Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Skype Jailbreak and the Unholy Alliance of Wireless Handset Makers and Carriers

News of conditional iPhone Skype access has arrived; see http://gadgetwise.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/01/09/fring-for-the-iphone-all-skype-no-gripe/?pagemode=print. I use the word conditional, because iPhone users can access the service only via a Wi-Fi connection and not via the AT&T network.

This announcement provides both good and bad news. On one hand, Apple the computer manufacturer recognizes the user benefit in constructing a handset that can incorporate many applications, including ones that the wireless carrier may not be thrilled to support. On the other hand, both Apple and AT&T have absolutely no interest in considering the iPhone property owned and controlled by consumers. This means that Apple does not protest when AT&T limits Skype access to Wi-Fi islands of connectivity. Because iPhone users frequently use their phone while moving, AT&T can tolerate the loss of some revenue in the limited instances where non-moving subscribers make Skype calls.

Many iPhone users have undertaken the warranty violating exercise of “jailbreaking” their handsets to add an “illegal” application, i.e., software either Apple or AT&T do not want users to have. Clever users will find ways to make Skype useable over the AT&T networks, but I wonder why handset manufacturers and wireless carriers have the power to condemn such user options as illegal hacking. Surely after paying rates that recoup the handset subsidy don’t iPhone users own their phone?

In a number of different forums and writings I have argued for a wireless Carterfone policy that recognizes the lawfulness of using handsets to access any service, application, software or carrier provided such access causes no technical harm. We expect such attachment freedom when using handsets attached to wired networks, as well as television sets and personal computers. But apparently in our delight with a working wireless connection we accept limitations on handset attachment freedom. Some wireless carriers disable handset Wi-Fi access, so Apple must come across as a consumer advocate of sorts.

Wireless carriers do not have to comply with the wireless Carterfone policy in part because handset manufacturers carriers do not vigorously contest handset limitations imposed by wireless carriers. With only four major carriers controlling most of the market, and locking most subscribers into two year service agreements, in exchange for the privilege to buy a subsidized handset, no handset manufacturer cares to risk its good standing with the carriers. If Nokia had more ways to sell handsets—as occurs in most parts of the world outside the U.S.—it would have far less tolerance for carriers disabling consumer welfare enhancing features like Wi-Fi access.

U.S. wireless carriers have cowed handset manufacturers into submission. With such an unholy alliance limited Wi-Fi-based iPhone access to Skype looks generous.

3 comments:

Pongster said...

It's worst in Canada, the Skype application is blocked so we can't download it directly. After getting a copy, it is disabled on Jailbroken iphones.

Anonymous said...

Today is my lucky day :)
Apple is giving review copies of iPad to 100 lucky person. Go to http://bit.ly/cmmVr7 and apply for it.

Anonymous said...

Do You interesting how to [b]Buy Viagra per pill[/b]? You can find below...
[size=10]>>>[url=http://listita.info/go.php?sid=1][b]Buy Viagra per pill[/b][/url]<<<[/size]

[URL=http://imgwebsearch.com/30269/link/viagra%2C%20tramadol%2C%20zithromax%2C%20carisoprodol%2C%20buy%20cialis/1_valentine3.html][IMG]http://imgwebsearch.com/30269/img0/viagra%2C%20tramadol%2C%20zithromax%2C%20carisoprodol%2C%20buy%20cialis/1_valentine3.png[/IMG][/URL]
[URL=http://imgwebsearch.com/30269/link/buy%20viagra/3_headsex1.html][IMG]http://imgwebsearch.com/30269/img0/buy%20viagra/3_headsex1.png[/IMG][/URL]
[b]Bonus Policy[/b]
Order 3 or more products and get free Regular Airmail shipping!
Free Regular Airmail shipping for orders starting with $200.00!

Free insurance (guaranteed reshipment if delivery failed) for orders starting with $300.00!
[b]Description[/b]

Generic Viagra (sildenafil citrate; brand names include: Aphrodil / Edegra / Erasmo / Penegra / Revatio / Supra / Zwagra) is an effective treatment for erectile dysfunction regardless of the cause or duration of the problem or the age of the patient.
Sildenafil Citrate is the active ingredient used to treat erectile dysfunction (impotence) in men. It can help men who have erectile dysfunction get and sustain an erection when they are sexually excited.
Generic Viagra is manufactured in accordance with World Health Organization standards and guidelines (WHO-GMP). Also you can find on our sites.
Generic [url=http://viagra.gertantis.ru]legal buy viagra online[/url] is made with thorough reverse engineering for the sildenafil citrate molecule - a totally different process of making sildenafil and its reaction. That is why it takes effect in 15 minutes compared to other drugs which take 30-40 minutes to take effect.
[b]Viagra Online With Prescription
viagra lawyer ohio
viagra mycoxafloppin
viagra fail drug test
free pack sample viagra
Viagra Uk Shop
viagra and blood pressure meds
[/b]
Even in the most sexually liberated and self-satisfied of nations, many people still yearn to burn more, to feel ready for bedding no matter what the clock says and to desire their partner of 23 years as much as they did when their love was brand new.
The market is saturated with books on how to revive a flagging libido or spice up monotonous sex, and sex therapists say “lack of desire” is one of the most common complaints they hear from patients, particularly women.