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Nvidia says that a heat problem in with one of its mobile chips will hurt its earnings for the second quarter, sending its shares tumbling down almost 25 percent to below $14 in after-hours trading. According to the Wall Street Journal, Nvidia said that the overheating problem -- which appears to be focused on older chips for notebook computers -- caused higher-than-normal failure rates in certain GPU models as well as related chip sets; the company's said that it could see a revenue shortfall of nearly 24 percent in the second quarter (ending July 27th), but also cited problems such as general market conditions, price cuts to match rival AMD, and delayed product ramps. In June, the company debuted its Nvidia GeForce 9M series, which it said was built on a new, multi-core graphics engine that is up to 40 percent faster than its earlier 8M chipsets; the GeForce 9M series chips were set to appear this summer, and while a few manufacturers had already begun shipping designs with the newer GPUs, the company used most of the quarter to push out its older chips.
Mozilla on Tuesday posted Firefox 18.104.22.168, an update to its web browser that resolves several vulnerabilities, ranging from several benign problems, to critical bug fixes related to arbitrary code execution and remote control of a user's system. Among the major fixes are MFSA 2008-21, 2008-24, 2008-25, and 2008-33, which resolve crashes when memory is corrupted, Chrome script loading vulnerabilities, arbitrary code execution in a .loadSubScript() command, as well as crashing and remote code execution.
Virgin Mobile today quietly posted its first phone since its buyout of Helio. The UTStarcom Arc sits slightly above the baseline for most of Virgin's budget lineup and focuses primarily on its inclusion of a VGA camera, Bluetooth, and its two-tone, rounded flip design to stand out from other offerings on the pay-as-you-go carrier.
GEAR4 today announced the release of its newest portable speaker, the USB-powered BlackBox micro. As the smallest speaker in the company's range, the speaker can enhance the audio playback abilities of laptops or MP3 players thanks to an included mini USB-to-USB cable. There are two drivers hidden in the plastic shroud, with one dedicated to high notes, the other an SFX gel base driver for bass reproduction.
The first images showing what appears to be a Sprint-badged and therefore first CDMA version of the iPhone-fighting Touch Diamond from HTC have leaked on the Internet today. While the rumors of a Sprint Diamond date back to April, the phone is expected to be delayed. Little other details are confirmed, except for an unsubstantiated claim that the Diamond will launch ahead of the Touch Pro.
Nokia on Wednesday announced the release of its latest Wireless Loopset, the HS-67WL, designed to improve cellular phone usability for users with hearing aids. The Loopset is compatible with T-coil-equipped hearing aids or cochlear implants and makes hands-free connections between the hearing aid devices and Bluetooth 2.1-equipped cell phones. Background noise filtering thanks to induction technology improves speech discrimination for clear, distortion-free calls, Nokia says.
Microsoft today has announced it would launch Equipt, a new software package that will let it experiment with subscription services. The suite gives users both a copy of Office Home and Student 2007 as well as the company's OneCare anti-malware and backup service; in exchange for an immediate discount on both services, customers will pay $70 per year to keep the full service active. Office is believed to remain active regardless of when the subscription ends.
T-Mobile on Wednesday resisted moves by the US Federal Communications Commission to hasten its moves towards a free wireless broadband. The carrier has requested that the FCC delay an auction for its 2,100MHz Advanced Wireless Spectrum 3 (AWS-3) band by 90 days past its July 9th deadline to allow for a longer comment period and let T-Mobile air its potential problems with any future service; filling the AWS-3 band may create interference that prevents T-Mobile from using space it wants for its 3G service, according to a filing sent to the FCC.
Sprint may be shifting all its customers who want discounted data to opt into all-in-one plans that in many cases cost more than what they originally had, say reports from subscribers attempting to renew their contracts. The US carrier already requires a $70 monthly Simply Everything plan for the Samsung Instinct to use both its voice and data features but is now reportedly asking owners of Palm Centros and other data-centric phones to accept the same plan when they renew service, in many cases increasing the costs of using the phones regardless of the customer's actual intent.
A Czech leak today has revealed a Samsung phone in development that will stand as an alternative to the i900 Omnia. The i740 will still have a 640x480 touchscreen with Windows Mobile 6.1 but makes a number of cuts to reduce the cost, including dropping 3G and Wi-Fi access in favor of EDGE, a three-megapixel camera instead of the Omnia's five, and no large amounts of internal storage.
