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Sprint CEO takes pay cut as investors voice concern about cost of iPhone deal

Saturday, May 5th, 2012

Sprint CEO takes pay cut as investors voice concern about high cost of iPhone deal

Sprint Nextel’s $15.5 billion gamble on Apple’s iPhone will apparently lighten CEO Dan Hesse’s proverbial wallet by $3.25 million this year. That’s how much compensation Hesse agreed to give back to help placate investors unhappy about the high cost of the company’s iPhone deal. Securing the iPhone has already paid dividends for Sprint in terms of sales. The company sold 1.5 million iPhones in the first quarter while posting a net subscriber growth of 263,000. That didn’t stop Sprint from posting an $863 million net loss during the same period, however, causing some investors to grumble about the cost of subsidizing Apple’s phone. The subsidy Sprint pays for each iPhone is 40 percent higher — about $200 — than what the company pays for other competing devices. Don’t feel too bad for Hesse, though. Apparently, the financial gesture basically brings back his “compensation target opportunities” to 2010 levels.

Sprint CEO takes pay cut as investors voice concern about cost of iPhone deal originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 05 May 2012 16:51:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Android lost money in 2010

Friday, May 4th, 2012

Android lost money in 2010

During Google’s ongoing legal dispute with Oracle, the judge presiding over the case revealed the Internet giant’s Android mobile operating system was not profitable in 2010, Reuters reported. Google does not publicly report financial information regarding its Android operating system, however the judge did not disclose specific figures, but instead said it lost money in each quarter of 2010. “That adds up to a big loss for the whole year,” he said. Oracle argued that Google should not be able to deduct certain Android expenses for the purposes of copyright damages related to the case.

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CFC backtracks on Slim’s near-billion dollar fine in Mexico, lays out other terms and conditions

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

CFC backtracks on Slim's near-billion dollar fine in Mexico, lays out other terms and conditions

The ongoing kerfuffle between Mexico’s Federal Competition Commission and Carlos Slim’s America Movil (Telcel’s parent company) took a drastic turn earlier today. According to the CFC, a deal has been reached with Slim’s telecom outfit that, among other things, will revoke the 11,989,000,000 pesos fine (about $1 billion dollars) imposed back in 2011. That being said, the wealthiest man on the globe isn’t completely off the hook, as America Movil’s been given five new demands that must be adhered to. Among these are reducing the current per-minute interconnection rates from .95 to .36 pesos, sharing the Telcel waves with other companies in the country and routinely providing the CFC with extensive details to prove the aforementioned requirements are being followed. Should America Movil not live up to its end of the deal, the Mexican regulator could hit Carlos Slim & Co. with a fine of up to eight percent of Telcel’s annual revenue — which, needless to say, is a heck of a lot of cash.

CFC backtracks on Slim’s near-billion dollar fine in Mexico, lays out other terms and conditions originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 03 May 2012 22:24:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Apple in talks to stream EPIX films to Apple TV

Saturday, April 28th, 2012

Apple TV to stream EPIX moviesApple is reportedly in talks to stream films owned by EPIX — a joint venture among Paramount Pictures, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Lionsgate — across a variety of devices, including the long-anticipated iTV, according to a report from Reuters. Two people with knowledge of the negotiations told the publication that the talks are in the preliminary stages and no agreement is considered near. The Cupertino-based company is reportedly looking to beef up the content offered through its Apple TV set-top box and upcoming devices. An agreement could prove troublesome, however, due to EPIX’s $200 million agreement with Netflix, which gave the company exclusive streaming rights through September.

