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The Register - Networks

Biting the hand that feeds IT

Copyright: Copyright 2016, Situation Publishing

Vodafone says it'll launch NB-IoT network in EU early next year

Thu, 20 Oct 2016 14:48:13 GMT

Nobody's really impressed, but take a look at the long term

Vodafone has announced it will start rolling out its narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT) focused network in four EU countries from the start of next year – and folk across industry are rolling their eyes.…

Will rush for New Radio compromise 5G quality?

Thu, 20 Oct 2016 12:37:14 GMT

Accusations fly of vendors hijacking standards for their own purposes

Analysis The US operators have ended their long love affair with sub-1 GHz spectrum, which was so important to their LTE coverage roll-outs, and are leading the world in harnessing high frequency bands to address the challenge of the expected capacity demands of the 5G era.…

Virgin Media boss warns Brexit could hamstring broadband investment

Thu, 20 Oct 2016 11:03:07 GMT

Praises May for indicating date on Article 50 trigger

Further uncertainty over Brexit could hamper Virgin Media's ability to get more broadband investment for the UK from its parent company Liberty Global, chief exec Tom Mockridge has warned.…

Hard-up Brits 'should get subsidy for 10Mbps'

Thu, 20 Oct 2016 08:27:13 GMT

BT already has a subsidy for telephony, says representative body for councils

Folks in the UK unable to afford speeds of 10Mbps under the Universal Service Obligation (USO) should be offered a subsidy, the representative body for 370 councils has said today.…

European Telecoms Standards Institute to World+Dog: please start caring about 5G

Thu, 20 Oct 2016 03:58:30 GMT

Industry verticals, busy trying to make money, aren't paying attention to the telco biz's future

5G is on the way – no, really, it's on the way, stop giggling – but outside the telcos and their suppliers, the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) is having trouble getting industries to care.…

Whinge on: T-Mobile US docked $48m for limiting 'unlimited' data plans

Wed, 19 Oct 2016 19:04:15 GMT

Telco coughs up cash to make throttling complaints go away

T-Mobile US has agreed to pay the US comms watchdog the FCC $48m to settle claims that it illegally throttled the connections of some unlimited-plan data users.…

No, Russia is not tapping into Syria's undersea internet cables

Wed, 19 Oct 2016 13:45:43 GMT

A tale of the spy ship Yantar, tinfoil hats and that pesky bugger we call reality

Rumours abound on odder corners of the internet that a Russian signals intelligence ship has tapped into one of the main internet cables serving Syria. Sadly for the conspiraloons, it's almost certainly not true.…

Openreach split could damage broadband investment, says BT's chief exec

Wed, 19 Oct 2016 12:57:33 GMT

How interesting that you'd say that, Gavin

BT's chief exec Gavin Patterson has claimed an Openreach split would make future UK broadband investments more challenging and increase the firm's already-ballooning pension deficit.…

Digi minister Matt Hancock: Britain needs go full fibre. And we're not paying for it

Wed, 19 Oct 2016 10:52:12 GMT 'working with fibre providers to find a solution'

The UK's digital minister Matt Hancock has said pure fibre and 5G are the priority for Blighty's digital infrastructure over the next decade - but has indicated the government won't be paying for it.…

Swisscom claims world's first broadband service

Wed, 19 Oct 2016 05:27:11 GMT

Copper-extender can hit ~500Mbps, CTO says users will settle for 100Mbps

Swisscom reckons it's become the first carrier in the world to announce a service.…

Vodafone Australia promises fixed-line broadband over NBN

Wed, 19 Oct 2016 02:59:22 GMT

Let battle be joined with Telstra and Optus. And let's see how weak-in-mobile TPG responds

As widely anticipated, Vodafone's Australian tentacle has announced it's getting into the fixed-line broadband business.…

nbn™ says nobody needs gigabit internet, trumpets XG-Fast at 8Gbps anyway

Mon, 17 Oct 2016 23:03:35 GMT

Placating fibre fetishists has nbn™ in a twist and distracts us from bigger issues

nbn™, the organisation building and operating Australia's National Broadband Network (NBN), has announced trials of fibre-to-the-curb and broadband-over-copper technology XG-fast that hit 8Gbps on 30 metres of copper in lab trials. It's also done tests that produced “5Gbps peak aggregate speed being achieved over 70 metres of twisted-pair copper”.…

