Possibly compatible with previous models, facilitating third-party upgrades
A new Broadcom chipset spotted on a Chinese website may be a component of future Mac updates, bringing 802.11ac (known as "Gigabit Wi-Fi") and Bluetooth 4.0 to new models on a single chipset. Not only will the chip handle all wireless communication for future Mac models, but the new chip appears -- at first glance -- to be backward compatible with similar parts in recent models, opening up the possibility of aftermarket upgrades.
New model removes 30-pin dock in favor of wireless connectivity
Boutique sound system manufacturer Geneva has announced the new Model S Wireless Bluetooth streaming speaker set. The new Model S Wireless offers completely re-engineered components than the original Model S, higher-grade electronics, better speakers, drivers and the convenience of wireless connectivity.
Verizon and AT&T express interest in the general idea
According to recent reports, media companies with high-bandwidth apps are considering deals with wireless carriers to ensure users can consume the content without being slapped with data overage fines. Reportedly, sports network ESPN has had discussions with at least one carrier to subsidize users' wireless data usage, with the company paying to offset data used by subscribers.
Four million iPhones activated on Verizon in quarter
Verizon has managed to secure an extra 677,000 subscribers to its postpaid wireless service in the first quarter of this year. Quarterly financial results released by the carrier show it as having a total of 720,000 net retail connections for the quarter, with its entire wireless subscriber base hitting 98.9 million, a year-on-year increase of 6.4 percent.
Experimental radio service to work around Google headquarters
Google is intending to build an experimental wireless service around its Mountain View headquarters, for currently unknown purposes. The search company has sent a request to the FCC for a license to allow the radio service to operate, and plans to test up to 50 base stations and 200 user devices during the licensed period.
Proposal frees spectrum in the 5GHz band, aiding Wi-Fi congestion
At the Consumer Electronics Show, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski announced a proposal before the FCC to open up a "substantial" quantity of additional wireless spectrum for Wi-Fi, which would in theory allow for increased speed on wireless devices. The spectrum to be made available currently belongs to several Federal agencies such as the Department of Defense, and is mostly unused at present.
One input selector, two video streamers added to lineup
Accessory manufacturer IOGear added three new products to its lineup today at the Consumer Electronics Show. The Wireless 5x2 HD Matrix, Wireless Mobile and WiDi to HDTV, and the Wireless 1080P Computer to HD Display Kit were all shown. All three devices will be available at retail shortly after conclusion of the expo.
New larger Las Vegas event to start September 2014
CTIA is combining two mobile trade shows into one larger industry event, starting from next year. The US wireless industry group will merge the existing CTIA spring event, held in Las Vegas during May, with the fall event, renamed MobileCon in 2012 and takes place in San Jose in October, and create a single show that will be held between the two.
All boast better speeds, longer ranges than replaced models
D-Link today enhanced its line of cloud-enabled products with the availability of the Cloud Router 2500 (DIR-836L), Cloud Router 1100 (DIR-626L) and SharePort Mobile Companion (DIR-505L), all of which boast increased wireless speeds, extended coverage and enhanced feature sets for the home and users on-the-go.
Dish in talks with number of non-industry parties
Google is rumored to be in talks with Dish Network over creating a new wireless carrier, competing against Verizon and AT&T. Though it is not clear if a Google-supported mobile phone network will come to fruition, the software giant's move to wireless mirrors early discussions it had over its gigabit fiber project in Kansas City, and could potentially end up disrupting the mobile carrier industry.
Ongoing success with iPhone, iPad allowed Apple to redefine industry
The iPhone, Apple's single largest-selling product and the device that completely redefined the mobile industry, has helped catapult CEO Tim Cook to the top of Fierce Wireless' 25 Most Powerful People in Wireless survey. Cook was ranked just above Google's Larry Page and the CEOs of all four major US wireless carriers, among others in the industry. Together, Apple and Samsung garner more than 100 percent of the cell phone industry's profits, and the iPhone remains the single most popular brand in the industry.
