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Verizon Says Software Update Caused Billing System Issue

June 30, 2014 10:22 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

"The Verizon Wireless billing system was fully restored early today, shortly after midnight. The issue affecting some customer access to account information was an unintended consequence of a software update performed by the company on its billing system two days ago. It affected customers mostly in the Northeast, Midwest and some southern states."

FirstNews Briefs: Blackphone, Verizon, Jibe Mobile, Deutsche Telekom, Wi-SUN Alliance

June 30, 2014 10:20 am | by Wireless Week Staff | News | Comments

SGP Technologies SA, the Switzerland-based joint venture of Silent Circle and Geeksphone behind Blackphone, today announced that Blackphone handsets have started shipping to the device's first pre-order customers. Blackphone is built from the ground up for user privacy. Blackphone's security-enhanced operating system, PrivatOS, built on Android KitKat, provides users protection and control over security issues.

Germany Drops Verizon Contract on Fears of NSA Snooping

June 26, 2014 10:42 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

The announcement comes after reports this week that Verizon and British company Colt provide Internet services to the German parliament and other official entities. Germany has been at the forefront of international outrage over alleged electronic eavesdropping by the U.S. National Security Agency and Britain's GCHQ, revealed last year by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

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T-Mo's 'Test Drive' Perfect Showcase for Impressive Wideband Service

June 26, 2014 10:38 am | by Andrew Berg | Blogs | Comments

This is T-Mobile's way into major metropolitan markets, where it will continue to take subscribers from the likes of AT&T and Verizon. Yes, Verizon has its XLTE product, and Sprint has its "Spark" offering, but neither of those are offering the kinds of speeds T-Mobile is putting up right now. 

Report: Verizon Eyeing Dish Network’s Spectrum

June 23, 2014 11:22 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Verizon Wireless is interested in buying Dish Network’s spectrum, according to the New York Post. The companies have reportedly held informal talks about a possible deal for Dish’s spectrum holdings. Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam in May squashed rumors that Verizon might try to buy Dish but did admit that Dish has some interesting assets.

T-Mobile CEO John Legere Apologizes for Comments

June 19, 2014 4:43 pm | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

T-Mobile CEO John Legere today took to Twitter to apologize to any offended by his remarks he made during the carrier’s Uncarrier 5.0 event Wednesday. The usually brash Legere regularly picks on the other three major U.S. carriers—AT&T, in particular—but his choice of words last night may have gone too far. Legere said AT&T and Verizon are “raping” their customers.

Verizon, Comcast Welcome FCC Inquiry Into Slow Streaming Speeds

June 13, 2014 3:22 pm | by Michael Liedtke, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

In a rare show of unanimity, Netflix and Comcast both said they welcomed the FCC's inquiry in the interests of greater transparency. Verizon reaffirmed its support for the status quo and pointed out that "Internet traffic exchange has always been handled through commercial agreements."

Report: Sprint, T-Mobile Set $2B Breakup Fee, T-Mobile Name for Combined Co.

June 13, 2014 11:03 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

CNBC is reporting that Sprint and T-Mobile have agreed to a $2 billion breakup fee should their potential merger not go through. The Wall Street Journal had previously reported the breakup fee attached to the merger would be $1 billion. The two companies have also reportedly agreed on T-Mobile as the name for the combined company, lending credibility to reports that T-Mobile CEO John Legere is in line to lead after the merger.

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Cell Towers Go Stealth with More Sophisticated Camoflauge

June 13, 2014 9:49 am | by Barbara Rodriguez, Associated Press | Articles | Comments

So-called stealth cellphone towers have been around for more than two decades and appear to be growing in popularity. They have been concealed in a wide variety of ways, including in a stop sign in New Orleans, a pine tree in Kinnelon, New Jersey, and a water tower in San Dimas, California.

FirstNews Briefs: C Spire, Verizon, Wienermobile, Huawei

June 11, 2014 10:34 am | by Wireless Week Staff | News | Comments

C Spire announced plans today to acquire MegaGate Broadband, a regional provider of IP voice, data, and business telecommunications solutions. Headquartered in Hattiesburg, MegaGate serves most Mississippi business markets as a competitive local exchange telecommunications provider and as an Internet service provider.

Report: U.S. Carriers Spent $109 Per Citizen in CapEx in 2013

June 9, 2014 11:21 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

Roger Entner, founder of Recon Analytics, said in a report that AT&T's efforts to improve the quality of its network resulted in record spending among the four U.S. carriers. Enter notes that in 2013, AT&T spent roughly $11.5 billion on network improvements, while Verizon Wireless spent another $9.75 billion improving its network. 

Report: Combined Sprint, T-Mobile Would Still Need To Improve Margins

June 5, 2014 2:43 pm | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

Those who are willing to entertain the idea of a deal often ask whether it’s realistic to expect the two smaller carriers to compete in any meaningful way on their own. According to research released today from Strategy Analytics, a combined Sprint and T-Mobile would prove an entirely different entity than the one that would have come into being had regulators approved AT&T's transaction.

VZW Completes Purchase of Golden State Cellular

June 2, 2014 11:14 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

In a statement, Verizon said it now owns 100 percent of the Golden State Cellular. The purchase expands Verizon's brand and network footprint in East Central California, a market area that includes much of Yosemite National Park, as well as Amador, Alpine, Calaveras, Tuolumne and Mariposa counties.

