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Verizon's 4G choice and the iPhone; Dell shipments slump in Q3

post #1 of 32
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Verizon's decision to use Long Term Evolution for its fourth-generation wireless will have a long-term effect on the US cellular industry. Also, Dell has traded spaces and finds itself struggling to grow sales, according to an iSuppli report.

Verizon's 4G to share same technology as AT&T

For the first time since the company's founding in 2000, Verizon Wireless will share the same base network technology as its largest rival AT&T, the carrier has revealed on Thursday while confirming future plans for its service.

Known as LTE for short, Long Term Evolution will replace the 3G (third-generation) networks of both carriers and will deliver downloads as quick as 100 megabits per second while cutting back on latency and supporting more users for every cell tower, making it easier to deploy than 3G in the process. To date, Verizon has used the competing CDMA standard and its accompanying EVDO data access, which are incompatible with AT&T's GSM network

The similarity virtually ensures greater network compatibility between the companies' cellular services in the future. A subscriber to AT&T with an LTE phone could roam to Verizon's network or vice versa, while customers of either provider will have the choice of bringing their unlocked devices with them if they switch providers. Vodafone's eventual European network will also support the same format, Verizon says.

While potentially impressive, Verizon cautions that its 4G network is still distant: early trials begin in 2008, hinting at an actual commercial deployment in 2009 or later. AT&T's exclusivity deal with the iPhone may also prevent some eventual 4G iPhones from switching to Verizon on an official basis. The Apple handset itself is also currently limited to AT&T's 2G EDGE service and will only reach 3G next year.

Rivals feed on Dell's PC marketshare misfortune, says report

The Round Rock, Texas-based computer builder is facing assaults on all fronts from PC vendors ready to take advantage of its mistakes, iSuppli said on Thursday.

Dell's computer shipments increased in the third quarter by just 1.5 percent compared to the same season a year ago, well behind other top-tier PC makers. The company shipped just 100,000 more systems than in summer 2006 and tumbled from a 16.3 percent marketshare of all PCs shipped worldwide to 14.6 percent.

The company's lackluster performance is largely due to sluggish sales channels that haven't yet adapted to the company's renewed PC-centric strategy.

Other companies have been eager to pounce on this fact, according to the researchers. Both first-place HP and fourth-place Acer are pushing Dell out of its familiar position at the top of the charts as they both put most of their attention on the more popular notebook business and have been much more successful at controlling their sales channels. Each grew substantially over the last year, with HP climbing from 16.5 percent to 19.2 percent year-over-year and Acer soaring from 5.4 to 7.9 percent -- a 68 percent leap in marketshare that will only get stronger once Acer finishes acquiring Gateway within coming months.

Lenovo occupies third place at 8.1 percent while Toshiba is fifth with an unspecified share, iSuppli adds. Companies below the marker, including Apple, are not mentioned.

The downturn for Dell is proving increasingly ironic for its namesake chief executive Michael Dell, who infamously suggested in October 1997 that he would shut down Apple and give back the money to shareholders at a time when Dell was triumphant and Apple was considered near death. The tone of the iSuppli report appears to echo this sentiment when it summarizes the effect of competition upon Dell ten years later.

"Dude, you're getting Dell's marketshare," iSuppli says.
post #2 of 32
Thats just great, the iPhone is just now going to get 3G in a year and 4G is coming around!
Will Apple ever catch up?!?!?!

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post #3 of 32
iPhone not having 3G was a choice based on size, weight, and battery life. Its likely Apple's wireless chip supplier will provide what Apple wants when 4G is ready.
post #4 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by MsNly View Post

Thats just great, the iPhone is just now going to get 3G in a year and 4G is coming around!
Will Apple ever catch up?!?!?!


Unless the iPhone's architecture is brain-dead, the software (the important part) shouldn't care what the network is. There should be a generic telephony API for placing and receiving voice calls, along with a standard TCP/IP stack for data connectivity. It should be possible to swap in any wireless chipset and only require a new device driver to make it work.

