Items tagged with wireless

A serious flaw has been discovered in the software component of some routers that feature a Realtek chipset. In particular, routers that utilize a Realtek RTL81XXX chipset and also use the 1.3 SDK (or older, potentially), are vulnerable to an exploit that could see executable code run as root. Because it's not obvious what chipset most routers will use, ITworld shares an extremely helpful link that will let you search for whichever one you use. It should be stressed, though, that not every affected router may be listed here, and it still hasn't been ruled-out if versions older than the 1.3 SDK are vulnerable as well. Based on that list, TRENDnet and D-Link seem to have the greatest share of impacted... Read more...
Sprint is pulling out all the stops to lure wireless customers away from their existing providers, such as offering to cut subscribers' bills in half when they switch over from AT&T, Verizon, or T-Mobile. That offer still stands, only now Sprint is sweetening the pot by offering to pay all costs associated with switching, including early termination fees and remaining payments on installment plans. It doesn't matter how you much you owe on your subsidized phone or what the termination fees would be to switch over the Sprint -- the telecom wants your business so badly that it's willing to absorb the costs no matter how high. "Sprint is dedicated to its customers," said Tom Roberts, senior... Read more...
We’ve been hearing rumors of Google’s intention to step into the wireless carrier market as a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO). Google’s Nick Fox is helming the project, which is codenamed Nova. None other than Sundar Pichai, Google’s SVP of Android, Chrome, and Google Apps, has now confirmed what was previously just a rumor. But before you start envisioning the prospects of Google doing for wireless what it has done for home Internet connections (a la Google Fiber), you might want to tamper your expectations just a bit. During a live talk at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, Pichai explained that its efforts in wireless will mirror its efforts in Nexus hardware, “[pushing]... Read more...
Verizon may not offer the best pricing promotions, but out of the four major wireless carriers in the United States, Big Red sits on top, according to RootMertics. Verizon was ranked as America's top carrier with an overall "Rootscore" of 93.9 out of 100, beating out AT&T (91.7), Sprint (86.6), and T-Mobile (84.0) for the honor.The rating is for the second half of 2014. During that time, Rootmetrics traveled 288,165 miles conducting over 5.7 million tests, including ones from 6,215 indoor locations. The goal is to evaluate each of the wireless carriers' mobile network performance from a consumer's point of view. That entails data, calling, and texting performance, both indoors and outdoors,... Read more...
The Western Digital Passport Wireless is a member of a new class of storage devices that combine run-of-the-mill USB storage with wireless hotspot and media center functionality. These devices essentially marry what used to be two separate drives - an external USB device and a media device that can stream data wirelessly to connected devices. They also help address the relatively small amount of storage that is included with today's mobile devices, as they let you store and access terabytes of data on your smartphone or tablet without having to store it locally. It's an interesting combination, and very useful if you're the type of person who is constantly passing your external drive around to... Read more...
AT&T just earned itself a bit of bragging rights over competing wireless carriers, as it ranked highest in customer service according to the J.D. Power's 2015 Wireless Customer Care Full Service Study, Volume 1 released today. The semi-annual study pinged 6,499 full-service wireless customers for the period running from July to December 2014.Image Source: Flickr (Mike Mozart)"Our research has shown and our customers tell us that their number one desire is to feel appreciated by their provider, and we at AT&T Mobility are dedicated to deliver that each and every day to our customers," said Glenn Lurie, president and CEO, AT&T Mobility. "Delivering an excellent customer... Read more...
Cablevision is taking exception to Verizon's claims that its Wi-Fi service is the fastest available, claims the wireless telecom has made in television, radio, and Internet ads. The way Cablevision sees it, Verizon is making "deceptive" claims intended to "mislead consumers," so it went and filed a complaint with the U.S. District Court in Central Islip, New York. "Verizon's claim that it has faster Wi-Fi than Cablevision is false, deceptive, and designed to mislead consumers," Cablevision said. "Verizon has no public Wi-Fi network. In addition, Verizon’s in-home routers are not faster than Optimum Smart Routers and cost Verizon customers hundreds of dollars while Optimum’s are... Read more...
