Why do Cell Phone Calls Still Suck?


gizmodo-18kyerxb8ijqjjpg‘The IEEE’s Spectrum magazine just published a good article on the subject, “All smart, no phone: Cellular carriers are dragging their heels over technology to improve voice quality,” that identifies the core problems and the technology fixes that can help.

‘But just to be clear, there really is a problem. Cell phones are lousy for voice calling. The magazine reports:

‘Even in the best conditions, including a quiet environment and a strong wireless signal, users consistently rate voice quality lower on a cellphone than on a landline. Weaken the cellular link or add background noise, such as from wind or street traffic, and callers’ opinions of the experience drop dramatically…’
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Ethernet is coming to cars
Soon you’ll be watching video streams inside your vehicles
‘One of the top microchip suppliers for the auto industry has announced its first automotive-grade Ethernet chipset and software, paving the way for car makers to install 100Mbps networks in vehicles.

‘The new processors from Freescale will connect in-car electronics and Wi-Fi routers over standard two-wire twisted pair cable, not CAT 5, making it robust enough to serve as a networking topology for vehicles.

‘A move toward Ethernet reflects the fact that in-vehicle electronics are becoming more sophisticated to support autonomous driving, exterior and interior cameras, embedded displays and infotainment systems…’
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Would you prefer lousy phone connections than this?:

Philippine NTC summons telcos on Internet connection speed (story below)

Netflix users probably blame their ISPs for slow Internet but Comcast Claims Netflix Slowed Down Its Own Video Streams
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The problem with slow Internet is that so many factors could cause it. Might be a virus in your PC, a bug in your browser, etc…

MANILA, Philippines – ‘The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has summoned major players in the telecommunications industry to a public consultation on the minimum speed of broadband connections.

‘In a notice of public consultation and hearing, NTC commissioner Gamaliel Cordoba said the major shareholders should submit the proposed changes on or before Nov. 4.

‘Cordoba said the proposed amendments to the order on the minimum speed of broadband connections would be discussed in a public hearing scheduled on Nov. 7.

‘He pointed out that the proposed changes should contain the parameters to be measured as well as the methods and period of measurement…’
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But don’t despair. If ever the Net stays lousy, here’s a possible brilliant solution

‘Forget the Internet, Brace for Skynet Greetings. I have seen the future of global communications. And because I’m such a nice person, I’ve decided I’m going to share it with you. (You can thank me later.) It consists of a global network of thousands of ultra-high-altitude (65,000 feet, or 13 miles high) solar-powered drones, equipped with some variation of next-gen microwave wireless equipment, delivering broadband capacity to the entire planet. I’m calling this drone network “Skynet,” after the antagonist in the Terminator movies, and because I suspect that it might eventually be equally destructive (to existing telecom operator business models, that is)…’
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About DigitalPlato

Poch is a Bookrix author and a freelance writer. He is a frequent contributor to TED Conversations.
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