Remainder of suit alleges undue battery drain, device wear and tear
US District Judge Jeffrey White of the Northern District of California has upheld some claims made against Google in a privacy suit accusing the search engine of using apps installed on mobile phones to collect persoanl data. Allegedly, Google used data from Foursquare, Groupon, Angry Birds, and Pandora to farm location, device identification, and personal information without user's consent.
Remarks in various venues mark 25th anniversary of Internet invention
In a series of statements commemorating the 25th anniversary of the Internet, inventor Tim Berners-Lee asked a pointed question. In a post on Google's official blog, Berners-Lee asked "Are we going to continue on the road and just allow the governments to do more and more and more control -- more and more surveillance?" In response, the computer scientist wants to build a "Magna Carta," codifying the rights of Internet users, and limiting the ability of governments to interfere with the execution of a global network.
Fixed $30M licensing pot a sticking point for music executives in Amazon negotiations
More rumors for fabled Amazon services have surfaced, with three different outlets claiming to provide more information about the Prime music service and its long-rumored streaming device. The latest claim for the music service, thought to be offered as part of the Prime delivery subscription, sees the company limiting the number of plays of a track, as a means to increase its MP3 sales.
Samsung appeals verdict: Apple appealing damages retrial, inter-trial orders
Days after the final judgements were rendered in the post-trial matters related to the first Apple-Samsung US patent trial from 2012, Samsung filed an appeal of the jury's decision. Now Apple has done the same, filing an appeal on selected decisions made during the trial -- including some of Judge Lucy Koh's orders (specifically her two decisions refusing to implement product bans on 23 violating Samsung devices) and the limited damages retrial.
Small shops will focus on 'entry-level' iPhones, iPads to boost overall sales
A new report on Tuesday highlights a potential new approach for Apple in India -- a market where the smartphone giant has been struggling -- by combining its usual high-end approach in premium stores and resellers with a new "neighborhood shop" franchise of stores that would focus on selling "entry-level" devices -- the iPhone 4 (still available in India), the iPhone 4S, the iPad mini and the full-size iPad 2.
European 2G, 3G, 4G patents from Ericsson used by Unwired Planet in lawsuit
Huawei, Google, HTC, and Samsung have become the targets for two patent infringement lawsuits, filed simultaneously in the United Kingdom and Germany. Unwired Planet, the owner of 2,400 wireless patents it acquired from Ericsson last year, claims a total of six patents have been infringed by the technology company group. Although Unwired Planet has not estimated the possible value of the UK action, the company is seeking at least 30 million euro ($42 million) from the German case.
Four committees have vast majority of members with Comcast funding
Comcast is scheduled to appear before Congress to defend its proposed $45 billion acquisition of Time Warner Cable. Records have recently been uncovered that show Comcast's political action committee having given contributions to 15 of 18 Senate Judiciary Committe members, and 32 of 39 members of the House Judiciary Committee. Both committees have scheduled hearings regarding the merger, and can allow -- or prevent -- the buyout from happening.
Indian Competition Commission investigating Google's search behaviors
Adding to Google's antitrust woes worldwide, the company is facing an investigation by India's Competition Commission (CCI) in which it may be found liable for up to $5 billion in fines. The investigation, already underway for three years, is similar to that in other countries in claiming that the search engine giant is abusing its industry-leading position and inserting Google services over those of competitors illicitly.
Deal likely to be halted by US regulators, but effort will be made anyhow
In a television interview with PBS's Charlie Rose, Sprint chairman Masayoshi Son declared that he was interested in buying T-Mobile. Citing "steps and details" that have yet to be negotiated, the executive claimed that he "would like to have the real fight, OK? Not the pseudo fight, the real fight" with competitors AT&T and Verizon.
Installment plans, recent price plan changes not worrying Verizon
Offering customers smartphone subsidies should not be abandoned by carriers, the Chief Financial Officer of Verizon has advised, with other aggressive promotional strategies apparently being viewed in a similar way. Speaking at a Deutsche Bank technology conference, Fran Shammo suggests carriers should not keep attempting to undercut their opponents in an effort to gain more subscribers, claiming "We're not going to buy customers. You have to earn customers."
