From Alexander Graham Bell to AT&T: The World's Telecom Leaders

Telecommunications would not be the same if not for the big names out there – not only are the biggest companies on the globe able to deliver wider coverage, but they also have the know-how and the resources to invest in cutting-edge tech that brings new developments to the market. This is how we got from the old-fashioned receiver landline phones to 5G high-speed internet-connected smartphones. And the world’s biggest and richest telecom companies keep up the race towards the next step in consumer-oriented tech – even if they are not always quite able to make good on their promises when it comes to their real coverage. Today we examine the best and most ambitious among the pack.
With $163 billion in yearly sales, AT&T has surpassed all competition, including China Mobile and Japanese leader Nippon to climb at the top of Forbes 25 Biggest Telecom Companies in 2017. The Forbes list brings together companies from 17 countries across the globe that collectively reach a market cap of $1.6 billion. In 2016, their combined revenues amounted to $1.2 trillion and profits reached $88 billion among them. AT&T rose to the top of the rankings after it decided to buy DirecTV, a satellite broadcast company, in 2015 and went on to create the concept of AT&T entertainment. Short for American Telephone and Telegraph Company, AT&T can traces its roots back to Alexander Graham Bell himself, the legendary inventor of the telephone, as it was established as one of the subsidiaries of the Bell Telephone Company back in 1885 and then went on to buy its parent company a few years later for legal grounds. Headquartered in Texas, USA, the company is one of the largest mobile and landline phone services providers in America.
Verizon Communications Inc., another US-based company that has its headquarters in New York, comes in second in the world. Interestingly, Verizon is what came of AT&T’s decision to divest its regional operations following a mandate from the US government in the 1980s. Bell Atlantic was one of seven companies that broke off from AT&T and in 2000 took on the ambitious name Verizon – a combination of the Latin word for truth, “veritas”, and “horizon”. It is currently run by chairman and CEO Lowell McAdam, who successfully headed the company into buying AOL and then later Yahoo! to branch out into the media sector. The two new companies were incorporated into a new sector, taking on the equally ambitious name “Oath”. It is publicly traded in both the NYSE and Nasdaq stock markets and in Q4, 2017, Verizon Wireless topped its market with over 150 million subscribers, leaving AT&T behind at a little more than 141 million.
Grupo Carso Conglomerate
A bit further south, we find Grupo Carso Conglomerate, a Mexican conglomerate company that is leading the Latin America market. It was founded in the 1990s by Carlos Slim and was named after a portmanteau of his and his wife’s name, which is Soumaya. According to Betway Casino’s billionaires’ journeys list, Carlos Slim is among the richest people in the world with a wealth that reaches $67.1 billion – and he became a billionaire at 51 years old. His empire includes Telmex, a telecom company that serves most of Latin America, including Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Peru, Colombia, Chile and other countries in the area, as well as América Móvil, a Forbes Global 2000 company with services ranging from Honduras and Jamaica to Mexico and Uruguay, and Telcel, one of the largest wireless communications companies in Mexico with wide coverage all over the country.
Deutsche Telecom AG
One of the most recognizable mobile service providers worldwide, T-Mobile has seen its trademark magenta logo in stores across Europe and the US, serving customers from Austria and the Netherlands all the way across the Atlantic to the New World. It is all part of Deutsche Telecom AG, one of the leading European telecommunications giants, headquartered in Bonn, Germany. Deutsche Telecom also holds significant interest in Telecom, a major service provider in Central Europe and the Balkans region, as well as Greek market telecom leader OTE. It also owned half of EE, UK’s largest mobile network, along with Orange, but divested in 2016.
China Mobile
One of the top companies worldwide, state-owned China Mobile mainly serves mainland China with services ranging from mobile network to multimedia – and pretty much dominates the Chinese market. In March 2018 its mobile service subscribers reached 898,537,000 individuals, with almost 4 million new customers added in that month alone. The company is listed at NYSE and its value in May 2018 reached more than $47 billion, making it one of the richest telecom companies across the globe.
The telecoms industry is a constant struggle between ambitious newcomers and savvy, trustworthy names. Yet, however the power dynamics between companies may change, the developments in tech and service keep moving forward to new frontiers.

Is 5G Just a Bunch of Marketing Hype?

