wireless industry

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Wireless Group: Radiation Warnings Will 'Stoke Fear'

Industry association says Berkeley's cellphone warning violates First Amendment

(Newser) - Last month, the city council in Berkeley, Calif., unanimously approved a measure that would require all cellphones sold within the city to come with a warning notice that informs consumers about radiation exposure. But a wireless industry trade group is now suing the city, saying that the warning violates sellers'... More »

T-Mobile: Join and We'll Pay Your Termination Fees

New users can get up to $650 in credit

(Newser) - Wireless carriers know it can be a pricey headache to switch from one provider to another—and T-Mobile is hoping to get a leg up on its competitors by covering those costs, the New York Times reports. Engadget explains the process, for which customers of AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint... More »

NSA Able to Decode Most Calls, Texts Worldwide

Washington Post unveils latest Snowden material

(Newser) - The NSA is capable of breaking the encryption used on most phone calls and text messages worldwide, the latest Edward Snowden leak shows, though it's not certain how often the agency actually does it. Under US law, the NSA can't eavesdrop on citizens' conversations without a court order.... More »

Samsung: 5G Downloads Movies in 1 Second

But we may not see it until 2020

(Newser) - Samsung has wireless technology in the works that will let users download an entire movie in a second, it says. In tests, the South Korean company's 5G service worked over a distance of more than a mile, AFP reports via Business Insider . Data traveled at more than a gigabyte... More »

T-Mobile Eliminates Contracts

But company's new wireless plan also nixes phone subsidies

(Newser) - T-Mobile is ditching a once-inescapable part of wireless life: the contract. The company had been offering contract-free plans as an option alongside two-year contracts, CNET reports; now, according to the T-Mobile website , contract plans are a thing of the past. An example of a new plan: For $50 a month,... More »

Petition Gets Obama to Back Unlocking Cell Phones

FCC backs legal unlocking, too

(Newser) - It now takes 100,000 signatures to get an official White House response to a We the People petition—and angry cell phone users got more than 114,000 after it became illegal to unlock your cell phone on Jan. 26. That's the day the Librarian of Congress ruled... More »

Government to Auction Off Public Airwaves

Payroll tax compromise could lead to faster wireless speeds

(Newser) - Congress is expected to approve a bill that would sell off public airwaves currently used for television to wireless Internet companies, speeding up broadband for mobile devices across the country, while at the same time creating a long-sought-after national communications network for emergency services. What is this revolutionary communications bill?... More »

AT&T, T-Mobile Withdraw Merger Bid (for Now)

They yank application from FCC but haven't given up on the deal

(Newser) - AT&T and T-Mobile have unexpectedly withdrawn their merger application from FCC consideration. While the move hints at trouble for the $39 billion deal, the companies say they’re not giving up, Politico reports. Instead, they’ll focus on getting approval from the Justice Department—either by winning an antitrust... More »

How Wireless Companies Rip You Off

...and what the FCC can do about it

(Newser) - Wireless carriers call for minimum regulations on their industry, claiming their market is competitive. But with consumers bound by two-year contracts, it’s easy for companies like Verizon and AT&T to take advantage. It’s time for the FCC to get serious about protecting wireless users, the editors of... More »

AT&T, T-Mobile Merger Bad News for Consumers

The consensus: 'Ma Bell is back'

(Newser) - Reactions to the surprise AT&T-T-mobile merger are pouring in, and, not surprisingly, most conclude this isn't a good thing for consumers:
  • The Bell telephone system—"aka AT&T"—was broken up in 1984 to increase competition, and the US telecommunications market was deregulated in 1996, again to
... More »

Why Google Phone Won't Be a Game Changer

Platform-exclusive features just aren't in the company's DNA

(Newser) - The Google phone, Nexus One, “is a real looker” and probably runs a great version of Android, Farhad Manjoo writes, but all the breathless predictions about its revolutionary impact on the market ignore the core principles of the company that makes it. First off, “Google doesn’t care... More »

Verizon Unveils Droid Smartphone

All looks promising, but some think OS is still no match for iPhone

(Newser) - Verizon's Droid smartphone—built by Motorola and powered by Google's Android—goes on sale Nov. 6 for $200. Some early opinions on the iPhone challenger:
  • The phone is "almost not worth writing about," notes Chris Dannen in Fast Company . It's "fine" but "doesn't advance" the Android
... More »

Court Backs Cell-Tower Haters

Aesthetics a valid reason for town to deny permission, Calif. judges say

(Newser) - Ghastly cell towers are proving to be little match for vista-loving communities: Palos Verdes Estates, a wealthy enclave near Los Angeles, took Sprint to court over proposed towers—and won, as have a number of other California towns. “You want cell coverage, but you also want beauty,” a... More »

Google, Verizon Team Up on Smartphones

Move to Android seen as real challenge to iPhone, BlackBerry

(Newser) - Google and Verizon will partner on a line of smartphones and software running the search giant’s Android OS and served by the carrier. Verizon is the largest-yet wireless network to back Google, and the announcement could complicate what was once a simple smartphone rivalry between Apple and BlackBerry, BusinessWeek... More »

Great Network Won't Make Up for Boring Phones

Verizon has reach, but is way behind on sexy smartphones

(Newser) - Verizon’s network may be the envy of its peers, but its smart phones definitely aren’t, writes Priya Ganapati. Caught off guard by the iPhone phenomenon, the carrier has taken a very cautious approach to new devices, subjecting them to a long testing process. As a result, while its... More »

As Telecoms Hype 4G, Recall How Long 3G Was in Coming

(Newser) - 3G landed in the US in 2003. But it wasn’t until the iPhone came around five years later that “consumers finally had a device that showed them the power of mobile broadband networks,” Stephanie N. Mehta writes in Fortune. In fact, "a few executives at US... More »

Radio Shack Ditches 'Radio' to Become ... 'The Shack'

(Newser) - From all accounts, Radio Shack is set to rebrand itself “The Shack,” Joshua Topolsky writes for Engadget. “It makes perfect sense—radios aren’t exactly considered cutting edge these days,” Topolsky writes, and “the store is about to launch a full assault on the mobile... More »

Google Voice Worth More Than Beloved iPhone

(Newser) - Apple and AT&T rejected the Google Voice app for the iPhone, driving TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington to drop the mobile device entirely. Why are Apple and its carrier blocking an innovative program that has amazing call-forwarding features and transcribes voicemail into text? “Because they absolutely don’t want... More »

Prepaid Cell Phones Are New Frugal Chic

Pay-as-you-go replaces contracts as consumers cut spending

(Newser) - More customers are turning to Tony Soprano-style, pay-as-you-go cell phones, and not just to avoid wiretaps. As the recession forces consumers to cut costs, all-inclusive prepaid plans are the new frugal option, reports the New York Times. "In today’s economy, it’s not cool to pay $120 a... More »

Sprint Nextel to Cut 8K Jobs

3rd-largest wireless outfit has lost millions of subscribers

(Newser) - Sprint Nextel is eliminating about 8,000 positions in the first quarter as it seeks to cut annual costs by $1.2 billion. The third-largest US wireless provider said it will complete the layoffs, about 14% of its 56,000 employees, largely by March 31. About 850 of the reductions... More »

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