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December 13, 2012
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News for wireless telecommunications professionals

  Top Story 
  • FCC gives small cells a boost with spectrum-sharing proposal
    Federal regulators on Wednesday proposed rules to free up wireless spectrum by allowing commercial services to share a slice of 3.5 GHz frequencies held by the military -- a step designed to give a boost to small cell technology. The Federal Communications Commission issued a notice of proposed rulemaking in the matter, with Chairman Julius Genachowski saying, "This has enormous potential for the country." The FCC also proposed rules that would require carriers to allow subscribers to send text messages to 911 emergency centers by 2014 in an effort to codify steps voluntarily taken last week by the four major U.S. carriers. News Service (12/12), Total Telecom Magazine (U.K.)/Dow Jones Newswires (12/13), (12/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Company News 
  • Analysts urge Clearwire to take Sprint's reported buyout bid
    A number of analysts believe Clearwire would have no choice but to accept a $3-a-share takeover offer from Sprint Nextel, saying the wireless services provider could be worth a lot less in the future because of its continued losses and dwindling cash hoard. The partners are reportedly discussing such a move. "It's Sprint or nobody. They're losing money hand over fist. They're burning so much cash. At the end of the day, Clearwire's worth what Sprint's willing to pay for it," said Christopher King, an analyst at Stifel Financial. Bloomberg Businessweek (12/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Agency that defected to Apple will test new BlackBerry platform
    Research In Motion says the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, which had announced plans in October to abandon BlackBerrys for Apple's iPhone, plans to test RIM's new BlackBerry operating system and devices. RIM said Wednesday that the federal agency would also test BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10, or BES 10, which is a vehicle for companies and governments to operate the BB 10 smartphones on their networks. RIM is scheduled to unveil the platform Jan. 30. Reuters (12/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Mobile Marketing 
  • Maluuba debuts updated Android app to rival Siri
    An updated version of Maluuba's Siri-like mobile application for Android users has teamed with Wal-Mart and Best Buy to offer expanded shopping options. Users seeking specific product information will also have access to results from several other retailers, including Amazon, IKEA and Zappos. TechCrunch (12/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Google delivers Maps to iOS App Store
    Google finally delivered its mapping application to Apple's App Store on Wednesday evening, nearly three months after Apple substituted its now-controversial mapping software on the iPhone for Google Maps. The move means Google determined it was better off broadly distributing its app rather than trying to undermine Apple's poorly received maps. "They're more interested in owning the relationship with customers in any way they can," said Gartner analyst Carolina Milanesi. Google has not yet completed an iPad mapping app. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (12/12), The Wall Street Journal (12/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • MediaTek debuts quad-core SoC for high-end smartphones
    MediaTek has invaded the smartphone market by introducing its first quad-core system-on-a-chip processor designed for high-end handsets. The Taiwanese firm, which aims to compete with Qualcomm in the global market, asserted that the 28-nanometer MT6589 represents the first real quad-core SoC and the initial release of a chip that used ARM's Cortex A7 design. The Register (U.K.) (12/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Trends & Research 
  Public Policy 
  • GOP objects to FCC's move to dole out unlicensed spectrum
    House Republicans are unhappy with the Federal Communications Commission's plans to free up 12 MHz to 20 MHz of unlicensed spectrum. At a communications subcommittee hearing Wednesday, lawmakers said the FCC was "giving away" up to $19 billion that the government could reap in an auction. FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski defended the proposal by saying, "Unlicensed spectrum has a powerful record of driving innovation, investment and economic growth -- hundreds of billions of dollars of value creation for our economy and consumers." The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (12/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  CTIA News 
  • Americans used 104% more wireless data
    Americans used more than 1.1 trillion megabytes (MB) of data from July 2011 to June 2012, which was an increase of 104% over the previous 12 months, according to CTIA-The Wireless Association®'s semiannual survey. As of June, out of the almost 322 million wireless subscriber connections, smartphones made up 131 million (or 41%); tablets were 22 million (or 16.7%). In addition, there was an almost 10 percent increase from the previous year in prepaid users, from 68.4 million to 74.9 million, which is 23.3% of U.S. wireless subscribers. Even though many consumers are using more voice, data and text than ever before, the average monthly bill went down $0.07 to $47.16 per month. With these data-hungry users, the wireless industry's need for more spectrum to meet consumers' demands is irrefutable. Check out the semiannual survey. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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