By Dave Burstein
On the effects of 4-3 The best research is from Pal Zarandy at Rewheel, who just did a major study. He found prices were 40%-50% higher in Germany and Austria (4-3) than six others, including France.Gigabyte price development in 4 to 3 consolidated versus 4-MNO European markets – September 2013 to March 2018. Because France has so dramatically cut prices, my figure would be lower, "10%-20%, sometimes more." Canada & France went from 3 to 4 with large price drops, which are now happening in Italy. 
On whether 5G will come faster "Do it all so much faster than either company could on its own,” Legere said in the release. T-Mobile CTO Neville Ray told MWCT-Mobile Building Out 5G in 30 Cities This Year ...and That’s Just the Start.He also committed to the entire country by 2020. My comment, admittedly snarky, is, "The only way the new T-Mobile could bring 5G faster is to build it in 2017." That would be difficult at this point. It's also unlikely to cover the whole country any earlier than 2020. Tmo VP Technology Karri Kuoppamaki last week emphasized how their 600 MHz spectrum will let them reach the whole country by 2020.  
"Combining is the only way they can fight back against the two industry leaders." Quote fromTimes.We all know how effectively T-Mobile has been competing. CEO Legere: "The T-Mobile team just keeps kicking the competition’s butt and bringing even more choices to consumers."   "T-Mobile will be bigger wireless company than AT&T in 5 years."
On whether Sprint could survive without the merger Many, many statements by the top executives of Sprint on financial calls. If they were lying to Wall Street, they could be prosecuted. A close look at Sprint finances and networks would make clear that Sprint has deep problems but also plausible ways to fix them. (Craig Moffett, an analyst I learn from, disagrees.) "Sprint has posted ten consecutive quarters of postpaid net customer additions. It has also reversed its fortunes in the prepaid space, adding 63,000 in the third quarter."
On whether the T-Mobile 5G is a "seismic shift" “Going from 4G to 5G is like going from black and white to color TV. ... It’s a seismic shift — one that only the combined company can unlock nationwide to fuel the next wave of mobile innovation.” (Claure in the press release.) T-Mobile 4G in part of Manhattan is 500 megabits today. They have said they will roll that technology to 15,000 small cells. (LAA, 3-4 CA, 4x4 MIMO.) Is going from 500 megabit download to 600 megabit download going to change your experience that profoundly? That's the difference between T-Mobile's 4G LTE and "5G" NR.
This week, T-Mobile Technology VP Karri Kuoppamaki said the 5G improvements would be much less than "seismic," something like 25%. That's less than the improvement when LTE added Carrier Aggregation four years ago, 4x4 MIMO in 2016, or 256 QAM in 2017. No one called them a new generation, In addition, the industry consensus is the advanced uses are far away. "The enhanced mobile broadband use case will be driving more than 99 percent of the 5G investments over the next five years." Stefan Pongratz. In other words, for at least five years, 5G will provide more network capacity but will be used in the same way as LTE.
"5G" is not "5G." Much will not be the truly high speeds of millimeter wave. Much of what is now called "5G" is a marketing invention in the last year, including T-Mobile's 600 MHz "5G." Low & mid-band "5G" is the same as 4G LTE with a software tweak (NR - New radio.) Only millimeter wave is much faster than 4G from 2018 equipment. mmWave can be 2-3 times faster than the LTE at 500 meg T-Mobile is rolling out. Verizon and AT&T are using millimeter wave, 28 & 39 GHz. T-Mobile is using 600 MHz & a pr campaign. A year ago, millimeter wave and perhaps Massive MIMO were considered 5G. (See IMT-2020 in standards.) In 2017, lobbyists and marketing people extended the definition of "5G" to anything with a software improvement that does little for speed or capacity. (NR) Corporate run 3GPP expanded the standard. Amazingly few reporters realized that meant most 5G deployments were nothing special. AT&T & Verizon are doing millimeter wave but low and mid-band will be 80% to 90% for at least several years.
Is even the real 5G, millimeter wave, revolutionary? I have quotes rejecting the 5G hype from CEO, CTOs,, or other senior technical people at AT&T, Verizon, British Telecom, Deutsche Telecom, Orange and Telefonica. D.C. has fallen for spin. So have too many reporters. Professor Gerhard Fettweis, the leading expert, told a conference last week. "Autonomous cars will not use 5G because they have to work on all roads. They use radar and LIDAR instead." (Story to come.) VR, AR, and telemedicine are working well today without 5G. Remote surgery only needs 5G if doctors intend to work from the beach. (Ask me if you don't see that.) Nearly all the independent technical people see more and faster broadband as the primary use for 5G for years. That makes 5G important for the industry but definitely not world-changing.
"5G offers more reliability than 4G or LTE" Washington Post. Reliability is planned for 5G URLLC (Ultra Reliable and Low Latency Communications.) The full standard for that isn't expected until late 2019 and wide deployment mostly long after. T-Mobile's nationwide "5G" network does not support URLLC and may never do so, Some engineers are dubious about whether the reliability will be achieved, so firm statements are probably dubious. While 5G may offer more reliability one day, using the present tense is an actual error.
Is 5g required for autonomous cars? The very respected Professor Gerhard Fettweis from Dresden last week at a conference said, "Autonomous cars do not need 5G." They work on LIDAR and radar. 5G mmWave will not cover most roads for a decade or more. There will always be places not covered. Autonomous cars have to be able to work without 5G. IEEE has video of the session; I haven't written it up yet. At least one on the panel disagreed. I would recommend checking with an engineer currently active in the field before publishing on the topic. Many policy people are giving false information, mostly because they don't understand.
Is 5G needed for telemedicine or IoT?  The answer is probably not, but I don't have time to research and write it right now. Again, much of what's said is simply inaccurate; a newspaper we all respect made an error here. 

