What a week Telecom has had. $300 million from Microsoft to launch the newly revamped xtraMSN portal. A deal with Hutchison Wampoa that will see a new Telecom 3G company formed. It's signed a separate deal with a Norwegian firm to bring a mobile portal, djuice, to the New Zealand market and the company no longer sells DSL modems for its JetStream service.
The Xtra deal with Microsoft will see the software uber-giant invest $300 million in Telecom and join forces to create a single news portal. Xtra will provide the content and Microsoft the tools and added bits and pieces that make MSN the name that it is - things like Messenger and the Communities tags.
On the same day, the deal with Hutchison Wampoa was cemented. Both companies will launch new subsidiaries to manage the transition to a 3G cellular environment which, while untested, should allow high-speed data transmissions over cellphones. BT in Britain is complaining that between the cost of spectrum licences and implementing a new network it will cost the telco giant more than NZ$60 billion to offer these services. Here in New Zealand the cost should be significantly less as the licences were much cheaper - only around $120 million for the entire country.
Telecom rounded out the week by selling the last of its Nokia DSL modems. In November the company announced it would be opening up the sale and leasing of modems on its high-speed JetStream plan to all players and now that its supply of modems has been depleted it is handing over that part of the market to others. Datacom and 3Com seem to be the biggest winners so far with an upsurge in demand for 3Com DSL modems making the local company manager very happy indeed.
Telecom is also investigating taking part in an alliance to build another cable connecting Australia with Asia to complement its very successful Southern Cross Cable. If built the cable will connect Perth with Singapore and Jakarta and complete the loop that starts on the west coast of the US>
Future flies on Telecom deals - NZHerald
Telecom gets djuice - IDGNet
Cyber Wars: Or is it?
So the Chinese and US hacking communities are duking it out by attacking each other's websites and it appeared on the surface at least that Asia Online had been caught up in the battle.
That may have been an overstatement and Asia Online local chiefs are lying low, not commenting on reports that there was no denial of service attack but that users were in fact victims of a poorly configured router.
Herald chief denies cyberwar - IDGNet
New weapons deployed in cyberwar - IDGNet
Online privacy around the world ends
Stories from India and Europe say that government's are clamping down on the idea of being able to surf the net anonymously. In India users will need a licence similar to a driver's licence in order to use any Mumbai (formerly Bombay) internet cafes. In Europe the authorities are promoting a bill that will require companies to keep data on file for up to seven years just in case the law enforcement authorities want to have a look at it. This goes beyond the FBI's proposals as outlined in Computerworld almost two years ago. It's taken a while but it looks as thought the powers that be have almost achieved their goals on this score. Stay tuned as New Zealand introduces its own version - the Crimes Amendment Bill (number 6) with associated supplementary order paper.
Eurocops want seven-year retention of all phone, Net traffic - The Register
Law raises fears of SIS set-ups - NZHerald
The Enfopol Papers - Telepolis
A collection of stories about the moves by European governments in this area.