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Sharp posts $1.4 billion extraordinary loss, refocuses on mobile displays

Friday, April 27th, 2012

Sharp posts $1.4 billion extraordinary loss for 2011 - 2012, sees writing on wall in high definitionSharp has reported an extraordinary loss of 117.1 billion yen ($1.4 billion) for the financial year ending March 2012. The company has cited restructuring costs and inventory losses as the causes for the write-down, but also projected that its TV business would lose a further 18.7 percent of its projected sales in the current year. The company has decided to convert some of its big-screen LCD production lines into mobile LCDs as it tries to reassert its dwindling display business. It’s yet more bad news after the company sold part of its LCD manufacturing business to Hon Hai, Sony withdrew from a joint venture and refused to deal with Sharp in the future, plus an 86 percent collapse in profits.

Continue reading Sharp posts $1.4 billion extraordinary loss, refocuses on mobile displays

Sharp posts $1.4 billion extraordinary loss, refocuses on mobile displays originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 27 Apr 2012 04:20:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Huawei looks to ship 60 million smartphones this year

Thursday, April 26th, 2012

Huawei, the world’s sixth largest mobile phone vendor, said on Wednesday that it expects to ship more than 100 million mobile phones in 2012, including 60 million smartphones, Reuters reported. The Chinese company sold a total of 55 million handsets, including 20 million smartphones, in 2011 and is now looking to increase its global market share with a focus on key markets. “We plan to target China, the United States, western Europe and Japan as key markets,” said Shao Yang, chief marketing officer of Huawei Device. The executive also said he expects consumer device sales to reach $30 billion in five years, up from $7 billion, becoming as large as its telecommunications equipment business. “This means that by that time, the revenue will be comparable to our telecom equipment business,” Shao said. “We feel the room for growth for devices is much bigger than the telecom carrier sector.”

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Verizon plans big Windows Phone push for the holidays

Friday, April 20th, 2012

Verizon Wireless chief financial officer Fran Shammo said the company is looking to market a third mobile platform to help develop a strong competitor to Apple and Google. That operating system will be Microsoft’s upcoming Windows Phone 8. “We’re really looking at the Windows Phone 8.0 platform because that’s a differentiator. We’re working with Microsoft on it,” Shammo said in an interview with Reuters following the company’s earnings call on Thursday. The carrier expects to have Windows Phone 8-powered handsets in time for the 2012 holiday shopping season. The executive suggested that Verizon could play a similar role in helping Microsoft’s platform to grow as it did with Google’s Android OS.

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What crisis? Sony Music buys EMI’s back catalogue for $2.2 billion

Thursday, April 19th, 2012

Image

While its parent company goes through a dramatic reinvention, Sony Music’s scraped together $2.2 billion to lead a consortium that’s just bought EMI’s music publishing business. While it’ll sell off the three Virgin and Famous Music labels to avoid competition concerns, the company will gain access to three million songs from artists like Frank Sinatra, Jay-Z and Adele. It won’t affect the day-to-day running of EMI’s record label, which is a separate entity, but it will make Sony the biggest music publisher in the world. It’s hard not to envisage a future in which the company’s influence in the way we buy and listen to music becomes even greater — especially given that EMI led the charge in abandoning DRM all those years ago.

What crisis? Sony Music buys EMI’s back catalogue for $2.2 billion originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 19 Apr 2012 13:41:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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European carriers say Lumia phones can’t compete with iPhone and Android

Tuesday, April 17th, 2012

Nokia’s attempt to regain the traction in the mobile market is turning out to be more difficult than the company once thought. Four major wireless carriers in Europe have said that Nokia’s Lumia smartphones are “not good enough” to compete with Apple’s iPhone or Samsung’s Galaxy smartphones, Reuters reported on Tuesday. Nokia bet big on Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform last year, however the gamble has yet to pay off according to the report. “No one comes into the store and asks for a Windows phone,” said an executive in charge of mobile devices at a European operator. The company is now playing catch up with Apple and Google after suffering a huge decline that hurt its image in the high-end market, and according to Reuters’s sources, Windows Phone might be making matters worse. “Nokia have given themselves a double challenge: to restore their credibility in terms of making hardware smartphones and succeed with the Microsoft Windows operating system, which lags in the market,” the executive said. “If the Lumia with the same hardware came with Android in it and not Windows, it would be much easier to sell.”

