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John C. Tanner

January 30, 2015

ITEM: Telstra is reportedly replacing its “T-Box” set-top box with a cheaper box that customers can use to access streaming Internet video services – as long as they aren’t Netflix or Stan.

Telstra has been planning to drop the T-Box – which functions as an IPTV set-top box and PVR – since last year, but has been mum about its replacement. According to the Australian Financial Review, citing unnamed sources, Telstra is going with a low-cost box with no internal hard drive, and will mainly be used for on-demand streaming.

In addition to free-to-air channels and BigPond... MORE

January 21, 2015

ITEM: Not content to be in the streaming movie business, Amazon says it will be getting into the streaming movie production business. 

Amazon Studios announced earlier this week that starting this year, it will start producing and acquiring original movies for theatrical release. More interesting, however, is the fact that the same plan includes a shortened distribution window to bring the same films to its SVOD service, Amazon Prime Instant Video.

That means theatrical films produced by Amazon Studios – which already produces television series such as Transparent – will be... MORE

January 15, 2015

ITEM: 4G coverage doesn't mean a thing if the signal quality sucks – and both cellcos and regulators need to keep that benchmark in mind when making decisions about spectrum.

So says Caroline Gabriel, research director of Rethink Research, in a blog post about comments made by Vodafone UK CEO Jeroen Hoencamp that QoS – not ubiquitous coverage or the fastest data speed – is the most important metric to customers.

In an interview posted on Vodafone’s corporate blog site, Hoencamp said that speed will only get you so far in the mobile broadband business, because “the reality... MORE

January 15, 2015

ITEM: ETSI’s Network Functions Virtualisation (NFV) Industry Specification Group (ISG) says it has successfully completed Phase 1 of its work with the publication of 11 specifications.

According to a statement from ETSI, the new specs build on the first batch of ISG documents published in October 2013 and include “an infrastructure overview, an updated architectural framework, and descriptions of the compute, hypervisor and network domains of the infrastructure.”

The specs also cover management and orchestration, security and trust, resilience and service quality metrics.... MORE

January 13, 2015

ITEM: Consumer groups in Australia are pushing for cellcos to adopt a new rollover model that allows mobile users to carry over unused data in their bucket plans to the following month and beyond.

The demands follow recent announcements in the US from cellcos offering such plans. 

In December, US cellco T-Mobile announced a new offering called “Data Stash” as part of its ongoing “Uncarrier” strategy that allows users to carry over any unused data from their monthly plans to the next month for up to a year (provided your data plan is at least 3GB, and provided you don't have... MORE

January 05, 2015

ITEM: The next few years could see a lot of FTTH activity in Asia-Pacific – not as a residential broadband play, but as a mobile backhaul strategy.

That’s according to Ovum principal analyst Julie Kunstler, who says that while mobile broadband may be the sexy access technology of choice, wireline broadband is far from dead – at least when you look at wireline broadband access equipment revenues ( which covers FTTx PON, DSL and CMTS), which rebounded last year globally after a fairly steady decline over the last couple of years.

Part of that is due to the growing number of... MORE

December 15, 2014

Your new favorite Internet Of Things standards initiative:

Google launched a research program on Friday called the “Open Web Of Things”, which aims to develop open standards related to IoT that not only facilitate ease of use, but also ensure that privacy and security measures are crucial components of all IoT work going forward.

From the blog post by Vint Cerf (Google’s Chief Internet Evangelist), Roy Want and Max Senges (of Google Research):

While the Internet of Things (IoT) conjures a vision of “anytime, any place” connectivity for all things, the realization... MORE

November 28, 2014

It’s been two and a half years since Google first unveiled Google Glass, its project to create glasses that serve as an augmented-reality display for mobile users. Since then, not much has happened. The company has offered actual Google Glasses to beta users for $1,500 a pop. Reviews from the users were mixed, and reviews from non-users encountering Glass users were decidedly negative.

Now, with Reuters reporting that a number of apps developers (including Twitter) have given up on Google Glass, there is talk about whether it’s time for Google to pull the plug on the project – or... MORE