Virgin Media to Add 1 Million FTTH Connections; BT to Add 2 Million

Virgin Media, owned by Liberty Global has said it will use fiber to home to connect about a million U.K. homes by 2019. That is historically unusual, as cable operators have insisted loudly that the hybrid fiber coax network is extensible enough to underpin the business. The Virgin Media decision is a rather major step towards use of a physical media platform suggesting Virgin sees an end to HFC as a market-leading platform. To be sure, there is a key difference between the protocols telcos normally run when deploying FTTH and what Virgin Media will do.

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Virgin Media to Add 1 Million FTTH Connections; BT to Add 2 Million

Virgin Media Access Upgrades Illustrates Principle That Apps Matter More than Access Method

In the broader Internet ecosystem or the “telecommunications” business, it ultimately is the apps that matter, and less the details of infrastructure. Consider the way Virgin Media plans to upgrade access to 17 million U.K. households by 2019. At least a quarter of the four million locations to be upgraded as part of Project Lightning will be connected using fiber to the home platforms, rather than the traditional hybrid fiber coax platform

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Virgin Media Access Upgrades Illustrates Principle That Apps Matter More than Access Method

Can 5G Fix Profit Per Bit Per Hertz Problem?

Mobile operators have faced a rather persistent problem where it comes to profit margins on Internet access services. Simply, revenue generation has lagged consumption. Is that the sort of problem fifth generation networks can solve? In some ways, yes.

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Can 5G Fix Profit Per Bit Per Hertz Problem?

After TV White Spaces, Now Citizens Broadband Radio Service

The Federal Communications Commission has voted to approve a historic spectrum sharing plan in the 3.55 to 3.7 GHz band, creating at new 150-MHz block of spectrum available for shared use by licensed government users as well as commercial entities expected to include mobile service providers, Internet app and service providers. The plan is the second major initiative undertaken by the Commission to support shared access to spectrum by commercial and government users. The TV White Spaces initiative was the first to use spectrum sensing techniques to avoid interference between licensed users and occupants of TV White Spaces bands. But the new Citizens Broadband Radio Service is the first ever to use a single block of spectrum to support multiple classes of users. That is important for a number of reasons, not least of which is that it speeds the process of commercializing more Internet and mobile spectrum, at vastly lower cost than the older method of clearing existing users and relocating them elsewhere.

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After TV White Spaces, Now Citizens Broadband Radio Service

70% Improvement in Mobile Network App Performance is Possible,Study Finds

Mobile networks can be optimized for app performance, a test by XL Axiata, Ericsson and Facebook has found. The resultant optimizations improved app coverage by up to 70 percent, according to Internet.org. The number of connections completed within three seconds improved up to 70 percent. Time to content improved up to 70 percent and upload time improved up to 50 percent. In the radio access network, problems were found with parameter settings and capacity bottlenecks.

Citizens Broadband Radio Service faces hurdles at FCC

An FCC plan to use spectrum-sharing techniques to open up the 3.5 GHz band for wireless broadband use–the Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS)–is encountering concerns that it might have unintended ramifications in the United States as well as globally based on ground-breaking efforts to use complicated spectrum-sharing techniques to free up the targeted spectrum.

Content Consumption Has Shifted to Mobile Devices

Mobile devices now are the dominant content-consumption devices, in terms of “time spent,” surpassing personal computers. Mobile platforms, including both smartphones and tablets, represented 60 percent of total digital media time, up from 50 percent in 2013. Several key content categories have shifted almost exclusively to mobile. Digital Radio, led by category leader Pandora now generates more than 96 percent of its total engagement from mobile devices.

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Content Consumption Has Shifted to Mobile Devices

How Important is Ownership of Mobile Access Assets?

Bharti Airtel, India’s largest telecom company by market capitalization and revenues, has entered into an infrastructure sharing deal with the telecom arm of Reliance Industries. . The deal will give Reliance Jio pan-India access to Bharti’s nationwide tower and radio infrastructure while giving Bharti access to the optical fiber backhaul capacity created by Jio in the future. In April of 2013, the two fierce competitors had signed an agreement under which Bharti provided capacity on its i2i submarine cable to Reliance Jio. The companies said the deal preserves capital and avoids duplication of investment. Bharti will gain lease revenue while Reliance Jio gets to market faster

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How Important is Ownership of Mobile Access Assets?

First Passive Infrastructure Sharing; Then Active Element Sharing, Now Shared 4G LTE Spectrum Sharing?

It has been clear for some time that ownership of mobile cell sites is not necessarily “strategic” for a mobile service provider. Carriers often lease space on towers owned by third parties, sharing those sites with rivals. In India and some markets in Africa, mobile service providers agree to share the cost of tower facilities. Some service providers outsource actual operations of their radio networks as well.

