News

Have a safe and happy Memorial Day weekend

FierceWireless will not publish Monday in observance of Memorial Day. We wish you a safe and happy holiday weekend, and we'll be back in your inbox with all the important news in wireless...

Support for encryption legislation wanes following Apple's standoff with authorities

An effort to propose a law creating a "back door" enabling law-enforcement agencies to access data on encrypted devices is dead, according to Reuters.

Google wins Java copyright case over Oracle on fair use grounds

A federal jury found that Google's use of Oracle's Java programming language in Android didn't violate copyright law, claiming the fair use doctrine enabled Google to build compatible software without obtaining a license. But the case is likely far from over.

National Institutes of Health study finds link between mobile phones and cancer

A $25 million study by federal scientists uncovered a link between cellphones and cancer in rats, reigniting a longstanding debate over the health effects of the use of mobile devices.

Jolla's Sailfish stays afloat with new Jolla C phone, 'community device' developer program

Jolla introduced a new handset and announced a new "community device program" in an effort to boost developer support for its Sailfish OS. But whether the Finnish company can actually gain a foothold in the mobile world is still far from clear.

CTIA: Proposed privacy rules would harm competition, violate the First Amendment

CTIA struck back against the FCC's proposed privacy rules for Internet service providers -- including mobile network operators -- saying the Commission is overstepping its bounds and considering regulations that are "overbroad and harmful."

UBS: 'A potential storm is brewing' as AT&T, Verizon and others gear up for heated Q4

The first quarter saw more of the same mixed results in the U.S. wireless industry as handset upgrade rates reached an all-time low and subscriber growth slowed while profitability and margins topped records set just two quarters ago, UBS said in a research note.

Indoor deployments to be key as 5G bridges wireless and wireline

Just as the term "mobile" generally refers to on-the-go connectivity, discussions about 5G often focus on faster and more reliable services for users as they move from place to place. But speakers at the Wireless Infrastructure Show this week reminded me not to dismiss the importance of indoor usage as carriers prepare to enter the 5G era.

Cellular gears up to take on proprietary tech in the IoT: Explaining LTE Cat M, Cat 1 and Cat 0

Players such as Sigfox, Ingenu and the LoRa Alliance are rushing to meet those demands with low power wide area network (LPWAN) technologies, taking advantage of a head start as standards for cellular-based IoT offerings are finalized. As those cellular technologies begin to come to market, though, the two sides will battle to provide connectivity for everything from autonomous cars to industrial components to sensors in agricultural fields.

Moody's: U.S. carriers could rack up $55B in outstanding EIP loans

The move toward equipment installment plans (EIPs) could generate a total net outstanding balance of consumer loans of $55 billion across the four major U.S. carriers, Moody's analysts wrote this week. And while carriers who adopted EIPs early "have already addressed the majority of their shortfall," the loans don't incur interest and could actually end up costing operating money.

Wells Fargo: Tensions between carriers and tower companies 'at an all-time high'

The tension between U.S. carriers and tower companies is "at an all-time high," according Jennifer Fritzsche of Wells Fargo Securities, as operators continue to try drive down macrocell pricing.

IBM's Rod Smith: Voice is the key to 'conversational commerce'

DALLAS -- Consumers and businesspeople are increasingly looking to access information quickly, on the go, and from specific devices. And according to Rod Smith, IBM's vice president of emerging internet technologies, voice is how they want to ask for it.

T-Mobile's $420M price tag for Chicago's 700 MHz may not point to 600 MHz auction values: analysts

T-Mobile reportedly will pay $420 million for 12 MHz of 700 MHz A Block spectrum in Chicago -- far more than the $250 million to $300 million UBS valued it at -- despite the fact that T-Mobile was the only legitimate prospective bidder for those airwaves. But whether that transaction is a harbinger of bidding in the upcoming incentive auction of 600 MHz airwaves is still anyone's guess.

Lowenstein's View: What should cellular, pay TV and broadband services cost?

A familiar refrain among consumers is that cellular, pay TV, and broadband are overpriced. But if you take a look at the cost of providing some of these services, plot them against demand and usage patterns, and consider some of the unique aspects of the North America market and geography, a different picture emerges. So here's my take, in terms of what looks reasonable from the perspective of the consumer, and service providers' requirement to operate a viable business.

AT&T reportedly bidding against Verizon for Yahoo

AT&T has submitted a bid for Yahoo and remains active in the auction of Yahoo's core internet business, according to a new report from Bloomberg. AT&T's interest in Yahoo puts the company directly into competition with Verizon, which is also reportedly bidding on Yahoo's business and reportedly remains the frontrunner.

Microsoft to cut 1,850 jobs in further retreat from smartphones

Microsoft today announced it will cut up to 1,350 jobs in Finland and up to 500 jobs globally as part of its further withdrawal from the smartphone business. The company said it would record an impairment and restructuring charge of around $950 million related to the move, of which it said $200 million would relate to severance payments.

T-Mobile eases into IoT through Twilio's new Programmable Wireless service for developers

T-Mobile US will power a new service from startup Twilio called Programmable Wireless that essentially gives developers the ability to control the operation of voice, texting and data on Twilio's T-Mobile-powered SIM cards. The SIM cards can be installed on phones or into IoT-style sensors and gadgets.

Sprint CFO: We will lease some spectrum assets via 'spectrum leaseco' within next several months

Sprint's CFO said the carrier is working on a financial arrangement where it will sell the rights to some of its spectrum licenses to an unnamed entity that will then lease those rights back to Sprint. Sprint's Tarek Robbiati said the company expects to finalize the money-raising effort within the coming months.

AT&T: Transition to SDN 'changing relationships' among vendors

AT&T is transitioning to software-defined networks (SDN) perhaps more aggressively than any other U.S. operator. And Susan Johnson, the operator's senior vice president of global supply chain, said Tuesday that transition provides a way for AT&T to increase the number of vendors with which it does business.

Wang: Wireless carriers ready to capitalize on virtual reality

Last week, Google announced the Daydream Android VR Platform at its annual Google I/O developers conference, naming eight Android device manufacturer partners who have committed to offering "Daydream Ready" smartphones. If Google Cardboard represented the company dipping a toe into VR's waters, Daydream is Google making the splash the industry has been waiting for. Of course, it is not alone. Virtually every major tech company, including most of the big device manufacturers, are making a VR play too. We're seeing new equipment, more content deals, emerging ecosystems - and it's still only the beginning.