The real bottleneck will be power consumption on those chips. Keeping heat down and battery life up is needed to keep customers happy. If Jobs is to be believed, that's the thing keeping 3G out of today's iPhone. If the 4G chipsets meet Apple's power requirements, Apple probably wouldn't object to using them right from the start. If they don't, of course, then we'll all have to wait.
post #5 of 32
Verizon currently uses Evolution Data Optimized (EVDO), so I don't see the weirdness in them using its successor. It's more interesting that AT&T is switching to Evolution. Incidentally, all 3G standards use CDMA. 4G uses OFDM. Either way, we get rid of awful, awful, awful GSM for voice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post

iPhone not having 3G was a choice based on size, weight, and battery life. Its likely Apple's wireless chip supplier will provide what Apple wants when 4G is ready.

That's BS. iPhone not debuting at 3G was because:

1. provides compelling short-term upgrade path
2. AT&T isn't 3G
3. Using old components allowed Apple to develop the iPhone in secret.

If Apple had used a contemporary 3G SoC, the iPhone would have better battery life that the current model has, all else equal. <edit> I have a Samsung 3G phone with Sprint that goes 7 days between charges. I use it for music and data, as well.
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post #6 of 32
How does LTE compare to other 4g technologies like WiMax and the 700mhz spectrum?
post #7 of 32
Advice to Michael Dell: Close up shop, sell the company and return the money to the shareholders.

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GOA

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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post #8 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

Advice to Michael Dell: Close up shop, sell the company and return the money to the shareholders.

Heh!

From Reuters:
Quote:
"Chief Executive Michael Dell, leading a restructuring of the company he founded, spoke of "winds of caution in certain financial customers" despite good demand overall."

I've got some winds for you right here Mr. Dell.
post #9 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

will deliver downloads as quick as 100 megabits per second while cutting back on latency and supporting more users for every cell tower

Did we get overzealous with our zeros? 100 mb/s is the same as the LAN here! I might just be ditching my T3 line here and use a 4G iPhone when it comes out!

--EDIT--
Holy Hell! after some googling, the article appears correct! Wow... wireless ethernet... *drools*
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post #10 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by JakeTheRock View Post

Did we get overzealous with our zeros? 100 mb/s is the same as the LAN here! I might just be ditching my T3 line here and use a 4G iPhone when it comes out!

Of course, you're still limited by the speeds on the server at the other end of the connection.

Right now, with cable modems running in the 10-30Mbps range, you already find plenty of sites that can't saturate the line. With a 100M link, I'm sure most sites will fall into that category.

Of course, even if you never see an actual 100Mbps flood of data, it's still good if you can receive it as fast as the server can dish it out. That puts the onus on the data source where (IMO) it belongs, instead of on the carrier.
post #11 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by JakeTheRock View Post

Did we get overzealous with our zeros? 100 mb/s is the same as the LAN here! I might just be ditching my T3 line here and use a 4G iPhone when it comes out!

--EDIT--
Holy Hell! after some googling, the article appears correct! Wow... wireless ethernet... *drools*

I believe that these ethernet figures are expressed in megabytes, not megabits.
post #12 of 32
The downturn for Dell is proving increasingly ironic for its namesake chief executive Michael Dell, who infamously suggested in October 1997 that he would shut down Apple and give back the money to shareholders at a time when Dell was triumphant and Apple was considered near death. The tone of the iSuppli report appears to echo this sentiment when it summarizes the effect of competition upon Dell ten years later.

Mr. Dell, you are an arrogant dumb a$$. I hope you enjoy eating your words.
post #13 of 32
Quote:
1. provides compelling short-term upgrade path
2. AT&T isn't 3G
3. Using old components allowed Apple to develop the iPhone in secret.

These three statements are either conjecture or just plain wrong. Adding 3G later does add an upgrade path but there has been sound evidence that 3G for UMTS does use more power than EDGE.

