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Posts Tagged ‘Verizon’

Netflix Stops Accusing Verizon of Being Slow, Starts Proving It

Netflix-Movie-Night-1

Verizon may claim to have moved on from its spat with Netflix, but the latter isn’t quite done with this business, thank you very much.

After Verizon sent a cease-and-desist letter insisting that Netflix stop accusing it of slowing down customers’ streaming speeds, the content company’s comms director wrote a blog post indicating that its “transparency campaign” would officially end next week. We might take that announcement with a grain of salt, though: the real purpose of the post was to hype the release of a new round of performance data designed to shame those very service providers.

Click through for the statement, which we read as, “We MIGHT stop bringing attention to your network congestion. Or we might not. Deal with it.”

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Verizon to Netflix: ‘No, You’re Slow!’

Netflix might just be too clever for its own good.

Earlier this week, the company confirmed that it had gotten a bit cheeky with Verizon, its partner in the love/hate net neutrality dance.

Netflix, in the face of what might resemble extortion from a certain angle, recently agreed to pay for the right to “direct access” to Verizon customers in order to ensure that its videos stream at optimum speeds. The company signed a similar deal with Comcast.

Of course, we can see why Netflix might want to gripe about this fact, and they chose a sly way to do it. But Verizon wasn’t amused. Their statement after the jump.

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Will the Public Love Verizon’s Valentine’s Day Phone?

Verizon Today is the first day of February, which means Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. The public views Valentine’s Day as a symbol of everything that is both right and wrong with our society. Love deserves a day of celebration, but no one should have to choose between buying a bunch of overpriced nicknacks and sleeping on the couch.

Nevertheless, the commercialization of Valentine’s Day is an unstoppable beast, so we all must comes to terms with it on a personal level. There will always be people who embrace holidays with a fervor and passion that requires decorating the banister, dressing the dog in a ridiculously-themed holiday outfit and wearing a gaudy sweater that commemorates the occasion as only an uncle with a steel plate in his head can.

So we can’t blame Verizon for wanting to cash in on the Valentine’s Day bonanza. There will be plenty of people eager to buy the brand’s hot pink Valentine’s Day edition Motorola Droid RAZR M, which comes with a holiday discount for $50. So if hot pink is your thing (or your significant other’s thing), then this is the phone for you this Valentine’s Day.

But is this a step too far?

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T-Mobile Partners with Major League Baseball, Hawks Opening Day Tickets

T-Mobile Major League Baseball PartnershipWhile scrolling through my Twitter feed this morning, the first thing to jump out at this Boston Red Sox fan (Did I just alienate half our readers? Hello? Are you still there?) was a promoted tweet from T-Mobile that read:

Intrigued, I followed the link to a sweepstakes-entrance Facebook page run by T-Mobile, which announces in the wireless provider’s familiar pink, white, and black: “T-Mobile takes the field as the official wireless partner of Major League Baseball.” At first, still in my early morning/longing-for-baseball-season stupor, I just scrolled down to check out the entrance form. A few sips of tea later, the PR-oriented part of my brain kicked in and said, “Wait, what?”

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More Companies Raising Prices

Three more companies have announced that they are raises prices on their goods or services: Starbucks is raising prices by one percent on some items across the Northeast and Sunbelt; Denny’s is raising prices three to five percent this year; and Delta is adding a $3 charge on flights between the U.S. and Europe.

Word of these price hikes started coming out late yesterday, yet it hasn’t been met with the same level of consumer rancor that the Verizon or Bank of America fee proposals did. What gives? We have a few thoughts.

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Verizon Fee Goes Bye-Bye

We wondered how long this would last. Answer: about 24 hours.

That’s how long it took Verizon to back down from its absurd plan to charge wireless customers $2 for each one-time payment made online or over the phone, a.k.a, in Verizon parlance, the “convenience fee.”

The announcement was made in a press release on the Verizon website. According to the statement, they’re dumping the fee following “customer feedback about the plan, which was designed to improve the efficiency of those transactions.” In other words, the company was being skewered on social media and in the press and decided the $2 wasn’t worth the bad buzz and negative business consequences. Sounds very familiar.

According to The Huffington Post, there was online outcry, petitions, and even talk of an FCC investigation. Rather than charging the fee, the company says it will encourage customers to use one of the existing payment options. The fee was meant to go into effect in January.

Verizon Learned Nothing from BofA, Will Charge ‘Convenience Fee’

A leaked memo posted on Engadget reveals Verizon’s plan to start charging customers $2 for each one-time online payment or bill payment over the phone on January 15. Verizon confirms this ridiculous plan. And they’re calling it a “convenience fee.”

Remember the uproar when Bank of America tried to charge $5 for debit card purchases? Apparently, Verizon doesn’t. Ultimately, BofA had to dump the plan because of the backlash and other banks, taking a hint, decided to dump theirs as well.

Both Engadget and CNET suggest alternatives to charging a fee, such as stiffer late fee penalties and (gasp!) a reward for loyal customers who sign up for an automatic bill pay.

Charging people more when they’re recovering from holiday spending during a tough economic period is simply wrong-headed. It’s made even more so when telecom companies were among those on a “most-hated” list published just a couple of months ago. Folks on Twitter and on blogs are already complaining. Moreover, this is happening while service outages are a problem. Let’s see how long this lasts.

Research Finds Women Really Like Gaming Apps

The Sims Social, a new online game, is coming to Facebook.

Research over the past three months conducted by Women at NBCU’s Brand Power Index found that more women than men have at least one gaming app on their smartphone; 75 percent of women versus 67 percent of men. Women be gaming!

Moreover, the research showed that those brands that offered games during that time period saw a spike in their Brand Index score. For instance, Stouffer’s launched a game on Facebook, “Farmer’s Harvest” in Farmville, with promotions and moved up from number 363 to number 303.

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IPad 2: The Postmortem to the Big Reveal

Apple CEO Steve Jobs introducing the latest version of the iPad today in San Francisco. Photo: REUTERS/Beck Diefenbach

So after all the hype, the fact is I was all-in even if Apple brought out a dancing monkey and told me it was the new iPad.

Okay, let’s review. It’s thinner, faster, comes in white, and, yes, it’s Verizon-capable. Some tech writers dig itSome writers suspect the minor upgrades – which also includes two cameras – are only the beginning. And it’s the same price point! Other writers…you can’t please them.

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IPad Part Deux: Better…Faster…Stronger?

Is this the new iPad? Image via Business Insider

Pardon my excitement, but Apple‘s big reveal today (at 1pm ET)with the new and improved iPad will have everyone abuzz. Yes, there were the haters when the iPad 1.0 jumped on the scene. But within months we learned this sleek piece of machinery was fun to play with and, dare I say it, special.

So today, Apple will show us what’s next. If you can’t wait any longer, Gizmodo breaks down the details on how they are expanding and potentially improving the iPad. And Business Insider has what could be some leaked photos.

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