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Nation allowed to offset $21 million per year in US copyright by WTO
The Antiguan government is planning to open an online pirate marketplace, selling American media without reimbursing the copyright holders. The island nation is taking the controversial step in response to a decade of US-enacted legislation against online gambling, which is preventing legal access to the Antiguan sites. The US laws are in contravention of World Trade Organization (WTO) rulings which has allowed the island nation to operate the sites, and market them internationally, including to US markets. The WTO has ruled against the US twice regarding online gambling in Antigua over the past 10 years.
Unusual themed discount roundup on Mac App Store
In a rare move, Apple has started a three-week "productivity apps" sale called "Get Stuff Done" that offers discounted prices on eight "prioritizing" applications for the Mac on the Mac App Store. The second week will reveal sale prices on as-yet-unnamed organizing apps, and the final week will spotlight savings on utility apps. Sale prices currently ongoing include $3 off the normally $10 to-do app Clear; half-off pricing on Things 2, 2Do, Due, The Hit List and Taskpaper; 40 percent off BreakTime, and substantial savings on Todo.
Flaw allows remote access to MySQL database in equipment
According to Austrian security researchers SEC Consult Vulnerability Lab, an assortment of firewall, spam filtering, and VPN hardware made by Barracuda contain undocumented accounts that allow hackers to remotely log into the devices and access information. The SSH backdoor is hardcoded into the products, and can be used to gain shell access to the equipment, according to the published advisory.
Continued weakness in DRAM, computer industry cited
Samsung Electronics today announced quarterly revenues of 56.06 trillion Korean won ($52.7 billion) on a consolidated basis for the fourth quarter ended December 31, a seven percent increase from the same time period in 2011. Consolidated operating profit for the quarter hit $8.3 billion, and consolidated net profit for the same quarter was $6.6 billion. The results met Samsung's estimates provided earlier this month of $8.3 billion.
Rare look back from forward-thinking, revolutionary company
Seven years ago, at the MacWorld conference in January of 2006, Steve Jobs stunned his audience by taking a few seconds at the end of the keynote to comment on the fact that Apple would be turning 30 years old on April 1 that year. It was a very rare look back from a man who prided himself on his vision going forward, who eschewed museums and awards and other such remembrances. Tim Cook yesterday noted that today is the 29th anniversary of the introduction of the Macintosh in a similarly brief way.
Deal consolidates large percentage of US home networking market
Computer accessory manufacturer Belkin revealed on Thursday that it has entered into an agreement to purchase Cisco's home networking business unit, including the Linksys brand and all associated products. Belkin intends to maintain the Linksys brand, and will continue to support all of Cisco's products in the sector, including warranty support and replacement.
Filing claims Motorola should be held to Google's license standards
Google has suffered a setback in the next step of its federal case regarding Microsoft's potential abuse of the H.264 video codec. The head of the MPEG-LA licensing group, Lawrence Horn, declared in a court briefing that Google's agreement with the group and monetary restrictions on licensing fees applies to companies it acquired -- meaning Motorola's claim of Microsoft's patent abuse likely won't net the search engine hundreds of millions of dollars per year, as it has requested from Microsoft. Motorola, as a subsidiary of Google, is held to the same licensing standards as originally signed by Google in 2004.
Company claims 55 percent of user base using 4G phones
Adding to the rash of major company quarterly results, AT&T has posted its own numbers. For the quarter that concluded on December 31, the company's revenues totaled $32.6 billion, up 0.2 percent versus the same time period in 2011, but posted a $6 billion loss regardless of earnings. Fourth-quarter 2012 cash from operating activities grew to $10.5 billion, and capital expenditures totaled $5.9 billion.
Apple now surpassing number of 10.8.2 betas before release
Just a week after the last OS X Mountain Lion 10.8.3 beta was released, Apple has issued a slightly newer build to developers and testers. The new version comes with no changes to the release notes or any known issues, but the previous beta 12D54 was noted as making improvements to the Wi-Fi component of OS X. The new version is build number 12D58, and is likely to continue cleaning up code and squashing bugs found in earlier releases. The incremental change in build numbers suggests that release is forthcoming.
Service should eventually bring more EA games to Mac
Electronics Arts has released an initial alpha build of Origin for the Mac. On Windows Origin is the publisher's digital storefront and game launcher, now effectively required to play many EA titles. The software's arrival on the Mac should, eventually, increase the number of EA games Mac users have access to, so long as studios tied to the company can devote the time and money needed to build Mac ports.