The AT&T 3G / BroadbandConnect network is currently available in most major metropolitan areas and is expanding rapidly.

I don't see how using EDGE or 3G would make any difference in the secret development of the iPhone.

Quote:
I have a Samsung 3G phone with Sprint that goes 7 days between charges. I use it for music and data, as well.

Sprint uses EVDO and ATT uses GSM/UMTS. They are completely different technologies.

Quote:
If Apple had used a contemporary 3G SoC, the iPhone would have better battery life that the current model has, all else equal.

Which SOC would you have suggested? Seeing as other UMTS 3G phones do take a hit in battery life.
post #14 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by tmedia1 View Post

Mr. Dell, you are an arrogant dumb a$$. I hope you enjoy eating your words.

Meh. . . he has plenty in the bank. I assume that he realizes that, at some point, pursuit of profit is futile in a commodity market. Dell makes the stereotypical commodity PC.
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post #15 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Splinemodel View Post

1. provides compelling short-term upgrade path
2. AT&T isn't 3G
3. Using old components allowed Apple to develop the iPhone in secret.

1 Yes.
2 What you mean to say is that AT&T doesn't have reliable 3G coverage around the country.
3 Apple could have used old components for development and switched to newer components for the final device and FCC approval.

4 Cost. The iPhone is already expensive to produce. Making it 3G would just add more cost that is not necessary for the market right now. This ties in with your first point.
5 Battery. It's not debatable that 3G is far more battery intensive than EDGE. Adding a stronger batter increases size, weight, and cost.
6 Data. Apple can probably got a larger slice of the data plan revenue if they went with EDGE for the time being. AT&T has already invested a lot in beefing up EDGE, maintaining it.
post #16 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by JakeTheRock View Post

Did we get overzealous with our zeros? 100 mb/s is the same as the LAN here! I might just be ditching my T3 line here and use a 4G iPhone when it comes out!

--EDIT--
Holy Hell! after some googling, the article appears correct! Wow... wireless ethernet... *drools*

No, this is what's expected for 4G networks. It's like WiFi, though, an ideal. Real world speeds will never reach that, but could get to 50%, or so.
post #17 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by BjK View Post

I believe that these ethernet figures are expressed in megabytes, not megabits.

Ethernet is measured in bits, not bytes. 10 GB Ethernet is around the corner, but is still VERY expensive since it requires (so far) fiber.
post #18 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

Advice to Michael Dell: Close up shop, sell the company and return the money to the shareholders.

It's the right way to go for a beleaguered company. Which Dell is.
post #19 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by icfireball View Post

1 Yes.
2 What you mean to say is that AT&T doesn't have reliable 3G coverage around the country.
3 Apple could have used old components for development and switched to newer components for the final device and FCC approval.

4 Cost. The iPhone is already expensive to produce. Making it 3G would just add more cost that is not necessary for the market right now. This ties in with your first point.
5 Battery. It's not debatable that 3G is far more battery intensive than EDGE. Adding a stronger batter increases size, weight, and cost.
6 Data. Apple can probably got a larger slice of the data plan revenue if they went with EDGE for the time being. AT&T has already invested a lot in beefing up EDGE, maintaining it.

Wrong on all accounts. I do actually know what I'm talking about. Believe me: the iPhone was designed first and foremost to have a stealth product development cycle, and second to make way quickly for a much improved revision. That revision, the 3G revision, will be done right with (as far as I know) an OMAP SoC and several other cost and performance improvements. From the perspective of an electronic designer, the current iPhone is far from elegant. When I saw the breakdown photos, I was disgusted.

2. AT&T marketing claims that they have 3G, but they actually do not. UTMS is not 3G.

3. No. The iPhone electronic design is circa 2003/2004. 2007 design is all about SoC's. This would require a new board design. Second, FCC doesn't work that way.

4. No. It would possibly reduce cost since the BOM would be simplified. Worst case is an extra $10, but I find that unlikely.

