4/6/2009 11:29:00 AM
Uproar as operators restrict use of new Skype application on 3G networks
Operators’ refusal to allow the use of Skype over 3G networks has sparked uproar across the globe.
The voice over internet service was added a week ago to the iPhone in the form of an application, allowing users to make free calls to other Skype users.
In the UK, O2 has restricted the use of the Skype application to calls made through the Wi-Fi connections.
AT&T in the United States has banned the use of the application on 3G networks. Meanwhile T-Mobile Germany has completely banned the application.
According to the Financial Times, the Free Press, a net neutrality advocacy organisation, on Friday asked the US Federal Communications Commission to investigate whether AT&T was violating US guidelines by preventing the application from running on its 3G network.
The Voice on the Net coalition (Von), which includes Google, Microsoft and Intel, called on European regulators to ensure that consumers could access and run smartphone applications of their choosing on any public network.
The Sunday Times
A new pan-European radio spectrum band could be used to create new Europe-wide mobile phone services.
The 'S band' spectrum could mean partnerships between satellite companies and mobile operators to offer services like mobile TV, mobile radio, and mobile data.
European Commission has chosen to pool the S-band licences from all its member states, and award them in one block with 27 countries included. Previously bands of spectrum were awarded on a country to country basis.
Mobile phone operators, have therefore had to spend years gathering licences for pan-European mobile phone coverage.
The S-band spectrum could also be used by a new entrant into the mobile phone market, for example, if Google wanted to build mobile broadband services across Europe. Google has invested in a company building satellite broadband coverage in Africa and has been active in building Wimax mobile broadband networks in the US.