Our look at some of the big stories in mobile today: Small mobile operators band together against the AT&T (NYSE: T) proposed purchase of T-Mobile USA; the question over iCloud.com and Apple; (NSDQ: AAPL) and a new mobile payments service from Buongiorno.
— AT&T/T-Mobile USA: More competitors are stepping up in their objections to the proposed acquisition of T-Mobile USA by AT&T. Cincinnati Bell Wireless, MetroPCS, NTELOS, Rural Cellular Association and the Rural Telecommunications Group have joined forces with Sprint (NYSE: S) in a filing to the Federal Communications Commission, which not only objects to the merger but also asks that the FCC consolidate its review of the deal with a separate assessment it is making of AT&T’s proposal to buy 700 MHz FLO TV spectrum from Qualcomm (NSDQ: QCOM), arguing that taken together, the two give AT&T enormous mobile power in the country. (via Cellular News)
— Apple’s cloud services: Still no word from Apple about whether, when, and how it plans to make a big move into a cloud-based media offering, so that’s leaving lots of room for speculators and tipsters. The latest news is that apparently Apple has bought a domain name, iCloud.com, from its Swedish owners for $4.5 million. That company, meanwhile has rebranded its own cloud-based offering to “CloudMe.” (via TechCrunch and GigaOm)
— Buongiorno: On the heels of Visa announcing an investment in mobile payments company Square, another mobile payments launch, this time from casual mobile content company Buongiorno. Cashlog, as the product is known, lets users make charges for content, typically priced at around $20 and under, by using their mobile phone numbers, rather than any credit card details. As the transaction passes via the SMS channel, a smartphone is not required to use the service. Buongiorno (BIT: BNG) says Cashlog is available in 50 countries, but will require mobile operators to have signed deals with Buongiorno to enable the service beforehand.