The next BlackBerry for Sprint's iDEN push-to-talk network will be a Curve phone, called the 8350, a report claims. Although Sprint announced in February that it would receive a new iDEN BlackBerry, it has otherwise kept quiet on the issue, leaving most information to media leaks and speculation. The new device is expected to help revive Sprint's struggling iDEN network, whose most recent BlackBerry is the outdated 7100i.
The European Commission has approved an acquisition of map maker NAVTEQ, Nokia has announced. With this validation in hand, the company says it has met all regulatory concerns, and plans to complete the buyout within a matter of five days. "NAVTEQ will play a key role in our Internet services strategy," reads a statement from Nokia CEO Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo. The acquisition will also likely save the company money on licensing, as it has previously had to pay companies like NAVTEQ for each use of a map on a phone.
Motorola late yesterday slipped out a previously unannounced media phone with a local Brazilian launch. Known as the ZN200, the slider is part of an increasing wave of mid-range Motorola media phones with a 2-megapixel camera and basic on-camera photo editing. It also supports mobile uploading through its 3G cellular Internet access and supports stereo Bluetooth for listening to music through wireless earphones.
OpenMoko today said that it will start selling the Neo FreeRunner to the US on July 4th, marking its first phone release in the country. The touchscreen device is positioned as an unusual competitor to the iPhone whose strength is in its open access: based on a strictly open-source version of Linux, the device includes just the basic software for calling and SMS but is freely modifiable down to its core functions. Users can write or install apps that extend the phone's features without paying royalties.
Motorola is developing a new version of the RAZR2 with AT&T's navigation services in mind, says Engadget. Called the RAZR2 V9x, the phone would add the assisted GPS mapping of the Z9 slider to be used with the TeleNav-run AT&T Navigator service. In a unique change, however, the GPS functions would work even through the RAZR2's external screen and supply directions (though not controls) without having to flip open the handset.
Japanese cellphone users are most eager to have the iPhone 3G over any other smartphone in or coming to the market, according to a new study by iShare. The research group says that 57.9 percent of all those responding to a survey said they most wanted the Apple device, which placed well ahead of others despite the study method allowing multiple answers. Second place belonged to the Japan-made Willcom D4 UMPC and phone crossover at 35.8 percent, while the more conventional Willcom 03 was third at 33.1 percent.
Microsoft is actively exploring bringing other companies into a deal that would dismantle Yahoo as it's known today, says the Wall Street Journal. The newspaper cites anonymous sources aware of discussions who say Microsoft is still interested in buying just Yahoo's search business but has asked both News Corp. and Time Warner about merging what would be left of Yahoo into one of their respective properties, such as MySpace or AOL. A meeting between Microsoft and Yahoo was scheduled for Monday but canceled because Microsoft has so far been unsuccessful in lining up a partner, according to the report.
Apple is crowding out other orders for flash memory at Samsung through orders connected to the iPhone, according to reports from some of Samsung's smaller customers. The American company has allegedly ordered 50 million of Samsung's eight gigabit (one gigabyte) chips that are primarily intended for the iPhone 3G and is putting enough pressure on Samsung's supply that the Korean firm is informing smaller firms that their own orders are being reduced to keep Apple in healthy supply.
Gateway's budget label eMachines today served up three new desktops that it says ought to appeal to students heading back to school in two months' time. The W3653 is the most complete system of the group with the company's 17-inch, 1440x900 bundled with the tower; the system also packs a relatively new 1.6GHz Celeron Dual-Core processor, 1GB of memory, and Vista Home Premium stored on a 320GB hard drive. The system sells for $500 at retail shops.
T-Mobile clarified its 3G iPhone offerings for the Netherlands, which were previously hinted at on the company's website, offering unlimited data plans starting at €30 (~$50). The plans start at a basic 150 minute/SMS plan, with the next at 300 and 500 minutes/SMS messages, and offer varying discounts on the actual device itself. From lowest tier to highest, the 8GB and 16GB iPhones are priced at €80 (~$130)/€160 (~$250), €1 (~$2)/€80 (~$130), and €1 (~$2)/€20 (~$30), offered under a two-year contract.
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