Fast Facts Infrastructure: February 26, 2001
The Supreme Court last week left untouched a 1992 law that limits the number of subscribers a cable operator can sign on. Time Warner Entertainment, arguing that rules limiting the number of households a cable operator can reach to 30 percent nationwide may offend free-speech protections, had also hoped the court would overturn rules that limit the number of channels an operator can fill with its own programming to 40 percent.
AT&T and British Telecommunications are reportedly in talks to reorganize their European joint venture, Concert, which could collapse if an agreement is not reached. Concert provides phone and data services to global corporations.
Technical journals report Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line service can only reach within 18,000 feet of the central office. But Symmetricom, in a field trial with Berkshire Telephone, a small New York voice and data carrier, pushed DSL past 25,000 feet by repeating the signal, something not previously possible in ADSL. Symmetricom reports ADSL can push 1.5 megabits per second upstream and 256 kilobits per second downstream as far as 30,000 feet.
Lucent Technologies spin-off Avaya says it will outsource manufacturing of printed circuit boards, wireless systems and communications gear to Celestica. Torontos Celestica, which has picked up groups of Hewlett-Packard employees, has agreed to hire about 1,400 Avaya workers, and will acquire plants in Westminster, Colo., and Little Rock, Ark., as well as other assets, for about $200 million.
A software licensing agreement with Siemens for its next generation of so-called smart phones means Symbians operating system could show up in about 67 percent of the worlds wireless handsets. The top five handset makers worldwide have licensed the software.