A majority of the Federal Communications Commission have signed off on SoftBank's $21.6 billion acquisition of Sprint Nextel as well as Sprint's bid to take control of wireless service provider Clearwire, according to sources. "This clears a hurdle, so it's almost finalized," said Masamitsu Ohki, a fund manager at Tokyo hedge fund Stats Investment Management. Sprint shareholders approved the SoftBank transaction June 25.
A draft report from the Federal Communications Commission about communications outages during last summer's derecho storm praises broadcasters for providing critical information during the incident, while calling for wired and wireless providers to satisfy their own best practices, sources say. In related news, the FCC on Feb. 5 will hold the first of several field hearings on communications problems during October's Superstorm Sandy.
The next generation of Macs will have 802.11ac wireless networking thanks to chips being supplied by Broadcom, The Next Web reports, citing sources familiar with Apple's plans. The 802.11ac standard is often called 5G Wi-Fi to indicate that it's faster than existing 4G wireless technologies.
Apple is buying fewer memory chips from Samsung Electronics for use in the new iPhone model, Reuters reports, citing a source with direct knowledge of the matter. A dispute over pricing for the chips is behind the order reduction, according to Bloomberg Businessweek, which used a person familiar with the matter as its source. Another anonymous source said Samsung wasn't chosen to supply displays for the latest iPhone, although it will continue to provide processors for the Apple smartphone.
Verizon has completed its rollout of a Revision A EV-DO network, while the rollout of rival Sprint is about 98% complete, according to company representatives. The new offerings promise faster data-transmission speeds, with comparable download speeds, although Verizon promises quicker uploads.