Editor’s Note: RCR Wireless News goes all in for “Throwback Thursdays,” tapping into our archives to resuscitate the top headlines from the past. Fire up the time machine, put on the sepia-tinted shades, set the date for #TBT and enjoy the memories!
iPhone 4 launches with great fanfare, long lines, antenna issues
Driven by an insatiable consumer demand for anything “i” related, and apparently overlooking some slight design flaws, Apple Inc. (AAPL) said it managed to sell more than 1.7 million iPhone 4 devices through its first three days of availability, becoming the “most successful product launch in Apple’s history,” according to heady quote from Apple CEO Steve Jobs. The numbers were more than half the number of iPad’s Apple managed to sell during that device’s first 80 days of availability. There was no word yet on the number of iPhone 4’s devices sold in the U.S. through exclusive carrier partner AT&T Mobility (T), though Piper Jaffray noted in a report that more than three-fourths of those sold in the U.S. were upgrades and thus would not bolster the carrier’s net customer addition results. Apple noted that the device is currently available in the U.S., U.K., France, Germany and Japan, with plans to expand availability to Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland by the end of July.
RCR Wireless’ features editor Matt Kapko was one of those that braved the lines on launch day, spending 10 hours in line at a southern California Apple retail outlet before finally getting his hands on an iPhone 4G. While there have been widespread reports of device shortages, including the delayed availability of a white model until later next month, AT&T Mobility was set to begin offering the device through its retail locations beginning today. … Read more
Cisco dabbles in tablets
Cisco has surprised the world yet again, announcing at the company’s Cisco Live 2010 conference on Tuesday that it would come out with its own tablet, called “Cius,” aimed at corporate users and singularly-focused on delivering high-quality video conferencing. The specs include a docking station with HD audio and DisplayPort allowing users to plug in either a phone or a regular wired internet connection, options for 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, 3G and even 4G, a high resolution screen, a 720p HD forward facing video camera for video conferencing, a five megapixel rear facing camera, Bluetooth, Micro-USB and USB ports, all running on Intel’s 1.6-GHz Atom processor. The purported eight-hour battery in the Cius is “detachable and serviceable” and lest we forget, the seven inch 1.15lb tablet also runs Google’s Android operating system, will allow apps to be accessed using a SaaS model and will sport a hefty price tag of about $1000 when it starts rolling out in the third quarter of 2010. … Read more
Intel, Nokia team up on Meego OS
Intel and Nokia’s Meego operating system is not looking too shabby at all, at least not on a recent Intel YouTube video showing off the OS on an unspecified tablet. When Meego was launched back at MWC in February as a partnership between Intel and Nokia and managed by The Linux Foundation, many saw it as a bad joke, an Albatross around Nokia’s already Symbian burdened neck. But low and behold, the albatross appears to be preparing for flight, with several firms purported to be mulling Meego for tablets and netbooks over the coming months. Intel is now proudly showing off video of a pre-Alpha version of the OS, which comes complete with multitouch support, multitasking and integrated social networking – as one would expect from a tablet these days. … Read more
Will Verizon get the iPhone?
Stop me if you have heard this one before: Apple Inc. is set to break free of its AT&T Mobility bonds and begin offering the iPhone through Verizon Wireless. Sounds familiar? Sure it does as varying forms of that prediction have been bouncing around the industry since the first wireless licenses were granted back in the 1980s, or so it seems. The latest “push” for this came from a Bloomberg News report late yesterday citing those elusive “two people familiar with the plans” (as opposed to those “not familiar” with the situation). The report – based on the knowledge of two people so you know it has to be legit … this time – said Verizon Wireless will begin selling a version of the iPhone beginning “next year.” The move will end the domestic exclusivity deal Apple has had with AT&T Mobility since the first iPhone launched in 2007. No one from any of the companies mentioned would comment on the story, which is not surprising, though analysts were all in a lather over the news predicting Apple could sell more than 10 million additional devices per year with the arrangement through Verizon Wireless. This iPhone/Verizon Wireless love affair has been stoked by considerable news attention to network troubles encountered by customers on AT&T Mobility’s network following the launch of the iPhone. … Read more
Sprint, Clearwire plow ahead with WiMAX
Sprint Nextel Corp. (S) and partner Clearwire Corp. (CLWR)continued their full-court WiMAX press this morning announcing a trio of new markets where service is available as well as a new device set to launch later this year.