Earnings of $21.46 billion include losses in entertainment, business
Microsoft today revealed quarterly revenue of $21.46 billion for the quarter that ended December 31 and which encompassed the entire holiday buying season, the release of Windows 8, and the Surface tablet debut. Operating income came in at $7.77 billion, net income was reported at $6.38 billion and earnings per share computed to $0.76 per share. The numbers show a three percent increase in revenue, with a three percent drop in both operating income and income per share from the same quarter a year ago.
Twitter working to fix problems
Twitter's new Vine video sharing service has been hit with a number of glitches on launch day, reports AllThingsD. The most critical is a security issue which is accidentally logging some people into other users' accounts, letting them post under those identities and see any private profile information. It's unknown how many people may be experiencing the bug, but it should be possible to log back into the right account after relaunching the iPhone app.
Clip reverses inventor's view on future 'social impact' of computing
The widely-publicized first scene released from Ashton Kutcher's jOBS biographical feature on Steve Jobs is said to be "not close" to the actual relationship between Jobs and Stephen Wozniak, according to Wozniak himself. The film will be shown at the Sundance Film Festival, with Kutcher and co-star Josh Gad appearing at the Macworld conference next week to promote the picture.
New facility to create 800 full-time jobs, manufacture 14nm chips
Intel has received permission to build a new processor fabrication facility in Ireland, after receiving the go-ahead from Irish planning agency An Bord Pleanála. The $4 billion chip plant will be used by the processor manufacturer to create its 14-nanometer processors, with only the final decision from Intel management left before it can be constructed.
Sale of assets exceeds $72 million, some IP still unsold
Game published THQ has announced that it has received court approval for asset selloff, and will split following the sale. The transaction, worth about $72 million will see Relic Studios sold to Sega for $22.3 million, with Volition, Inc headed to Sega Corporation for $5.9 million. Other properties are headed to Crytek, Take Two, and Ubisoft. The fates of other intellectual properties owned by THQ, and the company's publishing business are not part of the sale process.
One, Duet allow charging connected iOS devices
Audio gear maker Apogee has announced updates to three Mac-oriented USB interfaces. For the whole trio the company is introducing a new Maestro iOS app, giving the iPad the same hardware control options as the Mac; the app should also work on the iPhone and iPod touch. Apogee's upgraded One interface features two inputs, iOS device charging, optional internal battery use, and new mic preamps and AD/DA converters. An integrated mic and breakout cable can be used to connect a 1/4-inch cable or XLR. The new One is shipping in March at a cost of $349.
SOUL ships bluetooth streamer Party in a Box 910
Audio device purveyor SOUL has declared that its wireless entertainment system "Party in a Box P910" is now shipping. The eight speaker P910 features many functions rolled into one package: an indoor/outdoor portable sound system with Bluetooth, auxiliary input, 30-pin Apple dock connector, and HDMI.
Move would bolster Lenovo's mobile presence, help shift from PCs
In an effort to enhance its mobile business, electronics manufacturer Lenovo is allegedly considering a deal with BlackBerry manufacturer Research in Motion (RIM). A report published earlier today by Bloomberg claims that RIM began a review of options last year after losing most of its marketshare to competitors, and reports that the Chief Financial Officer Wong Wai had spoken to RIM and bankers about combinations of acquisitions or strategic ventures.
Application could see future use in Project Glass devices
Google has applied for a patent concerning a Project Glass-style pair of glasses with built-in bone-conducting headphones. The application, titled "Wearable Computing Device with Indirect Bone-Conduction Speaker," would theoretically allow the wearer to hear audio played from the device privately without resorting to use earphones or external speakers.
Looping videos display inline with tweets
Twitter has launched a first-party version of Vine, an app for the iPhone and iPod touch that it bought the rights to in 2012. The app is similar to ones like glmps, letting users shoot small, looping videos that can be shared with others via a native social network. Vine posts can also be shared on Twitter and Facebook feeds, and any content linked in tweets can be opened inline on the web.
GOC adds 10 new Mac games
GOG.com, a digital game distributer, has announced that is adding 10 new games to its Mac catalog. New games include Alpha Centauri and the Alien Crossfire expansion, Fallout 2, Legend of Grimrock, Sid Meier's Colonization, Postal 2, Ultima 7, Freespace 1, Terminal Velocity, Conquest of the New World, and the Blackwell Bundle. All of the titles are supported on Mac OS X 10.6.8 and up, and carry prices ranging between $6 and $15.