Close to capturing second, but still far behind reigning champ Pandora
Barely six months after it debuted, Apple's iTunes Radio has already eclipsed Spotify and Google Play All Access (and others) to become the third most popular music streaming service in the US, according to a new report from Statista. While long-time veteran Internet radio station Pandora continues to maintain a clear lead over all rivals, it has taken 14 years for the latter service to reach its current level of 70 million active listeners (as of last April) and it continues to struggle with profits.
Apple first among smartphone makers, fourth when all mobile phones counted
Specific (and more importantly, accurate) country-by-country statistics when it comes to smartphones and "feature" cellphones are often hard to come by, but not in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The country keeps detailed records on its telecom providers, providing complete records of mobile phone statistics. Apple has emerged as the top smartphone seller, though it runs far behind Nokia when all types of cellphones are counted.
Whistleblower addresses US cyber defense weakness, need for privacy
Despite US officials' protestations, NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden addressed a packed venue at SXSW today, by way of a Google Hangout routed through no less than seven proxies. In his hour-long moderated conversation, Snowden said that end-to-end encryption with readily-accessible tools are the keys to privacy. Additionally, he cited NSA leadership and intrusive surveillance as a reason for the onslaught of digital intrusion by hostile powers, caused by weakening of US cyber defenses.
Comcast subscribers can soon purchase access to Netflix produced House of Cards
Comcast subscribers will soon be able to purchase access to the episodic series House of Cards without requiring Netflix, according to a report by Variety. The cable company has struck a pact with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, providing rights to sell the first season of House of Cards through its Xfinity Store service. The Xfinity store offers on-demand video streaming on a variety of devices for Comcast subscribers -- the company's own answer to Netflix or Amazon Instant Video. In a similar deal made with Lionsgate, Orange is the New Black will be available on the Xfinity Store in May.
New program designed to maintain adoption rate of paid Google Apps
Google today announced a new Google Apps Referral Program that allows business to refer customers to the search engine's paid services. Google claims that most of its customers were "word of mouth" referrals -- to "help continue the momentum," users can refer an unlimited number of customers, with up to 100 users per customer giving a $15 bounty per head to the referrer.
Company so far focusing on small buyouts
A new Apple job listing is calling for an "acquisition integration analyst." The successful candidate will help to "deliver the successful integration of acquired companies," Apple writes, and "drive multiple integration work streams, identify issues and drive decisions while coordinating with experts throughout Apple," acting as a "central point of contact for integration information." The person will presumably report to the company's Mergers & Acquisitions head, Adrian Perica.
High-speed network technology research announced by UK Prime Minister
United Kingdom will work with Germany to create the next generation of wireless communications technology, revealed UK Prime Minister David Cameron at CeBit in Germany. The two countries will collaborate together on the 5G connections, which Cameron hopes could cut the time it takes to download an 800MB file down from 4G's 40-second transfer time to just one second.
Agreement claimed to involve Netflix renting server space in Telenor data center
Netflix may be making more agreements with Internet service providers (ISP) to prevent throttling, and is apparently doing so outside of the United States. A deal between Netflix and Telenor of Norway is reported to be similar to one between the streaming service and Comcast, with Netflix said to be placing its servers within the ISP's own data centers.
Samsung, TSMC may be splitting production duties
Samsung will still be involved in production of Apple's A8 processor, an anonymous Samsung official tells ZDNet Korea. The company has allegedly signed a contract to produce the A8 at its plant in Austin, Texas -- where all other A-series chips have been made -- and is in the final testing stages before mass production. Rumors that Samsung has been having yield problems are "exaggerated claims," the official says, and so the A8 should start rolling off Samsung lines sometime next quarter.
Employees en route to improve efficiency, cost-effectiveness of manufacturing
Chip manufacturer Freescale Semiconductor revealed today that 20 employees, responsible for streamlining manufacturing efforts in China and Kuala Lumpur, may have perished in this weekend's disappearance of Malaysian Air's flight MH370. While less than one percent of the overall workforce, most of the 20 were high-level engineers with "a lot of experience and technical background," according to a company spokesman.
