Broadband Briefs for 03/02/09
• U-verse boasts of 100 HD channels
By Brian Santo
AT&T said it now offers 100 high-definition (HD) channels on U-verse, which the company said exceeds the number of HD channels offered by the local cable providers in every U-verse TV market.
AT&T U-verse TV has two HD subscription options. HD service is included with the U450 programming package and available for $10 per month with any other U-verse TV programming package. U-verse HD customers can get even more HD-exclusive channels with the HD Premium package for an additional $5 per month.
All U-verse TV packages include HD-ready equipment, and most packages include an HD-ready Total Home DVR, which gives you the ability to record your HD programs from a single DVR and watch them on any connected TV.
• SureWest gets $9.2M for wireless towers
By Traci Patterson
SureWest Communications has completed the sale of its wireless towers to Global Tower Partners for an aggregate cash purchase price of $9.2 million.
The company said that it expects to use the net cash proceeds of the towers sale to repay a certain amount of its current outstanding debt facilities.
Steve Oldham, SureWest's president and CEO, said: "This is an important transaction for SureWest as we continue to focus on our core broadband business and delivering a superior experience for customers using our advanced Internet, television and telephone services. The net proceeds from the sale will continue to enhance our financial flexibility and support our commitment to growing the broadband business."
• RCN Metro promotes sales, marketing exec
By Traci Patterson
RCN Metro Optical Networks, a division of RCN Corp. and provider of fiber optic-based network solutions, has promoted Maura Mahoney to vice president of sales and marketing.
In her new role, Mahoney will be responsible for the attainment of revenue targets, customer relationship management, marketing communications, product management, new product development and market development for RCN Metro.
Mahoney joined RCN Metro Optical Networks in November 2007 through RCN's acquisition of Neon Communications. She has more than 19 years in the communications industry, holding various sales and marketing roles of increasing responsibility with companies such as Neon, Globix, Priority Call, Bell Atlantic and Nynex.
• In-Stat: Smartphone use to double by 2013
By Maisie Ramsay, Wireless Week
Smartphones will double their market share by 2013, comprising 20 percent of all cell phones in use, according to research from In-Stat.
The research firm found that almost one-third of survey respondents plan to obtain a smartphone the next time they upgrade from their current phone. Smartphones with Linux OS (including Android) will see the highest growth, outpacing Windows Mobile, Research In Motion (RIM) and the iPhone OSX. When it comes to volume, Linux OS will be second to Symbian.
“Strong demand is being driven by device manufacturers leveraging open OS device to re-invent the mobile phone experience,” says Frank Dickson, vice president of Mobile Internet Group. “New and prospective smartphone buyers are drawn to new mobile applications, even though the median number of applications downloaded for all platforms, including the Apple iPhone, is relatively modest – below five applications per user for each platform.”