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It would be inappropriate to prevent mobile network Everything Everywhere from providing 4G LTE technology to UK customers, according to the network’s senior adviser, Kip Meek.

According to Three, one of Everything Everywhere’s rival networks, Everything Everywhere has the biggest (43 per cent) spectrum share in the market, while Vodafone (25 per cent), O2 (22 per cent) and Three (10 per cent) are lagging behind.

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This has allowed Everything Everywhere to apply to use its existing 2G spectrum to deliver 4G services, potentially by the end of the year, while other operators have to wait until the outcome of the 4G spectrum auction, which is also set to take place at the end of 2012.

Speaking at an event in Westminster this week, Meek said that when T-Mobile and Orange merged to create Everything Everywhere, it gave up a quarter of its spectrum and it would therefore be unfair for regulator Ofcom to stop the network launching 4G LTE technology this year.

“It would not be fair for Ofcom to say 4G should not be launched in the final quarter of 2012 and instead to be launched in the first quarter of 2013.

“In the interest of consumers, we are already behind globally in LTE technology and it would be inappropriate to deny customers the technology when it could be available,” he said.

The CEO of rival network Three, David Dyson, said that an early 4G launch for Everything Everywhere would give it an unfair advantage.

“If Everything Everywhere got their spectrum liberated, it would use it to its advantage. Customers would have to pay a reasonable premium for the service and it wouldn’t be a broad proposition but a niche one. This will give them marketing power,” he said.

Dyson believes that Ofcom should prevent Everything Everywhere from launching 4G before any of the other operators.

“They should not be able to use spectrum for 4G services. Ofcom should have waited until after the auction [to consider this]. A lot of spectrum should be available [to all operators] next year, which is when Everything Everywhere should be able to use 4G LTE technology,” he said.

Head of spectrum at Telefonica O2, Nicholas Blades, said O2 shared the concerns of Three but also had concerns about Three.

Blades questioned Dyson on reports that Three and Virgin Media had signed a contract to provide 4G services six months after Everything Everywhere.

Dyson said that there were on-going discussions taking place.

Earlier this month, Everything Everywhere submitted an application to Ofcom to use its existing 2G spectrum to deliver 4G services that give mobile networks a more efficient capacity at higher speeds.

At the time, Ofcom said that it had “provisionally concluded that [Everything Everywhere delivering 4G services] would not” distort competition.

However, the communications regulator has bowed to pressure from rival networks and has since extended the consultation period until 8 May 2012.

“We have decided to extend this period following requests from stakeholders for more time to respond,” it said in a statement.

via Ofcom must play fair over 4G, says Everything Everywhere – 29 Mar 2012 – Computing News.

Android Ice Cream Sandwich 4.0.4 has reportedly started rolling out to the Galaxy Nexus and Nexus S devices

Published on Mar 29, 2012

The Android ICE Cream Sandwich update (version 4.0.4) is now rolling out across SIM free Galaxy Nexus and Nexus S devices in Europe.

Google announced the milestone on its own Google+ page.

The exact announcement read:

‘We’ve started rolling out Android 4.0.4, Ice Cream Sandwich, to UMTS/GSM Nexus S, Xoom Wi-Fi, and HSPA+ Galaxy Nexus devices, and we’ll be rolling it out to more devices in the coming weeks. Some of you will be receiving Ice Cream Sandwich for the first time, while others will be receiving an update to your existing Ice Cream Sandwich experience with stability improvements, better camera performance, smoother screen rotation, improved phone number recognition and more.’

Followed by a load of predictable comments asking when it will be released for other devices, including the HTC Desire HD, Xperia-branded devices, Galaxy Note and Galaxy S2 (network-branded devices).

Google declined to comment when all these other updates would be coming, but everyday we’re hearing about more devices benefiting from the update.

If you do have the Galaxy Nexus or Nexus S, it may be a good idea to check whether the update has arrived. For those with network-branded devices, you may have to wait a little longer for your network to properly test the update before rolling it out.

via Android ICS 4.0.4 rolling out to Galaxy Nexus and Nexus S? – News – Know Your Mobile.

