Wednesday, 21 January 2009

3GPP Earthquake and Tsunami Warning service (ETWS)

Earthquake and Tsunami Warning Service: is a service that delivers Earthquake and Tsunami Warning Notifications provided by Warning Notification Providers to the UEs which have the capability of receiving Warning Notifications within Notification Areas through the 3GPP network.

Earthquake and Tsunami Warning System: is a subsystem of Public Warning System that delivers Warning Notifications specific to Earthquake and Tsunami provided by Warning Notification Providers to the UEs which have the capability of receiving Warning Notifications within Notification Areas through the 3GPP network.

Earthquake and Tsunami Warning service is provided to users by PLMN operators. Warning Notification Providers produce Warning Notification to PLMN operator when an event occurs e.g. an Earthquake. PLMN operators distribute Warning Notifications to users by utilizing ETWS.

The ETWS consists of the PLMN that is capable to deliver Warning Notification and the UEs that are capable to receive Warning Notification. A Warning Notification Provider is able to send Warning Notification to the users in Notification Area by activating ETWS. Warning Notification is classified into two types depending on the purpose and urgency of the notification.

The first type of Notification is called Primary Notification. This type of notification delivers the most important information of the threat that is approaching to users (e.g. the imminent occurrence of Earthquake or Tsunami). The notification shall be delivered to the users as soon as possible.

The second type of Notification is called Secondary Notification. This type of notification delivers additional information, such as instructions on what to do / where to get help as long as the emergency lasts.

More Information at 3GPP TS 22.168: Earthquake and Tsunami Warning System (ETWS) requirements; Stage 1.

You may also find interesting this FAQ for Cell Broadcast (CB) in Public Warning.

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

Emergency Phone Network enabled on the London Underground

Airwave has completed its deployment to all 125 below ground London Underground stations - within budget and ahead of schedule.

The complete roll out of the terrestrial trunked radio (TETRA) network on the Tube means that British Transport Police, Metropolitan Police Service and the City of London Police will now be able to use the same radios underground.

Police Minister Vernon Coaker welcomed the completion, saying the system was now fully functioning ahead of schedule, and would help frontline officers carry out the work they already do in tackling crime.

Tim O’Toole, managing director of London Underground, said the roll out was achieved five months ahead of schedule.

Airwave, a Macquarie investment fund venture, won the contract to provide access to its TETRA network in January 2007. The National Policing Improvement Agency managed the roll out, linking the emergency services to London Underground’s Connect digital radio system.

The Connect system forms part of a £10-billion investment programme by Transport for London. And the TETRA Tube roll out was initiated after the London Assembly called for improved public safety communications underground in its report into the 2005 London bombings.

Mobile dating to get big by 2013

In Sep 2007, Juniper Research proudly claimed, "Mobile dating revenues to reach $1bn by 2012, according to a new study from Juniper Research ". Most of the predictions are for the next 5 years as its safe to predict that much in future.

Now their latest report claims, "Mobile Dating Revenues to Approach $1.4bn by 2013 as Event-based Charging Models Proliferate, says Juniper Research":

A new Juniper Research report has found that new revenue streams from event-based charging and advertising will help to push the value of the mobile dating and chatroom market to nearly $1.4 billion by 2013, part of a burgeoning user-generated content (UGC) market that will reach $7.3 billion by the same time.

The report says that while subscription revenues will continue to contribute the bulk of service revenues over the next five years, an increasing number of dating companies have now switched to offering event-based charging, through products which offer free registration but levy charges when end-users wish to contact one another, or else offer virtual gifts for subscribers to send to other users.

The Juniper report also observed that while the initial impetus for dating services was provided off-portal, network operators have become increasingly keen to offer services on-portal as part of their entertainment portfolios: Vodafone offers Dating Direct, while 3 UK has partnered with Flirtomatic.

Other findings from the report include:
• Less than 30% of mobile dating customers will be on flat-rate subscriptions by 2011
• The Far East & China region is currently the largest region in terms of subscriber numbers, primarily due to the success of dating services in Japan
• Advertising will provide the majority of mobile social networking revenues but less than one-third of all UGC revenues by 2013

Its just matter of time when Location Based Services (LBS) will combine with these and offer 'instantaneous flirting' and 'speedy dating' ;)

Monday, 19 January 2009

MMS of NY Plane Crash, first photo on the web

A dramatic picture of the US Airways aircraft that crashed in the Hudson River appeared around the world within minutes after a bystander uploaded a photograph taken with his mobile telephone on to the website Twitter.

