3G would be nice, but what no multi-tasking?

I think I jumped the gun somewhat on my post about the iPhone SDK. I made the assumption that as the iPhone was based on the OSX kernal that it’d be multitasking capable. Having now read this techcrunch post, I’m not so sure the iPhone is capable of multitasking which is a show stopper.

Only one iPhone application can run at a time, and third-party applications never run in the background. This means that when users switch to another application, answer the phone, or check their email, the application they were using quits. (p. 16)

So that means you can set different apps running and flip between them like you can on Nokia S60 devices. This is  as my daughter would say, truly rubbish.

The second wave of stories that has followed the news of the SDK have wound me up slightly, such as this story, it’s all over bar the crying. What doesn’t get mentioned when Steve put’s up his pie chart showing Apple with a huge percentage of the smartphone market is how small that markter is. Up until recently the US smartphone market has been pretty poor, Treo and MS Mobile devices ahve dominated as Nokia hasn’t got a great deal of traction in the US. The second aspect here is as I mentioned above this is a percentage of the North American Smartphone market. 

To put things in persecptive; Compared to Apple’s 190,000 iPhones the Finnish company sold 133 million mobile phones during the quarter (qtr 4, 2008), more than its three closest rivals put together and has 40% of the global market, not just North America. [via]. Even if Apply get’s to it’s goal of selling 10 million in a year, Nokia will have sold 400 Million or more handsets. 

Yes, Apple have once again done a great peice of marketing and have a desirable product, but it’s currently got huge flaws, namely no 3G and no mulitasking and for me they are real show stoppers.

The Telco Dilemma Series.

I’ve been thinking about the implication of the $99 unlimited packages hitting the US shops and what the impacts of that would be if the model is adopted here in Europe. My musings then went on to cover the other challenges facing the mobile and fixed line carriers. So I’ve decided to split the post up and cover each of the questions in a little more detail.

So these are the ten questions I’ll be asking and trying to answer over the next few days.

1. How much will an unlimited plan cost in Europe?

2. The implications of unlimited bandwidth.

3. Is it unlimited or unlimited*

4. Is unlimited* bad or will the three strikes rule remove the *?

5. Should the value added services be dropped?

6. Has Nokia shown the way with Ovi?

7. Is the carrier model too predictable?

8. How do you compete in a market place when services are free?

9. Why is there loads of innovation in the mobile space, yet none of it from the Carriers?

10. Google has bought, Grand Central and Jaiku, who should the carriers be buying?

If you think you can answer any of the questions then please let me know.

Is Your Printer Spying On You?

Imagine that every time you printed a document, it automatically included a secret code that could be used to identify the printer – and potentially, the person who used it. Sounds like something from an episode of “Alias,” right?

Unfortunately, the scenario isn’t fictional. In a purported effort to identify counterfeiters, the US government has succeeded in persuading some color laser printer manufacturers to encode each page with identifying information. That means that without your knowledge or consent, an act you assume is private could become public. A communication tool you’re using in everyday life could become a tool for government surveillance. And what’s worse, there are no laws to prevent abuse.

I just picked this up and thought it thought provoking as I’m working on a printer deal at work. The printer company in question does print yellow dot’s btw,

I’m talking to the consultants next week so I’ll ask about it, let’s see what they say.

New role at Orange

I’ve been keeping this under my hat for a few days, but my Manager told the rest of the team last week so it’s in the ‘public’ domain. I have the name of the person to handover to and a date too, so I’m a bit more comfortable talking about it.

For the last 7 months I’ve been working on Orange’s only full scope outsourcing project as the lead buyer, so managing pretty much everything that Orange needs from third parties, software, devices and services. It’s been extremely interesting understanding how Orange manages its outsourcing business and I’ll miss the guys working on the account and the account directors of the various suppliers. I also spent a lot of time with the finance guys helping to fix the growing pains we’ve experienced, well outside of my remit I know, but it needed to be done. Over last few weeks I’ve been ‘loaned out’ to the CIO of the customer, helping them with an RFP, hence the recent 3 day trip to Halmstad, it’s been a strange experience, but an interesting one nonetheless.

So where am I going..

I’m joining the group level integrated Telco operator’s team, so I’m back working in a Telco only environment. There’s two of us in the UK team working on all Telco spend at group level, which means covering, Orange Business Services, Orange Mobile and Orange Home. I spent last Thursday down in Bristol taking a look at all of the projects going on which was great to be talking about Telco stuff again. We even had a great geek out tour of the Bristol Switch, a 500m2 room with all the associated kit of a mobile network.

So it’s going to be fun to understand from an insider view point, how enterprise, mobile and DSL networks are managed, costs are saved and partners chosen. Which in the face of calls for dumb pipes from the Telco’s it’s going to be interesting and challenging. I’ve read the paradox of the best network and totally understand the drive for more bandwidth and realistically priced mobile data access and how the likes of the BBC’s iPlayer will impact the network to deliver the extra bits and bytes.

So I just can’t wait to start the conversations

Tiscali – save costs, don’t worry about your customers

Tiscali have an interesting approach to network migration.

“The logic is that we’ll save more money placing customers on the Tiscali backhaul per month than we will lose from customers migrating away,” he said.

I overheard two engineers in our Manchester office whinging that their tiscali lines were recently performing badly. I don’t know why they weren’t on Orange first off, but I’d only heard OK comments about Tiscali in the past. But I think that stating your objective is save costs, stuff customers then there might be more problems under the covers for Tiscali.

IBM promotes blogging on the job

IBM plans to add blogging capabilities to the next version of its Workplace collaboration and development software, the company said on Wednesday. [via]

The tools are already there, but I guess if they make it even easier then great. I guess this would be able to create external blogs too.

Clarke calls Europe to hold telecoms data for three years

The Home Secretary Charles Clark is spearheading a European effort to
convince internet and phone companies to keep private e-mails, text
messages and mobile phone records for up to three years.

I guess we’re going to see a price freeze or hike if this comes in,if there’s an increase in the amount of time that that data has to be held then the cost of storing all that data could be interesting.

How long do they have to hold that data for now though? I’ve been told but can’t remember