Today AT&T announced it is in "advanced discussions" with the North Carolina Next Generation Network (NCNGN) to bring gigabit-speed fiber connections to communities in that state, potentially accelerating the race to deliver gigabit fiber broadband services to residential communities. 

AT&T said the proposal would bring fiber deployments in the areas of Carrboro, Cary, Chapel Hill, Durham, Raleigh and Winston-Salem in North Carolina, delivering speeds of up to 1 gigabit per second, packaged with AT&T's U-verse integrated voice, video, and data service. 

The move shows that incumbent telecoms aren't going to shy away from competing with Google, which has rolled out gigabit fiber in several communities including Kansas City, Provo, Utah, and Austin, Texas. Silicon Valley. In February, Google announced plans to invite nine more U.S. cities to work with Google on expansion

This entry was posted on Thursday, April 10, 2014 at 21:52 pm and is filed under Infrastructure & SDN, Investing.
Keywords: Gigabit Fiber, AT&T, Google, Adtran, Calix

Most people are challenged by the math of Google's (GOOG) jettisoning Motorola Mobility to Lenovo for $2.9B (it bought it in 2012 $12B). There are lots of melodramatic reactions to the news, but the deal remains one of Google's great strategic moves -- it's not just about the raw math.

The deal was designed to boost Android adoption and acquire patents. I'm pretty sure Google planned to sell Motorola Mobility all along. And it doesn't care that it booked a loss of a few billion dollars.

Proof of this is that the market doesn't see it as a bad thing -- Google shares are up 3% this morning. And Google shares have tripled since Google bought Motorola Mobility in 2012. So why the headlines screaming "Google Takes Huge Loss on Motorola Deal" ?

Do you really think Google investors and executives are crying on their private jets?

This entry was posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 15:05 pm and is filed under Mobile, Investing.
Keywords: Motorola Mobility, Google, Lenovo, Android

You heard about this thing called Net Neutrality. There was a big court decision this week. Is it the beginning of the end or are the journalists just being hysterical?

Here's what's happened:The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia on Tuesday struck down some key FCC rules which are regarded as part of the doctorine of "Net Neutrality" -- a concept that service providers should run all sorts of traffic over their pipes without discerning between applications. 

Service providers, which offer you broadband and charge you a fee, have been challenging these rules in court for years. They are annoyed that Internet companires such as Google and Netflix can stuff as much data down the broadband connection, without paying extra. They believe there should be ways to meter and charge for extra bandwidth consuming. 

When I read the news it's hard to discern whether the Berlin Wall of the Internet is being built or people are freaking out.

You decide. Here is a roundup:

What do the markets think? In a simplistic way, this is framed as service providers vs. Internet companies. In theory, service providers now have more power to charge Internet service providers for hogging traffic. 

They are reacting accordingly: Verizon (V) is up 2%, AT&T is up 1.3%, Netflix (NFLX) is down 3% and Google is flat. 

So in a general sense, the market agrees: This is good for Verizon and bad for Netflix.

And the FCC loses, again. 

 

This entry was posted on Wednesday, January 15, 2014 at 17:14 pm and is filed under .
Keywords: Broadband, FCC, Net Neutrality, Verizon, Google, Netflix

[Editor's Note: Corey Kronengold, our guest writer, has cooked up this Top 11 list for Rayno Report (our lists go to 11). Kronengold, a digital marketing expert, knows the ins and outs of the digital marketing and ad-tech world, having nearly two decades of experience working for wide array of marketing firms and ad technology start-ups such as Eyeblaster/Mediamind, Tremor Video, Innovid, Eyeview and ConvertMedia.]

Greetings and Happy 2014. Digital marketing and ad technology is in a dynamic and ever-changing phase. With big IPOs from digital ad-tech firms YuMe (YUME) and Rocket Fuel Inc (FUEL) -- and a bit of a dud in Tremor Video (TRMR) (Disclosure: I was an employee of Tremor, though I sold my stock before the IPO) -- it's clear this is an interesting space to watch in 2014.

With dozens of startups and now several larger players, including Google (GOOG), it's a competitive industry. It's hard to keep track of the players, technologies, and ad platforms that are rapidly disrupting the ad industry. So we'd thought it would be a good idea to give you the lay of the land, by outlining ten visionaries to watch in 2014. 

We're going to start today with #6-11, and next week we will have numbers #1-5. Here goes:

This entry was posted on Tuesday, January 14, 2014 at 14:04 pm and is filed under Digital Media.
Keywords: Online Video, Ad Tech, Video Tools, Top Ten, Acxiom, Rocket Fuel, AdFin, Google, OwnerIQ, BliNQ, Motivity, PointRoll

Certain technologies get "hot" and take over the world. Others emerge as over-hyped but then fade back into obscurity. It's clear that WebRTC -- the evolving group of technology standards for real-time communication over the web -- is at one of those crucial turning points.

