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China Approves Microsoft's Nokia Buy with Caveat on Patent Pricing

April 8, 2014 9:20 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

China has finally approved Microsoft's acquistion of Nokia's devices and services business. On China's Ministry of Commerce website, the Ministry said it would go along with the deal but tacked on a few conditions regarding pricing around the use of Nokia's significant patent portfolio. 

Samsung Adding Anti-Theft Solutions to Smartphones

April 7, 2014 9:29 am | by Terry Collins, Associated Press | News | Comments

Samsung Electronics will add two safeguards to its latest smartphone in an effort to deter rampant theft of the mobile devices nationwide, the company said Friday. The world's largest mobile-phone maker said users will be able to activate for free its "Find My Mobile" and "Reactivation Lock" anti-theft features to protect the soon-to-be-released Galaxy 5 S.

European Parliament Adopts 'Net Neutrality' Law, Ends Roaming Fees

April 4, 2014 10:01 am | by Toby Sterling, Associated Press | News | Comments

The European Parliament voted Thursday to stop Internet providers from charging for preferential access to their networks — a step cheered by consumer groups and startups but bemoaned by the telecommunications industry. The bill on "net neutrality" forces Internet providers to treat all traffic the same regardless of its source.

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Yahoo Adds More Security to Thwart Surveillance

April 3, 2014 11:28 am | by Michael Liedtke, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

Yahoo announced measure Wednesday that include the completion of a system that encrypts all information being transmitted from one Yahoo data center to another. The technology is designed to make the emails and other digital information flowing through data centers indecipherable to outsiders.

Sprint, T-Mobile Caution FCC on AT&T All-IP Trials

April 1, 2014 11:09 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

Sprint and T-Mobile are calling into question AT&T's recently approved IP-network trials in Florida and Alabama, saying the initiative is holding back the rest of the industry's move to develop cross-carrier IP interconnections. "AT&T’s proposed experiment is putting the cart before the horse," Sprint wrote...

Report: Kill Switch Could Save Americans $2.6B Annually

April 1, 2014 9:37 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

Whether you're for or against mandatory kill switch technology in smartphones, at least one study says such a feature could saved consumers bundles. According to a study conducted by Creighton University Professor Dr. William Duckworth, kill switch technology could save Americans up to $2.6 billion per year...

FCC AWS-3 Plans Get Mixed Reaction

March 31, 2014 3:13 pm | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

The FCC today issued an official report and order that sets rules for the upcoming auction of 65 MHz of spectrum in the AWS-3 band, specifically in the 1695-1710 MHz, 1755-1780 MHz, and 2155-2180 MHz bands. The report and order establishes a band plan that makes spectrum available in a mix of spectrum block and geographic license area sizes...

FCC Opens 100 MHz of 5 GHz Spectrum for Unlicensed Wi-Fi Use

March 31, 2014 2:53 pm | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

The new report and order focused on relaxing the rules governing the operation of Unlicensed National Information Infrastructure (U-NII) in the 5 GHz band, specifically removing current restriction on indoor-only use and increasing the permissible power in the 5.150-5.250 GHz band.

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CTIA, Broadcasters Prove Viability of Spectrum Sharing

March 28, 2014 10:25 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

The Wireless Association today released a report on its efforts to test spectrum channel sharing with a pair of Los Angeles television stations. CTIA claims to have proved the viablity of channel sharing through its experiment with Los Angeles television stations KLCS and KJLA. 

CCA Expo: Broadcasters Require Trust in Incentive Auctions

March 26, 2014 2:41 pm | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

Rick Kaplan, executive vice president of strategic planning for the National Association of Broadcasters, said he's worried that broadcasters still need assurances from the FCC around how the upcoming incentive auctions will work. "One challenge is you want to be able to trust what you hear from the Commission," Kaplan said. 

CCA: FCC Wireless Chief Sees Need for Compromise on Auction Geography

March 26, 2014 12:04 pm | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Roger Sherman didn’t even bring a prepared speech to CCA. Speaking at the CCA Global Expo Wednesday, the FCC’s acting wireless bureau chief instead focused on directly addressing key issues and questions from CCA CEO Steven K. Berry.

Sprint, T-Mobile, Dish Team Up to Plead Low-Band Spectrum Case to FCC

March 26, 2014 10:13 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Sprint, T-Mobile and Dish Network are teaming up to ensure smaller carriers can get their hands on low-band spectrum. Along with the Competitive Carriers Association and advocacy groups like Public Knowledge, the group is lobbying the FCC to adopt rules in the upcoming 600 MHz auctions that will benefit carriers other than AT&T and Verizon, who together hold the majority of available below-1 GHz spectrum licenses.

Obama to Propose Ending NSA's Phone Call Sweep

March 25, 2014 10:52 am | by Eileen Sullivan, Associated Press | News | Comments

The White House wants the National Security Agency to get out of the business of sweeping up and storing vast amounts of data on Americans' phone calls. The Obama administration this week is expected to propose that Congress overhaul the electronic surveillance program...

