Mobile phones have become so affordable in recent years that it's no longer uncommon to find consumers willing to ditch their landline and fly solo with a wireless account. Certainly that's the case in almost 25 percent of U.S. homes, according a recent study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The CDC pinged some 21,375 households giving residence to more than 40,000 adults over the age of 18 and nearly 15,000 children. What they found was that 24.5 percent of those homes had at least one mobile phone and no landline account in the second half of 2009. In addition, one out of every seven U.S. homes (14.9 percent) had a landline but received all or nearly all calls on wireless telephones.
The CDC has been conducting cell phone surveys since 2003 and has seen first hand the decline of landlines in favor of mobile phones. Back in 2003, less than 5 percent of homes were mobile-phone only.
Recent rumblings have suggested that Apple's iPhone is headed to Verizon this summer, but is it really? Engadget on Monday said it confirmed that Apple and AT&T entered into a five-year exclusivity agreement back in 2007, which means AT&T is the only game in town until 2012, seemingly putting an end to the rumors saying otherwise. The only problem is, the rumors are getting louder.
Just yesterday CrunchGear uncovered that a media company called Landor Associates is putting together an advertising campaign for Verizon and Apple's upcoming iPhone 4G. The info comes by way of a tipster, so take this one at face value, but as far as CrunchGear is concerned, this "very nearly confirms a Verizon launch of the iPhone at the end of the summer."
While we're hesitant to fully believe an un-named tipster talking about an unconfirmed rumor, one thing we do know is that even if AT&T and Apple did sign a five year agreement in 2007, it's still possible the iPhone could end up elsewhere. Contracts have a way of being revised, after all, so we wouldn't be terribly shocked if the iPhone readlly did end up on Verizon.
Would you be interested in an iPhone if it was offered through Verizon? What mobile phone are you using now?
Cisco has managed to shoot a special radiation-hardened router into space, next step global domination. The space router is part of the US Department of Defense's Internet Routing in Space (IRIS), and reached orbit by sharing a rocket with an Intelsat satellite. The goal is to use IP routers in space to deliver voice, data, and video via a satellite network the same way land-based lines are used now.
How does this differ from current satellite data routing? Currently, data is sent to satellites via radio waves from specialized ground substations. By deploying IP routers in orbit, Cisco believes that communication can be accomplished using standard internet protocols.
Now that the IRIS system is in orbit, the US government gets first crack at it. They will spend three months examining possible military uses for the system. After that, Cisco will allow businesses to test the system for one year. Possible issues with latency aside, this could open up an entirely new market driving cheap, flexible communication access around the globe.