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Connectivity & Communications Posts - Page 4

Australian telco Telstra will have 1Gbps over 4G available this year

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Connectivity & Communications | Posted: Feb 21, 2016 12:00 pm

Australian telco giant Telstra has had the trophy for fastest LTE in the world a few times now, with the company teasing Australians that it will have its 4G networking capable of pumping 1Gbps (or over 100MB/sec) to smartphones and tablets across Australia.




Right now, Telstra has seen real-world speeds over 800Mbps in the country, recently switching to Category 9 and Category 11 carrier aggregation technology in cities like Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. Once the company rolls out its LTE Category 16 technology to metropolitan 4G and 4GX towers, it will be capable of pumping out up to 1Gbps. Not only that, but Australians will have the ability to upload at a blistering 150Mbps, too.


Telstra will use a combination of its 700MHz, 1800MHz and 2600MHz frequency bands to link together using carrier aggregation, in order to reach the 1Gbps speeds. Netgear has been a longtime partner of Telstra, where they'll be working together to develop the world's first LTE Category 16 hotspot, which is will feature the world's first use of Qualcomm's impressive Snapdragon X16 modem. The Snapdragon X16 features 4x4 MIMO technology, and 256QAM modulation, which supports up to 20 different Wi-Fi connections, simultaneously.


Inside, the Snapdragon X16-powered hotspot will include a 4300mAh battery that would allow for all-day use on the go, all while transferring high speeds to multiple devices at once.

ViaSat teams with Boeing for 1Tbps satellites, launches in 2019

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Connectivity & Communications | Posted: Feb 11, 2016 12:25 pm

We all know the pain of being on a plane without Wi-Fi, but US communications company ViaSat could change all of that. The company has teamed up with Boeing to launch three new satellites that would have massive bandwidth.




The companies will be launching new satellites that will feature twice the total combined network capacity of all of the connected satellites flying through space. The two companies have already started this work, with two of the three ViaSat-3 satellites. These new satellites will have more than 1Tbps of capacity, each.


ViaSat will be in control of designing and manufacturing the payload while Boeing will be taking care of developing the "associated satellite bus platforms" for its 2019 launch. The first two satellites will take care of the Americas, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) while the third satellite will cover Asia.

Continue reading 'ViaSat teams with Boeing for 1Tbps satellites, launches in 2019' (full post)

Telstra apologises for service outage, offers free data for one day

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Connectivity & Communications | Posted: Feb 9, 2016 9:48 pm

For around five hours yesterday, Australia's biggest mobile network was thrown into disarray courtesy of an "embarrassing human error" courtesy of a technician who "reconnected the customers to [a] malfunctioning node rather than rather than transferring them to the nine other redundant nodes". While the problem is now fixed, the company has announced plans to offer an apology to customers, whether they were affected by the outage or not.




The company last night announced a plan to offer customers free data for one day, this Sunday the 14th February. The post states that "customers don't need to do anything to receive the free data, it will happen automatically for all of our mobile customers.", whilst also offering a layman's description of what caused the outage in the first place.


Despite the inconvenience, I guess Telstra's customers will be feeling the love this Valentine's Day. In turn, I'm sure they'll be loading up some torrents in appreciation.

Telstra outage in Australia caused by 'embarrassing human error'

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Connectivity & Communications | Posted: Feb 9, 2016 6:23 am

For most of Tuesday, Australians were angry at the biggest telco in the country over a nationwide outage that affected up to 16.7 million mobile services attempting to make phone calls or use data.




Well, a Telstra spokeswoman has explained: "This is an embarrassing human error. It's not OK. We do not like causing that level of inconvenience to our customers". Yes, all of that outrage over the outage, from a single person making a mistake. The Telstra spokeswoman added that there would be a full investigation and that some customers would be offered free data as compensation.


As for the issue, it all began when one of the nodes used for managing voice calls and data traffic between devices, and Telstra's network started malfunctioning. The Telstra spokeswoman explained: "We took that node down, unfortunately the individual that was managing that issue did not follow the correct procedure, and he reconnected the customers to the malfunctioning node, rather than transferring them to the nine other redundant nodes that he should have transferred people to".


She continued: "We are working very quickly right now to figure out how we can provide some free data to our customers to make up for the inconvenience that has been caused today".

Google Fiber at 1Gbps being offered for free to select US residents

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Connectivity & Communications | Posted: Feb 5, 2016 3:52 am

Well... Google is offering its super-fast optic-based 1Gbps Internet service for free to residents living in public housing, once the company hooks its Fiber lines up to the properties.




The news is coming directly from Google, from their new blog titled "Connecting Public Housing at Gigabit Speeds". It all started in July 2015 when Google partnered with ConnectHome - a joint initiative led by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the White House, where it wanted to speed up Internet adoption for families with school-aged children, living in public housing.


Soon, public housing tenants will be able to access 1Gbps up/down from Google, for free. Google will begin its free 1Gbps Fiber rollout starting with residents in West Bluff, an affordable housing community in Kansas City, Missouri. Around 100 homes have been connected to the service, but Google is working with nine low-income property regions that would eventually connect over 1,300 local families.

