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102

Smart grid technologies used at the Electric Power Board — the municipal utility in Chattanooga, Tennessee — and at two other East Coast utilities have helped the utilities recover faster from outages caused by storms, according to a report by the Department of Energy.

Storms are the biggest cause of power outages in the United States, and  "improved capabilities for outage detection and response benefit both utilities and customers," DOE noted.

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The Hill reports that the Senate passed three cybersecurity bills for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to address cybersecurity and anti-terrorism.

 

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Social media isn’t just for consumers. Mobile technology and apps are having a major impact on the way we work and connect with co-workers, customers and suppliers, as IDC's sixth annual Social Business Survey illustrates. 

Promoting their company, product, and/or brand was cited as the top social business priority by more than 23 percent of respondents to IDC's survey of 700 senior executive-level decision makers. Other top priorities are generating revenue through direct sales and communicating to internal business colleagues. These options were cited by 19% and 14% of respondents, respectively.

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Tagged in: mobile
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Researchers at the University of Texas (UT) have designed and built a simple circuit that promises to double wireless data transfer rates, reports Tom Simonite in a November 24 article from the MIT Technology Review. If the circuit were built into smartphones, tablets, PCs and other wireless devices, it would enable those devices to simultaneously send and receive data on the same radio frequency channel – what's known as “full-duplex” communications, 

With spectrum in short supply the technology developed at UT would seem to be of great interest to network operators that offer cellular or Wi-Fi connectivity.

The Full-Duplex Radio Circuit

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Here in America, there is a raging debate about broadband speeds, highlighted by the race to provide Gigabit services. Is that too fast? I mean who really needs a full gigabit for Internet access, some argue.

But in South Korea, they’re already moving into the next phase of gigabit access. SK Broadband – one of the nation's largest broadband service providers – recently introduced a 10 Gbps broadband service that will enable subscribers to download a 1 GB file in 0.8 seconds, Techspot reports.

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There has been a lot of discussion this past year on substation physical security, especially in light of the coordinated attack on PG&E’s Metcalf substation early in 2013. While there are numerous strategies that can be effective in improving substation physical security (see Finley’s earlier white paper on “Substation Security”), one that utilities should not overlook is tying physical security into high-speed, higher bandwidth technologies. Read More...

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While demand for power has continued to grow over the last 130+ years, some forecasters believe that demand for power in the future, while it won't decrease, certainly will NOT grow as quickly as population and GDP. Download our whitepaper to read more on this topic. Download

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Tagged in: Energy power
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Recent numbers revealed from Navigant Research reveal why smart grid may be worth a look by communications carriers. Nearly $30 billion will be spent worldwide on smart grid networking and telecommunications technologies over the next ten years, according to the market research firm. That’s just on the networking and communications portion of the smart grid.

Growing demands are being placed on power grid communications networks as the number and variety of smart grid applications continues to grow. A large number of competitors are offering “a multitude of solutions and equipment” as they vie for a share of the market for smart grid networking and telecommunications equipment and services, according to Navigant's global “Smart Grid Networking and Communications” report. 

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The winner of a competition sponsored by Intel highlights where technology may be headed – specifically wearable and drone technologies. On November 3, Intel awarded a cool half-a-million dollars to a group of “do-it-yourselfers who developed a wristband that converts to a camera-equipped drone,” Reuters reports.

Aimed for use among rock climbers and other adventurists, the Nixie quadcopter is worn around the wrist. The wearable drone launches into the air to snap photos of places difficult to reach by humans or other types of technology. “Like a boomerang, it returns to its owner and then syncs with the owner's smartphone,” according to Reuters' report.

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The Federal Communications Commission’s experiment exploring how to expand the most cost-effective, robust broadband in rural America, will identify the provisionally winning bidders in the coming weeks. Nearly 600 project bids from 181 applicants, representing nearly $885 million worth of projects were submitted. The proposed winning bidders will then be required to submit information demonstrating their financial and technical ability to participate in the $100 million experiment. Continue Reading: FCC-Announces-Number-of-Broadband-Experiment-Applications-Filed.pdf:

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The largest cruise company in the world, Carnival, recently announced plans for much improved Wi-Fi service at sea. Carnival says hybrid networks using a combination of satellite and earth-based wireless have made it to the high seas with their WiFi@Sea program, that the company says is 10 times faster than what it has been able to provide up until now.

Carnival said in an announcement that it expects the new offering to “revolutionize” how passengers and crew stay in touch during their cruise and to increase interest in cruise vacations, especially within the tech-savvy millennial generation.

WiFi@Sea will rely on a combination of land-based antennas installed along cruise routes, Wi-Fi from a port connection and satellite broadband. It will seamlessly switch from one option to another depending on signal strength with the goal of giving users the best bandwidth and connection quality available at any given time.

"This is a major technology breakthrough designed to enhance the cruise experience for our passengers," said Ramon Millan, senior vice president and global chief information officer for Carnival Corp., in a press release. "Our guests are looking for different experiences when they cruise – some are interested in disconnecting and others are interested in staying in touch with their world back home.”

Carnival plans to roll out WiFi@Sea across its entire fleet of 101 cruise ships, beginning with the most popular cruising region of the world, the Caribbean, in the fourth quarter of 2014.

