U.S. mobile capacity still trailing demand

28 April 2018 by Steve Blum
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U.S. mobile network speeds dropped during 2017 when operators went all in with unlimited data plans, according to an analysis done by OpenSignal, a London-based mobile metrics consultancy. Carriers responded well, although speeds weren’t back up to pre-unlimited levels. But you can forget about mobile as a replacement for wireline service.

In the first half of 2017, AT&T and Verizon responded to competition from T-Mobile and Sprint and went back to offering unlimited data plans.… More

Is it time for mobile carriers to scrap unlimited plans and bring back caps?

28 January 2018 by Steve Blum
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Pricing has a major impact on mobile data usage, and when marginal bits are free – as with unlimited plans – traffic jumps significantly. That’s the conclusion of a study by NPD Group, a market research firm that covers a number of industries, including telecommunications.

Subscribers with unlimited plans use 67% more mobile data than subs who have caps. Interestingly, though, people with capped plans consume 8% more data overall, when WiFi offloading is factored in.… More

Mobile data traffic forecast says seven-times growth in six years

30 November 2017 by Steve Blum

Mobile data traffic growth will continue on a hockey stick trajectory, according to Ericsson’s latest Mobility Report. North American smartphone users will, on average, be consuming 7 gigabytes of data per month by the end of this year, and by 2023 will be burning through 48 GB per month, the most of any region.

This growth is the reason that mobile carriers are pushing hard to increase the density, and consequently the capacity, of their networks.… More

LA rates as a striving, world class city in Ericsson index

25 February 2017 by Steve Blum
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Click for more.

Los Angeles ranks 12th, compared against forty other cities worldwide, in its blend of broadband infrastructure and usage and social and economic benchmarks, as measured by Ericsson, a major provider of equipment and services to the telecoms industry. The latest edition of Ericsson’s Networked City Index has LA slipping one notch from the last time the index was run in 2014.

LA was on of three U.S. cities in the study. New York finished ahead at 7th, same as 2014, and Miami slipped two places further behind to 17th place.… More

CTOs say big companies need to support and be supported by the open source community

9 January 2015 by Steve Blum
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If there’s going to be 50 billion connected devices by 2020 – which is the goal set by Ericsson – then interoperability and interconnection standards will be necessary, according to Ulf Ewaldsson, the company’s CTO. He was speaking at a CES panel session on corporate research and development. Those standards aren’t there yet, but the likeliest path will be through open source collaboration, rather than propriety technology.

“Open source creates both standards and it creates a more rapid development process than before”, he said.… More

Spectrum could be a major limiting factor for the Internet of Things, Ericsson CTO says

8 January 2015 by Steve Blum
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“Radio frequencies are going to become the most scare resource on the planet, more scarce than oil”, said Ulf Ewaldsson, Chief Technology Officer for Ericsson. “Frequencies are scarce because there are better frequencies and less better frequencies”.

Speaking at CES this afternoon, he said that current frequency allocations often reflect policy choices intended to keep particular interests happy rather than making the most efficient use of spectrum possible. Television broadcasters in Europe are one example, he said.… More

Microsoft CEO candidate understands the danger

16 January 2014 by Steve Blum
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Vestberg living large at CES.

“It’s normally not given that the winners in the first phase are the winners in the second phase”, said Hans Vestberg, CEO of Ericsson at CES last week. It might be that someone on the Microsoft board was listening hard, because the rumor of the day has Vestberg on the shortlist to be its new CEO, replacing Steve Ballmer, who announced his impending resignation last year.

Vestberg was talking about the challenge in front of Ericsson, which was an early behemoth of the mobile phone business, but has remade itself as it fell far behind in handset manufacturing and its infrastructure business lost ground as voice networks were upgraded to handle broadband.… More

Mobile innovation will continue to be the growth engine of consumer electronics

7 January 2014 by Steve Blum
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Left to right: Vestberg, moderately bright moderator Andrew Keen, Jacobs, Donovan.

Qualcomm’s outgoing CEO, Paul Jacobs, Ericsson’s CEO Hans Vestberg and AT&T mobile executive John Donovan sat down on stage at CES this morning, for a conversation about the “global innovation of mobile”.

The longest view ahead came from Jacobs. “One thing that’s cool and scary and at the same time is neuromorphic computing”, he said. Qualcomm is trying to reverse engineer natural brains – starting with insects and working up to humans – to build computers with high cognitive functions that operate on relatively little energy.… More

LA lands in the middle of global ranking of broadband's effect on local society

22 November 2013 by Steve Blum
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A picture is worth a thousand numbers.

Los Angeles ranks 11th out of 31 major metropolitan areas around the world in Ericsson’s 2013 City Index, behind 8th-ranked New York, barely ahead of of 12th-ranked Miami, the only other U.S. cities rated, and beats Seoul at number 13. The index compares cities on the basis of the level of information and communication technology (ICT) maturity and the contribution that ICT makes to the local economy, environment and social equity.… More

Thinking forward from CES 2012

If CES 2012 produced one quote that might be remembered in years to come, it was from Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg: “Anything that benefits from being connected will be connected in the future.” It says two very important things about the consumer electronics industry.

First, going forward, mobile telecommunications manufacturers and core technology companies will be the primary innovators. Computer companies provided much of the innovation for the industry in the past ten years, but they are all but gone from CES.