Dell Latitude 6430u premieres new co-developed chipset
Wilocity, developer of 60 GHz multi-gigabit wireless chipsets, announced today that it is jointly providing tri-band wireless chipsets with Qualcomm Atheros, for Dell's first WiGig enabled Ultrabook for business, the Latitude 6430u. Dell announced the Latitude 6430u last week and demonstrated its multi-gigabit wireless docking and networking capabilities at the Windows 8 launch attended by Dell and Microsoft executives in New York City.
Webcam has 50-foot range, Ustream compatible
Logitech has formally announced its new HD Broadcaster Wi-Fi Webcam aimed at bloggers and video professionals. Previously leaked under the name "Wireless Webcam for Mac", the camera can wirelessly transmit 720p video at a distance of up to 50 feet over Wi-Fi to an iOS device, a Mac, or a Ustream account.
Device boasts enhanced MIMO antenna, low-complexity configuration
Western Digital has revealed the My Net Wi-Fi Range Extender to expand wireless home networks into out-of-reach areas of the home. Following the introduction of its first line of wireless home networking products, the My Net family of HD dual-band routers, the new selectable dual-band range extender provides more reliable wireless network coverage to Wi-Fi connected devices that suffer from a weak Wi-Fi signal.
Moves may require 3GPP approval to extend LTE standard
According to FCC Director Julius Genachowski, the FCC has plans underway to make 300MHz of new spectrum available by 2015 to high-speed mobile carriers. The announcement was made on Thursday during a speech given at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business. The agency is scheduled to auction several parcels of wavelength in the Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) band, including a portion where a commercial user would share the spectrum with government users.
Evaluating plans for purchase, consolidation, future sale of spectrum
In February, Congress passed legislation allowing the FCC to re-allocate wireless spectrum by acquiring it from television broadcasters. The three-phase plan to re-acquire bandwidth has entered the rule-making process on Friday. The reverse auction process will allow the FCC to rearrange the remaining broadcasters to make larger blocks of spectrum available for other uses, such as existing wireless internet technology, or other future technologies. Unallocated spectrum will be placed up for auction, with the government expecting to make more money on the auction that it did buying the bandwidth freed by the shift to digital broadcasting. The FCC is seeking public comment on the details of the plan.
Fire HD should make November 20 release date, assuming no issues
According to preorder confirmation emails, Amazon's Kindle Fire HD 8.9-inch 4G tablet has yet to be approved by the FCC for sale. FCC approval is required for all wireless communication products, to assure safe operation that does not interfere with other devices, or broadcasts nearby on the spectrum. Amazon its accepting pre-orders now and is anticipating shipment on November 20.
Open meeting scheduled September 21, methodology to be discussed
Expanding a service already in place monitoring traditional wired broadband promises and performance, the US Federal Communications Commission has announced a program to monitor performance of wireless Internet service using actual data collected by volunteers. An open meeting is scheduled for September 21 at the FCC headquarters to discuss the proposal to start a program that will "develop information on mobile broadband service performance in the United States utilizing the collaborative model underlying the success of its fixed broadband program."
Universal equation considered to replace per-purchase rules
According to reports, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski plans to order a review of the "spectrum screen" used to analyze whether a company has acquired too much wireless spectrum. The FCC uses the rules to decide whether or not to approve mergers and purchases. Deals that violate the spectrum screen are given closer analysis before approval.
Bill will force renovation of dated absorption metrics
On Friday, Representative Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) introduced bill HR 6358 to Congress, which could spawn a new national research program to study cell phones and force the FCC and EPA to update the Specific Absorption Rate methodology for determining the potential damage that radio frequency emissions can cause. The bill, should it be passed, will "examine, label, and communicate adverse human biological effects associated with exposure to electromagnetic fields from cell phones and other wireless devices, and for other purposes."