Apple Has Made It Impossible to Manage Your iTunes App Subscriptions

Trying to Cancel A Subscription is Now Impossible

Is Your Android Phone Rooted or Not?

Find out if your Android device has root access in just a few steps

Have you tried to root your phone, and now you want to know if you did it right? Or have you bought a second-hand Android phone and don’t know if the previous owner has tried to tweak its system? Android phones are typically easy to root without you knowing. You may now know if your phone has been rooted. 

We’ll tell you how you can check if your phone has gained root access or not. 

What is root access? 

Android devices run using a Linux operating system. In these operating systems, most of the high-level operations are protected, and can be accessed only by developers with administrative access. To access these system files, you need to be a “superuser” before you can execute password-protected commands. Having root access is just like gaining admin rights on your personal computer. 

Phone manufacturers purposely block typical users like you from having too much freedom with their devices. By default, these can be viewed only by administrators who can read, edit, control and delete all of the root components of the device. 

Is there a need to root? 

The need to root your Android phone depends on how much control you want over your device. Most users who have rooted phones do so for a variety of advantages, such as: 

  • Increased CPU performance 
  • Better battery life 
  • Access to “incompatible” apps and features 
  • Greater file coverage during backup 
  • Access to the system files

Although there are a few disadvantages to rooting one’s phone, including loss of warranty, greater security threats, and the possibility of bricking your phone, rooting makes your phone completely yours. More on rooting you can find on

How do you know if your phone is rooted?

If you just rooted your Android phone and want to check if the rooting process was successful, there are plenty of ways to check. In the same way, if you’ve purchased a second-hand Android phone and want to know if it’s been tinkered with, there are many ways that can reveal this. 
Option #1: Look for a SuperSU icon on your phone 
During Android rooting, an application labeled SuperSU or SU is commonly installed. This program lets you use certain superuser commands on your system. Check in your list of apps if you have an app for this purpose. If you see this icon, or similar apps such as KingUser, then it’s likely that your phone has gained root access. If you do not see this icon, install a program right away. Then, open the app to get final confirmation that your attempt at rooting was a success. 
Option #2: Download an app that can check for you 
There are several root checker apps on the Google Play Store, such as Root Checker and KingoRoot. Run these apps and follow the instructions. The app will tell you if your phone is rooted or not.
Option #3: Use a terminal app 
Install a terminal client on your device. The terminal client is a text-based window that lets you execute commands using your Linux device, also known as your Android phone or tablet. Think of it as a command line that you use when you’re programming on the computer. When the terminal opens, if you see a “#”, that means your phone has gained root access and superuser abilities. If you see a “$”, the phone isn’t in superuser mode, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that it hasn’t been rooted successfully. You could also type in “su” to know if the device has been rooted. If the next line responds with a “#”, that means it has root access and your phone is ready to receive superuser commands. If not, the terminal won’t acknowledge the command. 
When rooting your phone, you should always be careful when accessing system files and using root permissions. It can be very easy to ruin your phone’s software -- even deleting the smallest file can brick your phone or render it useless. Before you root your phone or use a rooted phone, you should read everything that you can find about rooting and educate yourself as a precaution.

