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See you at Mobile World Congress 2012

02/24, 2:50pm

We travel to Barcelona for MWC 2012

Electronista is traveling to Barcelona for Mobile World Congress 2012. Updates may come in at unusual times, but we should have updates over the weekend, especially mid-Sunday, as most of the cellphone and tablet world shows its hand. Hands-on coverage will continue through mid-week.

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European iPhone discounts softened, built-in SIM plan blamed

12/02, 5:30pm

Euro iPhone discounts may have gone in SIM dispute

Apple's rumored fight over embedded iPhone SIMs may have cost it valuable carrier discounts. Sanford Bernstein analyst Robin Bienenstock noted that subsidies in larger European countries had been reduced by 40 to 150 euros ($53 to $198). The carriers had also pulled promo graphics from their main pages, the analyst said, suggesting they may have been reluctant to keep giving the phone its full attention.

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Apple said leaving embedded SIM out only for iPhone 5

11/23, 10:15am

Apple may pass on embedded SIMs only on iPhone 5

Apple's rumored decision to avoid embedded SIMs may have only been for the 2011 refresh, sources argued Tuesday. The company has purportedly reassured European carriers that the iPhone 5 will still depend on removable micro SIM cards but has given signs that it would shift over later on. Tips to the Financial Times didn't reveal whether that meant 2012 or still-longer plans.

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Carriers threaten Apple over talk of embedded iPhone SIMs

11/18, 6:45pm

Euro carriers warn Apple over embedded SIMs

European carriers are discussing the possibility of retaliating against Apple if it goes ahead with a rumored plan to use embedded SIMs in iPhones, leaks from the industry alleged Thursday night. The parent companies of O2, Orange and Vodafone have reportedly been worried that Apple was trying to take control of the "relationship" the carriers have by letting customers buy without having to talk to the carrier. An unnamed executive at one of the companies told the Financial Times that Apple could risk a "war" if carriers decided to stop subsidizing the iPhone on contract.

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Wholesale Apps Community adds 32 members, still no platform

10/18, 8:55pm

Wholesale Apps Community now 48 members strong

The Wholesale Applications Community (WAC) founded earlier this year has just aggregated 32 new members. The newcomers include Opera Software, Oracel, Fujitsu, Rogers and China Unicom, among others, joining the original 24 companies such as LG, Samsung, Telefonica and Orange. The goal of the alliance is to create a common, global app store that will offer software for multiple platforms and devices.

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Macworld to bring iPhone to Mobile World Congress

09/07, 3:10pm

Macworld plans to bring iPhone to MWC 2011

Organizers for the GSM Association's Mobile World Congress revealed today that Apple would have an unofficial presence at the phone trade show through Macworld Mobile. The magazine will have full-day training and sessions for developers specific to iOS devices. The next Congress is due to start February 14 next year.

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27 firms promise common rival to iPhone's App Store

02/15, 9:00am

Wholesale Apps Community takes on Apple

The GSM Association today unveiled an alliance for a common app store platform meant to challenge Apple. Known as the Wholesale Applications Community, the service will create an open, standard way of developing and selling apps across multiple phone operating systems and networks. The partnership will include phone builders LG, Samsung and Sony Ericsson, as well as 24 major carriers that include all four major US networks and major internationals like China Mobile, Orange and Telefonica.

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Tougher GSM, 3G security cracked

01/12, 12:05pm

Newer GSM encryption hit using sandwich attack

The security of GSM phone calls dropped again late Monday with word that the standard's second, more guarded encryption standard has been broken. Following a first crack of the simpler standard, researchers at the Weizmann Institute of Science say they have cracked the A5/3 security cipher (nicknamed Kasumi) by using what's known as a "sandwich" attack. The group accomplished its goal by creating a distinguishing trait for the key and using just four related keys to determine the key for Kasumi itself.

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GSM phone security cracked, published

12/28, 2:55pm

Cellphone protocol deemed vulnerable

German software engineer Karsten Nohl said at the Chaos Communication Congress hacker expo today that he and a group have cracked and published the primary encryption code for GSM, the protocol that handles most non-3G cellphone calls. The team says it has used legal methods to break the A5/1 standard, which prevents easy snooping, and has made available a 'code book' of binary data that could theoretically be used to decipher the content of a call within hours or even minutes rather than weeks.

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Phone firms plan universal chargers for 2012

02/17, 12:30pm

Universal Phone Chargers

Most cellphones could use a single, interoperable standard for their power chargers within three years if a GSM Association initiative proves successful. The partnership includes phone makers like LG, Motorola, Nokia, Samsung and Sony Ericsson as well as carriers like AT&T, KTF, Telefonica, T-Mobile and Vodafone; all have developed a format that would use micro USB as the standard and cut the typical power use by about half. The plan would cut back on the number of chargers thrown out after switching phones as well as reduce the amount of energy used to keep phones running.

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