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Posts Tagged ‘Alabama’

C Spire pleased with decision by FCC to block AT&T/T-Mobile merger

November 23rd, 2011 Comments off

Executives with C Spire were pleased with the news from Tuesday that the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission took steps  to block the proposed $39 billion merger of the mobile phone companies AT&T and T-Mobile USA.

“We are pleased the FCC has taken this important step toward a formal, administrative hearing to resolve questions regarding AT&T’s claims regarding its takeover of T-Mobile,” Eric Graham, vice president of Strategic and Government Relations for C Spire Wireless, told the Mississippi Business Journal. “C Spire Wireless has long asserted that this acquisition would be harmful to competition, the wireless industry and consumers. This action shows that Chairman Genachowski — like the Department of Justice — recognizes the harm inherent in AT&T’s bid to eliminate a competitor from the marketplace.”

>> SEE RELATED STORY: Judge approves C Spire lawsuit

>> SEE RELATED STORY: iPhone a coup for C Spire

>> SEE RELATED STORY: C Spire reveals iPhone plan

>> SEE RELATED STORY: Competitors react to C Spire’s deal with Apple for iPhone

The chairman, Julius Genachowski, made the move after the commission’s staff concluded that the deal would harm consumers, kill jobs and result in an overly concentrated wireless phone industry, F.C.C. officials said.

The decision puts another large roadblock in front of AT&T, the nation’s second-largest wireless phone company, in its effort to buy T-Mobile, the fourth-largest carrier. In August, the Justice Department filed a federal antitrust lawsuit to block the merger, saying it would stifle competition.

Mr. Genachowski on Tuesday notified the other three F.C.C. commissioners that he intended to refer the proposed merger to an administrative law judge for a trial-like hearing in which AT&T would be required to show that the deal was “in the public interest.” The commission — currently composed of three Democrats, including Mr. Genachowski, and one Republican — is likely to vote on the chairman’s plan in the next couple of weeks, an agency official said.

Despite news of Iris, Apple’s iPhone 4S still a coup for C Spire

October 21st, 2011 1 comment

Boy just when you thought you had things figured out, a girl named Iris kicks you in the teeth,

With everyone in Mississippi and beyond jumping up and down about Apple’s new iPhone 4S now being a part of the C Spire stable, you would think nothing could keep folks from smiling.

Then along came Iris. One of the cool things about the iPhone 4S was Siri. That’s  the natural languages understanding app with the cool woman’s name and voice that answers your questions and is supposed to be the advantage that the iPhone 4S has, not only over other models of the iPhone, but every other mobile device on the planet.

But according to a recent report, a programmer spent just eight hours creating a similar app for the Android phone. Oh, and he named her Iris.

But that doesn’t mean Ridgeland-based C Spire’s announcement this week that the country’s eighth-largest phone company will start selling the iPhone 4S in a few weeks isn’t big news. It’s still a huge deal, and it still gives it a bigger edge over its major competitors in Mississippi — AT&T and Verizon. However, what it does do is make you realize the difference in the technology world between good and great isn’t very far apart.

Having said that, Apple still developed the technology first and delivered it first with the iPhone 4S.

And that means Apple is still the king of the mountain, because even more important a tech guy that can roll out a look-alike app in eight hours, is someone at the top of the organization with vision.

That’s what the Android makers are missing.

At the end of the day, Android is still playing catch-up to the iPhone 4S.

In a week when the little phone company from Mississippi got the attention of the nation’s tech business watchers, C Spire comes out on top, having shown its own unique vision for the future.

Mississippi State to win easy game against Memphis

August 29th, 2011 1 comment

If you are a Mississippi State football fan these days, life is pretty good.

Most college football experts believe the Bulldogs will win as many as 9 or 10 games before any SEC title game or bowl contest.

Oddsmaker Danny Sheridan even has the Bulldogs a 27 1/2 point favorite in their season opener against Memphis on Thursday at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium in Elvis’ hometown.

Rarely has MSU’s future looked so bright. Does that mean the Bulldogs need to be taken down a notch. Probably not. … I say the Bullies win by at least 35. But what do I know? I am just the editor of a business newspaper.

Find out what the readers of the Mississippi Business Journal think.

More oil rigs in Gulf than before BP oil spill

February 4th, 2011 Comments off

According to The Times Picayune in New Orleans …

While a backlog of drilling permits in Washington continues to feed oil industry angst, new data shows that more rigs are in the Gulf of Mexico than before the BP oil spill, indicating that operators might have more confidence in the future than they are letting on.

