13/04/2006

Digit news - May launch date set for Q1 ultra mobile PC

Digit news - May launch date set for Q1 ultra mobile PC

Samsung is launching the Q1 computer worldwide in May which is the first of the Microsoft "Origami" platform. It will have a Celeron running at 900MHz and a 40GB disk.

Don't bother and get an OQO instead !!!

Digit news - Popcorn 2 converts DVD video to iPod, PSP

Digit news - Popcorn 2 converts DVD video to iPod, PSP

Roxio the makers of Toast, have released Popcorn 2 which will copy DVD's to various formats. V2 adds the capability to directly convert to formats suitable for the PSP and iPod and 3GPP phones.

It wont copy "copy-protected" DVDs (i.e. commercial DVDs), but there are tools out there which will rip them, and then Popcorn can handle the Video_TS file which is created by them. It will also compress disks so a dual-layer disc will fit on to a single layer (obviously loosing quality).

It's available in Universal Binary format on MacOS X and costs £30 +VAT or £17 for an upgrade from a previus version.

Ofcom Website | Broadband – switching, migration and connection processes

Ofcom Website | Broadband – switching, migration and connection processes

Ofcom has launched an investigation into how well processes are working so customers can switch to and/or connect to other broadband providers.

Though broadband is a relatively new technology, more than 80,000 new customers per week are connecting to broadband services.

The investigation will work with internet service providers and Openreach to ensure all providers benefit from equal access to critical network infrastructure.

12/04/2006

Ofcom Website | The replicability of BT's regulated retail business services and the regulation of business retail markets

Ofcom Website | The replicability of BT's regulated retail business services and the regulation of business retail markets

BT want to be able to offer various bespoke (unpublished) prices to customers for various services as they say they can now be replicated by their competitors.

Ofcom have deemed that services like CPS (carrier pre select), WLR (wholesale line rental) and PPCs (partial private circuits) are not et replicable, but BT are moving towards a point where they will be. BT can work on each one indvidually rather than have to ensure all a compliant.

Though good for the consumer as BT can drop prices and offer mixes of services with various bundles, without close attention it's BT killing off the competition again.

Ofcom Website | Spectrum Usage Rights

Ofcom Website | Spectrum Usage Rights

Ofcom are holding a consultation on the liberalisation of spectrum usage rights. This means that where licenses have stipulated the use and technolog, this will no longer be the case.

Ofcom will still ensure that interference issues are kept to a minimum, but licensees may choose what they use the spectrum for and they also choose the technology to implement that use.

There is no fixed date on this as it is a mjor change to current licensing, but Ofcom are looking for interested parties to respond.

Ofcom Website | Wireless Telegraphy Act Licence Fee Proposals for encouraging internet licensing

Ofcom Website | Wireless Telegraphy Act Licence Fee Proposals for encouraging internet licensing

Ofcom is proposing to change the licensing for Amateur Radio, Ship Radio, Ship Portable Radio and Citizen's band radio such that if the license is obtained via the internet they are free for the lifetime of the license.

The Citizen's band license means that Ofcom will have to make exemptions regulations for equipment used in that band which will be covered in a seperate consultation (to be issued shortly).

Comments should be sent to Ofcom by 1th May 2006.

11/04/2006

Ofcom Website | Spectrum licence for mobile radio and public safety applications

Ofcom Website | Spectrum licence for mobile radio and public safety applications

Ofcom is going to offer spectrum in early 2007 in the paried band 872-876MHz and 917-921MHz (2x4MHz). There will be a single national license. The license is being offered for a minimum of 15 years, will cover the whole of the UK, will be technology and application neutral.

There will be a single round of sealed bids, the minimum price is £50,000.

The deadline for the consultation is 21st June 2006.

Ofcom Website | 1781.7-1785 MHz paired with 1876.7-1880 MHz

Ofcom Website | 1781.7-1785 MHz paired with 1876.7-1880 MHz:

Ofcom have released details on when sealed bids can be delivered is Thursday 20 April between 10:00 and 17:30.

The final list of approved bidders is: -

British Telecommunications PLC
Cable & Wireless UK (England)
COLT Mobile Telecommunications Ltd
Cyberpress Ltd
FMS Solutions Ltd
Mapesbury Communications Ltd
02 (UK) Ltd
Opal Telecom Ltd
Orange Personal Communications Services Ltd
PLDT (UK) Ltd
Shyam Telecom UK Ltd
Spring Mobil AB
Teleware PLC
Zynetix Ltd

Which makes 14 bidders for between 7 and 12 licenses. It's very possible the bigger players will put big sums in for bids, but only say for 7 or 8 and maybe much lower bids for 12 licenses.

Ofcom have a duty to maximise the use of the spectrum, but also generate revenue for the government. If the big bidders do only put large bids in for small numbers of licenses, they're likely to kill of smaller bids for all 12.

The smaller players would likely utilise the spectrum in more innovative ways.

Ofcom Website | Mobile Services on Aircraft

Ofcom Website | Mobile Services on Aircraft:

Ofcom has produced a paper on the Regulatory issues raised by allowing GSM in planes (utilising an in-plane microcell).

Some of the potential issues are: -

* the territorial jurisdiction of Ofcom and other National Regulatory Agencies over airborne systems;
* the legal status of the proposed Network Control Unit under the R&TTE Directive;
* the status of airborne services under the Authorisation Directive;
* the protection of other services from interference
* the regulation of the backhaul from aircraft to ground;
* the arrangements for managing the systems in the air;
* access to numbering resources;
* the range of technologies covered by the current European work."

There are potentially several licensing issues (like options of authorising such systems and who should authorise them).

Currently utilising the 1800MHz band is favoured.

Ofcom is loking for comments from stakeholders.