It’s nearly time for the next HTC One to be released in a reboot only 2014 could handle, and the device has hit the FCC. This device will be released to AT&T at least, as this listing suggests, but we’d eat our collective hats if it wasn’t released to the rest of the major USA-based carriers this year as well.
The FCC has outlined its reworked plan to achieve net neutrality, following its defeat in the federal courts last month, including the possibility of reclassifying ISPs altogether so as to force through rules. The Federal Communications Commission was told it did not have the authority to stop broadband providers like Verizon and Comcast from prioritizing select internet traffic or, conversely, slowing other traffic, but the court pointed out that it may already have the power in other ways under existing telecoms laws. Now, FCC Commissioner Tom Wheeler says he will "accept that invitation" from the court.
LG's Heart Rate Earphones, revealed as part of the company's fitness wearable push back at CES 2014 last month, have hit the FCC, ahead of what we'd assume is a near-at-hand launch in the US. The headphones, which use pulse-tracking technology built into the buds to monitor heart activity and send it to a nearby smartphone, plugs into a clip-on Bluetooth dongle and can optionally be paired with LG's other new wearable, the Life Band Touch.
Getting content delivered to your PC, TV or mobile device via the Internet is no simple matter, but the business ecosystem working behind that can be even more convoluted. While not exactly pointing to the fact, new data gathered about Internet performance might be pointing the finger at the almost unspoken but widely practiced business of peering.
Sprint wants to purchase T-Mobile but since the merger would remove one of the four major carriers from the US market, the deal needs FCC and regulatory approvals. Sprint and T-Mobile have been working with the FCC to get the deal approved, but that may never happen. Sprint and T-Mobile had a meeting with the DoJ late in January 2014, and the merger was in danger after the meeting.
In what one commissioner called a "beta test" phase, the Federal Communications Commission has approved a program of trials that will study the shift to a new telephone network. This next generation infrastructure will make use of the same Internet Protocol or IP used for HD voice calls and videos delivered over the Web.
The nation is all ears today as President Obama delivered his State of the Union address. As such, it will be highly unlikely anyone will miss the President's special mention of Apple, Microsoft, and a few other key players in the tech industry for their efforts in improving the country's education system by connecting students to high-speed broadband.
The internet as we know it is in peril. Verizon's victory in the court of appeal this week, seeing the FCC's attempts to regulate broadband providers in the name of Net Neutrality defeated, has the potential to change how we access the internet and web services like Netflix, Hulu, and others more fundamentally than 2013's SOPA threatened to. In question isn't whether internet access should be a free-for-all, but what it is fundamentally, legally classified as, and who therefore has control over what gets shuttled through: Verizon and the broadband providers, in control of the "pipes", or the FCC as protector of infrastructure that uses public rights of way. For all both sides are claiming some degree of victory this week, we're still no closer to settling that fundamental question.
This morning a court has struck down the FCC's ability to enforce certain key "Net Neutrality Rules" on companies that would favor certain kinds of web traffic over others. That's what Net Neutrality protects the public against, after all: with a "neutral" law in place, all web data is treated equally. Without these rules in place, companies that provide web connectivity are able to legally place restrictions on some content while making other content run faster - whichever they do so choose.