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O little town of Bethlehem, Georgia. How still we see your internet lie... US govt throws another $600m at rural broadband
Tuesday, 18 December 2018 10:13

Analysis The US government has added another $600m to the pot of money that is supposed to expand broadband internet access to rural areas of America. But it remains far from clear how effective the program will be.

This time the US Department of Agriculture is the federal agency in charge of the money , with the funds added to a must-pass $876 billion Farm Bill. The funds come in addition to $700m that has already been set aside for the USDA to expand internet access.

The money will trickle through a new ReConnect Program that consists of loans and

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What's this under the Christmas tree? A gift-wrapped Mellanox, for Microsoft? Say it ain't so
Thursday, 20 December 2018 16:29

Microsoft is considering buying Mellanox, according to a report on Wednesday by an Israeli financial newspaper.

The American tech giant has hired Goldman Sachs, while the Ethernet and InfiniBand networking gear maker, based in Yokneam Illit, Israel, has tapped J.P. Morgan, to oversee the acquisition negotiations. That's according to The Maker, a Hewbrew-language daily paper, drawing on unnamed sources .

This comes after chip designer Xilinx, according to CNBC last month, mulled gobbling up Mellanox for roughly $5bn, or $100 a share, on advice from Barclays.

So either there's a bidding war going on, or the biz is shopping itself

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Sticking with one mobile provider gets you... Oh. Price rises, big exit fees, and lovely, lovely lock-in
Wednesday, 19 December 2018 22:31

The UK's Competition and Markets Authority has issued an urgent call for action against mobile providers that rip off loyal customers with high prices even once handsets are paid off.

In an investigation published today, the watchdog said phone pushers aren't playing fair and should release customers from costly contracts once they have have paid off the device.

The probe was prompted by a super-complaint filed by Citizens Advice over the issue of continued customer lock-in in five markets: mobile, broadband, mortgage, insurance and cash savings markets.

It found a range of dodgy practices that exploit customers:

The report (PDF)

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'Year-long' delay to UK 5G if we spike Huawei deals, say telcos
Saturday, 22 December 2018 03:48

Mobile network operators have reportedly said that tearing up their contracts with Huawei would set Britain's 5G back "by nine months to a year" – so they're ploughing on despite pressure.

Stephane Richard, Orange CEO

If most punters are unlikely to pay more for 5G, why all the rush?

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UK mobile operator O2 confirmed to the Financial Times that it will continue to deploy Huawei 5G gear in the UK, at 200 test sites in London.

Huawei is used by several operators for their RAN, or radio access network, although all of the UK players are committed to a multi-vendor strategy.

BT's

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Ready for Glasto-net? Cheap, local low-power networks up for grabs in the UK
Friday, 21 December 2018 20:22

Some technologies lurking under the 5G umbrella promise to reshape the entire communications sector, creating new uses and businesses we can't imagine today. Ofcom showed it was hip to a few of these this week with a radical new way of opening up the airwaves.

Ofcom is allowing bidders to run their own local low-power networks at a very low cost, like selling electricity you generate at home back to the National Grid. And this won't even need 5G.

This was announced alongside Ofcom's 700MHz/3.4GHz spectrum auction on 18 December . It's a consultation on sharing three bands of spectrum

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HD Video and Telemetry Link Uses Standard WiFi Hardware
Friday, 28 December 2018 13:30

[GlytchTech] decided to implement his own Digital Data Link (DDL) for his drone experiments, and by using a Raspberry Pi Zero and some open-source software, he succeeded in creating a mostly self-contained system that delivers HD video and telemetry using an Android phone as a display.

The link uses standard WiFi hardware in a slightly unusual way to create a digital data link that acts more like an analog system, with a preference for delivering low latency video and a graceful drop-off when signal quality gets poor. A Raspberry Pi Zero, Alfa NEH WiFi card, external antenna, battery, and a …read more

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