CTIA Hit Orlando This Week Like a Hurricane. Some Amazing Products and Announcements

Hi all, this past week the CTIA (Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association, the International Association for Wireless Telecommunications Industry, basically the governing body for wireless communications) held its yearly spring convention in Orlando, Florida. Unfortunately, I was not able to go and give you a first hand account and look at all the new product and service announcements. So, I put together a summary of the companies that made the biggest splashes and the articles and videos I got them from (actually I drew from many articles but I have referenced the one article that I feel will give you the most info on the products). I know I normally don’t send you to link after link, however there was so much information that this article would have to be in two or three parts or 10 pages long. I figured it was better to give it to you all at once and you could peruse the products you had an interest in. The videos that are coming from YouTube will also give you the option of seeing more on the particular product.There will be some shockers (T-Mobile) and some “it’s about time”. Lastly, for that one person out there who knows who you are, I just want to say that there is no “cut and paste”. All this came from my little fingers. Please enjoy and let me know which of the new gadgets you think will be big winners.-Bill
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AT&T finally gets a MiFi wireless hotspot of its own for $50

AT&T finally has a MiFi, a device which lets you share mobile internet to multiple wireless devices, of its own. The company announced today that it will offer the Novatel MiFi 2372 starting November 21 for $49.99 after a $100 mail-in rebate.

Thus far, consumers who wanted a MiFi device had to get one from Sprint or Verizon. AT&T’s MiFi comes with some features its competitors don’t have — like the ability to plug in a MicroSD memory card and share files with users connected to the device. It also sports GPS support, and Web-based widgets that can use the device’s location to give you local news and weather.
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Starbucks’ Wi-Fi Goes “Venti”

Starbucks will offer unlimited free Wi-Fi at 6700 US locations starting July 1, announced CEO Howard Schultz today in New York at Wired’s Business Conference “Disruptive by Design.”

Currently, AT&T mobile and DSL customers already get free access, as do patrons with a registered Starbucks Loyalty Card who receive the first two hours of their internet infusion free daily – everyone else pays $3.99 for every two hours. The new service allows unrestricted access with a simplified one-step login. Read the rest of this entry »

Thrifty Wi-Fi That Travels With You

Or so it seems until you really need it and there is no coffee house with a free hot spot. Or when you don’t want to pay a fee to connect at the airport or a hotel for an hour.

Our pockets and bags are filling with Web-connected devices: laptops, smartphones, netbooks, tablets, e-readers and even cameras. But to connect one when Wi-Fi is not available means using a cellphone network, and that usually requires buying a new data plan for each device.
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