In what's been described as "by far the highest-earning spectrum auction the United States has ever seen" by Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler, AT&T led the way by spending a whopping $18.2 billion on wireless licenses. Combined with its acquisition of DirecTV last year, some are wondering if AT&T is being a bit careless. AT&T spent nearly $49 billion last year buying DirecTV, the largest satellite TV provider in the U.S. with 20 million customers. Along with a pair of smaller acquisitions and the wireless spectrum licenses it just bought, AT&T will see $70 billion go out the door in a year's time. "This spectrum investment will be critical to AT&T... Read more...
AT&T is wasting no time taking advantage of its acquisition of Mexican wireless service provider Iusacell. Last week’s buyout paved the way for AT&T to announce today that its international calling package, AT&T World Connect Value, now includes unlimited calling from the U.S. to any number in Mexico. There's no additional charge, and mobile numbers are included as well. "We’re always looking for opportunities to show our appreciation to our customers," said David Christopher, chief marketing officer, AT&T Mobility. "Mexico is the most frequently dialed country among our wireless customers—and now they can call as much as they want with our enhanced World Connect... Read more...
AT&T, the largest telephone company in the U.S., gave a heads up that it's planning to record a $10 billion charge in its fourth quarter financial results, including a $7.9 billion write-off related to changes in its pension and retiree benefit plans, and a $2.1 billion non-cash charge based on the determination that copper assets are no longer necessary as customers move away from older voice and data products. As an increasing number of customers shift their calling habits over to mobile phones and Internet-based calling services like Skype, the need for more copper landlines is quickly disappearing. Image Source: Flickr (Mike Mozart) According to Bloomberg, AT&T... Read more...
Up to this point, T-Mobile's been the one shaking up the wireless industry with its "Un-carrier" initiatives that go against the grain. However, credit Virgin Mobile for being the first to launch no-contract data sharing plans in the U.S., though there's a small caveat -- they're exclusively available at Walmart locations. If you don't mind a trip to Wally World, then beginning tomorrow (January 17), you can access the new plans on four specific 4G LTE smartphones that come pre-loaded with the Virgin Mobile data sharing application. In addition, each multi-line plan will also come with a free Mobile Hotspot feature so that it's easier to share data from... Read more...
Sprint this week reported some preliminary customer results for its third fiscal quarter of 2014, noting that it added 967,000 customers to the fold, including postpaid net additions of 30,000, prepaid net additions of 410,000, and wholesale net additions of 527,000. What's significant about these numbers is that it means Sprint was able to hold onto its position as the third largest wireless carrier in the U.S. That's bad news for T-Mobile, which has been pulling out all the stops as it attempts to catch up with surpass Sprint. And T-Mobile would have, if only Sprint posted a loss in subscribers -- T-Mobile earlier this week announced that it added 8.3 million subscribers in 2014, bringing its... Read more...
T-Mobile has been aggressive in its campaign to woo customers away from the competition, which it's successfully been able to do through its so-called "Uncarrier" campaign. So far it's working like a charm -- the wireless carrier today announced some preliminary data for the fourth quarter of 2014, revealing that it added 2.1 million net customers to the fray in Q4 alone. For the full year, T-Mobile saw 8.3 million total net customer additions, making it the biggest year of net customer additions in the company's history. It's no coincidence that the record breaking performance comes at the same time outspoken T-Mobile chief John Legere decided to shake things up by eliminating customer contracts... Read more...
It's always a good idea to comb through your wireless phone bill each and every month to make sure you aren't being hit with any unauthorized charges, such as ringtones, screensavers, and other third-party items that you never agreed to purchase. It's a practice known as bill cramming, and it's something the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) takes very seriously. The FCC is so serious that it may slap Sprint with a hefty fine for allowing its customers to be charged for services they never wanted or requested. According to Reuters, FCC commissioners are currently reviewing the situation and will soon vote on the proposed $105 million fine. It's the same amount the FCC punished... Read more...
Verizon is putting its brave face on and remaining positive about future growth opportunities as it deals with increasingly aggressive competitors in the wireless space. Without feeding the media and analysts too much real data to chew on, Verizon spoke in vague terms, saying that it sees "strong momentum for wireless customer growth" heading into the fourth quarter of 2014, along with "very strong customer demand" for 4G devices on its More Everything shared data plans. According to Verizon, retail postpaid gross additions are higher both sequentially and year-over-year. In addition, new device launches are leading to "significant customer phone upgrades." If you're keeping count so far, that's... Read more...