Rapid Deployment Data Center concept features modular piece design
Facebook announced that it will be using its Rapid Deployment Data Center (RDDC) concept that was created through the Open Compute Project (OCP) for its latest build in as part of a second building at the existing Luleå, Sweden data center location. The design was displayed at the Open Compute Summit in January, showing the strides the company has made in data center construction and development since the official launch of their first center in Prineville, Oregon in 2011.
Case shrinks dramatically as Apple, Samsung agree to avoid SEP disputes
The second patent trial between Apple and Samsung, scheduled to start on March 31, took a dramatic turn late on Friday as the two companies filed a stipulation with the court dropping some of the claims and counter-claims to be debated in the second trial. Samsung, perhaps fearing further investigations over its improper use of standards-essential patents (SEPs) as legal weapons and bargaining tools, has agreed to drop all SEP claims from the case, leaving it with only two claims on two patents, down from its original five.
Suit over price fixing from 1998 to 2002 result in $10 for those affected
A class action lawsuit brought forward by the Attorneys General for 33 states over price fixing for dynamic random access memory (DRAM) has reached a settlement, with manufacturers agreeing to pay out $310 million nationwide. Of the settlement amount, around $200 million will go to consumers and businesses that purchased devices with DRAM or DRAM itself from January 1, 1998 to December 31, 2002.
Report confirms speculation that 5s outselling 5c by 3:1
A new report from mobile ad analysis firm Mixpanel has reinforced some speculation about the iPhone 5s, even as it has dispelled other rumors about the iPhone 5c. In its latest report, the company says that the iPhone 5s is set to top the popular iPhone 4s in user share, with the newer model currently accounting for about 19 percent of all active iPhones.
Apple likely to appeal portions as well, renew fight for product ban
With surprising speed, Samsung has now officially filed a notice of appeal over the final judgement in the first Apple vs. Samsung patent trial from 2012. The last ruling in the case was handed down yesterday, when Judge Lucy Koh ruled in Samsung's favor that sales injunctions on the products it was found guilty of infringing Apple patents with were not warranted in the interests of competition. Apple is likely to appeal that portion of Judge Koh's rulings.
High-resolution projector small enough to fit on side of smartphone
Texas Instruments has produced a new chipset that will let smartphone producers offer a higher-resolution projector as part of their devices. The 0.3-inch HD TRP DLP Pico chipset is capable of projecting a 720p video onto a wall, screen or another surface, with the module being small enough to fit into the side or end of a smartphone or tablet, in a similar way to the Samsung Galaxy Beam.
iPhone still most popular device
Apple grew its share among US smartphone owners during the last quarter to 41.6 percent, according to new comScore data. Data polled between October and January shows that Apple advanced 1 percentage point. The company's main rival, Samsung, grew ownership by 1.3 points, but remained firmly in second place at 26.7 percent. LG's share rose just 0.3 points to 6.9 percent, presumably on the back of the G2 and the Google-branded Nexus 5.
Patent purchase to end legal dispute leaves Twitter with 956 patents in total
Twitter paid a hefty sum to acquire a collection of patents from IBM, a Securities and Exchange Commission filing reveals. The January payment, which saw Twitter take ownership of 900 patents, was worth $36 million and also ceased the legal action brought against the micro-blogging firm for alleged patent infringement, though it will certainly not be the last it faces.
Short video clip made available by Israeli PM's office
As reported previously, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met on Wednesday with Apple CEO Tim Cook at Apple headquarters as part of a California-driven initiative to strengthen commercial ties between the state and Israel. In a short video posted to the prime minister's official YouTube channel, Netanyahu can be seen touring Apple's headquarters and posing with Cook ahead of a lunch meeting.
Users move to 7.0.6 quickly to avoid threat of SSL and VPN-based attack
Following the discovery of a dormant but serious flaw in iOS 6 and iOS 7's handling of VPN and SSL security and the release of a patch by Apple to handle the issue, advertising and content-presentation company Onswipe estimates that more than 50 percent of the entire iOS userbase has already moved to iOS 7.0.6 as of March 3, under two weeks since the update became available. The transition has set a record for the fastest in iOS history.
