I don't think they can solve the first problem you described. Launching satellites is still expensive, and there's only a small market for satellite phones. Cell coverage is even better than during the first Iridium, except maybe uninhabited areas or outside of cities in some third world countries.
Exactly, here the users that are using less than average bandwidth are subsidizing others, so the pricing can't be considered fair or economically efficient. So this is just a way for ISP's to generate more profits compared to flat rate. Despite pure flat rate never being economically efficient, it's usually very profitable for ISP's because core network capacity (at least used to be) 1/100th of the price of access capacity. When the access part is already installed and paid for, the operators don't have any other reason for bandwidth caps than greed. However, in expensive bottleneck links like radio this is different than in wired access.
The article does seem to confuse strategic mistakes with technical mistakes. The history is full of well engineered products that failed because of strategic or marketing reasons.
Alcatel-Lucent surely isn't the first one to implement bonding, and it has also been used with ADSL2+. And they are not the first ones to come up with vectoring, that is used to reduce crosstalk. The article makes it seem like Alcatel-Lucent has done something incredible, even though there will be ITU-T standard and equipment from at least Ericsson.
Yes, I think that some kind of innovation culture is required in the universities so that the system works effectively. Maybe financial incentives for scientists, such as money for patent applications. And scientists should be somehow encouraged to start up companies to commercialize their inventions. Funding shouldn't be automatical for projects of course, and some degree of supervision would be degree. But too much control and pressure can hinder innovation.
I think it's more about the death of basic research than private versus public funding. Companies nowadays don't want to invest in basic research because they are risky and long term investments. In my opinion, companies in general are rather investing in marketing and short-term projects that only rarely result in radical innovations, but are marketed as "innovative" despite not offering significant benefits compared to old products.
I can confirm this, visited there last summer. Truly a place worth visiting. There are several hundred people working on shifts there all the time, two weeks at a time. There's even a mobile phone network there nowadays. Ukraine government also plans to open large part of the exclusion zone during the next 5 to 10 years, so some of the stories are kind of exaggerated.