Acquired by Microsoft in October 2011, Skype has been hard at work for several months integrating the communication software with the latest version of Windows. Today the company announced that Skype for Windows 8 will be available Friday and on new Windows 8 devices; you can download it from the Windows store.
Skype has received a complete makeover, with features that take advantage of both the Windows 8 Start menu and the use of a touch screen. You'll be able to log in using any of your Microsoft accounts (such as Hotmail, Messenger, SkyDrive, Windows Phone, Xbox Live, Skype, … Read more
WhatsApp Messenger is an iOS (and other platform) messaging app that allows notifications to be pushed instantly. It doesn't require usernames or logins, using just your phone number as your unique ID. And, unlike some messenger apps, WhatsApp Messenger is always on. The download is fast and the install is easy.
WhatsApp Messenger has an pretty standard interface with a list of clients and a chat window for each ongoing chat session. A neat feature is setting up group chats and being able to share video and music with others at the same time. Since WhatsApp Messenger uses your … Read more
The Federal Communications Commission has paved the way for AT&T to finally use spectrum for its 4G LTE network that had been sidelined for 15 years because it caused interference with satellite radio services.
At its open meeting today, which was Webcast for the public, the FCC approved a compromise proposal that had been submitted by AT&T and Sirius XM Radio earlier this year that protects the satellite radio service by instituting unused guard bands of spectrum that are right next to the spectrum that Sirius uses.
All five of the commissioners on the FCC supported … Read more
The free ride is over for people who have been getting access to basic cable TV stations by simply plugging their TVs into the wall.
Late last week, the Federal Communications Commission gave cable operators permission to encrypt basic cable TV service, which includes broadcast TV, in an effort to allow people to sign up for and disconnect cable service remotely and help cable operators reduce theft of basic services. Cable operators already encrypt the more expensive channel packages.
The FCC had prohibited encryption of basic service, because doing so required consumers to rent a set-top box. The idea was … Read more
So you Skype; do you OoVoo too? Because OoVoo is a free HD video, voice, and IM chat app that lets you chat with up to 12 friends at once (6 via video and 6 on the phone). It records voice and video on your hard drive, not an online account, so file size is unlimited. You can use OoVoo to share large files (up to 25MB) as well as make phone calls to landlines, text chat, record video messages up to 1 minute long, and do a whole lot of other cool things. Mobile and tablet users have a … Read more
The Federal Communications Commission has begun the long process of reclaiming broadcast TV spectrum for wireless use.
The five commissioners unanimously approved a proposal intended to free up spectrum now held by broadcasters and auction it to wireless broadband providers. (See the FCC press release embedded at the end of this article.) CNET followed the hearing via the FCC's public webcast.
The complicated process, which is the first of its kind, will have three components.
First there is the reverse auction, in which TV broadcasters will voluntarily sell their spectrum back to the government. Then there's a "… Read more
As the Federal Communications Commission establishes the rules for its upcoming incentive spectrum auction, competitive carriers say they do not want to see a repeat of what happened with the 700MHz spectrum auction in 2008.
"The 700MHz auction was a disaster," Patrick Riordan, CEO of the rural Wisconsin carrier Cellcom, said at the Competitive Carrier Association's annual conference this week. "The FCC needs to get this one right. We all need spectrum too much. It has to be a level playing field."
On Friday the FCC will open comment on a proposal for how the … Read more
Federal police are increasingly gaining real-time access to Americans' social-network accounts -- such as Facebook, Google+, and Twitter -- without obtaining search warrants, newly released documents show.
The numbers are dramatic: live interception requests made by the U.S. Department of Justice to social-networking sites and e-mail providers jumped 80 percent from 2010 to 2011.
Documents the ACLU released today show police are using a 1986 law intended to tell police what phone numbers were dialed for far more invasive surveillance: monitoring of whom specific social-network users communicate with, what Internet addresses they're connecting from, and perhaps even "… Read more
LAS VEGAS -- Competitive wireless carriers say a AT&T-Verizon Wireless "duopoly" is threatening mobile competition in the U.S., and they want regulators in Washington, D.C., to "level the playing field."
At a conference here Tuesday hosted by the newly branded Competitive Carrier Association, nationwide carriers T-Mobile USA, Sprint, and Clearwire joined forces with more than 100 smaller rural carriers that formerly made up the Rural Carrier Association to sharpen their talking points and organize their lobbying efforts to promote policies that will encourage and safeguard competition in the wireless market.
The message … Read more