Both companies said they are now offering WiMAX service in Salt Lake City; St. Louis; and Richmond, Va., pushing their total market coverage to around 40 markets. The Sprint Nextel offering is marketed under its “4G” brand, while the Clearwire service is marketed under its “Clear” brand. In addition to the extended coverage Sprint Nextel unveiled details of its second WiMAX-enabled smartphone, Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. Epic 4G. The device is based on Samsung’s Galaxy S platform and joins the recently launched HTC Corp. Evo 4G with access to Sprint Nextel’s WiMAX service. Samsung said the Epic 4G device will include a 4-inch AMOLED screen, slide-out QWERTY keyboard, run Google Inc.’s Android 2.1 operating system, a 5-megapixel camera as well as a front-facing camera and is powered by a 1 GHz Samsung processor. Sprint Nextel is working on a Android 2.2 update for later this year and said it would announce availability and pricing for the device in the “coming months.” … Read more
Why listen to ringback tones when you could hear joyps?
With all the apps and functions today’s phones can perform, we often tend to forget that their main purpose and basic function is to make actual phone calls. But in a world where everything is immediate and our need for instant gratification trumps all else, it is a frustrating fact of life that after dialing a contact’s number, we still have to wait an agonizing five to 10 seconds before the person actually answers. A full 10 seconds wasted! Oh, the travesty! Indeed, some stats say we spend 30 hours a year on average listening to ring back tones. To help impatient attention-span deficient people deal with this abhorrent waste of precious time, some firms have come up with “funtones” which plays a more pleasant tune, song, or melody in place of the obnoxious “Ring Ring” tone and helps pass the time. Companies like Comverse deploy those services as VAS for operators. But now a new company by the name of Joyp is trying to utilize this “waiting time” in a different way. Rather than forcing callers to listen to a pre-chosen song, it enables users to leave massages that will be heard when a voice call is made. Joyp is voice-based social-networking tool, and when you make a call, you’ll hear any Joyps that your friends have sent you. For example, if you want to remind an individual or a group about an upcoming party, you can record a Joyp, send it out to selected people, and next time that group of people makes a call, no matter who they’re calling, they’ll hear that message instead of a ringtone. … Read more
Obama administration aims to open 500 megahertz of spectrum
President Barak Obama issued a memorandum to free up 500 megahertz of spectrum in the next 10 years, directing the National Telecommunications and Information Administration and the Federal Communications Commission to free up federal and nonfederal spectrum. The details of the president’s four-point plan to bring more spectrum to commercial use are similar to his National Broadband Plan. “As demand for mobile services skyrockets, so too will the need for additional spectrum frequencies to facilitate this transformation. Without a strategy for freeing up more spectrum for wireless technology, the United States will fall behind in technological innovation and 21st-century jobs as cutting edge applications and technologies that depend on broadband wireless platforms are invented in countries with more advanced wireless infrastructure,” according to a fact sheet detailing the memorandum. The president asked that NTIA and the FCC identify by Oct. 1 any spectrum that can be freed up within five years for exclusive or shared use and asked that the agencies create an inventory of spectrum to help identify what spectrum could be freed up, as well as create a timeline for such spectrum. Along with freeing up 500 megahertz of spectrum, the president would like to change the rules so government and commercial spectrum holders can realize greater and earlier benefits from giving up their spectrum; value the spectrum the most, which means auctioning most of the spectrum, but setting some aside for unlicensed use and sharing spectrum when possible. Finally, the memorandum proposes using auction proceeds to aid public safety, reduce the federal deficit and create jobs in industries like smart grids. “The administration has no official estimate of the auction revenues from this plan. The actual amount will depend on effective implementation and additional design details, but based on past auctions, many analysts believe the revenue potential could reach in the tens of billions of dollars. … Read more
Check out the RCR Wireless News Archives for more stories from the past.
The post #TBT: iPhone 4 launches; Cisco dabbles in tablets; Sprint expands WiMAX … this week in 2010 appeared first on RCR Wireless News.