Is there an unsecured wireless network near you?
Master of Arris: Network giant CommScope downloads broadband modem biz for $7.4bn
Friday, 09 November 2018 12:26

Network infrastructure giant CommScope has decided to buy some growth, shelling out US$7.4bn (£5.67bn) for broadband and video gear slinger Arris International.

In announcing the deal on Thursday, CommScope predicted “annual cost synergies” will reach $150m within three years, meaning there are up to $150m in shared costs – think HR, PR, etc – between the two American businesses that can be cut, which probably isn't great news for employees. Some $60m of those savings will be “realised in the first full year after closing,” mostly by eliminating administrative overlaps.

The $31.75 per share all-cash transaction, subject to regulatory approval,

NBN satellite user waiting for extra gigabytes? Keep waiting
Tuesday, 13 November 2018 22:25

NBN ground station in Bourke, NSW

Remote Aussies getting their broadband from nbn™'s SkyMuster satellites have been promised a bit of bandwidth relief, with the company deciding to bundle some 'net traffic for free.

So-called “essential” traffic, which nbn™ defines as collecting email, web browsing, and importantly, “critical” operating system updates for PCs and smartphones, will be carried free in a wholesale service being launched in 2019.

The “your gaming habit won't bust your browser” (how's that geostationary latency going, gamer?) offer will come under the coming “SkyMuster Plus” wholesale service – so punters will have to wait and see

France: Let's make the internet safer. America, Russia, China: Let's go with 'no' on that
Tuesday, 13 November 2018 18:02

America has aligned with China and Russia to scupper a France-led initiative to improve the internet's security. However, French president Emmanuel Macron has promised to battle on.

World leaders were meeting in France for the Paris Peace Forum, where French President Emmanuel Macron used the Internet Governance Forum to announce the “Paris Call for Trust and Security in Cyberspace”.

Macron outlined proposals that would set down rules for engagement for using “cyber-weapons,” along with better cooperation on fending off attacks, and ways to handle foreign interference in elections, online censorship and hate speech.

The call was supported by 51 countries

Big Q. Tch, what could have persuaded Intel to bring forward 5G chip production six months?
Tuesday, 13 November 2018 13:09

It looks as though Apple's iThings may get 5G connectivity in 2020 – after Intel promised production of its 5G modem will start in the second half of 2019, and ship in the first half of the following year.

This, therefore, gives Apple, which prefers Intel cellular modems for its latest iPhones , a decent design-in time for future smartphones.

Whether influenced by demands from Cupertino, or the fact that it's running months behind Qualcomm , Intel said it has brought forward the 5G chip plans by six months.

Chipzilla says its XMM 8160 5G modem will operate at peak

OK Google, why was your web traffic hijacked and routed through China, Russia today?
Tuesday, 13 November 2018 12:05

People's connections in the US to Google – including its cloud, YouTube, and other websites – were suddenly rerouted through Russia and into China in a textbook Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) hijacking attack.

That means folks in Texas, California, Ohio, and so on, firing up their browsers and software and connecting to Google and its services were instead meandering through systems in Russia and China, and not reaching servers belonging to the Silicon Valley giant. Netizens outside of America may also have been affected.

The Chocolate Factory confirmed that for a period on Monday afternoon, from 1312 to 1435 Pacific

'My entire company is without comms': Gamma's Horizon cloud PBX goes DOWN
Thursday, 15 November 2018 00:25

Biz broadband comms provider – in name at least today – Gamma is suffering from web wobbles this morning, reportedly across the UK, as customers can't access its Horizon service.

The woes for Horizon, which includes fixed and mobile telephony served up via Gamma's cloud PBX system, began just after 09:30 GMT, according to Gamma's support page .


Gamma said by mid-morning it had "identified the root cause which relates to one of our application clusters", and confirmed customers may also "be experiencing handset and call registration failures".

A patch was applied to the app cluster just before

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