U.S. broadband actually approaches advertised speeds

By on August 4, 2011 at 4:30 AM.

U.S. broadband actually approaches advertised speeds

4G is a hot topic here on BGR and as such, we’ve likely become more numb than we should when it comes to advertised data speeds. We’re so used to seeing “theoretical limits” that are so far from reality we just chuckle and move along. The wireline broadband industry, however, is a different beast. According to a study recently conducted by the Federal Communications Commission, major broadband Internet service provides in the U.S. deliver data speeds that are generally between 80% and 90% of the speeds they advertise. The Associated Press reports that the FCC’s study measured data speeds delivered to thousands of U.S. broadband subscribers this past March from 13 of the nation’s top ISPs including Time Warner, Comcast, AT&T and Verizon. The three most popular wired broadband technologies were covered by the study — DSL, cable and fiber — and data rates were said to have been close to the advertised speeds during both peak and off-peak times. The AP notes that the FCC’s study didn’t delve into speeds delivered by wireless data services, which is a study we would love to see. More →

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Apple may sell 30 million iPhones in Q4, including 1.5 million Sprint iPhones, analyst says

By on August 3, 2011 at 4:31 PM.

Apple may sell 30 million iPhones in Q4, including 1.5 million Sprint iPhones, analyst says

The launch of Apple’s next-generation iPhone will propel global iPhone sales to 30 million units in the calendar fourth quarter of this year, BTIG Research analyst Walter Piecyk wrote on Wednesday. BTIG had previously estimated that Apple would sell 21.5 million iPhone handsets in the fourth quarter, but in light of Apple having recently reporting sales of 20.34 million units in the fiscal third quarter, the firm’s previous estimate is almost certainly low. Piecyk also believes Apple may sell more than 10 million iPhones in the U.S. alone in the fourth quarter. AT&T, he says, could sell as many as 5 million Apple phones next quarter thanks to the iPhone 5 launch and the possible continuation of a $50 legacy iPhone model. Verizon could sell as many as 4 million iPhones in the fourth quarter, making up 45% of the carrier’s smartphone sales in the quarter; Piecyk thinks Verizon’s continued success with 4G LTE-enabled Android smartphones will drive total smartphone sales to 9 million units in the quarter. Finally, the analyst sees Sprint launching the fifth-generation iPhone this fall, and he estimates sales of 1.5 million units in the fourth quarter. More →

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Apple iPhone 5 to launch in October in Canada

By on August 2, 2011 at 10:02 AM.

Apple iPhone 5 to launch in October in Canada

BGR has reported on several occasions that Apple will announce its brand new iPhone 5 at the tail end of August with a September street date, though it looks like the company might make the iPhone 5 available a little bit later than that. According to confirmed information we have received from a reliable source at Canadian carrier Telus, Apple’s iPhone 5 looks to be touching down on October 1st in Canada. In the past, Apple has flip flopped between releasing its iconic smartphone in the U.S. first and then in Canada, or launching its smartphone simultaneously in the U.S. and Canada as it did with the iPhone 3GS. As such, it is currently unclear if Apple intends to launch the iPhone 5 in the U.S. and Canada at the same time or if we’re still looking at a September launch stateside, which we see as being likely. Hit the break for more. More →

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Nielsen: Apple top U.S. smartphone vendor, Android top OS in Q2

By on July 28, 2011 at 8:00 AM.

Nielsen: Apple top U.S. smartphone vendor, Android top OS in Q2

Android continued on its warpath this past quarter, once again showing gains as it retained its position as top smartphone platform in the United States. Nielsen on Thursday issued its second-quarter smartphone market share data for the U.S., and Android finds itself atop the list again with 39% of the market. IOS remains in the No. 2 spot with 28% and RIM slid to 20% in the second quarter. Windows Mobile and Windows Phone combined to take 9% of the market, while webOS and Palm OS combined to account for just 2% of the market. Nokia’s Symbian OS also held a 2% share in the June quarter. On the list of top vendors last quarter, Apple held its lead by a wide margin with 28% of the total U.S. market. HTC devices accounted for 14% of Android market and 6% of the Windows Phone/Windows Mobile market, making it the nation’s top vendor in both categories and No. 2 overall. Samsung owned 8% of the Android market and 2% of the Windows Phone/Windows Mobile market in the U.S. last quarter, while Motorola topped Samsung’s Android share with 11% to slide into the No. 2 spot among Android device manufacturers. More →

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35% of U.S. consumers will buy iPhone 5, study finds

By on July 27, 2011 at 7:01 PM.