5. 3G chips are more modern and more efficient than EDGE chips. Second, the network is 5 to 50 times faster, so the power-intense components are active that much less. Third, batteries aren't really that heavy or that expensive. If Apple used an SoC instead of the ludicrous board layout they decided to go with in the iPhone, they could probably get away with a single battery cell instead of two cells, which in turn would simplify the battery-supervisor circuitry, decrease leakage, and, all together, improve battery life and reduce cost.

6. AT&T is only using EDGE because W-CDMA uses too wide a signal bandwidth to meet FCC approval. Otherwise, they would have upgraded their network years ago, when Sprint and Verizon did. Frankly, I'm amazed that they've managed to hold on to market. If Sprint and Verizon weren't run by knuckleheads, AT&T would have been out of the mobile business by now. AT&T QOS is shockingly bad in theory and in practice.
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post #20 of 32
Totally agree with Splinemodel's analysis.

The "3G chips are too power hungry" excuse from Jobs was smoke and mirrors.

There ARE 3G phones out there that are slimmer, smaller and 3G that have better battery life. And you've got the ultimate solution for 3G power usage - switch it off when you don't need it. That's how many people lived with the early 6xxx nokia 3G bricks available 3-4 years ago here.
post #21 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

Advice to Michael Dell: Close up shop, sell the company and return the money to the shareholders.

Nah, no reason to repeat stupid comments.

I think the best thing Steve Jobs could say in response to Dell's current situation would be the truth (rather than repeat a stupid statement.)

Something like, "I'd advise them to start making a products worth purchasing."

I think that would get to the point of the current status of the two companies. That's how Jobs got Apple back on track, and that's exactly why Dell still sucks. We have Dell machines at work, and they are crap.

Truth.

IQ78
post #22 of 32
Does this mean Verizon is going to be adding GSM support? There is plenty of talk of compatible technologies and 4G is the article, but nothing explicitly stating adding support for GSM.

EDIT: Looks like the answer is YES: http://www.engadget.com/2007/09/21/v...n-4g-networks/ - sweet
post #23 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

Ethernet is measured in bits, not bytes. 10 GB Ethernet is around the corner, but is still VERY expensive since it requires (so far) fiber.

10GigE isn't "around the corner". It's shipping right now. But if you're not provisioning a wide area network, there's really no point, especially given current prices.

There is especially no point to using it on personal systems - there's no way a desktop computer can saturate even a 1G line (not counting contrived tests, where the entire OS does nothing but generate packets.) Your computers don't even have internal buses capable of 10Gbps operation.

10GigE, IMO, will remain in the domain of router manufacturers. It's great for aggregating lots of slower circuits, but rather pointless in small-scale networks.
post #24 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by ajmas View Post

Does this mean Verizon is going to be adding GSM support? There is plenty of talk of compatible technologies and 4G is the article, but nothing explicitly stating adding support for GSM.

EDIT: Looks like the answer is YES: http://www.engadget.com/2007/09/21/v...n-4g-networks/ - sweet

LTE is based on GSM tech. This doesn't necessarily mean that Verizon's 4G phones will be backwards-compatible with legacy GSM networks. They may very well contract for phones that use CDMA/1x/EVDO for backward compatibility (with their own network) and GSM/LTE only for 4G operation.

Nothing in the Engadget article says Verizon will be supporting all legacy GSM tech as a part of this move, or that LTE support mandates legacy GSM support.

Be careful about how much you read between the lines.
post #25 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by shamino View Post

LTE is based on GSM tech. This doesn't necessarily mean that Verizon's 4G phones will be backwards-compatible with legacy GSM networks. They may very well contract for phones that use CDMA/1x/EVDO for backward compatibility (with their own network) and GSM/LTE only for 4G operation.

Nothing in the Engadget article says Verizon will be supporting all legacy GSM tech as a part of this move, or that LTE support mandates legacy GSM support.

Be careful about how much you read between the lines.