3,500 Verizon call center workers can't hear you now

Thu, 13 Oct 2016 19:37:12 GMT

Telco plans to board up seven US facilities

US telecom giant Verizon says it will be closing seven US call centers and tossing the jobs of 3,500 employees in limbo in the process.…

Metronet gobbles up hosting firm for £47.5m, instantly doubles in size

Thu, 13 Oct 2016 10:27:07 GMT

It's a network-biz-eat-network-biz world. Burrrp

Manchester-based network services provider Metronet has snapped up infrastructure and hosting firm M247 for £47.5m.…

BT will HATE us for this one weird 5G trick

Thu, 13 Oct 2016 08:24:05 GMT

Ready to hear our bright cycle safety idea?

I cycle in London. It halves my journey time to the office and being nicer than sweating on the tube lets me substitute muscles for my Oyster.…

Google, Facebook toss cash into LA-to-Hong Kong sub cable corp

Thu, 13 Oct 2016 02:02:08 GMT

120 Tbps non-stop Pacific link plans to see first light in 2018

Mere months after its first trans-Pacific cable venture lit up, Google has announced it's friended Facebook as part of another cable consortium.…

Sckipio touts fibre-like symmetrical kit

Wed, 12 Oct 2016 01:22:35 GMT

Stick this on your pole, instead of fibre

Fabless silicon house Sckipio hopes to give the fibre-most-of-the-way, copper to the home market a kick along with silicon that gets close to symmetric performance, at whatever data rate the copper can support.…

Cheer up Samsung! You might get back $400m for copying the iPhone

Tue, 11 Oct 2016 18:43:43 GMT

Might help cover the cost of scrapping the Note 7

Samsung received good news of a sort on Tuesday, when the Supreme Court heard arguments for why Apple should reimburse the company $399m.…

Yahoo! halts! email! forwarding! to! outside! email! addresses!

Tue, 11 Oct 2016 06:02:12 GMT

It looks like lock-in, swims like lock-in and quacks like lock-in … this could be lock-in!

Yahoo! has “temporarily disabled” the ability to forward email from its messaging services.…

Probe cops' Stingray phone masts, senators tell US comms watchdog

Fri, 07 Oct 2016 18:58:13 GMT

Congresscritters want to know if cellphone snooping kit illegally jams connections

A group of US Senators has asked the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to investigate concerns that police stingray devices are causing illegally high levels of interference to wireless networks.…

Ofcom kicks off 5G auction consultation

Fri, 07 Oct 2016 09:06:10 GMT

But what about the delayed auction for more 4G capacity?

Communications regulator Ofcom has opened a consultation on the first tranche of its 5G spectrum auction.…

Australian broadband sat launch also tested next Ariane rocket

Thu, 06 Oct 2016 21:44:12 GMT

European Space agency's re-usable rocket plan takes a small step forward

Video The European Space Agency (ESA) used the launch of new satellites for India and Australia to test technologies it plans to use in the successor to the Ariane 5 rocket.…

Mobile data is getting slower, faster

Thu, 06 Oct 2016 09:35:11 GMT

US cities see major crash in data speeds. But that's not the whole story...

US cities have seen a massive crash in LTE data speeds this year - but consumers haven’t noticed as latencies are getting lower.…

Whales permitting, Hawaiki sub cable to hit Sydney in August 2017

Thu, 06 Oct 2016 01:33:09 GMT

Filing tells NSA exactly where to send cable-sniffing divers

The Hawaiki Cable, which would create trans-Pacific competition for those shipping bits across the ocean to Australia and New Zealand, plans to get its Australian landing in place by August 2017.…

NBN is essential, says Essential poll, but not Turnbull's NBN

Wed, 05 Oct 2016 21:12:25 GMT

Finally, something that crosses the political divide

Australia's famous two-party divide doesn't apply to our attitude towards the Internet: nearly everybody thinks the Internet is an essential service.…

Prime Minister May hints at shaking up Blighty's 'dysfunctional' rural broadband

Wed, 05 Oct 2016 15:19:05 GMT

'Yes, but what does that actually mean?' ask alt-nets

UK Prime Minister Theresa May has suggested her government could intervene in failing markets, such as rural broadband.…

London best for 4G - who'd have thunk?

