Editor’s Note: RCR Wireless News goes all in for “Throwback Thursdays,” tapping into our archives to resuscitate the top headlines from the past. Fire up the time machine, put on those sepia-tinted shades, set the date for #TBT and enjoy the memories!
STAMFORD, Conn.-Two new studies show the market for personal digital assistants continues to shrink as more and more users are enticed by smart phones. “Through the end of 2004, smart phones will generally have a negative impact on the low end of the PDA market, as many individual users will find the personal information management and e-mail capabilities of smart phones acceptable,” said Todd Kort, principal analyst in Gartner’s Computing Platforms Worldwide group. “These users will tend to become less interested in low-end PDAs that have provided these capabilities.” According to Gartner’s new PDA figures, the number of device shipments worldwide decreased 5.3 percent in 2003 to a total of 11.5 million units. Gartner said PalmOne Inc. maintained the top spot, followed closely by Hewlett-Packard Co., Sony Corp. and Research In Motion Ltd. Similar numbers from rival research firm IDC confirm Gartner’s assessment. … Read more Mini Handheld Computer
Voice to drive wireless use in 2004
NEW YORK-Deloitte Research expects wireless subscriber numbers to continue to rise during 2004, bolstered by the steady use of traditional voice applications. Deloitte predicts mobile-subscriber penetration rates will continue to rise in 2004, with voice applications continuing to dominate mobile revenues and profits. The research firm also expects color and polyphony sound to drive revenues. Meanwhile, the group expects mobile data growth to slow due to stagnant consumer text-messaging growth. Advances in third-generation technologies will continue, but 3G will not yet be adopted by the masses during the year. … Read more
Battle for broadband in the home
CAMBRIDGE, U.K.-Wireless operators are expected to battle fixed-line operators for a chunk of the broadband home market, which could be worth more than $100 billion by 2008, according to a report from Analysys. “While the major share of the market will go to consumer electronics companies, content owners and packagers, broadband operators could generate up to $12.5 billion by providing broadband home services such as communications, entertainment, IT and security services,” said Margaret Hopkins, author of the report. “These services could be delivered over the fixed-broadband Internet, but many of them could equally well be delivered over broadcast TV networks using mobile phones to provide interactivity.” The Analysys report examines two scenarios. In one, broadband Internet service providers gain up to $38 per month in revenue per household, or a total of $12.5 billion in 2008. In another scenario, mobile operators and broadcasters take most of this revenue, with mobile operators adding up to $2.26 per month to consumer ARPUs, or a total of $5 billion in 2008. … Read more
‘RIM’s biggest competitor is ignorance’, says CEO
BlackBerry-maker Research In Motion Ltd. faces a range of obstacles, both major and minor. But one challenge overshadows the rest, according to Mike Lazaridis, the company’s president and co-chief executive officer. “RIM’s biggest competitor is ignorance,” Lazaridis said. “Our challenge continues to be and has always been getting someone to try it.” Because, Lazaridis asserts, once you try BlackBerry, you can’t go back. Indeed, the device has earned the nickname CrackBerry from enthusiasts as legal, financial and telecommunications executives refuse to travel without it. BlackBerrys (and new color-screen versions dubbed BlueBerrys) are ubiquitous at high-tech conferences. They are a common ornament on the leadership of the Cellular Telecommunications & Internet Association, the wireless industry’s trade organization. Even the federal government has admitted its addiction, with members of Congress using BlackBerrys to stay in touch during the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11. Dozens of companies compete in the struggling wireless enterprise market. Business spending remains sluggish. Profit margins are slim. But the key to sales, Lazaridis said, is as simple as getting a BlackBerry in a customer’s hand. RIM’s successes over the past few months make Lazaridis’ assessment hard to dismiss. The company in December reported a record quarter with revenues topping $150 million, net income of more than $16 million and an upgraded outlook for the year. And Wall Street roared. Following the release of its quarterly report, the price of RIM’s stock almost doubled. News of the jump made national business headlines. RIM’s stock now looks like it could soon break the $100-per-share barrier. … Read more
Huawei invests in free-space optics
HONGKONG-Huawei Technologies Inc. moved to strengthen its U.S. business and microwave offering by investing $2 million in LightPointe Communications Co., a free-space optics firm. Huawei joined other investors in a $17 million funding of the company. Last year, LightPointe had entered into an OEM deal with the Chinese firm to supply FSO products to Huawei. … Read more
Sprint says it will sit out telecom merger mania
NEW YORK-Sprint Corp. told industry analysts at an investor conference that the company planned to sit out the merger mania currently sweeping the wireless industry, noting the company would instead focus its wireless operations on growing relationships with wholesale partners and closer integration with Sprint’s wireline operations. “We’re very committed to running this business on our own,” said Sprint President and Chief Operating Officer Len Lauer. Sprint’s chief executive officer, Gary Forsee, added that the company expects to see benefits from customer uncertainty surrounding its competitors and … Read more
Sprint offers Video Mail service
OVERLAND PARK, Kan.-Sprint is offering a new Video Mail phone to its customers nationwide. The VM4050 phone allows customers to take and send video and audio directly on their mobile phone anywhere on Sprint’s PCS network. The PCS Vision Video Phone is made by Toshiba and marketed by Audiovox Communications Corp. Sprint is offering the phone for $180 with a two-year contract. … Read more
Cameraphones get their own conference
MELVILLE, N.Y.-Pulver.com and Next Generation Ventures announced they will launch their inaugural Cameraphone Summit: The Conference on Cameraphones and Convergent Mobile Media April 27-30 in Maui, Hawaii. Executives from Nokia Corp. and Hewlett-Packard Co. will offer keynote speeches, and the summit will cover issues from applications to privacy to hardware. “Cameraphones are definitely the next big thing for the global mobile-phone market,” said Moses Ma, the managing partner of Next Generation Ventures. “Industry analysts are estimating that 125 million handsets with imaging capabilities will be shipped globally in 2005 … Read more
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