How to Prevent Spam Phone Calls

Turn on Do Not Disturb

Turn on "Do Not Disturb" and then "Allow Call From" everyone, favorites on no one.  Hopefully, this will prevent unwanted phone calls.  Hope this helps.

We tried blocking calls for a while but this didn't seem to help.  

Are Spam Phone Calls Driving You Insane?

Scam Likely Phone Calls
Have you noticed a significant increase in "Scam Likely" phone calls in the last year?  What is causing this to happen?  Is there anyway to stop it?  I have tried blocking phone numbers but apparently these companies keep getting new phone numbers. 

I think we are getting to the point where fines and regulations need to crack down on these companies.  They are a menace to society and waste valuable time and energy for people.

As a result of these phone calls I don't answer the phone anymore unless I recognize the number in my contacts.  This is unfortunate because I actually might be missing phone calls that I would have wanted to take.

Can't the carrier prevent spam calls similar to how email companies prevent spam? 

Someone in congress or Trump needs to fix this business disgrace!! 

How To Find Cell Phone Towers Near Oil & Gas Fields

Today, we launched a new map of cell phone towers vs oil & gas fields map.  Easily search and find the nearest cell phone tower near oil & gas drilling operations.

Oil & gas rig monitoring relies on remote wireless sensors and device that need to connect to wireless networks.  AT&T, Verizon, Sprint & T-Mobile call remote monitoring sensors the IOT (Internet of Things) revolution.  Remote monitoring saves oil & gas companies lots of money vs having someone physically drive out to the site.

Click on the cell phone tower pins (black) to locate the contact information of the wireless tower operator.  

Campground Cell Phone Coverage Reviews

Cell Phone Coverage Reviews vs Campgrounds Map

Cell Phone Towers Map vs Campgrounds Map

Today, we launched two new comparison maps that will help you find cell phone reception at campgrounds all over the United States.  

The 1st map on the upper left shows you 70,000+ cell phone coverage reviews submitted by our users.  Click on these pins to read the specific reviews and comments.  The map to the upper right is a map of 28,000+ campgrounds.  Click on these pins to get the specifics of each campground.   

The 2nd map below shows 100,000+ cell phone towers vs 28,000+ campgrounds.  Use this map and submit new coverage reviews directly by clicking on the +.  

These two maps are showing the Grand Canyon as example.  However, there are over 28,000 campground sites in the database.  

We are looking to build out more cell phone coverage reviews at campgrounds this summer.  

Tips for Preventing Damage to Your iPhone

How to Prevent Damage to your iPhone
You paid enough for your iPhone, so when it's damaged you not only have no way to talk to your friends or download some great apps - but you also feel as if you are losing money on your favorite investment!

So why not make sure you prevent damage to your iPhone? It will save you time, headache, and money! There are four surefire ways to prevent damage to your iPhone and I have shared them below.

Always make sure to check your pockets before you do the laundry!

Always make sure to check your pockets before you do the laundry! Liquid damage is quite hard to repair, and you may even lose your expensive iPhone to such a simple and silly mistake. To save your iPhone from water damage try a couple of things before you send your iPhone to device heaven.

1) Don't turn on your iPhone or push any buttons when it's wet, it's dangerous and is a way to kill an iPhone that actually only needs repair.

2) Immediately put your iPhone in a bag of dry rice. Sounds silly, but it has worked for many desperate iPhone owners. Try keeping your device in the bag for a few days and try to turn it on again to see if it works.

3)  Blow dry your iPhone or iPod Touch. This is a perfect step when done after the rice bag trick. Before you try turning it on, make sure to try to aim the blow dryer in any open holes or crevices on your device as this will dry any water trapped in your device.

Remember: When in doubt check your pockets!

Purchase a Good Quality Case 

This one may seem a little obvious, but you wouldn't believe the amount of iPhone owners out there that don't have a case protecting their precious device.

