THE NEWS WRAP: Ericsson denies NBN rollout delay blame

Telecommunications equipment manufacturer Ericsson has denied responsibility for delays in connecting 450,000 rural and regional properties to fixed wireless broadband as part of the national broadband network.


The company had been awarded the $1.1 billion contract in 2011, but the rollout has suffered a number of delays and setbacks, including a lack of spectrum in many outer suburban areas.


“The client has to provide us with the spectrum. It’s not Ericsson’s responsibility to find spectrum and buy it. NBN Co knows about the spectrum issue, they have a plan for it and it will be resolved somehow,” Ericsson Australia chief executive Hakan Eriksson says.


Optus increases smartphone prices


Optus has quietly raised prices on Apple iPhone and Samsung Galaxy smartphones purchased by new customers on a 12- or 24-month contract, according to new figures from Goldman Sachs.


The price increases will see customers on a $50-per-month plan now pay $696 over the life of their contract for a 32-gigabyte iPhone – an increase of $200 over the carrier’s April 2010 prices.


“Optus has cut handset subsidies across its post-paid mobile plans [and] raised handset pricing in the past week,” Goldman Sachs research analyst Raymond Tong told clients.


“While Optus has stated its desire to stabilise/increase its market share, these moves are consistent with its goal of driving profitable growth. Optus handset subsidy cuts follow similar moves by Vodafone [Hutchison ­Australia] in February-March.”


ET found in landfill


Documentary filmmakers have confirmed one of the most pervasive myths in computing history, finding thousands of copies of the Atari game ET buried in a landfill in Alamogordo, New Mexico.


The game, described by some critics as the worst ever made, was rushed out in time for the release of Steven Spielberg’s 1982 movie E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, with thousands of unsold copies of the game rumoured to have been dumped in the landfill.


Falling consumer confidence as a result of the poor quality game is commonly blamed for causing a downturn in the North American video industry during 1983.




The Dow Jones Industrial Average is down to 16361.5. The Aussie dollar is down to US92.75 cents.


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