Microsoft on Saturday applied pressure to Yahoo by submitting a letter directly to the search engine firm's board of directors, setting a deadline for the company to accept Microsoft's $31 per share takeover offer. Citing deteriorating economic conditions, the Redmond, Washington-based Microsoft refused to increase its bid and gave Yahoo a total of three weeks to accept the $44.6 billion bid as originally made in late January before it would be "compelled" to bypass the board and bring a lower-priced offer directly to Yahoo's shareholders. This will include launching a proxy battle by stepping up pressure to elect a more takeover-friendly board of directors at Yahoo, Microsoft said.
As Motorola announces its desire to spin off its handset and broadband business as independent public companies, Videocon Industries is first to throw its hat into the ring, filing an expression of interest document for the former of the two departments. According to DeepikaGlobal, there will be a delay in the decision, however, since the acquisition process is required to be cleared by the regulatory body. Videocon chairman and managing director V. N. Dhoot told reporters of its intents.
The heavily anticipated 3G-capable iPhone will be available within the next 60 days, Wall Street Journal columnist Walt Mossberg revealed at a Beet.TV executive conference in Washington, DC. The veteran writer made the comment while discussing the limits of cellular broadband in the US, noting that third-generation access in the country is still slow compared to other areas of the world. Mossberg doesn't offer supporting evidence in the speech but is known to regularly have exclusive access to advance details, having received a review iPhone weeks ahead of its June 2007 debut.
Montreal-based Toon Boom Animation today unveiled Toon Boom Studio Express 4, a major update to its "light" animation software suite that introduces many new features and a revamped user interface. Toon Boom says that the interface is more user friendly, with docking interface items. A new calligraphic brush style was added to give animations a unique look. Toon Boom Studio Express 4 is available directly for a special of $100, $50 off its normal price.
MacWireless recently unveiled several new antennas and boosters for Apple's Time Capsule, offering users increased range control in a variety of forms. The antennas are available in a number of types: omni-directional, uni-directional, 90-degree corner, ceiling mounted, whip, and MIMO. The antennas are passive focusing systems since they do not use power to operate, and are available from MacWireless, ranging from $6 to $60, depending on the style of antenna.
Now AAPL Stock: 100.35 ( -0.06 )
Trade-up program expands in Europe
Smartphone users in France, Italy, and Spain will have until at least August of this year to trade in old iPhone, Windows Phone, or Android models at Apple Stores, and put the reward towards a new iPhone -- thanks to an expansion of Apple's trade-in program into those countries. The money given for the trade-in must be applied towards a new iPhone on a two-year payment plane, and traders must qualify under a credit check as part of the program. Interested customers can apply for the trade-in at their nearest Apple Store. http://bit.ly/1qPsldD
NBCUniversal adds Bravo, Syfy, E! to Apple TV
NBCUniversal has launched three new apps channels for Apple TV users. Bravo Now, Syfy Now and E! Now brings users access full seasons of current and past episodes of most of NBCUniversal's catalog. The Bravo Now app includes shows like "The Real Housewives of New York Cit," "Below Deck Mediterranean," comedy "Odd Mom Out" and "Top Chef." The Syfy Now app offers up shows like "The Magicians," thriller "12 Monkeys" and the reality show "Face Off." The E! Now app serves up shows like "Keeping Up with the Kardashians," "Botched," "#RichKids of Beverly Hills," Caitlyn Jenner's "I Am Cait," and "WAGS." While some content is free, most content requires users to authenticate via their cable satellite or telco TV provider. http://bit.ly/20K4Pea
Apple rolls out Arabic version of Apple.com
Apple has rolled out a new version of its Apple.com website for Arabic language users in the United Arab Emirates. The site utilizes a right-to-left reading format where it has been updated, although the upgrade is still in progress with a number of page links still in the original English language left-to-right format. Of particular note is that the site debuts an all-new custom Arabic font created by the Tarek Atrissi Design agency, giving it a highly contemporary look and feel. The new support for Arabic on its host website follows the introduction of full support for right-to-left languages in iOS 9, and the addition of Arabic support to Siri late last year. http://apple.co/20JHGIM
Adobe previews Photoshop content-aware crop
Adobe has previewed a new 'content-aware crop' feature from the next version of its Photoshop CC. The new feature is similar to its 'content-aware fill' from the current version of Photoshop CC, and potentially saves users time when cropping photos in a way that might otherwise leave blank white space in the frame. Adobe's 'content-aware' tech automatically assesses the blank space and seamlessly fills the blank space with the nearest related content in the space when a photo is expanded or rotated without the need to manually clone that part of the image. The feature allows users to move a horizon by adding more sky or ground, change the aspect ratio by adding content around the edges of the image and fill in the corners of an image when rotated during a crop. Adobe says the feature is coming soon and will be automatically available to Creative Cloud subscribers. http://adobe.ly/20JDFEu
Markzware updates Q2ID for QuarkXPress 12 files
Graphic design file conversion tool maker Markzware has launched a new version of its Q2ID tool. The InDesign plugin enables users to open QuarkXPress files within a new InDesign (INDD) document, without rebuilding the QXP document from scratch -- the new version includes support for QuarkXPress 12 files. Q2ID Subscription members can download the new version as part of their annual plan. A single-user can purchase the plugin for $200, with other licensing options available. http://bit.ly/1Z4dS9t
PopChar X 7.5 arrives
Ergonis Software has released PopChar X 7.5, an improved version of the company's tool for finding and inserting special characters and exploring fonts. PopChar X 7.5 adds support for combined emojis in the Apple Color Emoji font, enhances the "Font Info" view, and adds many further enhancements that improve overall speed and stability. PopChar X 7.5 retails for €30 ($34), and is free for anyone who owns a license for PopChar X 7 or purchased a license for PopChar X 6 on or after March 1, 2014 [4.5MB]
Safari Technology Preview release 5 arrives