Some popular case brands are: Speck, Otter Box, and iSkin - but of course there are some other quality brands as well.

Get a Scratch Resistant Screen Protector 

Even if you have the great case or bumper on your iPhone, this doesn't prevent the inevitable face-down drop of your iPhone on the concrete.

Don’t Let Your iPhone Die

The battery in your iPhone has a limited amount of charge cycles. What this means is that every time you let it die and charge it all the way back, that counts as a full cycle. So charge often to prolong the life of your battery.

 Speaking of charging, buy the right charger! We all know how they easily break, but buying a lightning charger that may not be supported with your iPhone is just a waste of money! Apple runs software checks on these cables to make sure they are safe and compatible.

Treat Your iPhone Like the Delicate Package it is!

Just because you may have a nice case on your iPhone or some scratch resistant screen protector doesn't mean that you are in the clear of any iPhone damage. People often damage the headphone jack in their phones by yanking on the headphone cable.

If you're in a high-chaos environment, run your headphone cable underneath your clothes. Or use a headphone cable with a quick-disconnect that gives way before your device does.

5 Reasons Why You Must VPN for Private Web Browsing (VPN)

A Virtual Private Network is a secure tunnel established between your PC and a VPN server and all your web traffic is encrypted and sent through the tunnel. When you use a VPN connection, your actual IP address is masked and it becomes difficult for eavesdroppers to track your online activity since the entire traffic is encrypted through the VPN tunnel. Though using a VPN connection will slow down your bandwidth by 30-40%, there are several advantages of using a secured VPN tunnel for private web browsing as listed below.

1. Downloading and Uploading of P2P Files without Getting Tracked

Virtual private networks are essential if you wish to enjoy unrestricted access to the internet along with total protection. It is illegal in many countries to download pirated content such as movies, music, TV from Torrent sites. By using a VPN tunnel you can share files with your friends using a P2P (peer-to-peer) connection securely. You can hide your IP address and location using a VPN connection and it will be difficult to trace your online activities.

2. Using Public Wi-Fi Securely

We always feel uncomfortable while using free Wi-Fi available in hotels, airports, shopping malls, and coffee shops etc. since we are doubtful whether it’s secure and if anyone will eavesdrop on us. Since these Wi-Fi connections are open and your web traffic is not encrypted, it can be easy for hackers to eavesdrop and steal all your confidential data. Any person with access to same public Wi-Fi can intercept all your web traffic using a simple plugin Firefox tamper data and steal your passwords, contacts, credit card information and all your confidential data. By using a secure VPN tunnel for browsing, you can make it impossible for hackers to eavesdrop since all your data will be encrypted.

3. Access Geo-Blocked Content and Bypass Content Censorship
When it comes to online streaming, every country has their own rules and regulations which make it difficult to watch your favourite TV shows and music broadcasted by companies like Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu etc. outside the United States. Due to certain copyright agreements, even some videos on YouTube are blocked in certain countries. Using a VPN service helps to masquerade your IP address and change your location as if you are browsing from US or a different country. This can help you bypass the content censorship and watch your favourite videos online. Even some popular services like Gmail, Facebook and other Google services are blocked in certain countries like China. By using a VPN connection, you can bypass such restriction and access these services through a secure VPN tunnel.

4. Search securely without your data being logged
All the popular search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo will log all your web search history which is linked to the IP address of your PC. By using a VPN service, you can hide your IP address and hence there won’t be logging related to your search history which allows you to maintain your privacy during web browsing.

5. Secure your VoIP calls

People use Skype, Google Duo, Lync and other services for online chatting through VoIP calls. Hackers can eavesdrop on your Voice-over-IP calls easily using certain promiscuous monitoring tools. Hence, you should secure your VoIP calls using a VPN tunnel so that all your voice data will be encrypted and sent through the tunnel. This ensures greater privacy and protection of your sensitive information.

VPN connection can also be used to bypass any restrictions made by the network administrator in your workplace or school. There are VPN products available in the market and you should compare the pros and cons of each product before you decide to purchase it. There are comparisons available for different products like the article Expressvpn vs Nordvpn which describers the performance, features, customer service and pricing of both products.

Popular Posts

Popular Posts