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Britney, Euro iPhone, WiMAX in Japan, & AOL Dial-down

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[qi:009] Britney Spears might have bombed at the MTV Video Awards, but she has proved to be da bomb for Viacom (VIAB), making visitors out of water cooler gossipers.

[qi:83] Will French, Brits and Germans fall for Apple’s (AAPL) iPhone? T-Mobile (Germany)and O2 (UK) think so, and Orange is hoping they will. And you want to know where they will launch next? Just look for places where EDGE networks are thriving.

[qi:025] Time Warner (TWX) is looking to sell AOL dial-up business and become a ad-supported company. Finally!

[qi:064] KDDI of Japan is starting a new company – Wireless Broadband Planning K.K. (WBPK) to bid on one of two WiMAX licenses in the 2.5Ghz band to be awarded by the Japanese regulator, the MIC, by end 2007. Intel Capital is an equity partner of KDDI. MIC doesn’t allow 3G license-holders to bid for a license. This is a workaround. Softbank and eAccess; NTT DoCoMo and ACCA Networks are other two teams in the race.

[qi:_newteevee] Despite the rise of legal P2P, it seems the TV networks are still wary of the technology. We looked for the shows and didn’t find much.

4 Responses to “Britney, Euro iPhone, WiMAX in Japan, & AOL Dial-down”

  1. Most European carriers TALKED about building edge, but very few actually did it. in the UK, only Orange currently has EDGE. O2 have only started It’s a backward step, but then O2 hasn’t really built a proper 3G network yet either.

  2. Jesse Kopelman

    handelaar, I am almost certain you are mistaken. The European carriers were all selling EDGE back in 2002-5, do you think they since removed this capability from their networks? The changes O2 are making are probably similar to those AT&T made — tweaks to better support iPhone and visual voice mail. AT&T had universal EDGE since 2003, but they still needed to optimize their network to better support the iPhone.

  3. Om,

    I listened to two investor conferences featuring top AOL execs over the past two days, and these guys are clearly on the fence in terms of selling dial-up, at least in the short-term.

    Randy Falco and Ron Grant, speaking at Merrill Lynch’s conference on September 17 clearly said that no sale will occur in the short-term. Falco said “We still have nine million very valuable customers who generate an enormous amount of page views for us.” “I think about it a lot but I think ‘do I really want those nine million users in the hands of a third-party?'”

    Then, speaking at a Goldman Sachs event, Time Warner CEO Dick Parsons said that although he can see a “disconnect” between dial-up customers and page views within the next 12 to 18 months, when asked point blank whether Time Warner would sell AOL’s access business, Parsons said he was tempted to say yes, but with two caveats. “One, this world changes so quickly that you don’t want to set your sails and say I don’t care what’s happening 12 to 18 months down the road because we’re heading this way.” And the second reason? The dial-up businesss spins off a lot of cash. “We’re focused on keeping that product, and at least as of today, it’s a strong driver of profitability and we’re focused on keeping this product strong and vibrant,” Parsons said.

    It’s a safe bet that AOL will eventually sell its dial-up business for no other reason that the dial-up business will die, but right now it’s a big source of cash flow, maybe up to half of the $484 million OIBDA that AOL reported for Q2 07.

    Cynthia