Shawn Layden of Sony Entertainment Network slated to lead division
Sony Computer Entertainment today announced that Jack Tretton will step down from his role as president and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA) as of March 31. Reportedly, the split is a result of a mutual agreement between Tretton and SCEA not to renew their contractual relationship. Executive Vice President Shawn Layden will become president and CEO of SCEA, effective April 1.
Main barrier may be Apple approval
CarPlay support is fairly easy to implement for apps, suggests Brian Lakamp, Clear Channel's president of Digital. iHeartRadio -- an app that streams Clear Channel stations -- is one of the few third-party offerings currently supported by CarPlay. "Apple is pretty selective about how they disclose information," Lakamp says about how his company gained a toehold. "Apple made us aware of the opportunity. We were enthusiastic to participate and then worked closely with them to build the demo that they just demoed in Geneva." The iHeartRadio team was given early access to the private CarPlay API.
Repackaged iPhone doing poorly next to iPhone 5s
Due to poor sales, unsold inventory of the iPhone 5c has amassed to more than three million units, anonymous Taiwanese supply chain sources claim. Production of the phone is said to have been cut completely towards the end of 2013. Regardless, manufacturer Pegatron allegedly is said to have two million or so units in stock, with the remaining phones being held by carriers and distributors.
May be supplying tech related to Retina displays
A company specializing in image processing semiconductors and software, Pixelworks, has revealed itself as an official Apple supplier through a new filing with the SEC. In 2013 Apple is said to have accounted for more than 10 percent of Pixelworks revenue. The news has sent the latter company's share price surging, boosting it by about 53 to 54 percent in Thursday trading, or more than $2.58 per share.
Company failed to prove harm caused by Samsung patent infringement
A California court has denied Apple a renewed motion it sought for a permanent injunction against Samsung, according to reports. In December 2012, US District Court Judge Lucy Koh made the initial denial of a permanent injunction against 23 Samsung devices. Apple won a partial appeal of the ruling at the Federal Circuit, which affirmed the denial of trade dress (design) patents, but handed back an injunction over software patents to Koh for review.
Social network introduces new rules for posts concerning regulated goods
Facebook is attempting to curb online sales of guns by updating its policy on user posts and pages on its social network. A number of "educational and enforcement efforts" were introduced by the company on Wednesday to both Facebook and Instagram, which will cover not only firearms but also discussions relating to other regulated item sales or services.
Practice is perfectly legal, admits government, but abused
Apple's practice over the past decade of funnelling all of its foreign profits through its international sales office in Cork, Ireland has allowed it to skip out on taxes in some other countries on billions of dollars in profits, according to an audit done by the Australian Financial Review. In Australia, Apple has paid only $200 million on ten years' worth of profits, totally nearly AUS $9 billion, the report said.
Original judge, DOJ misapplied antitrust law, 'ignored economic evidence'
Two economists from CalTech and NYU have filed an amicus curae ("friend of the court") brief that makes powerful arguments for a reversal of the verdict in the original bench trial overseen by Judge Denise Cote. Across more than 30 pages, they tell the appeals court that fundamental concepts of antitrust law and crucial economic evidence and reasoning were "disregarded" by the judge.
Tour of Silicon Valley part of California-Israel technology partnership deal
On Wednesday, visiting head of state Benjamin Netanyahu -- the prime minister of Israel -- met with Apple CEO Tim Cook and the founders of Facebook's recently-acquired WhatsApp as part of a tour of Silicon Valley, part of a state government initiative to forge stronger trade and business relationships between California and Israel. According to reports, Netanyahu had lunch with Cook at Apple's Cupertino headquarters.
Manufacturer allegedly has 'most' orders for logic/power chips
Taiwanese supplier TSMC has already begun manufacturing chips for the next iPhone, claims supply chain sources for a local publication, the Commercial Times. The company is said to have won "most" of the orders for logic and power management chips in the new device. The exact nature of the chips is left vague by the Times, but a Taiwanese website, TechNews, is claiming that TSMC will become the exclusive manufacturer of Apple's upcoming A8 processor.
