13 Mar DT Daily (Jun 6): Sprint/T-Mobile merger, Solar roadways pushback, Netflix needles Verizon
Today on DT Daily: Sprint makes a play for T-Mobile, not everyone loves the solar roadways idea, and Netflix takes a not-very-subtle jab at Verizon.
It looks like the Comcast-Time Warner and ATT-Direct TV deals have given more tech companies the urge to merge. Now, Sprint has apparently set its sights on T-Mobile, setting up another multi-billion dollar deal. But will it happen?
It would be one thing if it was just two big companies in on the deal, but there are actually four mega-corporations and three countries involved. Deutsche Telekom of Germany owns about 67 percent of the T-Mobile, so they would have to sign off on it, and Sprint is actually 80-percent owned by Softbank in Japan. Sounds like a fun family dinner, there. Reuters reports the deal could be worth more than $32 billion dollars if everyone actually agrees to terms.
But U.S. regulators also have to give their blessing, and with so much media consolidation already happening, there’s a good chance they may just say “whoa, not so fast.”
Remember that “solar roadways” project on Indiegogo? They were looking to raise a million dollars and with two weeks to go, they’ve already doubled up that goal. Not bad for a couple of married engineers in Idaho.
But despite obvious widespread support for the innovative project, which could bring sun power, LED lighting, water treatment and snow-proofing to roads, parking lots and playgrounds, not everyone is convinced it’s a good idea. A recent article in Renewable International said solar roadways must be stopped. Why? Apparently, they think the project is too innovative and threatens development of the burgeoning “regular” solar power industry.
Really? Too innovative? We kind of like the idea of going down a heated solar-powered road with embedded LEDs that light up ahead of us as we drive.
As we reported recently, Netflix struck a deal with Comcast to prioritize their video streaming service following a key FCC ruling. Netflix streaming is so popular it can dominate a large part of U-S internet traffic on some nights.
But some Verizon ISP customers have been getting a snide message if a show rebuffers, and it irked the Verizon folks enough that their legal department dispatched a cease and desist letter to Netflix. According to Verizon, any streaming interruptions to folks trying to binge-watch House of Cards or Orange is the New Black isn’t the fault of Verizon, as Netflix infers. Indeed, Netflix and Verizon have a deal in place to reliably get couch potatos their HD video fix.
But a test by C-Net of Verizon’s Fios system to reliably deliver Netflix put the fiber-optic system in eighth place, so maybe there’s a good reason behind Netflix’s snark attack after all.
Your host today is Greg Nibler.