16 May 2014

FCC Votes to Move Ahead on Fast Lane | Slow Lane Internet, goodbye net neutrality?

A very sad day for internet freedom, net neutrality, and a free and open internet. Without net neutrality, and an open and fast internet for all (with no fast lanes/slow lanes), the US will decline economically and continue to be surpassed by other nations -- already Korea, Japan and most of Europe have surpassed the US in average peak internet connection speeds --

F.C.C. Votes to Move Ahead on Net Neutrality Plan - NYTimes.com: "....As the meeting began and continued, four protesters stood at different times and began speaking in favor of a free and open Internet and saying the F.C.C. was protecting corporate interests. Security officers removed them from the meeting. After allowing a period for public comments and replies, the commission will try to draw up final rules that satisfy a majority of commissioners. Mr. Wheeler has said he hopes to complete the final rules by the end of the year. Even if he meets that goal, the issue will probably be challenged in court. Any new rules that impose restrictions on Internet service providers are all but certain to attract legal challenges from broadband companies or public advocacy groups — or both...."

Comcast could mandate a monthly data cap on all customers...
The Verge
Comcast says it could begin capping monthly data for all its customers within the next five years, a change that could potentially end up costing some heavy internet users additional fees. Speaking at a media summit in New York earlier today, Comcast ...

But the fight is not over, it is just beginning --
FCC considers treating cable firms like utilities in net neutrality debate | Technology | theguardian.com: "The top lawyer at the Federal Communications Commission confirmed on Tuesday that the regulator is considering treating cable companies like utilities as it fights off a wave of protest over the future of the internet."

Xiaomi Aims at Apple, Samsung With a Low-Cost Tablet and TV - Businessweek: "The Chinese technology upstart Xiaomi, known for selling smartphones online at heavily discounted prices, just intensified its attack on some of the biggest companies in technology–Samsung, HTC, and even mighty Apple. At a press conference on Thursday in Beijing, the four-year old company, which has been privately valued by investors at $10 billion, unveiled its first ever tablet and an HDTV using the new 4K screen resolution standard. Both products carry disruptively low prices, a strategy characteristic of Xiaomi...."

Venmo vs. Square Cash vs. PayPal vs. Google Wallet: The Best Apps to Pay People Back - WSJ.com: ".... Comparing Venmo, Square Cash, PayPal and Google Wallet" - Here's what we know: All four companies comply with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), which was created by a coalition that includes Visa, MasterCard and American Express to provide multiple layers of protection for digital financial transactions. All of the companies also have 24-hour fraud-and-risk-protection teams, and Venmo, Google Wallet and PayPal let you PIN-protect the app, in case your phone is stolen. Square Cash doesn't have a PIN, but it prompts you for your credit card's security code before you can send money...."

iPad Sales Slow as Tablet Competitors Rise | Digital Book World: "Despite pumping another 60 million e-reading devices into the market, including 16 million iPads, Apple may be losing its grip on the tablet market. According to a new report from ABI Research, Apple competitors grew their tablet businesses by a combined 79%, while Apple managed only 13% growth. While more Android and other tablets are entering the market than iPads today, Apple still exceeds all of its competitors combined when it comes to revenues it generates from selling tablets, according to the report...."

Will Marshall: European Regulators Take Aim at U.S. Tech Companies - WSJ.com: "....Most pernicious is the proposal to create a "European cloud," a communications network that would prohibit data from traveling to servers outside the continent. Germany's largest telephone company Deutsche Telekom AG is an outspoken advocate of the idea, ostensibly hoping to quell privacy concerns. This would mark the end of an open, global Internet, which has been an incredible engine of economic growth. In an April report, the U.S. Trade Representative called the concept "draconian" and a way to give a "protectionist advantage" to companies based in the European Union...."

Alibaba’s Rivals Merge E-Commerce with Mobile and Social | MIT Technology Review: "The next biggest Chinese e-commerce IPO is likely to be that of JD, a fierce competitor to Alibaba that is targeting smartphone users especially, and may be building a kind of Amazon-Facebook hybrid through which you can, among other things, buy directly from contacts. Both give buyers the option of using an online escrow system where you don’t pay until the product is delivered from a courier who has your cell phone number. Alibaba’s Tmall controls 51 percent of Chinese e-commerce, while JD—formerly called 360Buy—has 17 percent, according to figures from iResearch from the last quarter of 2013. However, while most of Alibaba’s ecommerce is done on desktops, JD may have a mobile advantage in a country that now has 500 million smartphone users (see “China’s Internet Paradox”)."

Why Yahoo Keeps Killing Everything It Buys
Wired
Yahoo has just acquired Meh Labs, the startup behind a self-destruct ... have their own following and uses that to grow Facebook's footprint.

Google, Yahoo warned about malicious online ads
San Jose Mercury News
WASHINGTON -- The Senate warned Google, Yahoo and other leading technology companies Thursday they need to better protect consumers from ...

Google promises to release minority hiring figures, as activists protest outside shareholder meeting
San Jose Mercury News
MOUNTAIN VIEW -- Prodded by the Rev. Jesse Jackson, Google said Wednesday that it will reverse a long-held stance and reveal publicly how many ...

Google: Larry & Sergey still making big bets
MarketWatch
But Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin used the annual meeting to ... Google is facing off with Apple and Microsoft in the mobile arena.

Google's Robot Car Can't Explore New Roads, and That's a Big Problem
Wired
The roughly three-mile ride we took around Mountain View in Google's self-driving car was so impressive it was kind of boring. With the exception of a ...

Google to Microsoft Face User Request Burden After EU Ruling (3)
Businessweek
Google said it was reviewing the EU court's decision, with spokeswoman Leslie ... engines, which means it will affect Google, Microsoft's Bing and Yahoo! ... a spokeswoman for Facebook Inc., didn't respond to requests for comment.

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