Brings CNN content into Flipboard
iOS- and Android-based news reader service Flipboard has bought its main rival Zite from CNN, the company and reports have confirmed. The deal is worth about $60 million, and beginning today has allowed Flipboard to integrate tailored CNN content into its news feeds, including not just general news but feeds from shows like Anderson Cooper 360, Crossfire, and Inside Politics. Some celebrities from the network, like Jake Tapper and Fareed Zakaria, are launching their own Flipboard magazines.
Court filing points out double-standard in allegations
At the same time as it was accusing Samsung of leaking the same information, Apple publicly exposed the terms of its patent licensing terms with Nokia and NEC, Samsung remarks in its latest Apple v. Samsung lawsuit filing. In October, Apple filed a motion against Samsung as part of the original Apple v. Samsung case, alleging that Samsung's counsel -- Quinn Emanuel -- had inadvertently leaked licensing terms to Samsung executives, giving them an edge in corporate negotiations. In January the the District Court for the Northern District of California ruled that the latter was never sufficiently proven, and denied sanctions against Samsung, pinning the blame on counsel.
Move likely used to bolster nationwide cell offerings by Dish
The first round of FCC wireless bandwidth auctions has concluded, with the Dish Network purchasing all of the 1,900MHz license nearly uncontested. With nearly no competition, Dish shelled out $1.6 billion for the acquisition under the cover of a shell company, as expected.
Uber update replaces SMS with push notifications
Uber has announced its update for its iOS app, featuring a shift from SMS message notifications to push notifications. Soon to include real-time information regarding its recently announced surge pricing, the taxi travel app now accepts PayPal as a fare payment option, meaning no credit card is required. Uber is free to download through iTunes.
Channel-skipping feature disabled for 72 hours after initial broadcast
The Walt Disney Company and Dish Network Corporation today announced a long-term distribution agreement that will provide Dish customers with access to Disney-owned programming. The distribution agreement grants Dish rights to content from the ABC-owned broadcast stations, ABC Family, Disney Channel, ESPN and ESPN2, as part of an Internet delivered, IP-based multichannel offering -- but with a catch for the consumer. Under the terms of the deal, users must wait three days before being able to skip commercials on new programming saved by the Hopper DVR.
Nadella calls leadership consolidation 'go-forward approach'
Adding to a previous shuffle, Microsoft has made public a pair of high-profile executive departures as new CEO Satya Nadella takes the helm of the company. Tony Bates, the ex-CEO of Skype, and Chief Marketing Officer and Executive Vice President of Marketing Tami Reller will be "pursuing other interests outside the company."
Apple still most successful individual tablet maker
Android ruled global tablet marketshare in 2013, accounting for 62 percent of devices by shipments, according to somewhat questionable data from research firm Gartner. That represents a significant upset, since in 2012 the iPad was in firm control with a 52.8 percent share. Apple, however, continued to do best among individual tablet makers in sales, with a 36 percent share and claimed sales over 70.4 million units -- an increase from a figure just under 61.5 million in 2012.
HTC allegedly among poaching targets
Apple has been hiring "hundreds" of new engineers and supply chain managers in China and Taiwan, according to sources for the Wall Street Journal. In particular the company is said to be building up teams in Shanghai and Taipei to accelerate product development and ship a wider range of devices. The supply managers may be at least partly meant to cope with allegations of labor and safety abuses at supplier factories.
Ten percent will go to non-profit charities decided by Reddit users
Reddit announced on its blog that it will be donating a portion of its 2014 advertising revenue receipts to non-profit charities at the end of the year. Users will be able to decide which charities receive funding after the company closes out its books.
Attempts to keep video up as larger appeal is sought fails
After a ruling on February 26 in which the Ninth US Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a previous decision and ordered a YouTube video removed, Google's appeal to appear before a larger panel review has been denied. On Friday, the Ninth Circuit Court rejected Google's request to put the video's removal on hold as the case continued.