While only 34 of the 125 rigs in the Gulf are actually working — half the total that were active before the Macondo well blowout — the vast majority of the idle rigs, particularly those slated for big-ticket jobs in deepwater, will remain under contract for the rest of 2011.

The latest tracking information from ODS-Petrodata, a Houston-based compiler of oil and gas data, shows there are 10 more rigs in the Gulf now than there were last April.

While only 34 of the 125 rigs in the Gulf are actually working — half the total that were active before the Macondo well blowout — the vast majority of the idle rigs, particularly those slated for big-ticket jobs in deepwater, will remain under contract for the rest of 2011.

In the shallow-water Gulf oil fields, where the government has never officially banned drilling but has issued few work permits in the past several months, activity has rebounded to near its pre-blowout levels.

There are 26 shallow-water rigs operating now, just 11 fewer than before the BP blowout, according to ODS-Petrodata. In December, the government issued seven shallow-water drilling permits, matching the monthly average from the year leading up to the BP disaster.

There are also signs of renewal in the more lucrative deepwater fields.

Haley’s been soaking his head in oil

June 5th, 2010 Comments off

Gov. Haley Barbour told a group of mostly native Mississippians today (Saturday) that the oil tragedy in the Gulf of Mexico isn’t as bad as the media is making it out to be.

“It’s really more of a nuisance,” he said.

Really?

Barbour made the comments at the Mississippi in the Park event at Central Park in New York City.

Does he really believe that?

Nearly 40 percent of the Gulf of Mexico is closed to fishing and boating; oil is inundating the marshes of Louisiana and is beginning to wash ashore in Mississippi, Alabama and Florida.

I suppose nuisance is one way to describe it, but I suspect only folks that are trying to downplay the effect of this tragedy would use that term.

Gov. Barbour has no sense of urgency about this event and hasn’t since Day 1.

While Mississippi has not seen the devastation to evironment and wildlife that Louisiana has to date, there is no guarantee those conditions will hold.

It really is quite striking that Gov. Barbour would even be in New York when he should be on the ground on the gulf coast monitoring the situation.

During the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Gov. Barbour was famous for going on national television and anywhere else, for that matter, and telling everyone how Mississippians are “hitching up their britches,” to get through the tragedy.

Maybe it’s time Gov. Barbour hitch up his britches and make sure the Mississippi Gulf Coast is protected from an event that could prove to be far more costly than Hurricane Katrina in the long run.

Back in the office, Northway to tell story of the Coast

May 6th, 2010 Comments off

Mississippi Business Journal senior reporter Wally Northway is back from a day on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, where he talked with residents from bay St. Louis to Ocean Springs about the potential for disaster associated with the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

He also spent the afternoon on a media boat that toured some of the affected waters.

“The fight to stave off the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and protect the Gulf Coast’s delicate ecosystem was more than evident,” Northway said.

Look for his story here Friday and in the print edition of the Mississippi Business Journal, which will be available in newsstands Friday afternoon.

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Explosion does not signal end of off-shore drilling

April 29th, 2010 Comments off

There have been those in the last week or so that have found reason to link the oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico to halting offshore oil production anywhere in the United States.
That’s way too much of a leap for me.
First, those oil rigs in the Gulf have been through a lot — hurricanes, high seas and more — and rarely show signs of wear and tear.
The offshore oil rigs off of America’s coasts have served the country well and will continue to serve their country for some time in the future.
What I did find interesting is that on the same week we are worried about an oil spill in the Gulf — which (as of this writing) is threatening to come ashore in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida — the Obama administration approved the 130-turbine Cape Wind  project in the Nantucket Sound of Massachusetts, and developers say they want to generate power by 2012.
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar’s decision “allows our nation to harness an abundant and inexhaustible clean energy source for greater energy independence, a healthier environment and green jobs,” Cape Wind president Jim Gordon said.
What I do think is that we need to continue to be smarter about the energy we use and produce.
We all know that at some point we are going to run out of oil.
While they are needed now, offshore oil rigs aren’t there forever. Over the course of time, we will use less and less oil. That is just a fact. Why else would Exxon, Chevron, BP and others be investing billions and billions of dollars into finding more and better alternative energy solutions?
Wind and other alternative fuel sources can be used for as long as Mother Earth is a part of the universe.
But, to suggest we abandon offshore oil production because of the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig is short-sighted and not practical.
The explosion was an accident that likely should have been prevented, but we have to move forward, protect our coastlines and be better at monitoring the safety of those rigs for environmental and humanitarian reasons.
This is a transitional stage in the energy world, and we will have get through it together.
There’s no place for knee-jerk reactions.

Contact Mississippi Business Journal editor Ross Reily at ross.reily@msbusiness.com or (601) 364-1018.