San Francisco pilot continues

Sonic, the regional ISP that is transitioning from a copper-based DSL and telephone company to a fiber-to-the-home provider, has announced plans to expand its fiber construction to Brentwood, a Silicon Valley commuter town that will join Sebastopol, Calif., in getting gigabit networks. Sonic CEO Dan Jasper told me last week that the pilot network in San Francisco is still under construction and he has no sense of the timing on when it will go live, but plans to head to Marin next.

More anti-trust issues?

Now that Qualcomm has to pay $975 million to settle an anti-trust in China, you’d think that’s the last we’d hear about it. Nope. It appears that South Korea is going to take its turn to investigate Qualcomm’s practices in that country according to Mobile World Live. In 2009, Qualcomm paid $200 million in fines for “unreasonable and discriminatory terms for licensing its patents” in South Korea, so this isn’t the company’s first rodeo there. Although Qualcomm chips power the bulk of smartphones and tablets today, nearly a third of its $27 billion in revenue last year came from royalties and licensing of its patents.

Satellite launch successful

SpaceX is on its way to delivering NASA’s DISCOVR satellite to orbit after a succesfull rocket launch today, a feat that will make it the first private company to travel beyond the inner ring of Earth’s orbit. The satellite will travel 1 million miles to a location between the Earth and the Sun, where it will spot solar flares up to an hour before they hit Earth and take daily images of the planet.

DISCOVR launch still a go

SpaceX has decided against attempting to land its Falcon 9 rocket today, though the launch is still a go. The rocket launch is currently planned for 3:03 p.m. PT, when SpaceX will deliver NASA’s DISCOVR satellite to orbit. The rocket will then fall back to Earth and crash into the ocean, as is the common practice, instead of trying to land on a ship off the coast of Florida, where three-story waves have created dangerous conditions. Today was the last possible day to pair the DISCOVR launch with the Falcon 9 landing, as pushing the launch another day would require alterations to DISCOVR’s path. SpaceX attempted a Falcon 9 landing in January, but failed.

good morning redmond

As had been rumored last week, Microsoft has officially purchased Sunrise Atelier, a startup that makes a popular calendar app for basically every major mobile OS except Windows. No price was announced, but last week TechCrunch reported it was “north of” $100 million. Like Microsoft’s purchase of Acompli, which later became the email component of the official Outlook app for iOS and Android, Sunrise is expected to be integrated into Microsoft’s own Exchange-based mobile apps. Sunrise is promising that its calendar app will “remain free and available” for iOS, Android, Mac as well as through a web app.

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