AT&T could face net neutrality charges for 3G FaceTime fees
In the wake of the discovery of a dialog box implying AT&T will charge for FaceTime over 3G above and beyond existing wireless fees, Sprint has gone on record opposing the move. Sprint remains "committed to our unlimited data, and that means not charging for data consumption based on the application." When queried earlier this week, AT&T CEO Randall L. Stephenson said that it was "too early" to address FaceTime fees, and AT&T was working closely with Apple on the developer build of iOS 6. Verizon's statement was even more terse, saying only that "the timing of any pricing conversations related to future versions of iOS is premature.”
Amazon first foreign company to become an NVMO in Japan
Amazon will be the first foreign company to offer a prepaid wireless service in Japan. Nikkei [account required] reports prepaid SIM cards with 500MB preallocated to it will be sold for 1,980 Yen ($25) through the website, and as a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO), will be carried by NTT Docomo's LTE network. This takes place ahead of the expected Japanese launch of the Amazon Kindle in the summer.
Subwoofer interacts wireless system
Sonos has introduced the Sub, a wireless subwoofer designed to work alongside the company's amplified systems with wireless support. The resin cabinet integrates a pair of acoustic ports and speaker cones, each facing inward in a configuration that is claimed to eliminate buzz or rattle, while dual Class D amplifiers provides the power.
Buffalo releases new-gen 802.11ac wireless router, media bridge
Buffalo has announced that its 802.11ac next-generation Wi-Fi solution is now on the market. It has jointly made available its AirStation WZR-D1800H wireless router and its WLI-H4-D1300 wireless media bridge available so users can hook straight up to Wi-Fi speeds 3 times faster than 802.11n and 30 percent faster than Gigabit Ethernet. The new router is also dual-band capable and will support older Wi-Fi devices.
System said to offer space reduction
IDT Wireless Power has introduced new wireless charging components that are claimed to slash the time that it takes to charge mobile devices such as cellphones and tablets. The company's latest system is said to bring a 50-percent cost savings, 67-percent reduction in component count, and 73-percent total system efficiency compared to the previous generation.
Researchers 'twist' airwaves, boost bandwidth
A team of Swedish and Italian physicists has developed an experimental technique that has the potential to dramatically increase both speed and bandwidth using the electromagnetic wireless spectrum. According the BBC, the method exploits a property of physics that can be observed in space known as the ‘orbital angular momentum’ of airwaves. Already in discussions to commercialize the technology, the researchers have used the phenomenon to impart the waves with a ‘twist’ to fit multiple data streams where previously there was only room for one.
Tim Donahue may replace Sanjiv Ahuja
Beleagured LightSquared, the LTE data company that is facing stiff government resistance to its GPS-fouling technology for implementing wireless networks, is said to be considering hiring former Sprint chairman and Nextel CEO Timothy Donahue to head the company following the resignation of former CEO Sanjiv Ahuja. The veteran telecommunications executive could help the company fight government opposition to its high-speed network plans.
FCC puts up $300 for Phase 1 of Mobility Fund
The FCC has scheduled a reverse auction to help facilitate a build out program to expand 3G services to rural regions. The agency has compiled a $300 million Mobility Fund for Phase 1 of the project as it aims to give US citizens ‘universal broadband and advanced mobile coverage by the end of the decade.’ The money has been made available as part of the Connect America Fund.
Wireless speakers for home and auto
SuperTooth, a French Bluetooth accessories maker best known for their line of wireless car speakers, has announced two new products at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The first is a complete re-design of its previous Disco portable speaker into the Disco2, which features an angular vertical look but maintains the high sound quality. Also debuting is Crystal, the company's latest sun-visor-mounted Bluetooth speaker for smartphones.