The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) was expected to reach consensus on an important new component of the WebRTC standard -- the video codec -- at its recent meeting in Vancouver. But it didn't, and now the WebRTC movement risks losing momentum.

This entry was posted on Sunday, November 17, 2013 at 21:23 pm and is filed under Digital Media, Applications.
Keywords: WebRTC, Cisco, Google, Collaboration, VOIP, Online Video, Skype

This Twitter IPO. WTF. A giant public celebration of people getting rich on 140 characters or less?

I guess I'm supposed to suspend disbelief and join in on the nonstop media celebration along with the millions of "should you buy Twitter shares?" articles written by 20-something bloggers in pajamas who don't even remember 2000. Yes, that is an immediate turnoff.

I am not wearing pajamas. And I was a professional technology journalist writing about nonsensical IPO after nonsensical IPO during the 2000 bubble when the technology media company I worked for, Red Herring, was on the precipice of collapse. It later collapsed. These things can go both ways, I tell you.

Twitter is a great product and I use it a lot. But the product and the company valuation are two different things. Two notes I made during the 2000 bubble: 1) Don't pay more than a10X price/sales multiple for a tech company and 2) Never buy the IPO of a company that has never turned a profit.

What we have here is the largest celebration of the hubris and vanity of modern civilization ever, on the same day that we get a nasty stock-market reversal. A sign of the beast?

This entry was posted on Thursday, November 07, 2013 at 22:29 pm and is filed under Digital Media, Investing.
Keywords: Twitter, IPO, Jack Dorsey, Ev Williams, Google, Facebook

In the tech world, Big Data and Hadoop are all the rage. You can tell the marketing folks aren't really sure what it all means yet, but know they want to be a part of it. It's like the huge party you heard about on the other side of town -- even if you haven't been there yet, you know you have to get there.

So let's pay attention. There were some interesting developments in Big Data at O'Reilly's Strata + Hadoop World in New York City this week (doesn't that sound like some kind of new restaurant chain?). 

First, let's cover the basics of Hadoop in case some of you don't know what's going on. Strata itself published a nice explanation of Hadoop by Mike Olson, CEO of Cloudera, a software company focused on Hadoop.  

This entry was posted on Wednesday, October 30, 2013 at 14:04 pm and is filed under Applications.
Keywords: Hadoop, Cloudera, Open Source, Microsoft, EMC, Google, Yahoo

The Web commnity is still debating the onset of "Google Keyword Armageddon," in which Google (GOOG) recently made the decision to encrypt the bulk of the keyword data from logged-in user searches. It's not as bad as people are making it sound. 

Yes, a vast amount of keyword data that was once available to people who wanted to analyze traffic patterns is no longer available. This is not to be ignored.  But there is still plenty of data about user search patterns. There are ways to work around it.

Intially, upon discovering this news, the Web community went ballistic, tossing accusations of "evil" Google's way. One guy even called Google a "whore."

This entry was posted on Monday, October 28, 2013 at 16:49 pm and is filed under Digital Media, Applications.
Keywords: Google, Keyword Encryption, Panda, Penguin, Hummingbird

Reuters has started this Cisco-or-Google-buying-Blackberry rumor in a sad attempt to make the Blackberry price go up.

It's dumb.

Why? 1) Even if it were true, I'm sure (as the article states), companies such as Cisco (CSCO), Google (GOOG), or SAP would only be buying assets, such as specific patents. They wouldn't want to keep the company intact. 2) This would be a bad move by Cisco.

This entry was posted on Monday, October 07, 2013 at 16:55 pm and is filed under .
Keywords: BlackBerry, Google, Cisco, M&A

You would think after reading the wide-ranging indictment of Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer in the technology and business press, he had run Microsoft into the ground and driven his shareholders bankrupt, the way past managers of, say, Enron or Lucent Technologies Inc. had done. These people are wrong -- and clueless.

Ballmer announced he was retiring last week. The stock went up, prompting everybody to mock him. But be careful what you wish for, because Ballmer's reign wasn't that bad.

Am I crazy? No. Imagine you are running a company. Your job is to build value for the shareholders. That measure, if you are Warren Buffet, is book value. Microsoft's book value almost doubled in the last five years. Its cash hoard grew from $32 billion to $77 billion. Net income grew from $14 billion to $22 billion annually.

This entry was posted on Monday, August 26, 2013 at 12:34 pm and is filed under Applications, Investing.
Keywords: Steve Ballmer, Microsoft, Google, Windows, Retirement