Editor’s Note: RCR Wireless News goes all in for “Throwback Thursdays,” tapping into our archives to resuscitate the top headlines from the past. Fire up the time machine, put on the sepia-tinted shades, set the date for #TBT and enjoy the memories!

Germany gives Facebook a thumbs-down
Germany has a long, storied history of being both swift and overzealous in their enforcement of privacy and intellectual property laws. Today Germany’s Independent Centre for Privacy Protection has issued a blanket ban on the Facebook Like button. German websites based in the state of Schleswig-Holstein (an area of around 2.8 million people in northern Germany) have until the beginning of October to remove the offending buttons, or face a fine of up to €50,000. The ICPP’s issue with the Like button stems from the way it tracks users. Any page on which it is installed automatically tracks visitors if clicked, and if a user is logged in to Facebook it can send information about that particular visit back to Facebook’s servers in the US. This data is then used to create a profile of an individual’s activities. … Read more

HP kills Palm, webOS
Hewlett-Packard Co. (HPQ) just dropped a bombshell — Palm and webOS are effectively dead. The company just announced that it will stop selling devices based on the webOS platform it acquired from Palm less than 16 months ago for $1.2 billion. In addition to preliminary results for the recently closed quarter, the statement from HP said it “plans to announce that it will discontinue operations for webOS devices, specifically the TouchPad and webOS phones. HP will continue to explore options to optimize the value of webOS software going forward.” Unless HP can find a manufacturer to license webOS, which might stand a little higher chance following Google Inc.’s (GOOG) planned $12.5 billion acquisition of Motorola Mobility Holdings Inc. (MMI), the platform is effectively dead. … Read more

U.S. leads in mobile data revenues
The United States accounts for four of the top 10 operators ranked by mobile data revenues in the second quarter, led by Verizon Wireless (VZ), which pulled in $5.8 billion, according to a new report from wireless analyst Chetan Sharma. A combined AT&T Mobility/T-Mobile USA Inc. would give the top two U.S. operators 20% of the world’s mobile data revenues. With Sprint Nextel Corp. (S) in the No. 6 position, and T-Mobile (DTEGY) in the No. 8 position, the United States Is on track to reach $67 billion in data revenues by the end of the year. In Sharma’s wide-ranging report, he notes that the United States also is tops in text-messaging, with almost 664 messages sent per user per month. The Philippines, which had held the top spot, is seeing a decline in the number of text messages sent as people increase their use of Facebook and other messaging applications. … Read more

Google says, ‘Hello, Moto’
Google Inc. (GOOG) took a more serious position in the mobile space today, announcing plans to acquire Motorola Mobility Holding Inc. (MOT) for $12.5 billion. The move, if approved, would give Google direct control over a device maker and a direct channel to distribute its Android mobile operating system. The deal calls for Google to pay approximately $40 per share for Motorola’s now-independent handset business, or a 63% premium over its closing price last week. Motorola said that following the deal it will remain a separate business under Google and will remain a licensee of the Android platform. Google added that the Android platform will remain open. Currently, Google has agreements with just about every device maker to use the Android OS, though the device makers can customize the OS in any way they see fit. Google does have a bit of a history of partnering with select device makers on Google-branded devices that run a more “pure” version of the OS. That original deal was the Nexus device with HTC Corp., and more recently the Nexus S model from Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. … Read more

iPad tops tablet most-wanted list
There was another twist in the iPad vs Android punch and counter-punch today as a consumer survey indicated that 94.5% of respondents were interested in purchasing Apple’s ubiquitous iPad over an alternate tablet device. The study by Robert W. Baird & Co took in the views of 1,100 individuals (mostly affluent American males), specifically asking which tablet(s) they were looking to pick up. In a somewhat surprising second place was HP’s TouchPad with 10.3%, while Motorola’s Xoom and Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 occupied third and fourth place respectively (Although Samsung may see themselves disappear from the list of contenders pretty quickly if Apple get their way). RIM’s Playbook, which has suffered a negative response from pundits and consumers alike, got the thumbs up from a measly 3.8% of participants. … Read more

Verizon covers half the country with LTE
As of today, Verizon Wireless’ (VZ) LTE network cover more than half of the U.S. population. The carrier lit up 15 new markets today and now blankets a population of 160 million in 117 cities around the country.
The carrier launched and expanded its 4G service today in Tulsa, Okla..; Fort Collins, Colo.; Lansing, Mich.; Omaha, Neb.; Council Bluffs, Iowa; Northwest Arkansas, Johnstown and … Read more

AT&T/T-Mobile US merger seen as likely
Ongoing hurdles along the path does not seem to be dampening expectations that AT&T Inc.’s (T) proposed $39 billion acquisition of T-Mobile USA Inc. is not still on track, at least according to Wells Fargo Securities L.L.C. The firm, which it should be noted holds AT&T stock, put out an investor note this morning claiming that it still thinks the deal will get approved by government regulators, though it might be difficult to meet the original guidance of closing by the end of the year. “While some of the most optimistic timing scenarios (close by YE 2011) may be tough to achieve, the recent support of a substantial number of governors and mayors should not be overlooked,” the firm noted in its report. One of the issues tackled by Wells Fargo was the recent decision by the Federal Communications Commission to … Read more

Check out the RCR Wireless News Archives for more stories from the past.

The post #TBT: Germany bans Facebook ‘likes’, HP kills Palm, Google picks up Moto … this week in 2011 appeared first on RCR Wireless News.