Tag Archives: orange

P2P file sharing to be targeted by new Government body – time to stop content piracy?

The government are planning on bringing out a new organisation that will be in place to tackle the on-going Internet piracy issues that have been disregarding the copyright laws for years.  The new organisation will be called the Rights Agency and will be aimed at those Internet users who use peer-to-peer networks to illegally download copyright content, such as movies, games and music.

The move comes after an attempt was made to voluntarily bring together the ISPs and those holding the rights to the content with a solution to suit each party.  However, this attempt was deemed a failure and so the Government has decided to take the matter into their own hands.

Along with the introduction of the new body, the Government will also be bringing in new codes of practice which will be coordinated with the Ofcom regulating organisation.

If the plans, drafted by Lord Carter, the UK communications minister, do come into effect, the effect will be that the ISPs  will be forced to regulate the use of illegal downloading and sharing by taking a deeper look at the activities and behaviours of their users.

However, ISPs are clearly not thrilled about the possibility of having to bear down on their customers, more than likely spending countless pounds in the process, with the possibility of alienating innocent users.

Orange have spoken out about how they do not feel as though it should be their responsibility to take action for such matters, saying that Orange as an Internet provider “does not accept that it has any existing legal obligation … to assist in the enforcement of private legal rights.”

“A fundamental flaw in the preferred regulatory option is that it seeks to cut the court – or any other independent review – out of the process and install the ISP as the arbiter of private rights as between the rights holders and users,” continued the spokesperson for Orange regarding the Internet piracy issues.

“Orange fails to see how a proper regulatory regime could even contemplate the imposition of the costs of enforcing private rights on innocent third parties – namely ISPs and consumers – which would be a courageous political move.”

However, the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) has said that the reaction to the announcement has been very mixed, some for the solution and some opposing it.

The new body must, however, be able to judge between those breaking the law and those innocent users out there as the BBC programme, Watchdog, has recently uncovered how innocent users have been wrongfully accused of Internet piracy.  A new regulating body could aggravate this issue even further.

France – unlockable iPhone sells, but for a price

France is going mad over the whole iPhone liberation that has taken place over the last couple of weeks.  Apple is notorious for bringing out its iPhone in many countries around the world but only allowing one network to release the phone, providing somewhat of an interesting monopoly.  However, France has recently abolished the monopoly in their country as it was deemed unfair.

Now, French businesses across the country are stocking the iPhone, however, the price does not bring such a big smile to ones face.  The law in France states that anti-competitive actions, such as the ones that Apple brought into effect, and the law has been a fly in the ointment for Apple ever since the iPhone came to the market.

Orange won the contract to offer the iPhone in France, however, by offering the iPhone on an unlockable contract for the price of 649 Euros and even offered to unlock the handset for the quite extreme price of 100 Euros.

However, now that the iPhone has been allowed to be sold by just about anyone the price of the iPhone has shot up and some people are paying up to 900 Euros for the 16GB version.

However, although 900 Euros seems like a fortune to pay for the iPhone, compared to the United States for example the price is quite reasonable.  In the United States, if you want an iPhone you have to sign a 2-year contract with AT&T as well as shelling out $199, and then over the next couple of years you will be paying up to $100 a month.  At the end of the two year contract you will be looking at close to £2000 for the whole iPhone experience – so $1,200 for the iPhone isn’t too unreasonable after all.

The iPhone has enjoyed major success since its release.  The iPhone has become a household name and has even been battling as a major contender in the handheld gaming arena, against the likes of the PSP and the Nintendo DS. The iPhone has also enjoyed major success in the 4th quarter of 2008 as sales have sky rocketed past any other quarters sales.

However, Apple is being forecast to have difficulties through 2009.  It has already been announced that Steve Jobs will not be talking at Macworld in January, which is already being taken as a clear sign that this is due to Apple having nothing new to bring to the market.

Although many analysts are claiming that Apple is in a good position to survive the storm of the coming year, some analysts are concerned for the future of AppleYair Reiner, analyst for Oppenheimer, claimed that, “The question isn’t just 2009, it’s what happens after that.  What are going to be the next set of products that continue to drive the shift from Windows to Apple?”

Apple will be nervous entering 2009 as the economic downturn has already seen the end of establishments and can cause disruption even to stable firms.

Social networking sites such as MySpace and Facebook will bring in charges in 2009

Social networking sites, such as favourites Facebook and MySpace, are set to jump on the greedy-train as news has surfaced that the sites are planning to charge good money to their users to partake in activities that they are currently taking for granted, such as uploading videos.

Director of research for technology and telecommunications for Deloitte, Paul Lee, claims that, “The book value of some social networks may be written down and some companies may fail altogether if funding dries up.  Average revenue per user for some of the largest new media sites is measured in just pennies per month, not pounds.  This compares with a typical average revenue per user of tens of dollars for a cable subscriber, a regular newspaper reader or a movie fan.”

Websites that provide their users with networking privileges such as poking your mates rely heavily on advertising to bring in the money to help pay for the domain, the employees and the Porsche’s.  However, apparently advertising is seemingly drying up and sites such as Bebo are apparently not turning out to be the lucrative business paths they originally were planned on being.

The sad fact is that, although you and I are more than happy to fill our MySpace page with our pictures and small thumbnails depicting our “friends”, we aren’t paying for the rights to use the site, and the advertising is clearly proving not to be enough for the sites to survive on.  In fact, Twitter is making such little money it doesn’t generate any revenues at all.  Not really the aim of any business.

However, there is no denying the website’s successes – in user numbers, not pound signs.  These social networking sites, and in particular Facebook, have been appearing more and more on mobile telecommunication networks, such as Orange.  A study by Orange discovered that 640,000 of its UK users would use their mobile handset to connect to the Internet to check their social networking accounts.

The Director of Products for Orange UK, Paul Jevons, claims that the high usage of social networking sites on the Orange network is incredibly substantial, saying, “We are seeing massive numbers of unique users and traffic in social networking and we expect that to continue.  A number of things have come together such as the tariffs and the handsets that really have kickstarted social networking on mobile phones.”

Facebook, however, can breathe a sigh of relief as it is bringing in SOME revenues due to a lucrative advertising deal made when Facebook was in its prime in 2007.

The months between June 2008 and October 2008 saw numbers of users of mobile handsets access these social networking sites raise by 277 per cent and a reason for this has been said to be the introduction of such tariffs as Dolphin which allow unlimited access to these social networking sites.  The recent success of the iPhone has also brought strong attraction to Facebook and other similar sites as the iPhone provides continually wireless Internet.