Archive for November, 2007

Uranium prices

I recently spent some time looking at the projected demand and supply of uranium. As with any subject the devil is in the detail!

For many years there has not been a big focus on discovering new sources. This is changing and is expected to have a very significant impact on supply. What I also discovered is that sea water is a potential source of uranium, albeit expensive to extract given the concentrations in water. Another factor effecting the price of uranium is obviously demand. Two issues are of particular interest her, firstly new reactors can use reconditioned uranium which means that uranium can be used 3 times in a reactor and secondly, new reators are much more efficient in converting fission to electricity.

Don’t bet too heavily on the price of uranium and remember that real prices of commodities have not historically increased over long periods.

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I, Android

Last week at Future of Mobile in London, David Burke from Google (http://www.future-of-mobile.com/speakers.html#DaveBurke) gave a great presentation on Android. My perspective that such an initiative will be successful because it’s Google pushing it.

Google have to win in search on the mobile for the obvious reasons (briefly, mobiles are more pervasive than PCs, always with us, very personal) and can gain massively if the search/advertising market on mobile is brought forward in time. This initiative, if successful (success being that they are in I would say 60% of mobile phones) in maybe 3 to 5 years, will give Google the platform to deliver mobile search and at the same time have provide a massive boost to take-up of the mobile internet.

Investing even what is a very large amount of money in such an initative  is nothing when compared to the size of the gain for Google and the huge sums that they have available.

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Vodafone’s walled-garden

Vodafone has implemented a reformatting proxy within its mobile content delivery stack that enables normal web sites to be reformtatted for phones. The issue is that they now no longer allow information regarding the user’s phone to be sent to third-party content providers. This means that the user experience on mobile sites that are not part of the Vodafone Live portal (are therefore what we call “off-portal”) can be severly impacted to the point where the service does not work.

Is this a conspiracy or a cock-up? I, like others, can’t help feeling that Vodafone is seeking to provide an advantage to its own mobile internet services. This is big-telco thinking and a possible abuse of their position. To be followed with interest!

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