As the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) gives the EE/BT merger its preliminary approval

we ask what the decision means for the mobile market.

There were 20 submissions from interested parties to the CMA regarding the deal, many of them

very strong worded and emphatic in their belief that any deal would be damaging for competition.

Effectively the CMA has decided that there was not enough within these documents to

fundamentally convince them that was the case. It seems highly unlikely that those who put

forward the complaints will now go quietly. It’s been pretty evident from the public sparring that

has taken place between Sky and BT that these disputes will run and run. Now that the CMA has

given the deal its approval those against the merger will have to look for other platforms to air their

objections.Ofcom’s review of the telecommunications market would be one option.

Vodafone ‘disappointed’ by BT/EE merger approval.

Sweaty palms for Three and O2

There were some pointed statements in the CMA’s explanation for approving the BT/EE deal surrounding competition. It mainly concerned the number of major players in the market and whether the takeover would affect regulation. They must have made grim reading for those involved in the Three/O2 merger, which of course would reduce the number of major operators in the market. The CMA has already expressed its desire to investigate the deal and the latest announcement will do little to calm the anxiety of those who fear its intervention will result in the merger being blocked.

CMA asks to investigate O2/Three merger

The form of the beast

EE want to complete this deal quickly, that was evident from Olaf Swantee’sstatement in reaction to the news. The question is what the combined business entity will look like. There are obvious areas which can be merged such as BT’s MVNO and EE’s broadband business. The big issues surround assets, structure and branding; will BT bring mobile in house or will it keep EE as a separate business unit? Which departments will be merged? And how will BT make use of EE’s huge retail portfolio? It is expected that cross selling and the bundling of services would be introduced fairly quickly, after all that was one of the key points made by both sides. But seeing how it all plays out will be an interesting watch.

BT/EE merger approval…What it means for mobile

By Zak Garner-Purkis on 28/10/2015

iPhone 6 vs iPhone 6s : What's the difference and should I upgrade?

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By Alistair Charlton on 2/09/2015

Now that Apple has finally announced the iPhone 6s, answers to the big 'should I upgrade now or wait for another year?' question start to emerge. As is now tradition, the 'tock' of Apple's tick-tock update cycle sees the iPhone 6s retain the same design as its predecessor, but with some key upgrades.

iPhone 6s vs iPhone 6: The Specifications

The 3D Touch technology is what really separates the two handsets. Apple has implemented 3D Touch into almost every aspect of iOS 9 – and feedback from the iPhone 6s' haptic engine (vibration motor) has been tuned to be more accurate.

It is disappointing to see Apple sticking with 16GB of storage for the base model of the iPhone 6s, when sure an increase to 32GB isn't too much to ask – especially since that is what you get from Samsung and Sony these days.

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Phone 6s vs iPhone 6: Display

The biggest different between the iPhone 6 and new iPhone 6s is their screens. They both measure 4.7in and have a resolution of 750 x 1334, but the major update here is 3D Touch. A development of Force Touch on the Apple Watch and newest MacBooks, 3D Touch knows how much pressure you are putting on the screen. This gives developers a whole new set of gestures to work and make their applications (and games) react to.

Apple has embedded 3D Touch deeply into the new iPhones' iOS 9 software, where it can be used to 'peak' at content such as the contents of message and links.

iPhone 6s vs iPhone 6: Design

As is usual for Apple's 's' upgrade the new iPhone is almost identical to the year-old iPhone 6. The only real change is the use of a stronger 7,000 series aluminium to reduce the risk of the phone bending when sat on in your pocket; this adds a fraction of a millimetre to the thickness of the handset (0.3mm to be precise, taking the iPhone 6s up to 7.1mm). Otherwise you will be hard-pressed to tell the difference between the two phones – good news for iPhone 6 owners not wanting to look out of date, bad news for any 6s buyers hoping to stand out.

Although the design is unchanged, Apple has introduced a new rose gold colour for the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, which complements the equally new rose gold and regular gold Apple Watch Sport.

iPhone 6s vs iPhone 6: Camera

Another noticeable improvement is the new iPhone's camera. At 12MP it has a larger sensor than the 8MP iPhone 6, and Apple has worked hard to improve the way it uses every single one of those pixels. After explaining each improvement, Apple eventually resorted to assuring us that the 6s's camera is much better, and that's all we need to know.

A new software feature of the 's' phones is Live Photos, where the camera records a second of video before and after you take each photo, which can then be played to help bring an image to life. This feature isn't a million miles away from the animated photographs seen in the Harry Potter films.

As for video, the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus can now shoot 4K video – a first for any Apple handset. The front camera has also been improved, up from just 1.2MP on the iPhone 6 to a much more respectable 5MP on the iPhone 6s.

iPhone 6s vs iPhone 6: Processor and storage

Apple will have upset many by yet again failing to increase the minimum iPhone storage from 16GB to 32GB. The new iPhone 6s gets the same storage options as its year-old predecessor – 16GB, 64GB and 128GB. As has always been the case with iPhones, the new model does not include a microSD card slot to increase this. Apple will point to its iCloud online storage system as an alternative to storing files on the phone itself, but for areas of poor 4G coverage – or for customers with a low monthly data cap – this will not be seen as an adequate solution.

iPhone 6s vs iPhone 6: Price

The iPhone 6s is priced at £539 for the 16GB model, £619 for the 64GB model and £699 for the 128GB model. iPhone 6s Plus will be available for a suggested retail price of £619 for the 16GB model, £699 for the 64GB model and £789 for the 128GB model.

These are all broadly the same as the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus when they first went on sale a year ago.