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Posts Tagged ‘Software Giant’

Microsoft hires 14 Yahoo researchers for new NYC lab

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

Microsoft hires 14 Yahoo researchers

Microsoft has hired 14 Yahoo researchers for its brand new New York research lab, AllThingsD reported. The hires come after Yahoo made significant layoffs last month to its research and development unit. According to Jennifer Chayes, who manages Microsoft Research in New England and New York, the researchers were’t hired as a package deal. “I don’t feel like we hired a group; I feel like we hired 15 amazing individuals, some of which became available because there were some problems at Yahoo,” she said. The software giant has an extensive research division that includes some 850 Ph.Ds, and the New York City lab will be the company’s 13th global office.

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AOL sells 800 patents to Microsoft in $1 billion deal

Monday, April 9th, 2012

AOL and Microsoft on Monday announced an agreement in which the software giant will purchase 800 patents from AOL in a $1.056 billion cash deal. Microsoft will also license more than 300 additional patents from AOL as part of the agreement. “The agreement with Microsoft represents the culmination of a robust auction process for our patent portfolio,” said Tim Armstrong, AOL’s chairman and CEO. “We continue to hold a valuable patent portfolio as highlighted by the license we entered into with Microsoft. The combined sale and licensing arrangement unlocks current dollar value for our shareholders and enables AOL to continue to aggressively execute on our strategy to create long-term shareholder value.” The portfolio sold relates to advertising, search, content generation and management, social networking, mapping, multimedia/streaming and security. The sale is expected to be completed by the end of 2012, pending regulatory approval. Read on for AOL’s press release.

AOL and Microsoft Announce $1.056 Billion Patent Deal

AOL to sell more than 800 patents to Microsoft; Microsoft to license more than 300 additional patents and patent applications from AOL

Transaction is tax-efficient for AOL

Upon closing, AOL expects to return a significant portion of the proceeds to shareholders

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–AOL Inc. (NYSE: AOL) (the “Company”) today announced that the Company has entered into a definitive agreement to sell over 800 of its patents and their related patent applications to Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT) (“Microsoft”) and to grant Microsoft a non-exclusive license to its retained patent portfolio for aggregate proceeds of $1.056 billion in cash.

“The agreement with Microsoft represents the culmination of a robust auction process for our patent portfolio”

Following the sale, AOL will continue to hold a significant patent portfolio of over 300 patents and patent applications spanning core and strategic technologies, including advertising, search, content generation/management, social networking, mapping, multimedia/streaming, and security among others. AOL also received a license to the patents being sold to Microsoft.

The patent sale includes the sale of the stock of an AOL subsidiary upon which AOL expects to record a capital loss for tax purposes and as a result, cash taxes in connection with the sale should be immaterial. Additionally, AOL expects to utilize approximately $40 million of its existing deferred tax assets, representing approximately 20 percent of its total deferred tax assets, to offset any ordinary income taxes resulting from the license of its remaining patent portfolio.

AOL management and its Board of Directors intend to return a significant portion of the sale proceeds to shareholders and will determine the most efficient and effective method to do so prior to the closing of the transaction. Pro forma for the sale and license, as of December 31, 2011, AOL would have had approximately $15 per share of cash on hand.

“The agreement with Microsoft represents the culmination of a robust auction process for our patent portfolio,” said Tim Armstrong, AOL’s Chairman and CEO. “We continue to hold a valuable patent portfolio as highlighted by the license we entered into with Microsoft. The combined sale and licensing arrangement unlocks current dollar value for our shareholders and enables AOL to continue to aggressively execute on our strategy to create long-term shareholder value.”

“This is a valuable portfolio that we have been following for years and analyzing in detail for several months,” said Brad Smith, General Counsel and Executive Vice President, Legal and Corporate Affairs, Microsoft. “AOL ran a competitive auction and by participating, Microsoft was able to achieve our two primary goals: obtaining a durable license to the full AOL portfolio and ownership of certain patents that complement our existing portfolio.”

The transaction is expected to be completed by the end of 2012, upon the satisfaction of customary conditions and regulatory approvals, including expiration or termination of the applicable waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976, as amended.

Evercore Partners and Goldman Sachs acted as financial advisors and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz and Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner acted as legal counsel to AOL in connection with the transaction.

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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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Google celebrates Nelson Mandela with virtual museum

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012
Image
Google today announced the grand opening of the Nelson Mandela Digital Archive, an online collection of digitized photos, videos and documents centering around the former South African president. The site, based out of the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory in Johannesburg, South Africa, was developed with the help of $1.25 million in funding provided by the software giant. The collection includes unseen drafts of Mandela’s work, letters to friends and family members and diary entries made during his 27 year imprisonment. The multimedia archive is available for view now. You can check it out by clicking the source link below.

Google celebrates Nelson Mandela with virtual museum originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 28 Mar 2012 00:39:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink Slashgear  |  sourceGoogle, Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory  | Email this | Comments

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Microsoft says Windows Phone will beat the iPhone in China

Wednesday, March 21st, 2012

Microsoft believes its Windows Phone operating system will help the software giant push past Apple in China’s smartphone market, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday. Passing Apple is an “interim goal” for the company, as the longer-term objective is to surpass Google’s Android platform and become the local market leader, Microsoft’s chairman and chief executive officer for the Greater China region Simon Leung said. Read on for more.