In another illustration of the growing power of Twitter, where users post mini-messages, Janis Krums took the picture with his iPhone and sent it to the site.

Mr Krums, from Sarasota, Florida, posted: “There’s a plane in the Hudson. I’m on the ferry going to pick up the people. Crazy.”

Read complete article here.

Sunday, 18 January 2009

What lies ahead in year 2009

In the year just gone i.e. 2008 we saw some unprecedented economic situations. I can clearly say that I have never seen anything like that but then I’m too young to say that anyway -:))

Talking to more experienced people in the industry I came to the conclusion that this recession indeed one of the worst one.

It's a very tough economic climate out there and there an every chance that no one will be reprieved by its effect. What I men by that and even if you haven't been touched by the downturn thus far, you will be. There is an argument that IT or technology shop has some advantage over other departments which makes sense as well as I can rarely think of a business these days which doesn’t use telecoms these days. Nevertheless, it would be unthinkable not to be wearing your flak jacket at all times.

Jos losses have started to happen in telecoms now with the likes of Motorola, Nortel already involved in this procedure. More than 50,000 tech workers lost their jobs before the financial meltdown hit, and more jobs may soon be axed.

Everyday we see ourselves into more gloom and doom with more bad news coming our way. Even India is getting affected by this and especially after what happened Satyam. The Satyam scandal had shocked India specially the IT world. This has definitely not helped to boost up the confidence with some of the IT companies shares plunging. The Satyam scandal what many has labeled as India’s Enron has put a big doubt into investor’s mind which is a very serious concern.
In way this scandal has done woken up many and will do some good in the future. Telecom companies are working feverishly to get their balance sheet right and hence already started taking drastic measures. I view it like this where everybody is anticipating a tsunami and to save themselves from high waves they are already moving onto high grounds.

I myself is involved in the situation where the salaries of the staff are frozen for at least one year. I believe any measure taken now although painful is a right thing to do. So when tsunami comes the high waves may not do the much damage and if doesn’t then it’s even better.
Companies are in the mindset of not spending in the coming months and plans to invest only in what it call key projects but with an increase of only 1 or 2 percent in the next 12 months.
LTE is considered as one of the key area of development but at the same time provide immense dilemma as well. Companies are no doubts thinking of concentrating on the current projects which guarantee a source of revenue but then want to spend in LTE product as well so that they are not behind when the good times begin.

People with high skills especially in wireless and VoIP may have got good chances of just clinging on to their jobs.

Remember everybody would need the skilled people when good times come back so it’s in companies interest to freeze the salaries instead of making make people redundant.

It's important, above all, to keep your skills at top form and be flexible with an employer going through tough times.

In the end I will mention the line from Judi’s blog which is
“Remember, don't panic. The trains cannot run without you”

'Sexting' is dangerous for teens

It's a popular trend among teens called "sexting."Middle and high schoolers are texting racey nude pictures back and forth, and it's causing an uproar across the country.

According to a recent study, one out of five teens have done it. The study also shows that teen girls are not the only ones sharing sexually explicit content. Almost one in five teen boys said they have sent or posted nude/semi nude images of themselves. One-third of young adults -- 36% of women and 31% of men ages 20-26—say they have sent or posted such images.

A year ago, a 19-year-old cheerleading coach was charged and prosecuted for taking a topless photo of herself and a 15-year-old girl.

And a boy was taken to juvenile court last year for taking explicit photos of his girlfriend.

Mr Brown, who is also resource officer at the areas primary school, said of the 14-year-old boy's mobile phone photos: "They were as graphic as you would see in any Penthouse magazine."

In the latest case, three teenage girls in Greensburg, Pennsylvania, who sent nude self portraits, and the three male classmates who received the images, have all been served with child pornography charges.

The girls have been charged with manufacturing and disseminating child pornography while the boys are accused of possessing it.

In Wisconsin, a 17-year-old was charged with child pornography after posting naked pictures of his girlfriend, who is a year younger, on the internet. In Rochester, New York, a boy aged 16 faces seven years in jail for circulating an image of a girlfriend to friends.

"Sexting" is fast becoming a moral and legal headache for school heads and police throughout America. The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy last month published a study suggesting one in five teens had sent or posted images of themselves in various stages of undress.