Gogo raked in record revenue of $104 million for its fiscal third quarter of 2014, up 22 percent year-over-year, however the company has also been spending a great deal on expanding its in-flight Wi-Fi service to more airlines. As a result, Gogo ended up posting a $24.9 million loss for the quarter, or $0.29 per share, compared to a loss of $18.7 million, or $0.22 per share a year ago. Though the company couldn't manage to climb out of the red, Gogo President and CEO Michael Small was pleased with the performance as he keeps an eye towards long-term growth. In order to set the company up for that, Small has to make investments into getting Gogo's service offered on more airlines. "We announced... Read more...
When people think about Internet security, they still think of the various bugs, flaws, and malware that pervade the online world as a Windows problem. Macs have long enjoyed special status thanks to limited market share, while smartphones aren't generally considered to be an attack vector, no matter which OS you prefer. That's clearly changing -- a new report from Palo Alto Networks illustrates how a new Trojan they call WireLurker doesn't just infect iOS devices -- it relies on Mac OS X vulnerabilities to do so. WireLurker contains a bevy of firsts and achievements. It's the largest malware to rely on repackaged OS X applications, the first to automate the generation of malicious iOS applications,... Read more...
Wireless carriers in the U.S. are doing everything they can to be seen as more than that. For some, that means opening up innovation centers. For others, it's offering home security solutions in addition to phones. And for AT&T, it means hawking tablets and even watches. Yes, watches. The carrier has just announced that it'll be the first operator in the United States to offer the LG G Watch R, but you can rest assured that it won't be the last watch you see in AT&T stores. The company has stated that the G Watch R will "join its growing wearable portfolio," hinting that more could be on the horizon. The G Watch R is a different breed of wearable, boasting a circular P-OLED display with... Read more...
While hardwired connections always trump wireless ones when it comes to longstanding reliability and sustained transfer rates, it's obvious that a wireless world is the one we're headed for. Samsung just so happens to recognize that, which is why it's trotting out a new development in the Wi-Fi space that could send files, photos, and whatever else from point to point at record speeds. The company has just announced a new 60GHz Wi-Fi technology, which represents a five-fold increase  from 866Mbps, or 108MB per second, the maximum speed possible with existing consumer electronics devices. With Samsung's approach, you could (in theory) see transmission speeds of up to 4.6Gbps, or 575MB per... Read more...
Being the hardcore enthusiasts that we are, it's easy to forget that not everyone lives on the cutting edge of technology or otherwise wants or needs high end components and peripherals designed for power users. So for those of who wouldn't dream of owning a mouse decked out with more buttons than you have fingers, meet Logitech's latest rodent, the M320. This little guy is a wireless mouse designed for comfort by way of its curved shape to "guide your hand to a natural position." It also sports an asymmetrical form, making it an ambidextrous rodent for both left- and right-handed users. "With the considerable amount of time each day that we all spend using desktops, laptops and tablets, it is... Read more...
A major pet peeve of mine while traveling is having to endure the ridiculous fees that hotels charge you to get online. A very capable home Internet connection might cost you about $60/mo, but many hotels see nothing wrong with charging you $15 per day - and even then, the performance you get from your connection could be measured in a couple of megabits (and not to mention be sporadic in reliability, to boot). Hotels could give out free Internet if they wanted to (and to be fair, many do), but it's one of those services that today, people need, and so it's a perfect way to bolster revenue. Even then, $15/night is ridiculous, but people pay it because it's better than having no Internet at all.... Read more...
I've been a fan of WD's My Passport series of external hard drives for some time, but with some wireless drives having come and gone over the past couple of years, I could never help but wonder where on earth the WD option was. Well, that question has now been answered, with the just-announced and appropriately-named WD My Passport Wireless. WD's tagline for the Wireless is "Every device. One drive. No wires.", which does a great job of explaining what the drive is all about. Under the hood is a 500GB, 1TB, or 2TB hard drive, along with an 802.11n 2x2 Wi-Fi adapter. As with most wireless storage, you'll be connecting to this My Passport through Wi-Fi, as if it were a hotspot. Then through WD's... Read more...
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