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Bringing Free Television To Phones In America 159

ideonexus writes "South Korea, China, Brazil, parts of Europe, and Japan have been watching television on their phones for free since 2005, but American mobile carriers are struggling to offer clunky streaming video using Qualcomm's proprietary MediaFLO system for an additional monthly fee and excessive bandwidth demands. Now, with America having gone digital in June, if Mobile carriers were to have ATSC M/H (advanced television systems committee — mobile/handheld) television-tuner chips built into their handsets it sounds like we could enjoy free TV on our cell phones too; however, these companies have already invested a great deal of money adapting their networks to Qualcomm's format and Qualcomm is considering becoming a mobile television distributor itself."

Nokia Claims Patent Violations in Most Apple Products 419

An anonymous reader writes with an extract from this Associated Press story, as carried by The Globe and Mail: "Nokia is broadening its legal fight with Apple, saying almost all of the company's products violate its patents, not just the iPhone. Nokia Corp. said Tuesday that it has filed a complaint against Apple Inc. with the US International Trade Commission. The Finnish phone maker says Apple's iPhone, iPods and computers all violate its intellectual property rights."

Panasonic Begins To Lock Out 3d-Party Camera Batteries 450

OhMyBattery writes "The latest firmware updated for Panasonic digital cameras contains one single improvement: it locks out the ability to use 'non-genuine Panasonic' batteries. It does so for safety reasons, it says. It seems to indicate that this is going to be the norm for all new Panasonic digital cameras. From the release: 'Panasonic Digital Still Cameras now include a technology that can identify a genuine Panasonic battery. For the protection of our customers Panasonic developed this technology after it was discovered that some aftermarket 3rd party batteries do not meet the rigid safety standards Panasonic uses.' The firmware warning is quite clear as to what it does: 'After this firmware update your Panasonic Digital Camera cannot be operated by 3rd party batteries (non genuine Panasonic batteries).'"
The Courts

Verizon Sues FCC over 700MHz Open Access Rules 115

Carterfone writes "Verizon is upset at the open access conditions for the 700MHz spectrum auction, and they're going to court to get them overturned. The company has filed a lawsuit in the Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit, urging the court to overturn the rules. 'In its petition for review, Verizon argues that the FCC exceeded its authority in mandating the two open access conditions, accusing the Commission of being "arbitrary" and "capricious," and saying that the rules are "unsupported by substantial evidence and otherwise contrary to law." Google is critical of Verizon's lawsuit: 'It's regrettable that Verizon has decided to use the court system to try to prevent consumers from having any choice of innovative services. Once again, it is American consumers who lose from these tactics.'"

Firm Sues Sony Over Cell Processor 330

An anonymous reader writes that earlier this month, Sony received word of a lawsuit from a Newport Beach company called Parallel Processing. They've filed against the electronics giant alleging that the Cell processor, used in the PlayStation 3, infringes on a patent they own. They've made the somewhat outrageous demand that every infringing chip (and console) be 'impounded and destroyed'. From the article at Next Generation: "The patent, 'Synchronized Parallel Processing with Shared Memory' was issued in October 1991. It describes a high-speed computer that breaks down a program 'into smaller concurrent processes running in different parallel processors' and resynchronizes the program for faster processing times ... Parallel Processing said that Sony's alleged actions have caused 'irreparable harm and monetary damage' to the company."
The Internet

ISPs Starting To Charge for 'Guaranteed' Email Delivery 288

Presto Vivace writes "Under the guise of fighting spam, five of the largest Internet service providers in the U.S. plan to start charging businesses for guaranteed delivery of their e-mails. In other words, with regular service we may or may not deliver your email. If you want it delivered, you will have to pay deluxe. 'According to Goodmail, seven U.S. ISPs now use CertifedEmail, accounting for 60 percent of the U.S. population. Goodmail--which takes up to 50 percent of the revenue generated by the plan--will for now approve only mail sent by companies and organizations that have been operational for a year or more. Ordinary users can still apply to be white-listed by individual ISPs, which effectively provides the same trusted status.'"

Microsoft Says Free Software Violates 235 Patents 1217

prostoalex writes "Microsoft told Fortune magazine that various free software products violate at least 235 patents, and it's time to expect users of this software to pay up patent licensing royalties: 'Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith and licensing chief Horacio Gutierrez sat down with Fortune recently to map out their strategy for getting FOSS users to pay royalties. Revealing the precise figure for the first time, they state that FOSS infringes on no fewer than 235 Microsoft patents.'"
The Almighty Buck

FDA Considers Redefining Chocolate 939

shewfig writes "The US Food and Drug Administration is considering redefining 'chocolate' to allow substitution of vegetable oil ($0.70/lb.) for cocoa butter ($2.30/lb.), and whey protein for dry whole milk. There are already standard terms to differentiate these products from chocolate, such as 'chocolatey' and 'chocolate-flavored.' The change was requested by the industry group Chocolate Manufacturers of America. Leading the resistance to this change is high-end chocolate maker Guittard, with significant grass-roots support from the Candyblog. The FDA is taking consumer comments until April 25. Here is the FDA page on the proposed change, which oddly enough does not say what the proposed change is."

Viacom Sues Google Over YouTube for $1 Billion 508

Snowgen writes "Viacom has filed a $1,000,000,000.00 lawsuit for 'massive intentional copyright infringement' against Google over YouTube video clips. '"YouTube's strategy has been to avoid taking proactive steps to curtail the infringement on its site," Viacom said in a statement. "Their business model, which is based on building traffic and selling advertising off of unlicensed content, is clearly illegal and is in obvious conflict with copyright laws.'"

Vista to Allow "One Significant" Hardware Upgrade 641

fiorenza writes "Ars Technica spoke with Microsoft concerning the controversial changes in Windows Vista's licensing, and they have learned that Vista will permit one 'significant' hardware change before requiring users to either appeal to Microsoft support or purchase another license. Automatic re-activation online will fail after one use. Microsoft is using a new algorithm to monitor hardware changes and enforce licensing compliance, and the company says that it is more forgiving now than it was with Windows XP."

"Atomic batteries to power, turbines to speed." -- Robin, The Boy Wonder