Google is nothing if not ambitious. Of course, not everything Google touches turns to gold the way search and Gmail did -- we're looking at you Google Plus. So, we'll have to wait and see what impact Google's newest venture, Project Fi, has on the industry it's competing in (wireless phone service). In the meantime, let's have a look at what Project Fi is and what it could be.
Verizon plays you for a fool; hopes you won't dig too deep
Today was arguably a landmark event for the FCC and net neutrality. The FCC successfully passed a vote that classifies Internet service as a public utility under Title II of the Communications Act, which makes ISPs become what's otherwise known as a "common carrier." If you want to read the actual rules from the FCC, check this out.
Minneapolis is now home to ‘fastest service the world has ever seen’
A couple of months back, South Korean ISP (internet service provider) SK Broadband gave those attending the 2014 ITU Plenipotentiary Conference in Busan a glimpse of its upcoming 10Gbps (gigabits per second) internet service while the rest of the world, including the U.S., looked on with envy. Well, not so fast. Minnesota-based ISP US Internet has just beaten the South Korean company to the 10Gbps punch by announcing the roll out of a 10Gbps fiber broadband service in Minneapolis.
In what might be the boldest move yet by a wireless carrier, Sprint today announced it will cut in half the monthly rate plan for Verizon and AT&T customers if they jump ship and swim to Sprint beginning Friday, December 5. It's called the "Cut Your Bill in Half Event," and customers who make the switch will get unlimited talk and text in the U.S., regardless of their current plan, plus the same data allowance that they're currently receiving, for half of whatever they're paying.
Verizon's decision to throttle data for certain users grandfathered in to the company's older unlimited data plans has drawn the ire of the Federal Communications Commission. In an open letter, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler tells Verizon that he is "deeply troubled" by its recent announcement and finds it "disturbing" that the wireless carrier would try to take advantage of a loophole to bring in more money.
Depending on where you live and what Internet service provider (ISP) you're subscribed to, there's a high possibility that your download speed is massively faster than your allotted upload speed. Such is the way it typically goes, though not so on Verizon's FiOS network. Effectively immediately, existing and new Verizon FiOS residential customers will receive upload speeds that match their download speeds.
New York-based Verizon user finds Netflix to be nearly 10x faster with a VPN than without it
Netflix and Verizon are now locked in a blame game over the sluggish performance of the former’s video streaming service on the latter’s network. This despite Netflix (grudgingly) agreeing to pay Verizon to ensure the smooth delivery of its streaming video content to the ISP’s subscribers. Regardless of who’s to blame, it’s paying customers of both companies who are being made to suffer for no fault of theirs. One such end user caught in the crossfire, New York-based entrepreneur Colin Nederkoorn, posted a video exposing the severity of the issue. The video has since gone viral, having amassed over 400,000 views on YouTube.
Netflix received a cease and desist order from Verizon's legal team last week due to a message the streaming service was posting to customers during times when network congestion resulted in lower quality videos. The message read, " The Verizon network is crowded right now. Adjust video for smoother playback." Fast forward a few days and Netflix is backing off its shaming campaign, though it hasn't ruled out using the same or similar messages in the future.
After reluctantly inking a multi-year agreement with Comcast to ensure that its video streams reach customers without a degradation in quality, Netflix probably isn't all that gung-ho to pay what it feels would be another extortion fee, this time to Verizon. Instead, Netflix has been showing Verizon customers a somewhat snarky message blaming the ISP for low-quality video streams, and Verizon is none-too-happy about it.
AT&T seems to be at the front of the line a lot when it comes to mobile devices. For a period of time, it was the only carrier offering Apple's iPhone, and more recently, if you wanted a customized Moto X device from Motorola, you had to be an AT&T subscriber. Not anymore. Motorola announced that the Moto X is now available for customization on all major U.S. carriers, including Verizon Wireless, Sprint, T-Mobile, and of course AT&T.