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First Passive Infrastructure Sharing; Then Active Element Sharing, Now Shared 4G LTE Spectrum Sharing?

First Passive Infrastructure Sharing; Then Active Element Sharing, Now Shared 4G LTE Spectrum Sharing?

It has been clear for some time that ownership of mobile cell sites is not necessarily “strategic” for a mobile service provider. Carriers often lease space on towers owned by third parties, sharing those sites with rivals. In India and some markets in Africa, mobile service providers agree to share the cost of tower facilities. Some service providers outsource actual operations of their radio networks as well.

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First Passive Infrastructure Sharing; Then Active Element Sharing, Now Shared 4G LTE Spectrum Sharing?

Walmart Drops Price of Apple iPhone 5c to $45 With 2-Year Contract

Walmart originally had priced the Apple iPhone 5c at $79 with a service contract. Now Walmart has dropped the price of the Apple

Does Wireless Charging Cause RF Interference?

USB-based device chargers can create noise that interferes with touchscreen operation especially when the chargers omit noise suppression features. So with the advent of wireless charging, one wonders whether noise will be added to the communication channels used by Wi-Fi or Bluetooth devices. It appears that such corded charging creates noise in the 100 kHz to 1 MHz range, and should therefore not cause problems with Wi-Fi or Bluetooth devices. But what about wireless charging

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Does Wireless Charging Cause RF Interference?

Google Project Loon (Internet by Balloon) Continues Testing

Project Loon

Google Project Loon (Internet by Balloon) Continues Testing

Project Loon

Apple to Launch iTunes Radio

Apple is launching “ iTunes Radio ,” a free Internet radio service featuring over 200 stations and an incredible catalog of music from the iTunes Store, available in the fall of 2013. “Featured Stations” curated by Apple and genre-focused stations that are personalized will evolve based on the music users play and download. To begin with, iTunes Radio will base its personalization experience on user listening history and past purchases from iTunes. In addition, if you’re listening to a song you like from iTunes Radio or your music library you will be able to have a station built around those songs. Users will be able to create and customize stations based on artists, songs, or genres.

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Apple to Launch iTunes Radio

AT&T West employees threaten strike amidst negotiations

Wireline employees of AT&T ( NYSE: T ) West in California and Nevada represented by the Communications Workers of America are still working–despite being unable to hash out a new labor agreement with the telco last week–as union leaders debate whether or not to strike. The two sides returned to the negotiating table on Monday, Southern California Public Radio reports, but the 18,000 workers and CWA leaders said they will decide on a day-to-day basis whether to strike. Last Thursday, AT&T West and the CWA were not able to ratify a three-year agreement . Earlier, AT&T struck a tentative agreement

AT&T West employees threaten strike amidst negotiations

Wireline employees of AT&T ( NYSE: T ) West in California and Nevada represented by the Communications Workers of America are still working–despite being unable to hash out a new labor agreement with the telco last week–as union leaders debate whether or not to strike. The two sides returned to the negotiating table on Monday, Southern California Public Radio reports, but the 18,000 workers and CWA leaders said they will decide on a day-to-day basis whether to strike. Last Thursday, AT&T West and the CWA were not able to ratify a three-year agreement . Earlier, AT&T struck a tentative agreement

Cablevision’s Jim Dolan faces challenges with dual Cablevision, MSG roles

Jim Dolan has a lot on his plate these days, serving as both the CEO of Cablevision ( NYSE: CVC ) and as chairman of Madison Square Garden, a company which owns the New York Knicks, the New York Rangers, Radio City Music Hall and MSG Network. During the Q4 2012 earnings call, financial analysts pressed Dolan about the conflicts that Dolan faces in running both companies. Steve Donohue, editor of FierceCable ,

U.K. LTE Auction: Disruptive or Not?

The U.K. Long Term Evolution spectrum auction is over, and the results might surprise some observers. Some had thought there would only be enough spectrum for three winners of the 800 MHz spectrum, a result that would have put one of the leading four U.K. service providers at a disadvantage.

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U.K. LTE Auction: Disruptive or Not?

Google to Test Small Cell Network?

For some who worry that Google might someday decide to become an ISP in a bigger way, using either mobile or fiber to the home approaches, here is one more development to stoke concern. Google filed an application at the Federal Communications Commission seeking permission to test an experimental radio system near its Mountain View, Calif. campus, using as many as 50 base stations and 200 end user devices. The base stations will be both indoors and outdoors, using a “small cell” design

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Google to Test Small Cell Network?

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