporate into their devices was pretty damning to me. And also, on the last day, [Apple] showed the pictures of the phones that Samsung made before the iPhone came out and ones that they made after the iPhone came out. Some of the Samsung executives they presented on video [testimony] from Korea -- I thought they were dodging the questions. They didn't answer one of them. They didn't help their cause."

 

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NTIA & FCC Broadband News | Federal Telemedicine News

Last February, the “Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012” was signed to create a single nationwide interoperable public safety broadband network to enable police, fire fighters, emergency medical service professionals, and other public safety officials communicate across agencies and jurisdictions.

 

The Act requires NTIA to establish a grant program. NTIA on August 21st published a notice in the Federal Register to announce requirements for the “State and Local Implementation Grant Program” with up to $135 million in funding.

 

The grants would assist state, regional, tribal, and local jurisdictions to find the most efficient and effective means to use and integrate the infrastructure, equipment plus the other architecture associated with establishing the Public Safety Broadband Network (PSBN).

 

The Act also establishes the First Responder Network Authority referred to as First Net as an independent authority within NTIA to design, construct, and operate the PSBN based on national network architecture. Recently, Acting Secretary Rebecca Blank appointed 12 individuals to the Board of Directors to First Net.

 

In other actions, NTIA has updated the National Broadband Map an interactive map showing the high speed internet service that is available in the U.S. The map includes data from 1,865 broadband providers nationwide with more than 20 million records.

 

Since its launch last year the National Broadband Map has attracted more than 650,000 users. By using the map, a Utah mid-sized company in the healthcare field that was losing time and money due to frequent broadband outages at a rural office needed to find another broadband provider. The company was able to use the Map to identify other broadband providers in their rural county and avoid many outages.

 

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California County Tries to Roll Out Wireless Broadband to Farms | Government Technology

California County Tries to Roll Out Wireless Broadband to Farms | Government Technology | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

With 15 million acres under cultivation and about $6 billion in farm product sales per year, California’s Fresno County has some of the most productive agricultural land in the nation. The county sits in the San Joaquin Valley, which is responsible for more than half of California’s agricultural production. The region’s rich soil, abundant sun and Mediterranean climate mean that nearly 400 different types of crops are grown and harvested there — from oranges, pistachios, olives and alfalfa to peaches, tomatoes, almonds, cotton and broccoli.

 

Though connecting all rural areas with broadband is a national priority, why would anyone get fired up about blanketing this particular region with wireless broadband? For Fresno CIO Carolyn Hogg, the answer has to do with olive trees as wireless subscribers, tracking tomatoes from vine to dinner plate, self-driving tractors, and agricultural research and education that could boost the state’s economy and help feed the world. Hogg, along with a coalition of federal, state, private-sector and local interests, are working to secure high-speed wireless broadband to take the region’s agriculture to the next level.

 

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Four avatars of the metropolis: technologies that will change our cities | The Urban Technologist

Four avatars of the metropolis: technologies that will change our cities | The Urban Technologist | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Many cities I work with are encouraging clusters of innovative, high-value, technology-based businesses to grow at the heart of their economies. They are looking to their Universities and technology partners to assist those clusters in identifying the emerging sciences and technologies that will disrupt existing industries and provide opportunities to break into new markets.

 

In advising customers and partners on this subject, I’ve found myself drawn to four themes. Each has the potential to cause significant disruptions, and to create opportunities that innovative businesses can exploit. Each one will also cause enormouse changes in our lives, and in the cities where most of us live and work.

 

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NY: Internet access helps poor find jobs | DemocratandChronicle.com

NY: Internet access helps poor find jobs | DemocratandChronicle.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Thanks to easier internet access and social media, more of the homeless and working poor are able to use the internet’s resources to look for work and connect to distant relatives.

 

The internet is a place where everyone is seen equally and not any differently because of the user’s living situation or lack of income, according to a University of Dayton study.

 

“I think it has to do more with the age (of the people who come to shelters) than with the technology,” said David Appleton, supervisor of Open Door Mission in downtown Rochester.

 

One of the requirements for people who come through the mission is to set up an email account at the public library so they can begin looking for apartments on Craigslist, according to Appleton.

 

More than 300 library cards were issued to people who listed a local shelter as a temporary residence according to Cynthia Dana, circulation supervisor for the Rochester Public Library.

 

She estimates at least 75 percent of those cardholders have a card issued solely to use the internet.

 

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DOJ Releases Confidential Information; Verizon/Cable Deal As Bad As We Thought | Public Knowledge

DOJ Releases Confidential Information; Verizon/Cable Deal As Bad As We Thought | Public Knowledge | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

As we process the FCC’s approval of the deal between Verizon, Comcast, and other cable companies, it’s worth taking a closer look at the actual agreements, based on the details that the Department of Justice (DOJ) recently released in its analysis of the deal. Although the DOJ expressed concerns about the deals it still decided to approve it.