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Report: NSA Targeted Chinese Tech Giant Huawei

March 24, 2014 9:15 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

U.S. intelligence agencies hacked into the email servers of Chinese tech giant Huawei five years ago, around the time concerns were growing in Washington that the telecommunications equipment manufacturer was a threat to U.S. national security, two newspapers reported Saturday.

Turkey Blocks Twitter over Graft Recordings

March 21, 2014 10:27 am | by Suzan Fraser, Associated Press | News | Comments

Turkey blocked access to Twitter on Friday after Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan threatened to "rip out the roots" of the social network where links have proliferated recordings that appear to incriminate him and other top officials in corruption. Turkey in the past blocked access to YouTube, but it is the first ban on Twitter...

AT&T Files with FCC for Transfer of 700 MHz, AWS Spectrum

March 21, 2014 10:05 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

From MilkyWay Broadband, AT&T has requested the transfer of 12 MHz of Lower 700 MHz C Block spectrum in 71 counties in 15 CMAs. From WGH Communications and NTCH, AT&T has requested the transfer of 12 MHz of Lower 700 MHz B Block spectrum in 18 counties in six CMAs. From Paul Bunyan Rural Telephone Cooperative, AT&T has requested the transfer of 20 MHz of AWS-1 A Block spectrum in nine counties in three CMAs.

T-Mobile Goes to Bat for Smaller Carriers in AWS Auction

March 20, 2014 9:40 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

In a policy blog yesterday, T-Mobile suggested the Commission try to mirror the geographic market areas for existing AWS-1 licenses, a mix of smaller Cellular Market Areas (CMA) and larger Economic Areas (EA). The carrier also expressed support for the CCA’s proposed compromise of Partial Economic Areas (PEA).

Video: WDD Highlights Creepy IOT with Surveillance Sphere

March 17, 2014 3:35 pm | Videos | Comments

A floating sphere comprised of a balloon, helium, and electronics has been created to determine how sonic objects mediate between people, technology, and places. The sphere responds sonically to people and its surroundings by means of a battery-powered Arduino...

Update: AT&T Completes Acquisition of Leap Wireless

March 13, 2014 5:18 pm | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

The FCC has signed off on AT&T’s $1.2 billion bid to buy Leap Wireless, the parent company of Cricket Wireless. Through the transaction, AT&T will inherit 4.6 million prepaid customers as well Leap assets including spectrum and network equipment. AT&T will gain access to Leap’s spectrum licenses in 1900 PCS and 1700 MHZ and 2100 MHZ AWS.

SmartWatch, Episode 1: Masayoshi Son Slams U.S. Wireless Industry

March 13, 2014 10:01 am | Videos | Comments

Welcome to this week's episode of SmartWatch, brought to you by SanDisk. This week, we take a look at Softbank President and CEO Masayoshi Son’s quest for a unified Sprint and T-Mobile. We’ll also hear from BlackBerry CEO John Chen on his plans to turn around the Canadian handset maker. 

Rubio: US Should Give Airwaves to Cell Companies

March 10, 2014 3:37 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Sen. Marco Rubio says the government should give cellphone companies more airwaves and allow private companies to build a nationwide pipeline for oil and natural gas. The Florida Republican on Monday also told Google's Washington offices that nixing dozens of taxes

SXSW: Assange talks NSA, Hints at More Leaks

March 10, 2014 10:59 am | by Barbara Ortutay, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

Speaking over Skype from the Ecuadorian embassy in London, fugitive WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange said his living situation is a bit like prison — with a more lenient visitor policy. He also hinted that new leaks are coming from WikiLeaks, though he gave no specifics on what these might be.

Google Asks FCC for Four 6-MHz Unlicensed Channels in 600 MHz Band

March 7, 2014 3:26 pm | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

According to a filing, Google specifically requests unlicensed spectrum use in “any guard band separating broadcast and LTE licensees; any duplex gap separating LTE uplink and downlink operations; the reserved wireless microphone channels on a shared basis with wireless microphone users; and Channel 37 on a shared basis with WMTS and radio astronomy users.”

FCC Grants $41M to Alaskan Telecom for Rural Wireless Broadband

March 6, 2014 10:45 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

The FCC today deemed Alaskan telecom General Communications eligible for $41.4 million in grant money to build out 3G and 4G mobile broadband in underserved rural areas. The money, coming as part of the FCC’s Tribal Mobility Fund Phase I, will go toward serving 37,000 people across 48 communities in Alaska.

Verizon Attacks T-Mobile Over Canadian Auction Rationale

March 5, 2014 4:11 pm | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

“Proponents of restricting Verizon and AT&T have failed to present economic evidence proving that the FCC should adopt rules that disadvantage Verizon and AT&T in the Incentive Auction. There is nothing learned from the Canadian experience that cures that failure,” Verizon wrote in the filing.

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