How to Fix Facebook‘s New Broken Chat System (YES!)  By Jesus Diaz, Jul 22, 2011 9:31 AM
Gizmodo reader Tal Ater agreed that Facebook’s new chat system is a clusterzuck of confusion, so he created a little program to fix it! It will take off the list anyone who’s offline. Here’s how to do it:  • Go to his download page. • If you use Windows, download the program on top. After running it, your Facebook chat will forever only show the people who are online (green icon) or recently online (with the away icon). • If you use Mac or Linux, add the bookmarklet “Fix Chat” to your browser bookmarks bar. You will need to click on the bookmarket in every new Facebook window (I keep mine open most of the time, so this is ok).  That’s it. It works great but, as always, run this software at your own risk.  Tal says that he’s working on a version that would fix the Facebook chat permanently on Mac and Linux machines. And again, remember that there are still plenty of reasons for quitting Facebook and going to Google+.

http://m.gizmodo.com/5823757/how-to-fix-facebooks-new-broken-chat-system-yes

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Facebook has revamped its popular chat feature by adding free video calling that can be launched inside the social network’s website. What was most striking about the launch event, held in Palo Alto, was how much CEO Mark Zuckerberg tried to distance his company from those seeking to slow its momentum, Google in particular.

The video-calling service is provided in partnership with Skype, which recently agreed to be sold to Microsoft, a Facebook partner and investor. Skype already provides Internet phone and video services, but users need to install a sizable program, and can only make video calls to other Skype members. With the new service, Facebook members can click on a “call” button on a friend’s profile page or in a chat window and connect, after installing a small software plug-in.

“It’s a total natural for them,” says Greg Sterling, founding principal of market research company Sterling Market Intelligence. “A lot of people will use it.”

At the same time, the launch, which included a new group text chat feature and an easy-to-access chat buddy list, appears to expose Facebook’s increasing trepidation about Google. Last week, the search giant introduced a preliminary version of its Google+ social network. The new service, yet to be rolled out widely, has garnered considerable positive reaction from early users, though it remains to be seen whether it will take off once it’s released more widely. “Now it really looks like Facebook is nervous about Google,” says Danny Sullivan, editor in chief of the website Search Engine Land.

Among Google+’s features, in particular, is a group video chat service called Hangouts. Facebook’s Skype service is strictly one-to-one calling, which Skype CEO Tony Bates implied make up the vast majority of video calls. But group video calls are also something Skype charges money for, and Zuckerberg brushed away questions on when group video chat might come to Facebook.

One-to-one video calls fit more neatly with Facebook’s emphasis on providing ways for people to connect with real-world friends. Other social services such as Twitter and Google+, allow for less personal relationships. “Google’s design approach emphasizes loose connections, while Facebook emphasizes closer, more intimate connections,” says Ray Valdes, a research director with Gartner Research.

For his part, Zuckerberg portrayed the Skype video calling feature as a harbinger of a new era in social networking. The next five years, he contends, will go beyond the sheer numbers of people connecting on social networks. Indeed, he downplayed user counts, despite the fact that he said Facebook now has 750 million active users, the first time the company has officially announced a new active-user count since last year, when it said there were more than 500 million.

Instead, Zuckerberg said, the key point going forward will be providing ultimately billions of social network users more to do on those networks. “The driving narrative for the next five years is what cool stuff you’re going to be able to build, what apps you can build, now that you have this infrastructure in place,” he said.

In a jab at Google, Zuckerberg also positioned Facebook as the friendlier platform for outside software developers. “We want to leave apps to developers who are best in class,” he said. “That’s in contrast to other Internet companies out there who try to do everything themselves.”

In particular, Zuckerberg said sharing of news, photos, and videos is exploding, reaching some four billion items a day. The growth, he says, is exponential, similar to Moore’s Law, which describes a doubling of transistors that can be placed on an integrated circuit every 18 months. “People are sharing twice as much today as a year ago,” he said. He expects that trend to continue for years to come.

Zuckerberg also suggested that Facebook is years ahead of other companies looking to create social networks of various kinds. Asked what he thinks of Google+’s Circles features, which allows people to drop their various kinds of friends, colleagues, and acquaintances into specific buckets with which they can then share specific posts or other material, Zuckerberg declined to talk about Google. But in an implicit dismissal of Circles, he noted that Facebook’s research indicated that “people don’t want to take a lot of time to add people to groups.”

The day’s announcements, coupled with the thinly veiled references to Google, indicated to several observers at the event that Facebook views Google as a serious competitor. “The polarization between Google and Facebook continues to gain strength,” says Gartner’s Valdes.

via Facebook Lets Its 750 Million Users Video Chat, but Not in Groups – Technology Review.