Is there an unsecured wireless network near you?
After all that! Ofcom proposes BT as only broadband universal services provider
Wednesday, 05 December 2018 22:53

BT will likely remain the sole broadband universal service provider for most of the UK because smaller ISPs didn't meet Ofcom's qualification criteria and Hyperoptic pulled out of the running.

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The British government brought in Universal Service Obligation (USO) legislation in March that means eligible homes and businesses have the legal right to demand a minimum broadband download speed of 10Mbps by 2020.

And in June , the UK's comms watchdog, Ofcom, asked for telcos to apply to become universal service providers – but only if they could: finance delivery of services; cover over 5,000 eligible premises in

BT pension scheme will stay on RPI interest rates for now
Wednesday, 05 December 2018 00:53

Updated BT has lost its legal bid to cut its £14bn pension deficit by slashing interest rates for 83,000 members of its post-privatisation pension scheme.

This morning the Court of Appeal in London threw out BT's bid to change the interest rate payable on its pensions, after the High Court had already said "no" earlier this year.

The telco wanted to move the scheme from the old Retail Price Index inflation rate to the newer (and lower) Consumer Price Index rate for members of Section C of BT's pension scheme. Broadly speaking, RPI is normally higher than CPI.

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Your USB Serial Adapter Just Became a SDR
Friday, 07 December 2018 09:00

To say that the RTL-SDR project was revolutionary might be something of an understatement. Taking a cheap little USB gadget and exploring the radio spectrum from the tens of megahertz up to into gigahertz frequencies with the addition of nothing more than some open source tools may go down as one of the greatest hacks of the decade. But even in the era of RTL-SDR, what [Ted Yapo] has manged to pull off is still pretty incredible.

With a Python script, a length of wire attached to the TX pin, and a mastery of the electron that we mere mortals …read more

Solar-Powered IoT Sensor Saves Wine Batch From Overheating
Monday, 26 November 2018 18:00

Making wine isn’t just about following a recipe, it’s a chemical process that needs to be monitored and managed for best results. The larger the batch, the more painful it is to have something go wrong. This means that the stakes are high for small vineyards such as the family one [Mare] works with, which have insufficient resources to afford high-end equipment yet have the same needs as larger winemakers. The most useful thing to monitor is the temperature profile of the fermentation process, and [Mare] created an exceptional IoT system to do that using LoRa wireless and solar power. …read more

A 5G day may come when the courage of cable and DSL fails ... but it is not this day
Tuesday, 20 November 2018 21:51

Analysis 5G has the potential to make cable and DSL as antiquated and pointless as using a horse and a cart to drive to the supermarket. And it's already here.

A few weeks ago, Verizon switched on commercial 5G FWA (fixed wireless access) to the public. Come, ditch the most hated company in America , it whispered.

But how serious are the UK mobile networks about taking on the incumbents?

Now that three of the big four UK MNOs have laid out their 5G ambitions, we have a clearer idea. Hutchison's Three is the keenest on 5G-FWA and has promised

UK's national Airwave terminal procurement framework awarded to Motorola and Sepura
Tuesday, 20 November 2018 20:48

Motorola Solutions and Sepura are to build a centrally managed procurement framework for the UK's radio network, Airwave.

The framework will be managed by the Police ICT Company – which was set up to help manage cops' tech and into which all forces pay an operating fee – but can be used by other public sector entities.

It will provide a single place to procure the Tetra (Terrestrial Trunked Radio) devices and accessories that are used by the emergency services over the radio network Airwave.

The Police ICT Company said the framework would keep costs for the supply of Tetra

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