Bob's Byte

The Way to Femtocell

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The industry may be consumer-driven these days: but we're still stumbling towards consumers in an engineer-facing manner. Don't get me started on how bad the word "cloud" is for the next revolution in ITC. We might have done even worse and tried to sell it as "fog" but cloud is bad enough.

MicrocellOne of my pet peeves is the choice of "femtocell," a product that almost every telco service provider wants to put into the hands of as many consumers as possible. For a couple years now, I have-- in industry speeches-- asked manufacturers to re-consider their terminology if they really wanted to sell this product.

In fact, it would pay most telcos to give away this product to consumers but by labeling it "femtocell," we've crippled ourselves. You have telecom executives pondering why Apple can come in and dominate mobile phones...and on the one hand, you have a company selling "Apples, Macs, iPhones, MacBookAir..." and on the other hand you have stodgy wirepullers offering their "femtocell" to the public. Really, it sounds like something you mind find in a pharmacy...


The Short, Happy Life of Chrome OS

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Born 2010. Died 2012.

Life is so fragile, even for those born to rich parents.

The creator of Gmail (and founder of FriendFeed) says Chrome OS will perish or be merged with Android next year. The fact he now works for Facebook makes this look like sour apples (a New York way of saying he is motivated to make negative comments).Chrome OS

But Sergey Brin, Google co-founder, actually says Chrome and Android will merge over time. We're thinking Chrome OS will live through 2011, but not much longer...

Wickedly Brin told this to reporters immediately after the big Chrome OS roll-out. "Wickedly" because Google is not giving baby Chrome OS a fair chance at living long enough to enjoy its teen-age years. Wickedly because it was not part of the formal presentation, but an informal remark, made sense some snideness in his action.

It's hard to understand Google's thinking here, unless you ascribe this to their subconscious actions, to their own untapped corporate feelings, to an awkwardness about having two OS.

And oddly enough, Android is the adopted one. Google bought Android in 2005. It was opened up to a consortium of 78 mobile companies to develop a standard mobile OS.  Whereas Chrome was home-grown from computing roots. It was a "How to Make a Better Browser" experiment, even before they realized the cloud could make the browser a legitimate OS.