The company's current plan is to then deploy the system across its Alaska cruise liners in the summer of 2015. Deployments in the Mediterranean, Baltic, Western European and Asia regions are to follow next year and continue into 2016.

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The NTCA today released information a new opportunity for grant money in the spirit of community collaboration on broadband initiatives in rural America. The program  promotes broadband-enabled solutions for economic development, education, energy, health care, public safety and other community-oriented initiatives. Learn more the NTCA’s Smart Rural Community program by visiting Collaboration Challenge. Applications are due January 31, 2015.

 

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Earlier this month the Wireline Competition Bureau announced the Form 477 filing interface would be closed for a least two weeks to allow for technical improvements to be made to the site. Yesterday the FCC filed this Public Notice stating the site is to remain closed until at least November 10, 2014. View Notice.

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At Finley, we understand the growing importance of our clients broadband and IP services for their long term business viability. We’ve recently launched a new IP Services division dedicated to helping clients achieve operational excellence with their IP networks and the services and applications it enable for end customers.

Finley Director of Marketing Barbara Ostrander recently attended the BroadbandVision show and in the below on-site interview, she shares the mission and vision of this new initiative.

Watch Video Now

 

 

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With 4G firmly entrenched as the newest generation of mobile broadband, the wireless industry is actively working on and defining the next generation of wireless – 5G. Samsung recently revealed some results of their 5G research and development efforts, shedding some light onto what capabilities 5G could eventually offer.

In some recent tests, Samsung achieved an industry-best 7.5 Gbps (gigabits per second)/940 Mbps (megabytes per second) wireless broadband speed record in a stationary environment while also reaching an industry-first by achieving “an uninterrupted 1.2 Gbps/150 Mbps 5G connection while traveling in a vehicle at over 100km/h (~62 mi/h),” according to a company press release.

Samsung says there's more to come. “We will continue to build upon these milestones and develop advanced technologies that contribute to the 5G standard,” ChangYeong Kim, head of DMC R&D Center at Samsung Electronics, was quoted in the news release.

“In addition to leveraging our own global R&D capabilities, we will also continue to cooperate with other industry leaders and research centers across the world. Whether you are talking about mobile devices, the cloud, or the Internet of Things, the demand for 5G telecommunications standard and its supporting technologies will continue to grow.”

Samsung's stationary speed record was also the first successful test of 5G wireless broadband conducted outdoors. The moving 5G connection was set in a vehicle traveling on a professional, 4.35km outdoor race track.

Though no 5G industry standard has been established yet, the next-gen wireless telecoms technology is expected to deliver data at tens, if not hundreds, of times faster than 4G LTE. Samsung notes. Samsung employed its Hybrid Adaptive Array Technology in achieving the 5G records. Samsung's Adaptive Array Technology uses millimeter wave frequency bands to make use of higher frequencies over longer distances, the company explains.

Contributing to establishing a 5G industry standard, Samsung most recently proposed its 5G Rainbow technology to other industry members. 5G Rainbow offers a solid foundation for 5G, offering maximum data rate, spectral efficiency, speed of mobility, and data transmission rate at the cell boundary,” while also resolving technical issues such as “the number of simultaneous connections, communication delays, and cost,” Samsung elaborated.

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Tagged in: 4G 5G Wireless
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Increased spending on building “the digital industrial economy” will be the main contributor to growth in IT spending in 2015, which will surpass $3.9 trillion, according to Gartner. Spending to build the “Internet of Things” will be the main driver propelling global IT spending higher year-over-year next year, Gartner highlighted during their Gartner Symposium/ITxpo in Orlando October 5-9.

Evidence of just how fast the digital industrial economy – also known as the “Internet of Things” (IoT) – is emerging, 650 million new physical objects have been connected to the Internet since 2013 and 3D printers became a billion-dollar market, Gartner points out. “The impact that the digital business economy is having on the IT industry is dramatic,” the market research company states in a press release.

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Tagged in: Devices digital IT
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Smartphones and tablets are now the fastest growing technology in human history, and ongoing adoption is going to result in over half the world's population having access to the Internet within three years' time, according to the State of Broadband, 2014 edition.

Over 40 percent of the world population is already online, with the number of Internet users worldwide rising from 2.3 billion in 2013 to 2.9 billion by the end of 2014, according to the report, which was released September 21 at the tenth meeting of the Broadband Commission for Digital Development.

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The Wireline Competition Bureau released updated information regarding the Rural Broadband Experiments application process. In the attached release, the Bureau announced a delay in the timing of the applications in order to complete testing of the electronic submission system. You can read the release here. Please watch for further updates regarding the application process and timeline, and contact us 417-682-5531 if we can assist in the process.

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The market for “Big Data” technology and services will grow six times faster than the market for information technology (IT) overall over the next five years, according to a new market research study from IDC. The market for “Big Data” technology and services will expand at a 26.4 percent compound annual growth rate through 2018, with revenues totaling $41.5 billion, according to IDC's “Worldwide Big Data Technology and Services 2014-2018” report.

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Researchers at USC have built on experiments using Li-fi – the bi-directional transmission of data at ultra-high speeds via light waves – to send data “at unheard of speeds” by using a similar technique with radio waves. The results may avoid some of the problems associated with using optical systems, according to a USC news release.             

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