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Cellular Telephones

BUSINESS
November 28, 2007 | DAVID LAZARUS
First people were allowed to take their phone numbers with them whenever they switched wireless providers. Now, Verizon Wireless is handing consumers greater clout by allowing them to use their own handsets, not just Verizon's, on the carrier's network. The surprise announcement Tuesday could force other wireless companies to follow suit, which in turn would spur carriers to compete more aggressively on pricing and service. This could lead to cheaper and more feature-packed cellphones.
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NATIONAL
November 19, 2007 | From Times Wire Reports
A rogue cellphone is not accepting calls, but it sure likes to dial 911 operators in eastern Iowa. Operators at the Black Hawk County Consolidated Communications Center said they received about 400 calls from the same cellphone last week and no one seems to be on the other end. Officials can't locate the phone but have figured out that it is an old type not currently associated with a cellphone provider.
BUSINESS
November 13, 2007 | From Times Wire Services
Walt Disney Co. will begin cellphone services in Japan in the spring by leasing a network from Softbank Corp., relying on the popularity of characters such as Mickey Mouse to win customers in the $81-billion market. The service will be branded Disney Mobile. Subscriber targets and details on price plans haven't been decided, said Softbank, Japan's third-largest wireless carrier. Burbank-based Disney will become the first reseller of both voice and data services in Japan.
BUSINESS
November 6, 2007 | Jessica Guynn, Times Staff Writer
Google Inc. rules your computer. Now it wants to rule your mobile phone. After months of speculation, Google on Monday unveiled its vision to transform the wireless industry by making mobile phones as good for Web surfing as personal computers. Google and a consortium of 33 companies, including mobile- handset makers, phone carriers and other technology leaders, plan to offer free software to power mobile phones that will hit the market in the next six to 12 months.
BUSINESS
November 5, 2007 | From Reuters
Google Inc. will unveil its mobile strategy today, including a phone operating system and a broad alliance with multiple wireless service providers and handset vendors, according to people familiar with the matter. Sources said the Google mobile operating system would be based on open-source Linux code, which will support applications from different software developers in addition to Google's own services, which include e-mail and mapping. Its partners include Sprint Nextel Corp.
BUSINESS
October 31, 2007 | From Times Wire Services
Verizon Wireless and Sprint Nextel Corp. are in "advanced talks" with Google Inc. about carrying a cellphone powered by the Web company's software, according to a published report. The Wall Street Journal's online edition cited unnamed sources in reporting the talks Tuesday. The paper said Google was expected to announce within two weeks a set of software and services that cellphone makers could use.
BUSINESS
October 27, 2007 | From the Associated Press
Apple Inc. said Thursday that it would no longer accept cash for iPhone purchases and would now limit sales of the cellphone to two per person in a move to stop people from reselling them. Before the policy started Thursday, there was no cash restriction and the purchase limit was five per person.
BUSINESS
October 24, 2007 | From Bloomberg News
Apple Inc. said Tuesday that almost one of every six iPhones sold may have been unlocked to run on unauthorized wireless networks, surprising analysts who had estimated the problem wasn't as widespread. Chief Operating Officer Timothy Cook said 250,000 of the nearly 1.4 million iPhones sold might have been bought by users with the intention of unlocking them to work on a network other than AT&T's. Customers who aren't signing up with AT&T, Apple's approved service provider in the U.S.
BUSINESS
October 24, 2007 | Joseph Menn, Times Staff Writer
The Southern California fires wreaked havoc on cellphone service, destroying dozens of antenna towers, causing power outages in other areas and leaving many residents with no other means of communication. Even where coverage was available, the surging call volume as tens of thousands of evacuees went wireless overwhelmed circuits and blocked calls from getting through.
BUSINESS
October 22, 2007 | DAVID LAZARUS
Lawndale resident Julian Torres' cellphone experience will be familiar to many wireless customers. Dissatisfied with the frequency of dropped calls and roaming charges, Torres, 40, recently decided to switch service providers. Of course, that meant a big, fat fee for early termination of his contract -- in this case, $150. Then came the added insult: The fancy cellphone Torres had purchased from his former wireless provider couldn't be used with his new one.
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