Verizon, the telecommunications company, said Tuesday that it had higher
revenue for the fourth quarter, yet it reported a loss, mostly because
of costs related to layoffs.
Verizon Wireless has struggled to keep up with the momentum of the rival
carrier, AT&T, which has been adding subscribers at a rapid clip, in
large part because of the popularity of the iPhone, for which it is the
sole carrier in the United States. ...
AT&T Inc. is paying $18 million to settle claims that it imposed
unfairly high fees on wireless customers who wanted to end their
The settlement covers customers from as far back as 1998. Those who were
charged an early termination fee, or ETF, could get as much as $140
back, if they canceled a two-year contract just before it was about to
expire. Those who canceled earlier would get less.
Those who were never charged an early termination fee can get an AT&T
long distance phone card with up to 200 minutes, or if they have a AT&T
contract, choose to have the ETF changed from a $175 flat rate to one
that is prorated.
AT&T used to charge an ETF of $175, regardless of how long the customer
had left on the contract. Like other carriers, it started prorating the
fee in 2008, so customers canceling after a year of service paid less.
Adobe on Monday introduced the Flash Player 10.1 and AIR platform for
the Google Android mobile operating system. With this announcement,
Adobe plans to present the AIR platform as a tool for building mobile
apps that run on multiple phone platforms.
Adobe AIR, which made possible cross-platform apps like TweetDeck or the
New York Times Reader, is now going mobile, starting with Android. Using
this platform, developers will be able to design an application once and
deliver it across multiple phone operating systems.
Google's Android mobile OS is the first on the list to support apps
developed using Adobe AIR, and also to run the Flash 10.1 player. Both
should be available on Android phones sometime in the first half of
2010, Adobe said.
While LTE modems delivering mobile broadband services already appearing
on the market, LTE phones are still some way off -- not least because
manufacturers and operators have yet to agree how calls will be placed
and voice traffic carried over LTE's all-IP networks. One of the
solutions to that problem got a boost Monday, though, with more
operators and vendors lending it their support.
Support for One Voice, an initiative to standardize telephony over LTE
(Long-Term Evolution) networks, has increased from 12 operators and
vendors to over 40, according to the GSM Association (GSMA), which
represents mobile operators and equipment manufacturers.
The association will lead the development of the underlying
specification from now on, it said, changing its name to VoLTE (Voice
That all adds up to a greater chance for subscribers that the first
generation of LTE phones will work on multiple operators' networks --
although support for international roaming is still a work in progress.
There are two camps in the upcoming 4G wars in the United States. Right
now, the only 4G network that is commercially available comes from
Sprint and Clearwire. Other major producers are testing competing 4G
networks around the country and hope to start limited rollouts late in
Sprint and Clearwire backed WiMAX for their 4G technology while all
other major providers like AT&T and Verizon are backing LTE for 4G. The
only benefit of WiMAX over LTE is that WiMAX was faster to market.
Sprint and Clearwire offer WiMAX in a number of large cities around the
country and the two companies are rolling out coverage to more cities
all the time.
Five new WiMAX markets came online in November 2009 including Chicago,
Dallas-Fort Worth, and three North Carolina markets. The big catch so
far for the 4G covered areas is that connectivity has been limited to
USB modems for computers and no mobile phone supporting 4G have been
offered. Sprint has said the devices were coming, but so far, none have
Forbes reports that Sprint has now announced new 4G compatible handsets
will be coming sooner than previously believed. The new handsets are
said to be launching in the first half of 2010, which is a few months
earlier than previously expected. The handsets will be dual-mode phones
capable of operating on the limited availability 4G network and on the
Sprint 3G network in other areas.
Sprint is counting on the new 4G phones to help it grow and gain on
major rivals like Verizon. Sprint has been hemorrhaging subscribers
badly and losing market share to both AT&T and Verizon as customers
leave the Sprint network in droves. Sprint CEO Dan Hesse says that 2010
is the year of 4G and Sprint is working with manufactures to embed 4G
into a number of devices.