35% of U.S. consumers will buy iPhone 5, study finds

A surprisingly large number of consumers in the United States plan to purchase Apple’s next-generation iPhone according to a new survey. Shopping assistant site PriceGrabber polled approximately 3,000 U.S. consumers about Apple’s upcoming iPhone 5 in early July and found that 35% of consumers intend to buy Apple’s fifth-generation iPhone. Of those who intend to purchase the Apple handset, more than half plan to do so within the smartphone’s first 12 months of availability. “Our survey data confirms the strong following Apple has built around its iPhone, with more than one-third of consumers planning to upgrade to the latest model only a little over a year following the release of the iPhone 4,” stated PriceGrabber GM Graham Jones said in a statement. The company also found that 48% of respondents claim iOS is their favorite smartphone platform while 19% said it was Android, 7% said it was “Microsoft Windows” and 6% said their favorite smartphone OS is RIM’s BlackBerry OS. PriceGrabber’s full press release follows below. More →

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Spotify said to launch in U.S. next week

By on July 8, 2011 at 12:30 PM.

Spotify said to launch in U.S. next week

Popular European streaming music service Spotify could launch in the U.S. as soon as next week, AllThingsD’s Peter Kafka speculates. Spotify announced earlier this week that it would be taking its talents to the U.S., but it gave no indication as to how soon the launch might occur. AllThingsD says the smart money is on a launch next week, and the blog has historically been accurate with its coverage of the Stockholm-based music start-up. Kafka reaffirms that Spotify only has deals inked with three of the four major U.S. record labels, but he says a deal with Warner Music Group is close enough to being signed that it should be completed ahead of a launch next week. Like Microsoft’s Zune service or Rhapsody, Spotify allows users to stream music on demand, create playlists and more. The service uses a freemium model that permits ad-supported content to be streamed to desktop computers for free, and then offers mobile streaming, playlist sharing and sheds the ads for paid subscribers. Spotify has not yet revealed pricing for the U.S. market. More →

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Spotify announces imminent U.S. launch

By on July 6, 2011 at 2:31 PM.

Spotify announces imminent U.S. launch

Custom music steaming company Spotify on Wednesday announced that it will soon launch its popular service in the U.S. The company has been rumored to be in negotiations with major U.S. music labels for more than a year now, and it looks like those negotiations finally panned out. “The award-winning music service that’s taken Europe by storm will soon be landing on US shores,” the company said in a statement on its website. “Millions of tracks ready to play instantly, on your computer and your phone.” In markets where the service is currently available, Spotify allows users to stream music on demand for free to PCs. For a monthly fee, the service adds additional features and supports more devices, such as the iPhone, iPad and Android devices. Pricing and other details for the U.S. market have not yet been announced. More →

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iPhone, Android gain U.S. share in May, BlackBerry falters

By on June 30, 2011 at 8:31 AM.

iPhone, Android gain U.S. share in May, BlackBerry falters

Apple and Google both gained smartphone share in the U.S. last month according to new data from Nielsen. The research firm on Thursday released a brief detail of the U.S. smartphone market in May following a survey of mobile consumers. Android represented 38% of the smartphone market in May, up two points from 36% in 3-month period ending in April. Apple’s iOS platform gained a single percentage point over the same period to climb to 27%, and RIM’s BlackBerry platform slid two points to 21%. Microsoft’s Windows Mobile and Windows Phone platforms were flat at 9% and 1% respectively, and Palm OS, webOS and Symbian were flat as well. Interestingly, 55% of U.S. consumers who purchased a cell phone in the past three months report buying a smartphone over a feature phone, up from 34% in the same period last year. This is the first time the company determined that smartphones beat out feature phones among recent cell phone buyers. Nielsen also found that Android’s share of recent smartphone acquirers was flat over the past three months while Apple’s iOS was the only smartphone OS to gain share among this group, jumping to 17% from 10% in the prior three-month period. A chart depicting smartphone OS share among recent smartphone acquirers follows below. More →

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And the best-selling smartphone at AT&T and Verizon stores is…

By on June 22, 2011 at 1:35 PM.

And the best-selling smartphone at AT&T and Verizon stores is…

…the iPhone. BTIG analyst Walter Piecyk on Wednesday published the findings of a study in which BTIG researchers contacted 250 AT&T and Verizon Wireless retail stores to determine which smartphone model finds its way to consumers’ pockets the most. The study, which took place over the past three weeks, found that Apple’s iPhone was the best-selling smartphone at 58% of the stores polled. An Android model took top billing at 21% of the stores, and sales were neck and neck at 20% of retail shops. Breaking BTIG’s findings out by carrier, 65% of AT&T stores polled said the iPhone was their best-selling smartphone versus 31% that said an Android model was No. 1, and the iPhone was the top smartphone at 51% of Verizon shops polled. Also of note, when Verizon stores were asked about their best-selling 4G LTE smartphone model, 90% said it was the Samsung DROID Charge and just 10% said it was HTC’s ThunderBolt. The LG Revolution wasn’t included in the firm’s study. Hit the break for for charts depicting BTIG’s findings. More →

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Android U.S. market share slides in March quarter as iPhone gains

By on June 21, 2011 at 9:45 AM.