 

On August 16, 2012 the Department of Justice announced its approval of the Verizon/SpectrumCo Deal, a disappointing outcome for those of us fighting for greater competition in the broadband marketplace. Check out Jodie Griffin’s thorough analysis for a full rundown of Public Knowledge’s concerns with the DOJ approval, including the conditions imposed on Verizon and the cable companies.

 

The DOJ also released a Competitive Impact Statement that it filed along with its Proposed Final Judgment in the antitrust proceeding. This Statement includes previously confidential details about the deals, which is disappointing to read given the DOJ’s approval and lackluster conditions. Everything the DOJ mentions in this Statement further emphasizes PK’s position that this deal is bad for consumers and potentially crippling for innovation in the broadband and wireless marketplaces.

 

The commercial agreements allow Verizon Wireless and the cable companies to (1) cross-market each other’s services; (2) create a new company for them to develop new products and services that integrate wireline and wireless services; and (3) create a future option for each of the cable companies to operate a virtual wireless network using Verizon Wireless’s network. The DOJ found these agreements violate provisions of the Sherman Act and unreasonably “restrain trade and commerce.”

 

Here are some of the DOJ Statement’s observations about the most anticompetitive consequences of the Verizon/Cable deal. The commercial agreements:

 

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Is Cloud Gaming the Unavoidable Future? - Caps, Quality, Bandwidth and Latency | DSLReports.com

With services like Onlive, the recent announcement of Sony buying cloud gaming firm GaiKai and Microsoft’s apparent commitment to a could gaming future from an internal leaked slideshow, could we be headed for a cloud gaming future?

 

A better question, however, is will that future satisfy us as gamers. The answer in my opinion would be not yet, but we are close. There are several hurdles that must be overcome before cloud gaming can begin to offer a viable alternative for local gaming, but when we pass those hurdles, cloud gaming offers more good than bad.

 

Let’s take a look at some of the advantages that cloud gaming could bring.

 

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MN: Deer River Schools Get a National Nod for E-Learning Efforts | Blandin on Broadband

MN: Deer River Schools Get a National Nod for E-Learning Efforts | Blandin on Broadband | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

I love to see Minnesota called out for any example of broadband adoption efforts and improvements in the quality of life – especially in education. So I was delighted to see Deer River School Districtmentioned on the MSNBC website.

 

MSNBC did a nice piece the impact technology is having on education from K12 to higher ed. Deer River is recognized for their telepresence setup…

 

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More People Realize Our Broadband Plan Has Broadband Tax - FCC Weighs Tacking $1-$5 Tax on All Users for USF | DSLReports.com

Back in April I noted that people were just starting to realize how the FCC's nationwide broadband plan includes a proposed broadband tax on broadband service, with the FCC imposing what could be a $1-$5 a month tax on each broadband user per month to help fund the USF and expand broadband services.

 

The problem, as Free Press argues to The Hill, is that this extra charge on top of what's already usually very expensive service could keep lower income users from adopting broadband services.

 

The other problem is the FCC still hasn't shown they can act like a grown up when tracking where these subsidies go. The agency is still seeking comment on the tax, with companies like AT&T, Sprint and Google all supporting it as well as Republican Commissioner Robert McDowell.

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Tablet adoption could give flip phones new lease on life | Dialed In | CNET Blogs

Tablet adoption could give flip phones new lease on life | Dialed In | CNET Blogs | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Here's a list of people who tell me they want a simple phone: my retired parents who have easy access to a computer and two clunky laptops at home, my nonagenarian grandmother, and the tech-savvy CNET reader who just thanked me for my review of the Samsung t159, a $20 T-Mobile flip phone.

 

It may sound hard to believe, but basic phones like the t159 and others are poised to see a small uptick among an unexpected demographic. I'm receiving more and more e-mails from CNET readers interested in supplementing their investment in a Wi-Fi-only tablet with a cheap hunk of hardware adept at making calls and little else.

 

As tablets take off, there's a growing number of people who are interested in a tablet's larger screen, but who don't feel the need to duplicate their apps and tools on two separate devices.

 

For this set, there are a few practical options to save money and cut back on machinery.

 

The shift from small-screen phones that compute to larger-screen devices that also make calls is behind products like Samsung and LG's supersize smartphones, which hope to straddle the best of both phone and tablet worlds. Samsung and LG, and perhaps HTC soon, designed extra-large screen phones to nudge on-the-fence consumers toward an all-in-one device. (Of course, they'd love for committed tablet buyers to purchase their slates as well.)