Products for home, portable and live events, more
Consumer electronics manufacturer Behringer has introduced its 2012 lineup of products, many of which are aimed at iOS devices under the umbrella moniker of Eurosound. Offerings in the 50-product lineup include a sound-bar-and-subwoofer set, a wireless iPod sound system, a portable Bluetooth speaker, a PA system with an iPod dock built-in and more. The company has brought its notorious iNuke and its new lineup to the CES show.
Improved wireless and USB drive speeds
Cisco today launched an updated version of its dual-band "N" home router, now dubbed the E4200v2, which features networking speeds of up to 450Mbps in each of its two bands (2.4GHz and 5GHz), totalling up to 900 Mbps performance. The company also launched an app for iOS and Android devices to allow users to make configuration changes to the network.
Available in either white or black
Verbatim has re-worked its Bluetooth Wireless Mobile Keyboard to add features specific media control and function keys suited to iOS devices while keeping the keyboard compatible with other tablets and compatible smartphones. In addition, the Bluetooth capability of the device has been upgraded to allow pairing with up to six devices. The compact, foldable keyboard also includes an iPhone stand to put the smaller device at a comfortable angle while typing.
Exits business less than 1 year after launch
Cox Communications is exiting the wireless carrier business. Engadget has
posted internal Cox email that indicate the cable, broadband, and long distance carrier will unveil as soon as Tuesday night that it will be getting out of the cellular business by the end of March. It would stop selling new cellphones and wireless service effective Wednesday.
Move to halt continuing increases
The US House of Representatives has voted in favor of legislation that places a temporary halt on increases to taxes on cellular service. The approval will prevent state and local taxes on cellphone and wireless broadband service from increasing in the near future, though the bill only freezes the tax hikes for a period of five years.
Milestone reached in less than 3 years
Novatel Wireless has announced that it has shipped more than 3 million MiFi routers throughout the globe. The milestone was reached less than three years since the first MiFi devices arrived on the market. As part of an announcement celebrating the achievement, the company notes that it now holds 35 patents and 37 patent applications related to its line of portable routers.
Company blames industry for ignoring guidelines
Start-up wireless LTE provider LightSquared, which has been involved in a feud with the GPS industry over interference between GPS devices and planned 4G LTE cell networks, informed the industry that it would cost up to $400 million to buy equipment LightSquared has developed to eliminate the problem, CNet reports. Without the device, about half a percent of GPS receivers -- about half a million units -- will be disrupted when the LTE networks begin to go online.
Cans built by SMS Audio
SMS Audio's Sync by 50 wireless headphones have been detailed and pictured ahead of the official launch. Images and a spec sheet posted on TechCrunch show the 50 Cent-branded headphones, which include their own wireless transmitter that plugs into a 3.5mm headphone jack. The system is claimed to transmit 16-bit lossless audio with a range of 50 feet and support for four users connected to a single source.
Bluetooth accessory sold outside of subscription
Ooma has introduced a wireless accessory for its Telo home phone system. The Air adapter attaches directly to the back of the Telo box, enabling connection to a home network via Wi-Fi rather than requiring users to route an Ethernet cable. The wireless option is claimed to support the same level of quality as a direct connection.
Accessories set to launch in September
Logitech has introduced several new wireless accessories geared for the iPad, iPhone and Android-based devices. The headset features Bluetooth connectivity, enabling users to listen to music and videos or place calls without a wired connection to the device. A noise-canceling microphone is claimed to reduce background noise, while the integrated battery is said to offer six hours of playback time depending on conditions.
Headphones integrate playback controls, mic
Beats by Dr. Dre appears to be readying yet another set of headphones, a wireless model that has surfaced in FCC documents. Images from the Commission suggest the Beats Wireless headphones will offer an appearance that fits between the company's Solo- and Pro-series over-ear models, but with an integrated battery and Bluetooth radio for wireless operation.
Perhaps new method of 'hiding' 3G antenna?