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FirstNews Briefs: Verizon, Sprint, Seagate, Avago, Globys, Boost Mobile

May 29, 2014 10:41 am | by Wireless Week Staff | News | Comments

Boost Mobile and celebrity ‘coaches’ Ice-T and Luis Guzman kick off Boost Mobile’s “Spokesbattle” today, an interactive reality TV-style campaign that puts two people against each other and lets consumers vote to determine who will be the next Boost Mobile Spokesperson.

T-Mobile Announcing Un-carrier 5.0 June 18, Not Playing it “Safe and Sound”

May 29, 2014 9:37 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

T-Mobile has sent out the invitations for its Un-carrier 5.0 announcement June 18. The event in Los Angeles comes with few details; just a tagline reading “We don’t play it safe and sound.” Considering T-Mobile’s recent VoLTE launch in Seattle and using “sound” as a clue, the upcoming announcement may have something to do with the HD Voice-enabling technology.

T-Mobile Launches LTE-Advanced VoLTE in Seattle

May 22, 2014 1:07 pm | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

T-Mobile today launched Voice-over-LTE (VoLTE) service in Seattle, deployed using an LTE-Advanced function called Enhanced Single Radio Voice Call Continuity (eSRVCC). T-Mobile subscribers in Seattle using an LG G Flex, Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy Light will be able to use the service right away via an over-the-air update.

AT&T CFO Talks Video, Regulatory Advantages of Choosing DirecTV Over Dish

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

When asked why AT&T went after DirecTV and not Dish Network, AT&T CFO John Stephens said DirecTV had better distribution, content, network, etc. But he also said Dish raised a lot more regulatory red flags. “Dish has been very loud about their intentions to get into broadband,” Stephens said. AT&T feared that potential services overlap and Dish’s plans to use its spectrum for wireless would raise more regulatory concerns.

Verizon Promises VoLTE This Year Supported by “Tangible Volume of Handsets”

May 20, 2014 5:02 pm | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Verizon Wireless today is reminding its customers it hasn’t forgotten to launch VoLTE, promising the service will rollout nationwide later this year. The carrier is promising a “robust line-up” of VoLTE devices will be available at launch as well as an over-the-air update to make select devices already in service compatible with VoLTE.

U.S. Cellular Takes on AT&T, Verizon with $140 10GB Shared Plan

May 20, 2014 11:13 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

U.S. Cellular today is pushing out a discount for its Shared Connect plans that comes out to $140 monthly for four lines with unlimited talk and text plus 10GB to share. The carrier’s new pricing trumps similar offers from AT&T and Verizon that charge $160.

Verizon CEO Squashes Talk of Dish Network Bid

May 20, 2014 9:08 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

In the wake of AT&T’s $48.5 billion bid for DirecTV, talk immediately sprung up about the possibility of a Verizon Wireless and Dish Network merger. Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam, speaking at an investor conference, shut that down. McAdam said there have not been any discussions with Dish about a possible tie up but he admitted that Dish has some interesting assets.

Verizon Launches XLTE, Says 35 Percent of Active Devices Are Compatible

May 19, 2014 12:16 pm | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Verizon today officially announced XLTE, the name it’s given to the LTE network deployed over the carrier’s AWS spectrum. XLTE Ready devices, that automatically access the AWS network, include the newest DROID devices, Samsung Galaxy S4, S5 and Note 3, and the iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s. Verizon said that now more than 35 percent of active devices on its network are XLTE Ready.

FirstNews Briefs: Verizon, Sprint, Multi-Tech, Aeris, Boost, Virgin, Samsung

May 19, 2014 10:16 am | by Wireless Week Staff | News | Comments

Starting today, new FiOS TV or FiOS Internet customers (including existing customers who add new service to their existing account) will receive a free LG G Pad 8.3 LTE, or receive up to $200 off any other tablet available from Verizon Wireless when obtaining a new, two-year agreement. The carrier also announced it has expanded its XLTE AWS network to Houston, Beaumont/Port Arthur, Bryan/College Station and other locations in Texas.

Carriers, Others Respond to FCC’s Spectrum Screen, Incentive Auction Rules

May 16, 2014 10:56 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Following a busy day at the FCC that saw the Commission drafting rules for upcoming spectrum auctions and revising its spectrum screen, carriers weighed in with varying degrees of praise or scorn for the new policies. The FCC’s move to set aside a reserve of 30 MHz in the 600 MHz Incentive Auctions for bidders holding less than one-third of available low-band spectrum licenses per area drew a lukewarm response from T-Mobile.

FCC Sets Rules for Incentive Auctions

May 15, 2014 2:47 pm | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

The FCC said its band plan will limit variations in the amount of spectrum turned over from broadcasters in different geographic areas in hopes of preventing the “least common denominator market’ from limiting the quantity of spectrum we can offer generally across the nation.”

FCC Advances Open Internet Proposal Amid Protests

May 15, 2014 1:47 pm | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

Thursday's proceedings were disrupted when a woman began a vocal tirade during FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler's remarks on the matter. The woman was escorted away by police. The protests were an indication of just how passionate the public is about keeing the Internet in the United States free from constraints. 

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