The Pixel 2 was one of the first smartphones with eSIM — a feature that allows devices to connect to cellular networks without inserting a physical SIM card. The Pixel 2 and 3 both have eSIM, but it's only used for Google Fi. That will soon change, as multiple carriers are working to support the feature.
Where I live, phones are bought unlocked and operator pre-installed useless bloat is not something I've ever encountered. But for many of you who have just plunked down a few hundreds of dollars on a phone, upfront or via contract, the carrier isn't nice enough to let you have that device as it was intended to be. No-oh, siree, thou shalt have at least ten different apps shoved down your internal storage, uninstallable, and thou shalt be happy about it because the carrier knows what's good for you (™). Well, Deutsche Telekom - i.e. T-Mobile's parent company - is changing that in Germany and we need to take a break to applaud it.
After the T-Mobile US / Sprint merger talks dissolved for a second time, the magenta-themed carrier looks to be in a much stronger position to go it alone, as the company has announced a net addition of 1.9 million subscribers in Q4 2017, of which 891,000 are postpaid accounts.
RCS is designed as the (eventual) successor to SMS and MMS, but it's a bit of a mess right now. Several carriers have their own implementations of the standard, often incompatible with each other. Google's Jibe RCS Cloud is quickly gaining ground, but there's still only one US carrier supporting it - Sprint. Now Samsung has announced its own RCS cloud.
Late last year, Google announced that Sprint would be the first carrier to use its Jibe RCS Cloud platform. Several more carriers have joined since then, including Rogers in Canada and Telanor in Europe and Asia. In a blog post from Google, the company announced that Orange, Deutsche Telekom, and Globe will be rolling out Jibe RCS to their customers.
As expected, both the 5-inch Pixel and the 5.5-inch Pixel XL are compatible out of the box with Project Fi, Google's MVNO (it would be news if they weren't). Google also announced just over a dozen of other international partners around the world.
Oxy is a small start-up company out of the United Kingdom that is planning to launch a new smartwatch on Indiegogo this month. By all accounts, it is not competing with any other company in the industry, not even Pebble. But Oxy got served with a lil' lawsuit threat when it tried to file for a trademark on its logo (shown on the left in the image above) by Deutsche Telekom. Reasons? Magenta. I feel like we've been down this road before.
T-Mobile has been responsible for seriously shaking up the American cellular carrier for the last couple of years, disrupting nearly every area from contracts to phone subsidies to data sales models. So hearing that T-Mo's parent company Deutsche Telekom may be interested in selling it off is somewhat alarming. Hearing that they may be interested in selling to Comcast, quantifiably one of the most despised companies in the entire country, is like watching that head-crushing scene from Game of Thrones all over again.
Reuters reports that Deutsche Telekom is in active talks to sell T-Mobile USA to cable giant Comcast, according to business magazine Manager, which cites anonymous sources.
It's easy to forget, but T-Mobile USA is still owned by German firm Deutsche Telekom. In a recent speech given at the DLD conference in Munich, Germany, DT CEO Tim Höttges said that T-Mobile's un-carrier promotions won't be enough to keep T-Mobile going. The only long-term solution, apparently, is a merger.
Previously, we'd heard rumors and whispers that T-Mobile (by way of its parent company Deutsche Telekom) would be acquiring MetroPCS. Today, both companies' boards have approved the merger and, pending regulatory and MetroPCS shareholder approval, the deal should be completed by mid-2013. The two companies will have a combined subscriber base of about 42.5 million customers, which still leaves it in fourth place in the U.S. behind Sprint with 56 million and AT&T/Verizon who each have over 100 million users.
The biggest news is that this will allow T-Mobile the spectrum it needs to rollout a competitive LTE network. In fact, T-Mo's CEO John Legere hopes to some day be able to "taunt" competitors over their LTE coverage.