 

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Does High Speed Broadband Increase Economic Growth? | Forbes

Does High Speed Broadband Increase Economic Growth? | Forbes | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

It’s a reasonable enough question: does the roll out of high speed broadband increase economic growth? If it does, if there’s more than just the private gains that users themselves capture then this might make a decent case for there to be subsidy of the installation of such national infrastructure. This paper from Arthur D Little and Ericsson (who, err, make broadband equipment so might safely be assumed to have an interest in the matter) claims that there is such an effect.

 

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MN: Reducing Digital Divide in Minneapolis | Blandin on Broadband

Insight News ran two articles this week that serve as updates to the ARRA-funded broadband adoption program in the Twin Cities – Broadband Access Project (BAP), an outreach program developed through the University of Minnesota’s Urban Outreach and Engagement Center (UROC).

 

 One article looks specifically at addressing the needs of Latino population; the other focused on digital media classes taught at the Asian Community Technology Center.

 

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Copying Works: How Samsung’s Decision to Mimic Apple Paid Off in Spades | PandoDaily

Copying Works: How Samsung’s Decision to Mimic Apple Paid Off in Spades | PandoDaily | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

In the fall of 2008, just a year after it released the iPhone, Apple became the most profitable phone maker in the world. The milestone wasn’t much remarked upon by the press. At the time, Apple was still selling only a tiny number of phones compared to its rivals, and it wasn’t clear that it could ever become a global juggernaut in the phone business.

 

Still, because rivals couldn’t match Apple’s average sales price and profit margins, they were falling behind. In the fourth quarter of 2008, Nokia, which had long been the phone industry’s profit leader, sold 113 million devices worldwide, about 15 million of them smartphones. It made about $1.2 billion in profit on all those phones. That same quarter, Apple sold just 4 million iPhones. But that single device earned Apple a profit of $1.3 billion.

 

These numbers—which Asymco’s Horace Dediu has helpfully archived here—provide the backstory to an industry in panic. If you were a phone maker watching the iPhone’s sudden rise in 2008, you had to make a quick decision. A storm was blasting through your business and your survival depended on how you reacted.

 

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FCC eyes tax on Internet service | The Hill

FCC eyes tax on Internet service | The Hill | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The Federal Communications Commission is eyeing a proposal to tax broadband Internet service.

 

The move would funnel money to the Connect America Fund, a subsidy the agency created last year to expand Internet access.

 

The FCC issued a request for comments on the proposal in April. Dozens of companies and trade associations have weighed in, but the issue has largely flown under the public's radar.

 

"If members of Congress understood that the FCC is contemplating a broadband tax, they'd sit up and take notice," said Derek Turner, research director for Free Press, a consumer advocacy group that opposes the tax.

 

Numerous companies, including AT&T, Sprint and even Google have expressed support for the idea.

 

 

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Bill Gates Part of $12 Million Round for Satellite Mobile Broadband Start-Up | All Things D

Bill Gates Part of $12 Million Round for Satellite Mobile Broadband Start-Up | All Things D | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Bill Gates is part of a $12 million investment round in Kymeta, a company that aims to offer users satellite broadband access on the go.

 

Kymeta is a spinout from Intellectual Ventures, the Nathan Myhrvold-run company best known for its irksome strategy of amassing patents and then looking to collect from companies whose products make use of the patents.

 

The Redmond, Wash.-based company is the second spinout for Intellectual Ventures, preceded by TerraPower, which aims to build a new kind of nuclear reactor.

 

Other backers of Kymeta include Liberty Global and Lux Capital.

Kymeta’s technology uses something called “metamaterials,” artificial materials that can manipulate electromagnetic radiation that can steer a radio signal toward a satellite, thereby creating a continuous broadband link.

 

The company said its method should pave the way for antennas that are thinner, lighter and cheaper than today’s satellite antennas.

 

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Why Farms Need Wireless Broadband | Government Technology

Why Farms Need Wireless Broadband | Government Technology | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

When it comes to farming, what good is wireless broadband? Seed, sun, dirt and water are the essentials that have sustained agriculture for thousands of years, so what can wireless bring to the table? And what is a CIO doing down on the farm in rubber boots?

 

For Fresno CIO Carolyn Hogg, the answer has to do with olive trees as wireless subscribers, tracking tomatoes from vine to dinner plate, self-driving tractors, and agricultural research and education that could boost the state’s economy and help feed the world. Hogg, along with a coalition of federal, state, private-sector and local interests, are working to secure high-speed wireless broadband to take the region’s agriculture, health care and education to the next level.

 

But what do farmers -- worried about water and the price of tomatoes -- think about adding information technology to their operations? Find out in the August issue of Government Technology magazine and in this video.

 

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