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Author Topic: FCC probe into Apple's rejection of Google VoIP apps for iPhone  (Read 6154 times)
isthisthingon
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« on: August 03, 2009, 03:58:21 PM »

These monopolistic practices really give me a case of the mundays: http://www.networkworld.com/news/2009/080309-fcc-probes-apples-rejection-of.html?source=NWWNLE_nlt_daily_pm_2009-08-03.  Here's the letter from the FCC to Apple: http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/DA-09-1736A1.pdf

Collusion to deny iPhone users free VoIP? Shocked IMO, regardless of provable collusion between AT&T and Apple, this completely sucks and we're the ones who lose Angry  Intel is just as evil as Apple for similar anti-competitive practices.  AMD could have gone the way of every other chip manufacturer who died at the hands of Intel.  What the world needs to do is get their heads out of their "cool technology" butts and, at the very least, reduce the unnecessary grassroots support that Apple and others continue to enjoy. 

These companies and their kin (Microsoft, Oracle, etc.) successfully distract the impatient masses by providing various football games for us to focus on (Apple-vs-IBM, Apple-vs-Microsoft, PC-vs-Mac, ad nauseam).  Of course as technologists and consumers we'll wind up contributing to them in one way or another.  But holy fanboi sheeple Batman, if we can't find the courage to acknowledge the truth about the monsters behind some of our pet technologies, how in hell will the idiocracy at large ever change  Huh?
I have some feedback for Apple and his greasy-ass bed buddies:  Vomit

Police should Don't make me... the Devilish while we Popcorn and

Just to make my rant clear, this is for Microsoft, Oracle, IBM, and the rest of the worst-in-class players:  Vomit
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rcjordan
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« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2009, 04:17:39 PM »

"The FCC investigation is not just about the arbitrary rejection of a single app. It is the FCC's way of putting a stake in the ground for making the wireless networks controlled by cell phone carriers as open as the Internet"

"Like Google Voice, Skype helps consumers bypass the carriers. The carriers don't like that because it erodes their core business and turns them into dumb pipes.

But dumb pipes are what we need. They are good for consumers and good for competition because they allow any application and any device, within reason, to flower on the wireless Internet."

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/08/01/AR2009080101074.html
--------

Related?  I suspect so.....
Senators press FCC to examine exclusive cell phone deals
http://arstechnica.com/telecom/news/2009/06/senators-press-fcc-to-examine-exclusive-cell-phone-deals.ars
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nutballs
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« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2009, 04:48:42 PM »

Interestingly, I agree to some respect with att, assuming that they are blocking.

ATT owns the cell towers, or at least a portion of the tower when it is a shared unit.
They have every right to say what you can or cannot use their bandwidth for.
Now of course they cannot enforce that over the datachannel, but they can by way of their partners such as Apple. And by allowing them that right, they create a system potentially that is not satisfactory, and people move on to a competitor. I have no issue with that overall.

Now the way they go about it of course is stupid.
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rcjordan
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« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2009, 05:00:17 PM »

I'm with you, NB. ATT and Apple built this marketplace, so it's theirs to exploi... umm, use. But there's a lot of populist sentiment festering out there and I think it's eventually going to tear down this particular little walled garden.
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isthisthingon
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« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2009, 05:01:02 PM »

Nice article rc!  This is on the money:

Quote
The iPhone needs to be smashed open, and the FCC is swinging the hammer.

Everything will eventually open up since the collective force will bury even the largest gorillas of denial.



