Tag - Acquisition
TiVo, the manufacturer of TV set-top boxes, has agreed to be acquired by another company that is also quite big in the digital video recorder business. Rovi will be paying $1.1 billion, made up of approximately $277 million in cash and the remainder paid in stock, to acquire the DVR producer, with the deal apparently being seen as a way for Rovi to significantly increase its patent catalog by including TiVo's collection to the pile.
[Updated with confirmation] Microsoft is reportedly acquiring the producer of a popular predictive keyboard used on mobile devices. The software giant is allegedly preparing to announce an acquisition of the London-based SwiftKey, producers of the software keyboard of the same name, with the acquisition claimed to cost Microsoft somewhere in the region of $250 million, providing founders Jon Reynolds and Ben Medlock at least $30 million.
Apple has apparently taken advantage of its sizable cash pile and a fortuitous opportunity to acquire an 86-acre site in northern San Jose for future development purposes, though it does not presently have firm plans for the location. In a deal with the city, Apple has up to 15 years to figure out what to do with the 4.15 million square feet of space. A likely option is that Apple will eventually build a third campus and office complex to house its growing workforce, which is currently spread out among many leased or rented spaces in the region.
Another acquisition by Yahoo was announced late last week, building on a long string of pick-ups under the leadership of CEO Marissa Mayer. The newest company coming into the Yahoo fold is Cooliris, a developer known for its mobile photo-aggregator application Cooliris for Mobile and the recently launched BeamIt Messenger.
Fans holding out for a Minecraft 2 after the Microsoft acquisition of Mojang could be in for some disappointment. In a podcast recording last week, Microsoft's Head of Xbox Phil Spencer said that he doesn't believe that a second version in the franchise make sense. Even though the brand has room to grow, meeting the needs for the community is currently the most important job.
Yahoo is quickly putting the money it earned from the Alibaba IPO to work, as it was announced last week that the search company acquired social texting service MessageMe. Details of the acquisition weren't announced, but according to the confirmation from MessageMe, the deal appears to be negotiated strictly for the talent behind the platform.
In a move that strengthens its multi-passenger Lyft Line ride service, Lyft has acquired the San Francisco-based Hitch. The ridesharing service boasted a price less than its competitors, including Lyft, while focusing on the social experience and personal connections of the ride. Complete details of the acquisition weren't stated by either company, but Hitch co-founders Snir Kodesh and Noam Szpiro will be joining Lyft.
One of Apple's routinely-unpublicized acquisitions this year was magazine-app creator Prss. The firm, which created software that makes it easy to create magazine apps (and more importantly, to dynamically refresh them with silent updates), shut down this July -- and some of the former employees now appear to be working at Apple, according to Dutch enthusiast site iCulture. The iPad maker recently confirmed the acquisition.
Yahoo's stream of acquisitions doesn't appear to be slowing down any time soon, as a new pick up was reported today. The Economic Times and the Times of India are both reporting that the one-year-old startup Bookpad was purchased by the search company. TechCrunch confirms that Yahoo purchased Bookpad after a spokesperson issued a statement to the publication.
Adobe announced that it acquired a developer of software development kits (SDK) for photo-editing and third-party mobile software. Aviary's SDKs are to be folded into the Adobe Creative SDK, which the company is building as a development platform for mobile apps. Terms of the acquisition were not given, but Aviary was privately held.
Now AAPL Stock: 93.4 ( -2.7 )
WhatsApp now handles over 100M calls daily
WhatsApp is celebrating that it is being used for over 100 million calls every day. In a brief notice, the Facebook-owned messaging platform advises the voice-calling feature it rolled out to its users last year now deals with an average of over 1,100 calls initiated per second. Earlier this year, it increased the security of its calls and other messages, by introducing end-to-end encryption on all platforms. http://bit.ly/292HqCX
Adele's '25' album now streaming
Recording artist Adele has "pulled a Kanye" after saying that her current album "25" would not be available for streaming. The seven-month-old record, which has yielded a number of hit singles, is now available for streaming on all the major streaming services, such as Apple Music and Spotify, as of today in most major markets, with worldwide distribution to come. Reportedly, the singer had demanded streaming be limited to paid subscribers -- a condition that has hurt some streamers with artists, who aren't paid royalties for free or trial listens . Apple pays performers its normal royalty rates during its free trial, avoiding the issue -- and having repeated success in both signing up exclusives and placing those exclusives into the top of the charts. http://ti.me/28U7NOu
SanDisk iXpand case has battery, storage
A new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s case from SanDisk appears to be the "holy grail" of accessories: a stylish and protective case that offers both extra storage as well as the option of extra battery power as well. The iXpand Memory case offers either 32GB, 64GB, or 128GB of additional storage incorporated into the case, and an optional add-on battery pack (sold separately) adds up to an extra day or more of charge. Through the associated iXpand app, camera photos and videos can be automatically stored on the extra storage, optionally password-protected, The cost for the case is (in order of storage capacity) $60, $100, and $130. The battery pack's release data has not yet been announced, but the add-on should retail for an additional $30. http://bit.ly/291epHu
Fifth Hong Kong store to open June 30
The 46th official Apple store in what the company calls the "Greater China" region will open at 10AM local time in Hong Kong's New Town Plaza in the Sha Tin district on Thursday, June 30, according to a new page on Apple's retail website. Despite slowing growth due to economic turmoil in China, the country is still Apple's fastest-growing market. The new story will be the fifth for Hong Kong, a lucrative market for Apple thanks to the high concentration of wealth there and a thriving "gray" market. Normal store hours for the new store will be 10AM to 10PM every day. http://apple.co/291diaT
Apple Music bug bites very short songs
There appears to be a reproducible bug in the current version of iTunes -- version 12.4.1, running on OS X 10.11.5, both the current non-beta versions of the respective software -- that causes a streamed song to become "stuck" in endless buffering if the streamed item just before this happened was 60 seconds or less in length. The problem appears to stem from code in iTunes that signals the next track to start downloading one minute before the currently-playing track is done, and thus songs shorter than one minute don't trigger the download. Locally-stored music is unaffected by the bug, and the problem does not appear to exist in either the macOS Sierra developer beta or versions of iTunes earlier than 12.4, and does not affect the iOS Music app at all. http://bit.ly/291cN0l
Walmart Pay expands to 15 states
Walmart, one of the key progenitors of the failed CurrentC mobile payment system that was distinguished from Apple Pay by its ability to collect and share customer financial and buying data among its participants, has expanded the soft rollout of its alternative solution "Walmart Pay" to an additional 15 US states following a pilot program in Arkansas and Texas last month. Walmart continues to resist adding Apple Pay. The system, built into the Walmart app for iOS and Android, works with a complicated system of the camera scanning a purchase code at the register, then generating a QR code which is then scanned by the register. The system is available now in Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, and Washington, DC. http://apple.co/28SqZfu
Amazon refreshes entry-level Kindle
Amazon has added a new Kindle to its ebook reader range, one that is thinner and lighter than the previous entry-level model. Offering a six-inch 167-dpi touchscreen display, a doubled 4GB of storage, and an option for a white casing, the new model also adds in the ability to export highlights and notes to an email account as a PDF. Two versions of the all-new Kindle are available, priced at $80 including "Special Offers" and $100 without. http://amzn.to/28Q4c3R