Android U.S. market share slides in March quarter as iPhone gains

Google’s share of the U.S. smartphone market dipped for the first time since 2009 according to Needham & Co. analyst Charlie Wolf. Needham says Android’s share slid from 52.4% to 49.5% in the first quarter, its first sequential market share loss in any region since the second quarter of 2009. Wolf attributes the dip to the launch of Verizon Wireless’ iPhone 4; Apple’s U.S. market share ballooned more than 12 points to 29.5% in the first quarter. Wolf believes Android’s market share in the U.S. will rebound in the June and September quarters, though it will see a “material decline” in the fourth quarter of 2011 following the launch of Apple’s fifth-generation iPhone. “This is just the beginning of Android’s share loss in the U.S.,” Wolf wrote in a note to investors. “The migration of subscribers to the iPhone on the Verizon network should accelerate this fall when Apple coordinates the launch of iPhone 5 on the GSM and CDMA networks. The iPhone could also launch on the Sprint and T-Mobile networks.” Hit the break for a graphical representation of U.S. smartphone market share from IDC. More →

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Dolby sues RIM for patent infringement, looks to halt BlackBerry sales

By on June 15, 2011 at 1:20 PM.

Dolby sues RIM for patent infringement, looks to halt BlackBerry sales

Dolby announced on Wednesday that it has filed patent infringement lawsuits against Waterloo, Canada-based Research In Motion in the U.S. and in Germany. The suit seeks the recovery of financial damages resulting from RIM’s infringing products, and it also looks to halt sales of multiple BlackBerry devices. The patents in question cover “highly efficient digital audio compression technologies” that minimize storage space occupied by high quality audio files. Dolby claims that RIM uses these technologies in its BlackBerry smartphones and its PlayBook tablet, but it does not pay Dolby licensing fees as all other major manufacturers do. “Litigation was regrettably our last resort after RIM declined to pay for the use of Dolby’s technology,” Dolby EVP and general counsel Andy Sherman said in a statement. “We have a duty to protect our intellectual property.” Dolby’s full press release follows below. More →

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Previous-generation iPhone 3GS, iPad still outsell new Android devices, analyst claims

By on May 9, 2011 at 10:25 AM.

Previous-generation iPhone 3GS, iPad still outsell new Android devices, analyst claims

Canaccord Genuity analyst Michael Walkley suggests that not only does Apple have the most popular smartphone and tablet in the U.S., but even its previous-generation gear is outselling the competition. In a note to investors on Monday, Walkley writes that Apple’s iPhone 4 is far and away the top-selling smartphone for both AT&T and Verizon Wireless. The iPad 2 is also the most popular tablet in the country right now, of course. The real bad news for Apple’s competition, however, is that according to the analyst’s checks with retail sales channels, Apple’s old iPhone 3GS is still outselling competitors’ offerings at AT&T and Apple’s first-generation iPad is still outselling other tablets at Verizon. “Interestingly, our April checks indicated continued strong demand for the iPhone 3GS at AT&T and iPad 1 at Verizon, as these older generation products with reduced prices often outsold new Android products,” Walkley wrote. “We believe this highlights Apple’s significant competitive advantage, and these older products help Apple offer a tiered pricing strategy at key channels.” Walkley found that Apple’s original 16GB and 32GB iPads sold out at Verizon in less than two weeks following the introduction of the iPad 2, and the iPhone 3GS recently outsold both the Motorola ATRIX 4G and the HTC Inspire 4G at AT&T. More →

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Secure mobile payments appeal to 94% of North Americans

By on March 18, 2011 at 9:03 PM.

Secure mobile payments appeal to 94% of North Americans

A recent study conducted by payment solution provider Mobio Identity Systems suggests that North Americans are eager to see mobile payments become a reality. At the same time, however, security is a top concern for the majority of potential users. Mobio recently surveyed 1,085 people across North America and found that the overwhelming majority — 94% — would use mobile payments if they knew the system was secure. Mobio’s study also found that 73% of respondents said security was their main concern regarding mobile payments, while 12.4% said simplicity and 8.5% said speed. As such, it’s safe to say companies looking to bring mobile payments to the mainstream market must focus a tremendous amount of effort on security. As luck would have it, this study just so happens to come from a firm that specializes in mobile payment security solutions. Will wonders never cease? More →

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