THE WRAP: The Facebook phone, the BlackPad tablet

This week brought the great Facebook phone mystery, as the tablet market warmed up.
 
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg denied reports it is making an own-brand phone, but confirmed it was working closely with handset firms on making Facebook-friendly devices and software.
 
RIM is planning a tablet – dubbed the “BlackPad” by some staff - using an OS from new subsidiary QNX. Insiders say the device could be unveiled at the RIM developers’ conference next week.
 
Dell CEO Michael Dell announced plans to start shipping a seven-inch tablet device early next year.
 
LGE became the second handset firm in a week to dump its CEO ejecting Nam Yong in favor of a member of the founding family.
 
As new CEO Stephen Elop moved into the corner office, Nokia announced a delay in shipping its top-end N8 phone.
 
Deutsche Telekom’s German boss Niek Jan van Damme and Telenet chief Duco Sickinghe were hotly tipped to replace Ad Scheepbouwer as KPN’s CEO when he retires in 2011.
 
The EU pumped €10 million into WEBINOS, a web apps project backed by telcos, car makers and equipment vendors
 
MetroPCS launched the first US LTE network, prompting AT&T to bring forward its LTE launch by a year to mid-2011.
 
The next iPhone will be LTE and use Qualcomm chips, an analyst predicted.
 
Telkomsel signed ZTE to supply LTE gear for a trial.
 
 
The US FCC approved the release of unused or “white space” broadcasting spectrum for wireless broadband.
 
While the world’s fixed-line broadband population passed 500 million, the ITU warned that high prices were stymieing growth in developing countries.
 
Telstra began testing services over the first stage of the all-fiber NBN.
 
France Telecom acquired 40% of Meditel, and Vodafone mulled selling its SFR stake to Vivendi.
 
Huawei broke the 700 Mbps barrier in a DSL demonstration and said it would open its new $500 million (€374 million) India plant by year-end.
 
Bharti Airtel contracted out the back-end of its new African operations to IBM in a deal worth as much as $1.3 billion. IBM laid out $1.7 billion for real-time analytics firm Netezza.
 
Apple again topped the J.D. Power smartphone satisfaction survey, beating Motorola and HTC.
 
The EC unveiled plans to auction off digital dividend spectrum within two years, and gave regulators new powers it hopes will boost investment in fiber.
 
Austria raised €39.5 billion in an auction of 2.6GHz spectrum.
 
Over half of Chinese mobile users are downloading apps to their phone – more than double the number in Western Europe.
 
Nokia and AT&T launched a $10 million developers contest for apps for North American consumers.
 
Talking or texting drivers were responsible for 16,000 deaths on US roads from 2001 to 2007, according to medical researchers.
 
And a 17-year-old Australian high school student created a flap after exposing a Twitter flaw that allowed users to take over other people’s accounts.

MORE ARTICLES ON: Apple,  AT&T,  Dell,  Facebook,  Huawei,  LG Electronics,  LightSquared,  Nokia,  RIM,  SK Telecom,  Tablet PCs,  ZTE

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