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« Collaboration and Conferencing is Getting Cloudy | Main | Sunday Question-Why Do Banks and Some Credit Card Companies-- »

October 03, 2011

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Andy, this is kind of cool but its not as cool as UMA/GAN (WiFi Calling). For those of us in high rises in densely populated urban areas where GSM signals are weak (but where we have solid WiFi signals in our office and homes), why can't we have something like the T-Mobile USA Wi-Fi calling function in the phone (as software) instead of having to buy YACD (Yet Another Clunky Device) -- a femtocell -- which sucks up more energy (and makes Al Gore cranky)? Seriously, if T-Mobile can achieve UMA/GAN over WiFi, then why not the other carriers? What's the barrier especially with more and more smartphones that are capable of doing this in software on Android or iOS? With iOS one can understand the barrier may very well be Apple and its App store gatekeeping. But Android? Isn't Android the open source darling?

Android is actually not the picture perfect "open source" little prince that Google likes us to think it is. Eric Schmidt, Larry Page and Andy Rubin have essentially tricked people into buying the Nexus phones (Nexus One, Nexus S) with the hyperbole about how "open" and "pure" they are and yet we can't put the T-Mobile WiFi Calling app on either one (of course T-Mobile with Kineto won't open source the app either). This despite Google having Samsung design the Nexus S to support only the 3G GSM bands of T-Mobile in the U.S. (and sold by Best Buy with a T-Mobile SIM chip in the box when the Nexus S made its debut in December 2010). Andy Rubin also does not return phone calls to Nexus owners who call and beg him to find a way to give the Nexus phones the ability to run UMA / WiFi calling (how hard can it be, after all T-Mobile makes it possible for the Samsung Galaxy S which is for all intents and purposes the same as the Nexus S so long as you go to jail for 2 years with a T-Mobile contract on the Galaxy S). People who purchased the Nexus S *trusted* Google that it would be an open platform that one could modify without rooting it, and have much more flexibility on. But Andy Rubin is apparently too busy to return phone calls of his passionate Nexus customers; contrast this with Steve Jobs who is known to return phone calls and answer people's emails because Steve really does care!

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