Wed, 05 Oct 2016 11:46:05 GMT

Crap for average download speeds, though

Data from Which? today reveals that London has the best 4G connectivity in Britain - but some of the worst average download speeds in Blighty.…

Level3 switch config blunder blamed for US-wide VoIP blackout

Wed, 05 Oct 2016 11:33:09 GMT

Network dropped calls because it was told to

Updated Backbone provider Level3 says an outage that knocked out VoIP service for much of the US Tuesday morning was the result of improperly configured equipment.…

Will 5G give Samsung a chance at global Radio Access Network glory?

Wed, 05 Oct 2016 08:07:05 GMT

LTE it be, prays vendor

Analysis Will 5G bring Samsung the network infrastructure success which has largely eluded it outside of its home country?…

nbn™'s Sky Muster II satellite launch grounded by wind

Tue, 04 Oct 2016 21:27:56 GMT

If at first you don't succeed … you know the rest

nbn™'s second satellite for delivering wireless broadband to remote areas, Sky Muster™ II, is unexpectedly still on the ground.…

Level 3 goes to Level 0 for American VoIP peeps

Tue, 04 Oct 2016 18:12:32 GMT

Network provider stumbles, drops voice traffic

Backbone carrier Level 3 says it is investigating the cause of an outage that took out its services in North America.…

Brit telcos plead with Ofcom: No one should own more than 30% of available spectrum

Mon, 03 Oct 2016 12:35:09 GMT

BT's EE and Vodafone 'unfairly' dominate. Put it right, will you?

Telcos are calling on Ofcom to slap a 30 per cent cap on operators bidding in the next spectrum auction - a move that would limit the proportion of airwaves an operator can own.…

Brit ISP TalkTalk scraps line rental charges

Mon, 03 Oct 2016 10:22:11 GMT

Complies with regulator ahead of time. Fancy that

UK ISP TalkTalk is scrapping line rental charges and freezing price increases for 18 months – in a bid to comply with forthcoming regulatory changes and retain its declining customer base.…

Google, Facebook etc rush to defend US govt in last-minute ICANN internet takeover lawsuit

Fri, 30 Sep 2016 19:33:58 GMT

Mad dash on eve of critical IANA transition

A slew of internet organizations have come to the support of the US government in a last-minute lawsuit designed to prevent the handover of critical internet functions at midnight on Friday.…

Telcos hit out against plans to hike their broadband rates

Fri, 30 Sep 2016 13:18:06 GMT

BT alone expects its rates to more than quadruple

Broadband providers have rallied against draft plans to hike up the cost of business rates, which will result in a "steep" increase for broadband providers laying infrastructure.…

Business to be given more scope to quit crap broadband contracts

Fri, 30 Sep 2016 10:49:40 GMT

Providing ISPs have signed 'up to' the voluntary code, that is

UK businesses are to receive more accurate data on broadband speeds before signing up to a contract, under a voluntary code coming into force from Ofcom today.…

Four US states demand restraining order to stop internet power handover to ICANN

Thu, 29 Sep 2016 20:04:43 GMT

Arizona, Texas, Oklahoma, Nevada sue Uncle Sam

Four states' attorneys general have filed suit to prevent the transition of critical internet functions from the US government to non-profit ICANN this Friday.…

Verizon techie sold people's call logs at $75 a head to private dick

Thu, 29 Sep 2016 19:00:47 GMT

Prison looms for telco insider who flogged subscriber records to dodgy investigator

A former Verizon Wireless employee is facing time behind bars after he pled guilty to selling customer records.…

Optus' HFC problems were never a secret, so why did nbn™ need the network?

