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from Commentaries:

Tech Links: Phones, more phones and communion wafers

HTC Android phoneBetter luck next year for Android
Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC has warned of a revenue shortfall, saying it has too many new phone models chasing too little revenue. Revenue growth will turn negative in 2009, instead of growing 10 percent, as the company had previously forecast.

Chief Executive Peter Chou says: "Momentum on both the Windows Mobile and Android platforms are also turning out to be weaker than expected."

HTSEC weighted indexTC said it is boosting its marketing spending to more than 15 percent of revenue from 13.5 percent to fend off market leader Nokia and the Apple iPhone juggernaut.

My favorite line:  "Investors have been relatively bearish on the company this year, with HTC's shares having risen about 36 percent so far, far lagging the 54 percent advance on the TAIEX share index."

Rickshaw driver passes Bharti Airtel billboardBharti looks ready to raise price for MTN
Bharti Airtel and MTN have agreed to a month-long extension to merger talks to seal a deal that would create the world's third largest mobile phone company in subscriber terms.

Virgin, Universal give away music, fight pirates

Can Virgin Media crack the scourge of piracy with a new music download service?

The cable provider plans to offer customers unlimited streaming and downloading of MP3 music files in conjunction with the world’s largest music company, Universal, home to artists ranging from U2 to Lady Gaga and Willie Nelson. The service, which may be launched by the end of the year, could eventually include music from other major labels.

The idea is to drive back the tidal wave of online piracy, which could appeal to parents worried that their children are downloading contraband music. More than a decade after Napster made a splash by making it easy for users to download music for free, other systems still exist that give Web surfers the same power. Many of those illegally acquired songs are downloaded over cable providers’ systems.

So would you pay $16 to $24, about the cost of two new albums, for a month of unlimited access to music?

from UK News:

What do you think of Virgin’s fee-based download plan?

Cable TV company Virgin Media is set to launch a new music service which will allow its broadband customers to stream and download an unlimited number of tracks and albums for a monthly fee.

Virgin Media, which has almost 4 million broadband customers, has signed up the world's largest music company Universal Music Group to offer its artists such as U2 and Amy Winehouse. It expects to sign up the remaining major music labels before the launch at the end of this year.

The price is expected to be between 10 to 15 pounds per month and the two firms say it is a groundbreaking world first to allow the customers to download as many tracks as they want.