Just days after a prototype MacBook Pro with a built-in 3G antenna appeared for auction on Ebay (since removed), the company has been granted a patent on an integrated wireless antenna system that is "hidden" in keys on a notebook keyboard, perhaps demonstrating a superior way of adding 3G (or other wireless) communication to future models. The patent lists Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, but also mentions GPS and 3G as possible connections, AppleInsider reports.
Uses standard on-board equipment
A new startup out of California is offering a free tool called NetSpot for those who would like to compile a site survey of their wireless network that uses no special equipment beyond what's on-board a Mac and the local router. The software, which will be free while its in beta, creates a visual map of where signal is strong, weak or having difficulty penetrating walls, rooms or floors.
Users can track pulse, distance, speed, more
Scosche Industries has debuted a new fitness combination for iPhone and iPod Touch users, a hardware band to wear during workouts combined with a companion app called the Scosche myTrek to help users monitor their pulse, target training zone and calories burned, as well as runners' speed, pace and distance. Past workouts can be stored, and the band uses Bluetooth to wirelessly transmit the data collected to the app up to 33 feet away.
Portable keyboard for iPhone, Touch, iPad, more
MacNN has reviewed the Verbatim Wireless Bluetooth Keyboard, a re-branded version of the Freedom i-Connex bluetooth keyboard that features a folding design, media keys to control iTunes, a tucked-away stand for the iPhone or iPod Touch and other controls aimed at iOS device users -- but which can also be used with other smartphones and tablets. Our review reveals a few surprising touches, along with a few portability compromises -- read the full review for more.
'Super Wi-Fi' delivers longer range, faster data
The IEEE announced today that it had finalized the 802.22TM white space wireless standards for Wireless Regional Area Networks (WRAN). White space wireless, sometimes called "super Wi-Fi" because of its long range capability and faster throughput, broadcasts data on unused, unlicensed frequencies that were designated for VHF and UHF television broadcast. The new standard will be capable of providing broadband wireless access over a large area, with a range of more than 60 miles from the transmitter. White space wireless can deliver up to 22 Mbps per channel.
Can also be used as wired portable drive
RAM and accessory maker Kingston is offering a new portable flash-based drive called the Wi-Drive aimed specifically at users of Apple's iOS devices, using a built-in wireless 802.11g/n connection that supports up to three users and in effect gives owners up to 32GB more storage capacity, supporting various iOS media and file formats and allowing Windows-based iPad users the freedom to view content without having use auto-sync.
Airfoil for Windows also updated to v3
Rogue Amoeba have upgraded their wireless audio-distribution tool Airfoil for Mac to version 4.5, bringing support for direct audio from any iOS device to the Mac, as well as from iTunes on either Mac or Windows straight to selected speakers. In addition, the update offers full support for new AirPlay-compatible receivers from third-party manufacturers, and improvements in the control of remote audio sources. The company has also updated the Windows version of Airfoil to v3, a major update.
Companies to share cost of network expansion
LightSquared, a wireless provider backed by Harbinger Capital, has reportedly signed a deal with Sprint, outlining terms for cost sharing as the companies collaborate to launch and expand a 4G LTE network in the US. Recent rumors suggest the deal may be worth a total of $20 billion and span 15 years, during which time Sprint will be able to take advantage of LightSquared's wireless broadband service.
128-bit security foils keystroke monitoring
Microsoft will be debuting its Wireless Desktop 2000, a wireless keyboard that transmits its keystrokes using AES 128-bit encryption, early next month. The keyboard is compatible with both Macs and Windows computers and is paired with the Wireless Mouse 2000 for a matched look. The company says its AES 128-bit encryption is the same standard used by the U.S. government to help secure its wireless connections.
Carries start to block Android wireless tethering
Carriers appear to have started blocking access to Wireless Tether on the Android Market. Although the Wi-Fi hotspot feature appeared in Android 2.2, carriers have insisted users should be paying an additional fee for the capability. Just recently, AT&T began sending messages to Android users on its network that they were to either stop tethering or face being automatically signed up for the $45 tethering plan.