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FCC fines Google $25,000 for unauthorized data collection and impeding investigation

Monday, April 16th, 2012

The Federal Communications Commission has fined Google $25,000 for impeding a U.S. investigation into the data collection scandal surrounding its Street View project, in which the Internet giant allegedly accessed unsecured networks and collected personal information without users’ permission. The FCC said the Mountain View-based company did not cooperate with the investigation and refused to reveal the names of its engineers associated with the project. “Google refused to identify any employees or produce any e-mails. The company could not supply compliant declarations without identifying employees it preferred not to identify,” the FCC said. “Misconduct of this nature threatens to compromise the commission’s ability to effectively investigate possible violations of the Communications Act and the commission’s rules.”

In a statement provided to Reuters, Google challenged the agency’s findings and claimed it turned over the proper information. ”As the FCC notes in their report, we provided all the materials the regulators felt they needed to conclude their investigation and we were not found to have violated any laws,” the company said. “We disagree with the FCC’s characterization of our cooperation in their investigation and will be filing a response.”

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Robo-guard the South Korean correction service robot says ‘stay out of trouble’ (video)

Sunday, April 15th, 2012
Robo-guard the South Korean correction service robot says 'stay out of trouble' (video)

It sounds like the sequel that didn’t even make it to DVD: RoboCop’s jaded, rotund, less attractive younger brother, who never made the police force — and tired of living in his sibling’s shadow — took a job as the next best thing: a prison guard. Well, that might not make the silver screen, but it’s certainly reality TV. Meet Robo-guard, the world’s first robotic correctional officer. Developed in South Korea, Robo-guard is equipped with 3D cameras that let it observe inmates, while special software looks out for changes in behavior. Should anything suspicious be detected, he’ll raise the alarm. A lone wolf, he works his beat autonomously, but can also be controlled manually via an iPad, if human colleagues want to check what’s going down. Initial field trials are under way right now, and if all goes well, he’ll earn a place in more prisons. Who knows, he may even make deputy one day.

Continue reading Robo-guard the South Korean correction service robot says ‘stay out of trouble’ (video)

Robo-guard the South Korean correction service robot says ‘stay out of trouble’ (video) originally appeared on Engadget on Sun, 15 Apr 2012 09:35:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Veto of radical strategy shift led to former RIM CEO’s resignation

Friday, April 13th, 2012

Former Research In Motion co-chief executive Jim Balsillie sought a radical shift in strategy before he stepped down, Reuters reported on Friday. Citing two unnamed sources, the publication claims Balsillie wanted to allow wireless companies in North America and Europe to use RIM’s proprietary network for services on non-BlackBerry devices. The plan would help carriers entice customers to upgrade from feature phones to smartphones and allow them to offer inexpensive data plans that were limited to social media and instant messaging via the company’s BlackBerry Messenger service. Despite RIM’s network bringing in nearly $1 billion each quarter, the plan was vetoed, leading to Balsillie’s resignation soon after he stepped down as co-CEO. The Blackberry-maker will instead focus more on its next-generation BlackBerry 10-powered smartphones, and on regaining enterprise momentum.

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Apple says e-book price fixing charges ‘simply not true,’ Macmillan also responds

Friday, April 13th, 2012
Apple says e-book price fixing charges

Not that we were expecting Apple and Macmillan to simply fess up and say, “you’re right, totally tried to circumvent the free market,” but both companies have come out swinging pretty hard against the allegations of price fixing. Apple has rejected the charges, calling them “simply not true.” A company spokesman, Tom Neumayr, went so far as to tell Reuters that Cupertino was actually fostering competition by “breaking Amazon’s monopolistic grip on the publishing industry.” John Sargent, the CEO of Macmillan, defended his company’s behavior in blog post, saying the publisher had done nothing illegal and that the concessions sought by the DOJ in settlement negotiations were “too onerous.” It looks like the next step for both is to face off with the US government in court — a daunting task, no matter how large your war chest.