Thu, 29 Sep 2016 02:33:55 GMT

Malcolm Turnbull, you will never be a network engineer

Someone check in on former senator Stephen Conroy, would they, and make sure he hasn't laughed himself to death?…

Source: nbn™'s fibre-to-the-kerb will be VDSL at 100/40Mbps

Thu, 29 Sep 2016 00:01:44 GMT

But Optus still gets its $800m payday, even though its network was too expensive to upgrade

The Register has learned that the fibre-to-the-distribution-point (FTTdp) technology to be used in Australia's national broadband network (NBN) will use VDSL and be capable of 100/40Mbps speeds.…

After AT&T's crushing blow, FTC tells Senate it wants its balls back

Wed, 28 Sep 2016 23:26:29 GMT

US watchdog still feeling sore after being stripped of powers to punish telcos

US trade watchdog the FTC says it will appeal the August decision stripping its ability to fine AT&T.…

BT tops Ofcom's broadband whinge list

Wed, 28 Sep 2016 12:42:26 GMT

Virgin and Sky rated least moaned about

BT has topped a UK watchdog's quarterly whinge list for the most moaned about fixed line broadband provider in Blighty.…

Ofcom punts network-sniffing Android app

Wed, 28 Sep 2016 09:06:13 GMT

Help find not-spots

Telecoms regulator Ofcom has written a network tracking Android app so the great British public can help it sniff out not-spots.…

nbn™ dumps Optus HFC, will use fibre to the kerb for ≈700k sites

Wed, 28 Sep 2016 08:39:02 GMT

So what exactly did AU$800m buy? An option for bits of Optus network, says nbn™

nbn™, the entity building and operating Australia's national broadband network (NBN) has announced it will overbuild part of the hybrid fibre-coax network it acquired from Optus.…

Did last night's US presidential debate Wi-Fi rip-off break the law?

Tue, 27 Sep 2016 21:35:13 GMT

It's gonna spell bad news for all of us

The host of the first presidential debate on Monday night, Hofstra University in New York, may have broken the law and could be in line for a huge fine.…

US govt pleads: What's it gonna take to get you people using IPv6?

Tue, 27 Sep 2016 19:55:19 GMT

Eye-pee-vee-what? Rest of world responds

The US government is entering the next stage of grief and loss over IPv6, asking companies to explain why they won't just move over to the new protocol.…

Ofcom blesses Linux-powered, open source DIY radio ‘revolution’

Tue, 27 Sep 2016 14:28:36 GMT

It came from the shed

Small scale DAB radio was (quite literally) conceived in an Ofcom engineer’s garden shed in Brighton, on a Raspberry Pi, running a full open source stack, in his spare time. Four years later, Ofcom has given the thumbs up to small scale DAB after concluding that trials in 10 UK cities were judged to be a hit.…

Watch out, Openreach: CityFibre swallows Redcentric's network for £5m

Mon, 26 Sep 2016 10:24:10 GMT

Upstart reckons it's positioned to take on BT

Plucky Openreach challenger CityFibre has gobbled £5m worth of service provider Redcentric’s network - adding 137km of fibre to the upstart’s network.…

#Vodafail is BACK, with seven hours of 'try again later'

Mon, 26 Sep 2016 00:19:29 GMT

Must do better: still lagging Telstra in the TITSUP stakes

Vodafone has moved to reassert its once-dominant position in the Australian network outage stakes, suffering a seven-hour TITSUP (Total Inability To Support Usual Performance) on Sunday evening, 25 September.…

Smelly toilets, smokers and the Kardashians. Virgin Media staff grill top brass

Sat, 24 Sep 2016 12:24:14 GMT

'New 'soft closers' good, but the acrylic panels make the bogs look like a CDT project

Smelly toilets, smoking outside and questions as to who is the best Kardashian: these were just some of the issues Virgin Media top brass were grilled on in a Q&A session with staff seen by The Register.…