There is no word at this time what company will be making 4G handsets
Android Dominates, Windows Mobile Plummets, iPhone Stagnant
The results are in from comScore for the most recent quarter for
smartphone usage in the United States. With smartphone use up 18 percent
over the previous quarter, topping 42 million users, Google's Android
mobile operating system stands out as the dominant winner for this
The smartphone statistics from this quarter demonstrate that the
smartphone is still viewed primarily as a business tool rather than a
consumer toy. Businesses and business professionals continue to embrace
BlackBerry and Android devices, in all of their many shapes and forms,
over the Apple iPhone.
Verizon's massive marketing effort leading to the launch of the Motorola
Droid, and Google's major media attention for the introduction of the
Nexus One appear to have paid off. Android more than doubled its market
share over the previous quarter--jumping more than 250 percent from 2.8
percent of the U.S. smartphone market to 7.1 percent.
Apparently, much of that market share increase came at Microsoft's
expense. Microsoft finally unveiled the next generation Windows Phone 7
platform, but that hasn't helped stop the bleeding for the current
Windows Mobile devices. In fact, the lack of a path to upgrade current
devices to the new Windows Phone 7 operating system when it arrives, and
the lack of backward compatibility to run current Windows Mobile apps
probably mean Microsoft can expect sharp losses in the next quarter as
... Apple may have reached a saturation point when it comes to consumer
adoption of a smartphone device.
Research in Motion's Blackberries have extended their lead over Apple's
iPhone as the top smartphone platform in the US.
During the same period - December 2009 through February 2010 - Google's
Android platform saw a surge of nearly 140 per cent to 9 per cent
overall, while Palm's share dove 25 per cent, down to 5.4 per cent.
Microsoft's mobile presence is not doing so hot, either, with a dip of
over 20 per cent to 15.1 per cent.
GSM iPhone May Be Going To Canada
Canadian carrier SaskTel is switching to GSM and building its 3G network
and says it's ready for Apple's next-gen iPhone.
Now that the reports and hoopla surrounding the iPad has died down,
there is scuttlebutt that an iPhone under development will be offered
for sale in northern Canada by Saskatchewan's SaskTel.
The interesting angle here is that SaskTel is moving from CDMA
infrastructure -- used by Verizon Wireless, for instance -- to a network
based on GSM, used by AT&T, for instance.
Several months ago, the Wall Street Journal quoted Verizon chairman and
CEO Ivan Seidenberg as saying: "Apple never had any intention of making
a CDMA" iPhone. At the time a miffed Seidenberg indicated that he
thought Apple's negotiations were meant to increase its negotiation
muscle over AT&T, which, of course, gained exclusive US rights...
[Directly contradicts silly claims by SMS, VerizonFanboi Steven Scharf.]
Nonsense, both from Navas and that article. iPhone in no way is hastening
the death of CDMA 2000. Nor did SaskTel say that they are deploying a GSM
Rather, the fact that just about every carrier is using LTE instead of
WiMax for 4G means that the Qualcomm-controlled fork of CDMA is dying.
GSM is dead, and was killed by CDMA. Nobody is deploying new GSM any
more. GSM is an archaic TDMA 2G system. Good bye and good riddance.
All 3G is CDMA based, whether UMTS (which the GSM world adopted) or EV-DO
(which the CDMA 2000 world adopted). The Canadian CDMA carriers are doing
dual UMTS/EV-DO 3G transition strategies (although clearly the push is for
UMTS). Telus has been well underway on this for months now, and
duplicating their CDMA footprint with UMTS (not GSM/UMTS).
Verizon is doing their transition at 4G, and presumably will duplicate
their CDMA footwith with LTE. What remains to be seen is if Verizon will
have dual mode CDMA/LTE phones, or force their customers to choose between
incompatible networks as the Canadian carriers are doing.
Verizon already has phones which are tri-mode CDMA/GSM/UMTS. I suspect
that they will offer CDMA/LTE and CDMA/GSM/UMTS/LTE phones.