Apple says e-book price fixing charges ‘simply not true,’ Macmillan also responds originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 13 Apr 2012 12:02:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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WhatsApp founder says he doesn’t want to hurt carriers, much

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012
WhatsApp founder says he doesn't want to hurt carriers, much

Given how much the world has already noticed that instant messaging can be cheaper than SMS, it’s surprising to see the founder of WhatsApp trying to persuade carriers that he’s actually doing them a favor. In an interview with Reuters, Brian Acton said that his messaging service is “facilitating a broad movement to data plans,” from which carriers “stand to benefit quite substantially.” While it’s certainly true that smartphones and data plans make nice margins for operators, Acton’s thesis also slithers around some slightly inconvenient evidence. According to analysts at Ovum, carriers lost $13.9 billion in SMS revenues last year, and are set to lose another $23 billion this year. All the while, WhatsApp’s traffic is growing rapidly, with total messages doubling from one billion in October 2011 to two billion in February. With data costs falling around the world, and with platforms like WhatsApp running on lower-priced handsets (such as those running Nokia S40), it’s the consumer, not the carrier, who ought to be charmed.

WhatsApp founder says he doesn’t want to hurt carriers, much originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 04 Apr 2012 22:32:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink TheNextWeb  |  sourceReuters  | Email this | Comments

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European regulators probe Motorola following Microsoft, Apple complaints

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

European regulators are investigating Motorola Mobility for allegedly overcharging Microsoft and Apple for use of its industry standard patents in their products, Reuters reported on Tuesday. Both companies filed complaints with the European Commission, which is now conducting the investigation that will look to determine whether Motorola failed to honor its “irrevocable commitments” made to standard-setting organizations. In February, Microsoft had asked antitrust regulators to intervene in its patent dispute with Motorola, claiming the company “has refused to make its patents available at anything remotely close to a reasonable price.” In its complaint, the software giant also named Google, which is in the process of acquiring Motorola. Regulators confirmed that they are investigating Samsung as well in order to determine whether or not the company violated European antitrust laws in its patent disputes with Apple.

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Wealthy smartphone users more likely to own an iPhone, study finds

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

Wealthy smartphone users are more likely to own an Apple iPhone and less likely to play games or post on Twitter than average users. According to research from The Luxury Institute, 62% of U.S. consumers earning at least $150,000 per year own a smartphone. 45% of people falling to that category own an iPhone, 35% use an Android-powered device and 25% have a BlackBerry. More than 80% of wealthy smartphone owners download mobile apps, with the most popular categories being weather (63%), news (51%), travel (42%), business/finance (39%) and sports (34%). Facebook, Angry Birds and Words With Friends are the most popular apps, however higher-income consumers use far less entertainment apps than the average smartphone user. “As you get older and have family and significant others, aging parents, and a lot more assets and investments, you’re going to need apps for far more relevant things than playing games and chatting with your peers,” The Luxury Institute CEO Milton Pedraza noted.

[Via Reuters]

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Wealthy smartphone users more likely to own an iPhone, study finds

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

Wealthy smartphone users are more likely to own an Apple iPhone and less likely to play games or post on Twitter than average users. According to research from The Luxury Institute, 62% of U.S. consumers earning at least $150,000 per year own a smartphone. 45% of people falling to that category own an iPhone, 35% use an Android-powered device and 25% have a BlackBerry. More than 80% of wealthy smartphone owners download mobile apps, with the most popular categories being weather (63%), news (51%), travel (42%), business/finance (39%) and sports (34%). Facebook, Angry Birds and Words With Friends are the most popular apps, however higher-income consumers use far less entertainment apps than the average smartphone user. “As you get older and have family and significant others, aging parents, and a lot more assets and investments, you’re going to need apps for far more relevant things than playing games and chatting with your peers,” The Luxury Institute CEO Milton Pedraza noted.

[Via Reuters]

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