Tech News and Opinions (by Paul Spain)

NZ Tech Podcast: Episode 1

, posted: 18-Feb-2011 16:18

Today I am happy to confirm there is a cool new Podcast in town - The 'NZ Tech Podcast' which is hosted by myself and Bradley Borrows (Microsoft NZ) and features local + international gadget and technology topics. Topics covered in the first episode include Mobile World Congress, Nokia/Microsoft news, Intel's $1.6 Billion Sandy Bridge problems, Vodafone's NZ Sure Signal gadget and Windows Phone 7 updates. The NZ Tech Podcast will be coming to iTunes and Zune marketplace in the next few days. (read the entire post)...

CFH announces prioritised negotiations with Vector Limited

, posted: 17-Feb-2011 09:46

This announcement through this morning from Crown Fibre Holdings:

Crown Fibre Holdings (CFH) today confirmed that an additional party has been selected for prioritised negotiations in the UltraFast Broadband (UFB) initiative. This party is Vector Limited, covering the Auckland Candidate Area.

"Crown Fibre Holdings has elected to negotiate with Vector. Its offer meets many of the Crown's key criteria in areas such as access prices, funding, industry experience and financial (read the entire post)...

Telstra to launch 4G mobile network in Australia

, posted: 17-Feb-2011 09:38

Telstra plan to offer a 4G mobile network in Australia from late 2011. Speeds of 60-80 mb/s have been talked about for the new LTE (Long Term Evolution) based network. The announcement was made by Telstra CEO David Thodey at the Mobile World Congress held this week in Barcelona, Spain.

The network will run side by side with Telstra's existing network, with Telstra offering devices which will offer dual mode LTE/HSPA+. It has been disclosed the new 4G network will operate on 1800Mhz fr (read the entire post)...

NZ News: Additions to Telecommunications Bill proposed

, posted: 16-Feb-2011 09:52

This media release just in from the Hon Steven Joyce (Minister of Communications and Information Technology): Further amendments to current telecommunications legislation to be considered alongside the Telecommunications (TSO, Broadband and Other Matters) Amendment Bill will be tabled with the Select Committee Office later today. As well as measures for the effective implementation and deployment of the Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFB) Initiative and the Rural Broadband Initiative (RBI), the Supplemen (read the entire post)...

Nokia jumping to Windows Phone platform (dropping Symbian)

, posted: 12-Feb-2011 04:28

Nokia have announced today that they have selected Windows Phone 7 as their primary smartphone platform. They are going to phase out Symbian, Nokia's existing primary smartphone platform. In addition to delivering handsets - Nokia plans to offer it's own App Store, Ovi Maps and other features to the Windows Phone platform. They believe this will make them more competitive in the U.S. and global markets in the growing smartphone race. Microsoft's Steve Ballmer highlighte (read the entire post)...

Review: Vodafone NZ Sure Signal 3G Femtocell

, posted: 25-Jan-2011 09:28

Sure Signal (standard)

After a somewhat problematic process I now have a Vodafone NZ 'Sure Signal' branded Femto cell (micro cell site) gadget up and running. And I'm pleased to say it delivers. If you have problems with 3G mobile coverage at your home or workplace this might be what you need.

Sure Signal Enterprise

I tested the standard unit, which Vodafone are selling for $300+gst ($345) promises to bring a strong 3G signal to places where there was (read the entire post)...

Vodafone NZ launches mobile cell sites (FemtoCells)

, posted: 20-Jan-2011 18:42

A technology which has been offered in many other places around the world has finally been launched in NZ. Femto Cells are available immediately from Vodafone NZ and allow those in homes or regions lacking in cellular coverage to link a mini cellular base station to their Internet connection.

Femto Cells are being priced at $349 for a basic unit (supports up to 4 cell phones) and $1033.85 for an 'Enterprise' option which supports up to 8 mobiles. The units are being marketed by under (read the entire post)...

Windows 8 to support both ARM and x86 'System on a Chip' architectures

, posted: 6-Jan-2011 10:20

At a press conference held in Las Vegas in conjunction with the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2011 Microsoft have just announced that the next version of Windows will support 'System on a Chip' architectures from Intel, AMD, and ARM. The big news as was leaked in recent weeks is that a full version of Windows will run on non-Intel x86 chips.Previously the relationship and successes of Microsoft Windows and Intel have been very closedly tied - and hence the term 'Wintel' was coined. Today's ann (read the entire post)...

Windows Small Business Server 2011 (SBS 2011) finalised

, posted: 14-Dec-2010 15:34

After being available for a number months in beta and release candidate form - Microsoft have finished off work on the Standard Edition of SBS 2011 (and the Premium add on). The product has today officially reached release to manufacturing (aka RTM) stage. General availability will be sometime in the new year - OEMs receive it January, and new servers bundled with SBS 2011 should appear in February or March. There are a range of management and functionality benefits - such as improved backup and (read the entire post)...

More Prioritised Bidders Announced for NZ Ultra Fast Broadband Initiative (incl Telecom NZ)

, posted: 13-Dec-2010 10:22

This just in via a Press Release issued by Crown Fibre Holdings this morning: Crown Fibre Holdings (CFH) has announced the selection of a further three parties for priority negotiations in the ultra-fast broadband (UFB) initiative. The three parties are: Telecom Corporation of New Zealand Limited: covering 25 candidate areas; Enable Networks: covering Christchurch and Rangiora ; and Flute Joint Venture represented by Aurora Energy Limited: covering Dunedin These three parties have provided (read the entire post)...