Like or hate Google, they Jujitsued the hell out of the sleeping status quo, in a free-style smack-down.  Apple is truly the king with no clothes  ROFLMAO  AT&T has always been as nakedly uncool as the rest of the telco slumlords  Mobster
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perkiset
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« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2009, 05:18:37 PM »

(Not aimed at you ITTO, sort of tech world in general)

I disagree @ smashed open. Agree with NB & RC - it's AT&T's tower, network, Apple's device, store. If they want to make that somewhat stoopid-looking decision towards artificial and ill-conceived restraint, so be it. People will vote with their feet & wallet. But I have to say that the whole "Everything must be usable by anyone for anything" notion is just really weird to me. Simple question: Why? Why should Apple and AT&T be forced to break everything open when they certainly have no monopoly on cell service or network service? The iPhone has a monopoly on cool, but other than that, vote with your wallet and go elsewhere. The only reason that there aren't similar problems with crackberries and other so-called smart phones is that no one really cares that much. They're a device, the iPhone is an attitude. Apple will either prosper or fail, stand on this or change with the popular sentiment. It's their game to play.

This kind of smacks of undeserved entitlement to me (a seemingly prevalent aspect of our culture now-a-days): I want what I WANT and I want it THE WAY I WANT IT. I want the IPHONE but I don't want the baggage that comes with it. Sort of like, I want THAT woman for a wife, but I don't want all the baggage that comes with her. Just really bizarre to me.
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isthisthingon
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« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2009, 05:23:06 PM »

Quote
And by allowing them that right, they create a system potentially that is not satisfactory, and people move on to a competitor. I have no issue with that overall.

Capitalism without referees is like playing basketball against a team with firearms.  It's the consumer who already signed the 2+ year contract with AT&T who's been screwed, not to mention the folks who:

  • Want an iPhone
  • Like VoIP
  • Must bend over to have it

Market fundamentalism looks quasi-reasonable on paper, but it's truly incapable of producing anything but ever increasing concentrations of disproportionate wealth.  Apple and AT&T should be compensated based on the merits of their offerings.  This is true competition and will benefit our country.  "Golden handcuffs" are totally fine unless the gold plating gets removed after they're already on  Shocked

« Last Edit: August 03, 2009, 05:29:55 PM by isthisthingon » Logged

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isthisthingon
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« Reply #7 on: August 03, 2009, 05:38:30 PM »

Quote
This kind of smacks of undeserved entitlement to me (a seemingly prevalent aspect of our culture now-a-days): I want what I WANT and I want it THE WAY I WANT IT. I want the IPHONE but I don't want the baggage that comes with it.

This is definitely an unfortunate trend of our times.  One of my favorite commercials to hate is a new insta-snack product called "Anytizers".  It shows kids coming over to a friends house where the mom is too busy to make food for the little brats in the time that they feel she should prepare it for them.  The answer?  A smiling subservient enabler of a soccer-mom whips out steamy Anytizers and her son is "cool" again since his mom was up to the challenge.
Totally get it, and it too deserves a  Vomit

But I do disagree in cases where contractually bound people find themselves in a tech-corner, especially in this economy.

Seriously great to see you yesterday!!

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perkiset
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« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2009, 06:30:59 PM »

And great to see you as well ITTO - way too long in between visits.

@ contractually bound: There are few cell services that do not bind you into a contract - you (we / macro you) accept them because the terms offer something of value, so you concede freedom from the agreement for the benefit. The benefit costs them to provide, so they need a commitment from (the you) so that they can stay in business. I have a hard time seeing where this is wrong - again, if Apple or AT&T were a monopoly, my feelings would be different. But people want the iphone, so they concede certain things so that they can have it. I just don't see how this is fundamentally wrong... bad decision MAYBE (although Apple is making a boatload more than anyone on this board and their stock price certainly does not reflect an unhappy Wall Street...) but "wrong?" I'm having a hard time getting my brain around that.
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isthisthingon
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« Reply #9 on: August 03, 2009, 07:11:02 PM »

From wiki with my highlights:

Collusion is an agreement, usually secretive, which occurs between two or more persons to deceive, mislead, or defraud others of their legal rights, or to obtain an objective forbidden by law typically involving fraud or gaining an unfair advantage. It is an agreement among firms to divide the market, set prices, or limit production. It can involve "wage fixing, kickbacks, or misrepresenting the independence of the relationship between the colluding parties."

