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Wireless Week in Review (Week of October 29)

November 3, 2006 in Wireless Industry News

Hope everyone had a fun-filled Halloween, because there definitely was not too much happening on the wireless front. In this entry: the Nokia Research Center, an iTunes clone made by Cingular, Google’s email client, and Verizon’s plan to create a PC-to-TV video game service.

Nokia announced an agreement with Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, to “pursue joint research” in a whole bunch of different fields, most of which is way beyond me. Nokia also opened up a new research facility, code-named The Nokia Research Center nearby.

Cingular’s trying to make more money by launching a music download service similar to Apple’s iTunes. Well, sort of similar. While iTunes charges a meager fee of 0.99 cents per downloaded song, Cingular would charge a monthly subscription (ranging from $8 to $15 a month) for access to several music channels such as Yahoo! Music, Napster, eMusic, and XM radio. However, if you wanted to purchase an individual song you’d need to fork over the 0.99 cents. Sprint/Nextel and Verizon have already established song-to-phone music download services, with prices at about $2 – $2.50 per downloaded song. What a rip!

Speaking of Verizon, they’ve been busy working with Intel Corporation to set up a family-friendly, multi-player-ready PC-to-TV video game service. The service costs $9.95 a month, and would basically give you access to downloadable PC games that can be played on a TV.

Google is creating a mobile email client for its popular free email service, Gmail. The application will be Java and should run on any phone that supports the Java platform (which is a whole lot of phones). Am I the only guy WITHOUT a gmail account?

Analysts are still speculating how Apple Computer is planning to get its overly-secretive iPhone out to the masses. Will they team up with Cingular (not looking too likely considering the news above), or will be rent some airwaves from the bigger companies? Only time will tell.

Sadly, that’s it. Halloween week was pretty dead. Tune in next week for more exciting news in the wide world of wireless communication.


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