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Sky launches its own mobile service

Entertainment company Sky has announced what it’s calling “the UK's most flexible mobile service”.

Customers with another Sky service will be able to sign up for Sky Mobile from mid-December, with a full launch expected in early 2017.

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Vodafone fined £4.6 million by Ofcom

Vodafone fined £4.6 million by Ofcom

UK communications regulator Ofcom is fining Vodafone £4,625,000 for mis-selling, inaccurate billing and poor complaints handling.

This penalty is the result of two separate Ofcom investigations.

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BlackBerry moves away from handset production

BlackBerry moves away from handset production

Veteran smartphone manufacturer BlackBerry says it’s moving away from producing its own handsets and will instead license its software to other companies.

The first deal is with an Indonesian partner, BB Merah Putih, which is led by a leading telecommunications distributor in Indonesia.

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UK mobile users can now send a text to reduce nuisance calls

The Telephone Preference Service and Ofcom have introduced a new text message service that lets UK mobile users opt out of receiving unsolicited sales and marketing calls.

Mobile phone users can simply text ‘TPS’ and their email address to 78070.

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The Nokia brand is returning to mobile phones and tablets

The Nokia brand is returning to mobile phones and tablets

Android-powered devices being produced by a new Finnish company

Former mobile phone manufacturer Nokia has signed a deal that’ll see a new Finnish company producing Nokia-branded mobile phones and tablets.

The new company – HMD global – is being granted an exclusive branding and intellectual property licence to create Nokia-branded mobile phones and tablets for the next ten years.

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Opinion Articles

LTE fuels the race for the fastest network

Noam Green of Flash Networks writes:

The introduction and deployment of LTE networks offers real promise for both subscribers and operators worldwide. It brings the potential for revolutionary improvements in quality of experience for mobile broadband, and even faster downloads and video streaming.

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Last week at The Fonecast: 27th January 2014

Expecting the unexpected

Mark Bridge writes:

Great news for mobile phone users. Ofcom’s new rules preventing unexpected mid-contract price rises came into force last week, which means UK consumers can no longer be surprised by their subscription charge increasing while they’re still locked into a minimum-term deal.

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Last week at The Fonecast: 2nd December 2013

It's oh so quiet...

Mark Bridge writes:

It was a relatively quiet time for tech news last week, with many companies taking a day off to celebrate Thanksgiving in the USA and then planning for a present-buying retail frenzy on ‘Black Friday’. Today the focus on Christmas shopping moves online; a day that’s called either ‘Cyber Monday’ or ‘Mega Monday’ if you work for a news organisation.

Yet it wasn’t an entirely newsless week.

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Last week at The Fonecast: 12th August 2013

Welcome to the not-so-silly season

Mark Bridge writes:

August is traditionally known as the ‘silly season’… but last week’s mobile industry news was all very serious. Apple started with a move designed to reassure customers about unsafe iPhone chargers by arranging a discounted exchange scheme – and it ended the week with a patent victory in the USA.

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How to shield from internet snooping

George Putic of voanews.com writes:

When news broke about U.S. government agencies collecting metadata about its citizens’ Internet and phone communications, many were surprised by its scope. The surveillance covered a vast number of Internet messages and phone calls. The government did not deny the action but pointed out that the collected data contained, not the substance of the communication, but the so-called metadata.

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Recent Podcasts

The week's top mobile news stories: Vodafone expands, EE celebrates and Europe prepares

Podcast - 19th March 2014

We begin this week's programme by looking at Vodafone's acquisition plans in Spain before moving on to discuss universal mobile chargers and 4G roaming.

There's also time to talk about UK mobile coverage, EE's new customer tracking service, contactless transactions and a smartphone camera that can identify objects hidden behind something else.

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Johan Lodenius of MediaTek talks about wearable devices, smartphone evolution and the importance of driving costs down

Podcast - 13th March 2014

This year's Mobile World Congress was notable for the number of product launches by handset manufacturers. To get a better understanding of smartphone manufacturing, we spoke to Johan Lodenius of semiconductor company MediaTek.

He gave us a simple overview of how 'fabless' manufacturing works, discussed developments in smartphones and wearable devices, contemplated the end of the PC era and talked about the importance of driving costs down.

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Mobile payments, new smartphones, wearable devices, connected cars, CeBIT and David Cameron

Podcast - 12th March 2014

This week's programme opens with a quick look at David Cameron's commitment to 5G technology and the Internet of Things, which was made in a speech at CeBIT.

Iain and Mark then move on to talk about the other big mobile news headlines from the past few days, including the forthcoming Paym m-payment service, new HTC and LG smartphones, the growth of Chinese handset manufacturers, wearable devices, in-car connectivity and damaged iPhones.

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The rise of OTT messaging and the future of SMS: we talk to Stacy Adams of mBlox

Podcast - 7th March 2014

Messaging was very much on the agenda at Mobile World Congress this year, following Facebook's announcement that it was planning to acquire WhatsApp in a 19 billion dollar deal. So if the future for this type of internet-based 'over the top' messaging service looks good, what does this mean for SMS?

To find out more, we spoke to Stacy Adams of mBlox to learn what was happening in the messaging world, to find out how SMS is being integrated with mobile apps - and to discover some of the other ways SMS was being used by businesses today.

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We talk about 4G LTE coverage and device sensors with OpenSignal at Mobile World Congress

Podcast - 6th March 2014

Even at Mobile World Congress, the relevance of the mobile network operator can sometimes be forgotten. So for a different perspective on this year's event, we spoke to Samuel Johnston from British mobile crowd-sourcing firm OpenSignal.

Samuel discussed the announcements from MWC14 and OpenSignal's latest report into 4G LTE coverage around the world, as well as giving us an exclusive insight into OpenSignal's next research subject.

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