Quote
There are few cell services that do not bind you into a contract - you (we / macro you) accept them because the terms offer something of value, so you concede freedom from the agreement for the benefit. The benefit costs them to provide, so they need a commitment from (the you) so that they can stay in business.

Of course, this is simply the nature of a contract and is not in question.  The FCC didn't say anything at all about the legality or ethical aspects of having a general contract.  The FCC will and should determine if collusion or tacit collusion is involved in this proprietary partnership.  This is not about the freedoms of AT&T or the quality of business decisions at Apple - be they stoopid or smrrrt.  This is about leveraging a partnership in anti-competitive ways to extract more dollars from contractually-bound consumers. 

Remember, this was not the case when contracts were signed by new customers.  So what is potentially very wrong about this maneuver is the game changing rug pulled out from under everyone's feet.  I personally think having such a wildly popular device that's like a car that only drives on one privately owned road is also anti-competitive, but thus far the FCC doesn't see it that way.

Why regulate anything at all?  If you don't like your power company simply move and the market will handle everything Roll Eyes  Don't like AT&T and/or their recent game-changing money grab with their Apple relationship?  Oh nuts, I've invested thousands of dollars in my new Mac Pro and my whole family uses iPhones with Google Voice  Sad

I can't see why this would be hard to at least sympathize with, if not completely come out and admit that it's quite clearly "wrong" in every sense of the word.  I feel sorry for those people and we're talking grande scale impact - with whatever Apple chooses to do.

With great power comes great responsibility
« Last Edit: August 03, 2009, 07:26:09 PM by isthisthingon » Logged

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« Reply #10 on: August 03, 2009, 08:27:28 PM »

With great power comes great responsibility

Pfft. Thats just what people without the power say.  Grin
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isthisthingon
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« Reply #11 on: August 03, 2009, 09:44:13 PM »

Quote
Pfft. Thats just what people without the power say.

 ROFLMAO

Apple > isthisthingon  Shocked

Apple > any and all individuals  Wink
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« Reply #12 on: August 03, 2009, 09:54:21 PM »

(Not aimed at you ITTO, sort of tech world in general)  People will vote with their feet & wallet.
Yah I am starting to lean more your way perks.
With everything, war on drugs, piracy etc.
I suspect here that sales of pirated DVD are dropping here, simple reason, legit DVD's are starting to be sold from sidewalk kiosks at much cheaper prices.
Same fuking story with recorded music. Again prices are slightly higher then the pirated ones.

IPhone is getting its ass kiked in asia (or definitly PH). Complaints it is hard to text with it with one hand. Also to purchase it you have to lock yourself into a 2 year contract with a shitty cellphone provider. Should be interesting to see how the nokia N97 will face off against the iphone.

Stupid american companies can fight all they want trying to enforce stupid laws no one will follow.
Probably some fuking smart chinese company will make thier own skype, and then stupid american company can try and sue them in china  ROFLMAO ROFLMAO ROFLMAO
American recording companies are trying to go down that route, and they are losing. In China/Brazil/Asia in general artists have a whole different way of making money, and either the west smartens up, or they will get left behind.

It is simple economics, if it is cheaper for me to steal something, i will steal it, else i will buy it.
That is about all that 5000 years of civilization in China has proven  ROFLMAO ROFLMAO

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isthisthingon
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« Reply #13 on: August 04, 2009, 12:16:08 AM »

Quote
American recording companies are trying to go down that route, and they are losing. In China/Brazil/Asia in general artists have a whole different way of making money, and either the west smartens up, or they will get left behind.

Zactly nop.
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« Reply #14 on: August 04, 2009, 07:48:54 AM »

Complaints it is hard to text with it with one hand, lock yourself into a 2 year contract with a shitty cellphone provider?

VS:I deleted his link, but his comment was clearly ripped from the surrounding context, and I'd like to examine it some more to figure out how he did it. Clever spam.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2009, 10:41:25 AM by vsloathe » Logged

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