Google is using drones to zap high-speed 5G internet from the skies

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Connectivity & Communications | Posted: Feb 1, 2016 9:30 pm

Google has a new ambitious plan to use solar-powered drones to zap high-speed internet from the heavens down to Earth.




According to reports from The Guardian, the secret project is called SkyBender, and is centralized in New Mexico's Gateway to Space terminal. Google's Project SkyBender is using solar-powered Solara 50 UAVs from the Google Titan division to experiment with high-speed millimeter-wave radio transmissions. The drones essentially beam the transmissions from the skies down to one of two targeted transceivers, bestowing wireless internet to a given area.


High-frequency millimeter-wave transmissions may ultimately pave the way for 5G technology; the signals are up to 40 times more efficient and powerful than 4G LTE, and can transmit up to multiple gigabits of data per second. "The huge advantage of millimetre wave is access to new spectrum because the existing cellphone spectrum is overcrowded. It's packed and there's nowhere else to go," said Jacques Rudell, a specialist from the University of Washington.

Continue reading 'Google is using drones to zap high-speed 5G internet from the skies' (full post)

WhatsApp will soon be totally free, no ads or subscriptions

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Connectivity & Communications | Posted: Jan 18, 2016 1:30 pm

WhatsApp users rejoice: the cross-platform mobile messaging app is now totally free for everyone.




The Facebook-owned messaging titan announced today that it has removed all subscription fees from WhatsApp, and the service will be free to use for all users.


"We're happy to announce that WhatsApp will no longer charge subscription fees. For many years, we've asked some people to pay a fee for using WhatsApp after their first year. As we've grown, we've found that this approach hasn't worked well. Many WhatsApp users don't have a debit or credit card number and they worried they'd lose access to their friends and family after their first year. So over the next several weeks, we'll remove fees from the different versions of our app and WhatsApp will no longer charge you for our service."

Continue reading 'WhatsApp will soon be totally free, no ads or subscriptions' (full post)

TP-Link's new tri-band WiGig router hits a top speed of 7.2Gbps

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Connectivity & Communications | Posted: Jan 9, 2016 4:44 am

CES 2016 - TP-Link has unveiled the world's first 802.11ad router that leverages three bands for a total speed of up to 7.2Gbps.




TP-Link's new Talon AD7200 router taps into the power of WiGig--the brand for Qualcomm's new 802.11ad standard--to deliver ultra-fast speeds. The Talon AD7200 sports a tri-band access point chipset that combines the monstrously-fast 60GHz WiGig with 802.11ac's 2.5GHz and 5GHz frequencies, totaling up to an insane speed of 7.2Gbps.


Although WiGig presents tremendous gains over traditional Wi-Fi, the new band can't penetrate walls and is limited to a single area. Luckily the Talon AD7200 will automatically switch over to the most efficient frequency at any given moment without interrupting tethered connections. So if you walk outside of WiGig's potent-but-limited range, the router will switch over to 802.11ac Wi-Fi without breaking a stride. The AD7200 also supports older frequencies including 802.11 a/b/g/n.

Continue reading 'TP-Link's new tri-band WiGig router hits a top speed of 7.2Gbps' (full post)

Comcast's 1Gbps service rolling out, but no word on pricing just yet

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Connectivity & Communications | Posted: Dec 27, 2015 10:37 am

Can you believe it has been three years since Google launched its Google Fiber service in Kansas City? Well, Comcast is now rolling out its own gigabit Internet service, connecting its first customer in Philadelphia.




Comcast is doing things a little differently to Google when it comes to connecting users up to its 1Gbps service, so instead of laying new fiber connections to houses, Comcast is using the new DOCSIS 3.1 standard. DOCSIS 3.1 works over the current "hybrid fiber coaxial" networks, so it's much cheaper to roll out, and once Comcast has it all setup, it should be able to deploy 1Gbps connections to most, if not all of its customers.


Now, the cost. Considering Comcast is offering its insanely fast 2Gbps service for $300 per month, it uses an entirely different technology. Comcast's 2Gbps service requires customers to live "within close proximity" to their fiber network. The company hopes to have its 1Gbps service in "several parts of the country" before the end of next year.

USB-C connector updated with Intel's Thunderbolt 3 transfer protocol

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Connectivity & Communications | Posted: Dec 1, 2015 2:24 am

It looks like USB Type-C just took a step in the right direction, with the reversible USB port being upgraded to include the Thunderbolt 3 transfer protocol from Intel.




The latest USB Type-C based devices can be found in the new Dell XPS 12, XPS 13 and XPS 15 systems that were announced in October being the first to feature the new port. Intel has called Thunderbolt 3 "port nirvana" thanks to it being capable of transferring data at 40Gbps, twice as fast as Thunderbolt 2, and four times as fast as USB 3.1 which has a ceiling of 10Gbps.


Thunderbolt 3 is quick enough to transfer a 4K video in less than 30 seconds while the port itself can drive two 4K displays at 60Hz, and it can quick charge notebooks at up to 100W. Getting Thunderbolt 3 into the USB Type-C protocol is a big win for Intel, as Thunderbolt connectivity has never reached the high hopes of Intel, but direct integration with USB Type-C is something exciting for Thunderbolt and especially Intel.