The more I read about it the more I realise that this not simply adding GSM suport, but adding next generation GSM support. As you say whether that means adding support for current generation GSM phones, which use TDMA, is unclear.

One thing that might make a difference in the future is covered by a Wired article on radios made of software .
post #26 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by ajmas View Post

Does this mean Verizon is going to be adding GSM support? There is plenty of talk of compatible technologies and 4G is the article, but nothing explicitly stating adding support for GSM.

EDIT: Looks like the answer is YES: http://www.engadget.com/2007/09/21/v...n-4g-networks/ - sweet

3G and 4G technologies are based on CDMA.
post #27 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

Advice to Michael Dell: Close up shop, sell the company and return the money to the shareholders.

That would be funnier if Dell hadn't just bought the company I work for. \
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post #28 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by shamino View Post

10GigE isn't "around the corner". It's shipping right now. But if you're not provisioning a wide area network, there's really no point, especially given current prices.

There is especially no point to using it on personal systems - there's no way a desktop computer can saturate even a 1G line (not counting contrived tests, where the entire OS does nothing but generate packets.) Your computers don't even have internal buses capable of 10Gbps operation.

10GigE, IMO, will remain in the domain of router manufacturers. It's great for aggregating lots of slower circuits, but rather pointless in small-scale networks.

When I say "around the corner" I mean for the average person. I know it's out.

But, like the older 100 Mbs, and 1Gbs, the cost will be prohibitive for a while after the tchnology was available to corporate.

I was considering buying $1,500 to $2,000 hubs and switches that had only one or two 100 Mbs, and later 1 Gbs ports amongst the other lower speed ports, and buying those $500+ cards for my machines, but decided to wait.

Right now, Apple sells no card for the purpose, which is another reason why I said that it was around the corner. Though they do sell two 4Gb Fiber Channel cards. One is dual channel, and one is four.

http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPL...8IsB6DJ/2.?p=0

The Mac Pro also allows one to conglomerate the two 1 Gbs Ethernet ports for greater bandwidth, and you can add a multi port card that will add even more.

It's true that few can even use this tecnology right now, but others can. It's also true that using a 10 Gbs Ethernet card in a Mac Pro is very feasable. The card can use 4, or even eight, channels to get the bandwidth it needs. This is the same way video cards, fiber channel, and conglomerated Ethernet, work, and the principle is the same. There are already 500 MBs (Byte, not bit) ESata towers available for uncompressed HD video editing that are useable on the Mac Pro, with the proper SATA card.

This will be no different.

Next year, when Express 2 is out, it will be even easier. I'm even hoping we see a new Mac Pro with that announced at MacWorld, though I'm not holding my breath. I hope Apple doesn't wait for Nehalem.
post #29 of 32
Looks like Verizon is hedging its bets against losing to Google in the FCC's January auction of 700 MHz spectrum.
post #30 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

Looks like Verizon is hedging its bets against losing to Google in the FCC's January auction of 700 MHz spectrum.

The auction is what this is all about.
post #31 of 32
Quote:
Forbes
The new a la carte service plan, which will be based on bandwidth use, could also be pricy. Verizon hasn't yet disclosed its pricing scheme.

If Verizon increases prices that could effect you monetarily, you can get out of your Verizon contract without having to pay the Early Termination Fee. It is yet to be seen how Verizon's new pricing schemes could impact current Verizon customers.
post #32 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by icfireball View Post

If Verizon increases prices that could effect you monetarily, you can get out of your Verizon contract without having to pay the Early Termination Fee. It is yet to be seen how Verizon's new pricing schemes could impact current Verizon customers.

Contracts go both ways. When you sign up for a two-year commitment, it commits them to not change the terms. If they make changes that you don't agree with, they have to let you out.

They won't do a thing to your existing contract. If they do choose to impose a new rate schedule, the new rates will take effect at your next renewal. They'll only take place immediately if your contract has expired and you chose to not renew.
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