Since 3G and 4G is all CDMA based, there is no longer any good reason to
have two incompatible system. Preserving Qualcomm's control does not
constitute a good reason. Hence death to WiMax.
iPhone already support UMTS, and has for the past two versions. A Verizon
iPhone would almost certainly be an LTE device. At this stage of the
game, it is crazy for Apple to produce an CDMA iPhone for the short period
of time before LTE networks are deployed.
-- Mark --
is two wolves and a sheep deciding what to eat for lunch.
Liberty is a well-armed sheep contesting the vote.
This is true. LTE is going to be deployed by Verizon in months (or even
weeks). But CDMA/LTE devices are a certainty, as it will take LTE at
least another year to be deployed at all of Verizon's cell sites. They
want to roll LTE out quickly because they made the decision to stop
upgrading their CDMA2000 network in terms of speed, while AT&T has been
upgrading their W-CDMA network as a stop-gap measure until they can roll
out LTE. This has given AT&T a speed advantage in the interim.
AT&T has already said that they're going to try to accelerate their LTE
rollout, trying to be only one year behind Verizon, rather than the two
years behind that they originally projected, but Verizon can gain a lot
of speed-sensitive customers in that one year.
Apple's iPhone is the Nick Clegg of smartphones: attractive,
media-savvy, and firmly in third place when matched up against its
The top worldwide smartphone manufacturer - by a hefty margin - remains
neither Apple nor Research in Motion but Nokia, according to the IDC's
latest Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker report.
Well, to be completely accurate, the report surveyed what IDC insists on
calling "converged mobile devices," but what every other sentient being
on the planet calls smartphones.
In a nutshell, the report places Nokia's worldwide smartphone market
share at 39.3 per cent, RIM's at 19.4, and Apple's at 16.1, all for the
first calendar quarter of 2010. These numbers differ somewhat from those
announced last week by Strategy Analytics, but not enough to cause
cheering in Cupertino or weeping in Espoo, Finland.
Whether you root for Google or Apple, it's a heck of a horse race as
Android beat the iPhone in first quarter U.S. sales, according to the
Android sales accounted for 28 percent of smartphone sales last quarter,
NPD reports. That puts Android ahead of the iPhone's 21 percent, and
within striking distance of Research in Motion's BlackBerry, which took
It's worth noting that while Android had a great quarter, it still lags
behind RIM, Apple and even Windows Mobile for total market share,
according to recent statistics from ComScore. Google's operating system
had 9 percent of the market as of February 2010, compared with the
iPhone's 25.4 percent, so Android won't catch up for a while, if at all.
Still, as my colleague JR Raphael noted when ComScore reported its
numbers, Android's growth is striking. Not only did Android outsell the
iPhone, but it's the only smartphone OS whose unit share grew since the
previous quarter. The iPhone, meanwhile, is flat, while Windows Mobile,
BlackBerry and WebOS quarterly sales share is in decline. If this trend
continues, Android will catch up to its competitors for total market
share in a hurry.
"It looks like Android is going to be either the number one or number
two player," the executive told the crowd.
Schmidt also suggested that his estimate "might be quite low," according
to "the blogosphere." At present, there are 34 different smartphones
running the OS in 49 countries.
Better display, more RAM, bigger battery
Apple is betting big that its upcoming - and noticeably improved -
iPhone 4G will be an instant worldwide hit, according to a report citing
Taiwanese parts suppliers.
Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo at DigiTimes says that Cupertino has ordered 24
million units for this year alone from its Chinese assembler, Foxconn.
Kuo also provided more details on the increasingly not-so-secret phone,
expected to be revealed on the opening day of Apple's upcoming Worldwide
Developer Conference, which runs from June 7 through 11.
Foxconn, according to the DigiTimes report, is front-loading the
shipments with 4.5 million units to be delivered in the first half of
the year, with the remaining 19.5 due during the following six months.
These numbers are aggressive, but not unreasonable. According to its
most recent Form 10-Q filing (PDF) with the US Securities and Exchange
Commission, Apple sold 8.75 million iPhones worldwide in the quarter
ending March 27, and 17.5 million for the six-month period ending that