We've been expecting a 'mini' product launch from one of the world's leading tech manufacturers for some time now, but it has been speculation regarding a 7in iPad - circulating as far back as 2011 – that has primarily captured our imagination. However, while we still fully expect the heavily rumoured 'iPad mini' to surface in time for the lucrative pre-holiday shopping season, it may end up having its arrival pre-empted by another reduced form factor device – and one produced by bitter rival Samsung, no less. The Korean tech titan appears to have issued an invite for a special German launch event, with a brief analysis of the vernacular used to lure industry bods to the 11 October gathering in Frankfurt pointing to the emergence of a miniaturised iteration of the Galaxy S3.
(opens in new tab)Skype is set to bring free Wi-Fi hotspots to UK businesses, after joining forces with wireless provider Wicoms. Businesses are able to register for the service right now, gaining a free month and a free router in the process – otherwise, the router will cost £49 in addition to a flat £9.99 monthly rate (opens in new tab). Users will be able to access the service for free via the Skype Wi-Fi app.
Apple suffered both a win and a loss in the patent arena this week. First, Samsung officially added the iPhone 5 to its list of patent-infringing devices, arguing that the new smartphone violates two of the South Korean company's UMTS standards patents and six feature patents. But, as if to make up for the bad news, Google's Motorola Mobility unit withdrew a patent-related complaint it launched against Apple in August. Though it's unclear what prompted the move, patent expert Florian Mueller suggested it may have been because of the company feared it would be unsuccessful in court.
Finally, Everything Everywhere grabbed the telecoms headlines last month by becoming the first operator to announce the launch of a high-speed 4G network, while rebranding itself to just 'EE' in the process. This had come after months, even years of wrangling with Ofcom and industry rivals to secure an early rollout of the service, and turbulence had threatened to strike again after O2 and Vodafone threatened legal action over EE's 4G head start. But with these firms having agreed to settle their differences and focus on a spring 2013 launch, EE has a clear run to switch on their newly-upgraded network on 30 October. Get it in the diary.