Jim Brown, an official at Glen Este high school in the Ohio town of Cincinnati, told the Cincinnati Enquirer: "If I were to go through the cell phones in this building right now, of 1,500 students I would venture to say that half to two- thirds have indecent photos, either of themselves or somebody else in school."

Prosecutors are facing increasing dilemmas because case law has not kept up with the impact of digital media on teenage behaviour. Young adults can face lengthy sentences resulting from relationships with younger teenagers, with penalties varying state by state.

Federal law also requires hefty punishment for teenaged relationships that span the legal start of adulthood at 17. An 18-year-old in their last year of high school who dates a 14-year-old in the first year faces up to 30 years in jail for a first offence.

Saturday, 17 January 2009

Keep your kids safe, get num8 from Lok8u

Launched at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, the Num8 (pronounced 'new mate')watch from British company Lok8u (pronounced 'locate you') is said to be the first tracking device specifically designed to help parents keep tabs on wayward offspring.

The £149 Num8 looks much like any ordinary digital wristwatch, but it houses a GPS chip similar to that contained inside a satnav unit. This constantly keeps tabs on the location of the child - it is accurate to within 3 metres - and beams it back to Num8's website for monitoring.

Relatives can receive text messages about the watch's location direct from the device, pinpointing the street address of their youngster at the touch of a button.

"As far as the child is concerned it's a digital watch - for the parent it's a child locating product," said Steve Salmon, Lok8u's chief executive. He added that he hoped it would be used as a way to give children more freedom, rather than restricting them or promoting lazy parenting.

"Only 20% of children are now allowed to go out and play. It's my profound hope that Num8 will help parents feel more comfortable about letting their children go out to play," he said.

It is not the first time that a company has offered parents the chance to track their children by GPS, but most previous devices have been built into mobile phones - expensive pieces of technology that are notoriously easy to dispense with. By contrast, Worcestershire-based Lok8u says it has improved the situation by locking the watch on to the child's wrist.

If an errant child forcibly removes the watch - or has it taken from them - the system immediately trips an alarm, sending an alert to the mobile phone of a parent. Removing the gadget also triggers a warning that is sent by email, just in case the worried parent happens to be sitting in front of a computer.

And to get around the limitations of satellite tracking technology - such as going indoors to prevent the satellite overhead from establishing a direct connection - the system can also use mobile phone signal triangulation to determine a more approximate location for its target.

An Australian children's advocate is very upset with this device. He has already labeled this device as 'alarmist' and 'flippant'. According to him "There won't be a huge market here because I think Australians are smarter than that."

Even though this device is claiming to be the first, there have been other services that can already achieve this. In this article in Guardian, couple of years back, the author successfully tracked his girlfriend using a similar technique via some spying website. The accuracy was not as good though but because of many more cell sites, some of them micro-cell sites and with the use of A-GPS this should be easy.

Anyone aware of similar services out there?

Friday, 16 January 2009

Lucky dad escapes bankruptcy due to 14,528 SMS messages

Ok, i know the heading is quite a bit exaggeration but how would you feel if you received a bill for nearly $3000? Luckily in this case, this didnt happen.

Greg Hardesty didn't LOL when he got his teen daughter's cellphone statement.

All he could think was "OMG!"

The California man's 13-year-old daughter, Reina, racked up an astonishing 14,528 text messages in one month. The online AT&T statement ran 440 pages.

It works out to 484 text messages a day, or one every two minutes of every waking hour.

The reporter for the Orange County Register grilled his daughter on her texting habit - by text message, of course.

"Who are you texting, anyway? Your entire school?" he asked.

"Well, a lot of my friends have unlimited texting. I just text them pretty much all the time," she explained.

She messages a core of "four obsessive texters" - all girls between the ages of 12 and 13 - on her LG phone.

Luckily, Hardesty has a phone plan that allows unlimited texting for $30 a month. Otherwise, he estimates, he would have owed AT&T $2,905.60 at a rate of 20 cents per message.

The average number of monthly texts for a 13- to 17-year-old teen is 1,742, according to a Nielsen study of cellphone usage.

Hardesty admits he himself punches in 900 messages a month - 700 more than average for his age group, according to Nielsen.

Hardesty and his ex-wife have since placed restrictions on Reina's cellphone use, ruling she cannot text after dinner.

