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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.
Major online retailers open up pre-orders for March 14, 2014 release
The small form factor Asus Chromebox has gone up for pre-order at a handful of online retailers ahead of a March 14 release. Previously, the desktop machine was listed for a release in March without a firm date attached. Pre-orders cover only the Intel Celeron 2955U 1.4GHz-powered low-end option for the Google Chrome OS-based machine.
Ubisoft's 'hack everything' game to be released May 2014
Ubisoft's open world, cyber-espionage title Watch_Dogs now has official release dates of May 27 for North America and May 29 for the rest of the world on PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and PC. The game was pushed in back in October 2013 from its original release window, which coincided with Ubisoft's fiscal year-end of March. Watch_Dogs was originally pinned to be a launch title for the newest generation of consoles, but had been delayed to this spring in order to allow more time for its development. Gamers holding out for the Wii U version will have longer to wait, as a release date for Nintendo's console has yet to be confirmed.
Remote access tool Dendroid injects malware code into APK files
A HTTP new remote access toolkit (RAT) that is cause for concern has surfaced, according to anti-virus/anti-malware program maker Symantec, which makes turning legitimate Android apps into malware easier than before. The program, Dendroid (tagged as Android.Dendoroid by the security company), offers an easy-to-use commercial solution to inject malicious code for trojan access into APK files for placement on Android marketplaces, bypassing security checks.
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.
Pre-encrypted wireless router now shipping
Networking hardware producer, TrendNet, is now shipping its new Extreme Performance AC1900 (TEW-818DRU) wireless router. Powered by a 1GHz processor, high-power radio amplifiers for extended wireless coverage, and Gigabit Wireless AC networking speeds, the unit is designed to optimize wireless connections within the home. The TEW-818DRU is pre-encrypted, to help with mitigating the threat of hacking based on using unchanged default login credentials. The unit is priced at $260, and is available from retailers now.
Agreement with Apple requires $28 million in marketing as well
After not carrying the iPhone for nearly four years because of a dispute about sales guarantees, Russia's second-largest carrier Megafon signed a new deal with Apple late last year to return to selling the popular smartphone. The new deal requires the carrier to buy at least 750,000 iPhones over the course of three years, and spend at least $28 million in marketing the smartphone. While not a high number compared to the US, the figure was called "reasonable" by Russian financial analysts.
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