TelstraClear vs Telecom; MicroTunes; Woosh for Africa

Top Stories - All your calls are belong to us - MicroTunes has movies in tow - Woosh for Africa?

Top Stories

- All your calls are belong to us

- MicroTunes has movies in tow

- Woosh for Africa?

Sep 2 23:18:11 kernel: pid 51951 (conftest), uid 0: exited on signal 11 (core dumped)

- All your calls are belong to us

Competition is nice, especially when it leads to better service and lower prices. However, competition shouldn’t be misconstrued as “anything goes” style marketing. We hope that Telecom learnt this when its “Anytime” calling plan promotion blew up in its face with TelstraClear going ballistic and complaining to the Commerce Commission over what it perceives is “misleading and unlawful” behaviour from the Number One Telco.

While TelstraClear’s fury is aimed at Telecom’s apparent “slamming” (transferring customers calling without their consent), I was more disturbed by the call monitoring over a long period of time.

What has been gathered, apparently, is “call-associated data” – this, I presume, includes the number you dialled, the time the call was made and how long it lasted. And, this data was tied to individuals who were then targeted with the promotional letters.

It doesn’t mean marketroids have been listening in on your calls of course, but it is repugnant nevertheless. Perhaps it is legal under the various acts and privacy codes and maybe customers have inadvertently given telcos the right to collect such data when they signed up for telephone service. It is still a gross invasion of customers’ privacy and I am amazed that Telecom was insensitive enough to disregard this.

- TelstraClear complains to Commerce Commission over Telecom promotion

- MicroTunes has portable movies in tow

The iJobs will have to watch it now that Bill of the Borg has finally got his music service together. With the launch of Windows Media Player 10 final, Microsoft customers can now download music at the facile price of US99¢ a piece over at the prosaically named MSN Music Web site.

There is more to the Microsoft media thing than just music, however. Coinciding with the launch of WMP10 the first Portable Media Centres were revealed. Singapore’s Creative already have a US$500 “Zen” PMC for sale, with a 20GB hard disk and, wait for this, a 320*240 pixel 3.8” colour LCD. And the battery is swappable too. Will Apple come out with a iVidPod err… VidiPod or iPodVid to match this?

Now where’s that music then… ack, WMP10 means you’ll get Windows Digital Rights Management too. And, Windows XP SP2 pops up a warning about some sort of evil “Microsoft Music Assistant”. Do I want to run that? Dunno, doesn’t tell me what it is or does. Not mentioned in the help file either. Oh well, it didn’t seem to delete anything.

Let’s hit the Online Stores for some music then! :::click:::

NO AVAILABLE ONLINE STORE

There are no online stores available for your location

Whaaa…?

All right, that’s not Microsoft’s fault. It’s the record labels that have GPF’ed a music store for NZ. Nice one.

- Microsoft to launch MSN Music store

- Creative Zen Portable Media Centre

- Woosh for Africa?

I hear that African politicians and diplomats have been in NZ to look at all the modalities surrounding Woosh. Maybe that would be a more fruitful market for Woosh, as there isn’t all that much fixed Internet infrastructure in most African countries yet.

Woosh would have to work on lowering its per-customer cost for that plan to succeed, however. The $100 million it has spent in New Zealand so far has only garnered Woosh some 5,000 customers.

I would expect paying $20,000 per customer is too much, even for my good friend senator Uba Ugochukwu the chairman of the Senate committee on Pension, insurance and manpower development in the National Assembly of the Federal Republic Of Nigeria. Uba wrote to me earlier, soliciting my earnest assistance in helping to receive some sum of money into my account for safe keeping. Mmm. Maybe I should direct Uba to Woosh management instead?

- Cash burn continues on Woosh birthday

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