Optimism remains despite reigning in expectations
Analysts at several financial firms have cut their stock targets for Apple following the company's Q1 results. Piper Jaffray has reduced its target from $875 to $767, while Wells Fargo is now aiming for between $600 and $630, and Deutsche Bank is targeting $575. RBC Capital Markets has shifted from $725 to $600, and Canaccord Genuity has dropped its prediction to $650. Topeka Capital Markets has adjusted from $1,111 to $888.
Experimental radio service to work around Google headquarters
Google is intending to build an experimental wireless service around its Mountain View headquarters, for currently unknown purposes. The search company has sent a request to the FCC for a license to allow the radio service to operate, and plans to test up to 50 base stations and 200 user devices during the licensed period.
Ivona already provides vocal functions for Kindle Fire tablets
Amazon has announced its acquisition of Ivona, a company that has specialized in text-to-speech technology for the last 10 years. The deal, the terms of which were not disclosed, sees Amazon take control of the firm and software that provides the text-to-speech functions for the Kindle Fire, as well as the tablet's Voice Guide and Explore By Touch functionality.
Q&A session to feature pre-submitted questions
Apple has scheduled an internal "Town Hall" meeting for today at 10AM, according to an email memo by CEO Tim Cook, sent out to workers last night. 9to5Mac notes that the event will feature a Q&A session, for which people will be able to submit questions in advance via AppleWeb. It's unmentioned whether any live questions will be allowed.
Movie to get sneak peek at Sundance Film Festival
jOBS -- the first Steve Jobs biopic to enter production after his death -- will reach theaters on April 19th, says the Hollywood Reporter. The movie is directed by Joshua Michael Stern and written by Matthew Whitely, and stars Ashton Kutcher. The arc of the movie covers the period between Jobs dropping out of college and him becoming one of the most famous corporate moguls.
Quarterly profit significant improvement to $1.2B loss in Q4 2011
Nokia made a profit of €439 million ($585 million) in the fourth quarter of 2012, according to recently released financial reports. Full year results for 2012 saw that the losses in previous quarters still puts the company at an overall loss of €2.3 billion ($3 billion), despite the Lumia-based sales uptick seen in the last quarter.
LG takes on MacBook Pro Retina with U560 15.6-inch ultrabook
LG has introduced the U560 15.6-inch Windows 8 ultrabook. The device centers on 1080p IPS display for wide viewing angles and better color accuracy. It appears to be positioned as a Windows alternative to the 15.4-inch Apple MacBook Pro with Retina display, coming in slightly lighter than the 4.46 pounds MacBook.
Gaming network intrusion 'could have been prevented'
Sony has been fined £250,000 ($395,000) by the Information Commissioner's Office of the United Kingdom over the April 2011 hack of the PlayStation Network. The UK authority criticized Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, claiming the online gaming system's infiltration "could have been prevented" if security software used by SCEE had been kept up-to-date, with increased security on user passwords.
Logitech returns net loss of $195 million for Q3 FY 2013
Logitech has published its Q3 results for the financial year 2013, which revealed a net loss of $195 million on the back of $615 million in revenue. This included a one-off non-cash goodwill impairment charge of aroun $211milion. However, CEO Bracken Darrell is wasting no time responding to a 14 percent decline in sales indicating that he is moving to offload the Harmony division and its digital video securities division.
Now a half-billion dollar industry, but still a 'hobby'?
Ask anyone with an Apple TV (particularly the latest, $99 black iterations) and they will tell you they absolutely love it. In the conference call with analysts earlier today, Apple CEO Tim Cook started off by saying that "the most important thing [to Apple] is that customers absolutely love our products. Not just buy them, but love them." The Apple TV embodies this concept, but even after record 60 percent year-over-year growth in 2012, Cook still echoes former CEO Steve Jobs' description of it as "a hobby."
Messages, iCloud, Game Center all on rise
Mostly overlooked in Apple's quarterly report dealing with sales and revenues is the remarkable -- in some cases, astonishing -- growth in Apple's cloud-based services, ranging from the four trillion notifications sent to iOS users through Notification Center to the record-breaking $2.1 billion profit for iTunes. Users now send over two billion iMessages per day -- bypassing the cellular carriers' biggest profit center, SMS messaging -- from over 500 million devices, and over 250 million users now have iCloud accounts.
Two of the four patents found to be infringing headed to review
The US International Trade Commission (ITC) has announced that it is going to review a preliminary ruling involving Apple and Samsung made in December. The ruling under review found Samsung in infringement of four Apple-held patents, with no violations of two others. Both Apple and Samsung filed a request for review of the initial rulings, seeking additional leverage over the other.
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