Thursday, 15 January 2009

Projector phones a plenty at CES 2009

AT CES2009, there were quit a few phones that can be used as 'Projectors'.

The new Logic Bolt, a touchscreen GSM quad band handset, boasts pico projection with the ability to project a 36- to 64-inch image.

Other specs of the Windows Mobile device include a 3-megapixel camera, Bluetooth, GPS, and of course, for the office appeal, PowerPoint for those impromptu presentations.

Onboard storage of 4GB and expandability up to 20GB means that business users, which are clearly the demographic for this phone, would be able to store hours of super-fun PowerPoint presentations and video on the handset to show off in important business meetings.

And for the all-important sound, the speaker located on the bottom was more than adequate, pumping out good sound even when flush to surface.

After that, any other features would be a bonus, and there are a few for the more than casual user. A 3MP camera, GPS and internet connectivity mean that this is more than just a business phone... although the lack of 3G connectivity and WiFi might hamper the last part.

A likely launch of around $600 phone-only, or $100 with a 2-year tie-in on T-Mobile or AT&T in the States is hinted at, but no news on a UK release.

Samsung recently got the wraps of an innovative mobile phone accessory called the MBP200 Pico Projector. In a compact and light weight form factor, the projector has been design to offer users amazing projector performance with its wide functionality.

Offering easy connectivity to mobile phones as well as laptops, the MP200 projector is equipped with Texas Instruments DLP pico chip that enables users to convert their device into a large 50” viewing experience. Packed with a microSD card slot, users can also transfer files and project content that does not rely on the attached source.

The projector weighs just 160g and is about 107.3 x 48.8 x 19 mm in dimensions making it a very portable device. Powered by a smaller version as the imaging technology found in Samsung HDTVs, additional features of the Mp200 Pico projector include 3.5mm standard jack, and a built-in speaker. Accessorized by a small screen holder that has a telescoping pole hidden within, the projector offers instant conversion of a regular sheet of paper into movie screen viewing.

3M was showing off miniaturised projectors (rather than phones with projectors)

They had two prototypes on view: one played video off SD cards, the other plugged into an iPhone and played videos off that. Unlike other pico projectors, these have an RGB LED inside rather than a straight white LED, which is a significant step forward. Both were very nice looking, but alas, both were mere prototypes. The projector the prototypes were based on is smaller than ever, which is great, but until we see these things built into actual phones rather than in relatively bulky separate devices, I don't know how far they'll go.

Their tiny MM200 is a projector meant to be fitted inside the casing of a mobile phone so you don’t need to carry anything else. At the touch of a button it would then project what’s being displayed on your phone’s display.

This is actually the second generation of 3M’s mobile projector with the first appearing last year with the name MPro110. With the MM200 3M are offering a 50″ screen projection while requiring just 1 watt to function through its use of LEDs for illumination.

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

LG shows off new 'touch watch phone' GD 910

The world's first market-ready "touch watch phone" with 3G video telephony and GSM quad band capabilities, the GD910 will go on sale in Europe "sometime in 2009".

Described as "chic and wearable", arguably it is not as comedic as some previous watch-phone offerings, but LG is perhaps pushing it a bit when they say that at first glance it could "simply be a high-end timepiece".

With a curved tempered glass face and a high quality metal casing the watch measures 13.9mm thick, a dimension that might be forgiven when you consider the 7.2Mbps 3G HSDPA compatibility.

Capable of sending text messages (on its 1.43-inch screen), there are also voice recognition features, which can be used with or without a Bluetooth headset, phone book, stereo Bluetooth and a built-in speaker for playing back MP3 music files.

It also recognises voices, transforms text to speech, has a Bluetooth function and works as an MP3 player.

The 'watch phone' is part of a trend towards multi-tasking gadgets that can perform a host of functions. Mobile phones, in particular, have been at the forefront of this convergence revolution.

At first glance, LG's new Watch Phone appears to simply be a high-end timepiece. The company used materials and stylistic elements found in watches from top manufacturers to ensure that people will be comfortable wearing it for any occasion. The Watch Phone has a curved tempered glass face, high quality metal casing and is a mere 13.9mm thick.

"This Watch Phone is the result of a great deal of research and development, something that is very important to us at LG. We will continue to invest in creating innovative new products and technologies like this and setting trends in the mobile phone industry," Dr. Ahn said.