China is a crucial market for vendors, and the country is predicted to become the world’s largest smartphone market in 2012. According to market research firm IDC, smartphone shipments in China will increase 52% to 137 million units, overtaking the United States for the first time ever.

“We will continue to drive the price down,” Leung said. “Our goal is number one. Having a goal to be number two is not really a goal.” While Apple’s 16GB iPhone 4S cost 4,988 yuan in China, Leung said that Microsoft’s manufacturing partners will “definitely” offer devices in the price range of 1,000 yuan, roughly $158, although he did not specify which partners or devices. By 2016, Windows Phone is projected to have a 20% Chinese market share, ahead of Apple’s 16% and trailing Google’s 60%, said Teck-Zhung Wong, a Beijing-based analyst at IDC.

Microsoft unveiled an updated version of its Windows Phone platform for the Chinese market on Wednesday, and announced the availability of the first Windows Phone for the region, the HTC Eternity.

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Microsoft patent suggests eyewear integration for Xbox, Windows Phone

Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

A new Microsoft patent published recently by the United States Patent and Trademark Office revealed that the company is working on two types of headsets for its Xbox and Windows Phone platforms, PatentBolt reported on Monday. The first unit resembles an aviation-type helmet and is aimed at Xbox gamers, while the second looks like a pair of sunglasses for use with smartphones and other future devices. The software giant states that a compact display system can be integrated into goggles, a helmet or other eyewear, enabling the wearer to view images from a computer, media player or other electronic device. Since the human eye can’t focus on images less than a few centimeters away, however, Microsoft’s headsets will have the ability to virtually project an image.

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Google’s Siri competitor to called ‘Assistant,’ report claims

Wednesday, March 7th, 2012

In December, it was reported that Google is working on a solution that will boost the capabilities of its Voice Actions on Android-powered devices in an effort to compete with Apple’s Siri voice assistant. The service, which was previously code-named “Majel,” will launch as “Assistant” according to a report from TechCrunch. Google intends its Assistant service to go beyond Siri’s functionality, and the software giant will maintain complete control of all the layers involved. According to the website’s sources, Assistant is being created by the Android team and has three goals: to put the world’s knowledge into a format a computer can understand, to create a personalization layer and to build a mobile, voice-controlled “do engine” that will help users accomplishing real-life goals. Unlike Apple, Google reportedly intends to make the service available to developers in an effort to broaden its functionality. The service will reportedly be unveiled in the fourth quarter of 2012.

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HTC also in talks to be Google’s next Nexus partner

Wednesday, February 29th, 2012

Following LG’s statement that the company is “heavily in discussions” with Google to become the next Nexus partner, HTC said it too is in discussions with the software giant. According to a new report from TechRadar, the Taiwanese handset maker is in talks with Google in hopes of being selected to design the company’s next flagship smartphone. Google previously worked with HTC to craft the original Nexus One. “Google hasn’t chosen its Nexus partner for (Android) Jellybean as yet. So right now all the manufacturers are crossing their fingers,” HTC’s global online communications manager Jeff Gordon said in a statement that has since been removed. Gordon said that the notion of being the next Nexus partner is “still very attractive to all OEMs, despite the imminent takeover of Motorola.” Gordon didn’t give an exact date as to when Android 5.0 would be released, but stated the company’s current priority is to bring Ice Cream Sandwich to its current device lineup.

[Via Droid-Life]

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Zune Music Pass May Be Reborn as a New Xbox Live Music Service [Rumors]

Friday, February 17th, 2012

Hotmail turns 15, checks spam folder for misfiled birthday wishes

Tuesday, July 5th, 2011

This Monday marked the 15th anniversary of the birth of Hotmail. That July 4th launch date is no coincidence — the service’s founders intended its release to highlight the symbolism of its independence from more traditional e-mail models. The following year, the service would be snatched up by Microsoft and housed under the software giant’s MSN umbrella. The subsequent years haven’t always been easy for the brand, thanks in part to competition from Yahoo and Google-owned services. In 2007, the service fired back, revamping and rebranding itself as Windows Live Hotmail. It’s been a decade and a half of ups and downs, but the webmail service continues to be one of the most widely used in the world. Got any Hotmail-related memories? Please share them in the comments below.

Hotmail turns 15, checks spam folder for misfiled birthday wishes originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 06 Jul 2011 00:03:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink   |  sourceWindows Team Blog  | Email this | Comments

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Adobe dominates Kaspersky Lab’s top ten PC vulnerabilites list

Thursday, May 19th, 2011

Being number one is usually an honor, but not when it comes to Kaspersky Lab’s top ten PC vulnerabilities list. Unfortunately for the software giant, Adobe took top dishonors for Q1 this year, pulling in five total spots on the list, including the top three. According to the security firm, all of the vulnerabilities appearing on the list allowed cyber-criminals to control computers at the system level. The number one spot was occupied by a vulnerability in Acrobat Reader that was reportedly detected on 40 percent of machines running the application, while Flash Player flaws took second and third. Other dishonorees included the Java Virtual Machine, coming in at fourth and fifth place, Apple QuickTime, Winamp, and Microsoft Office. That ain’t bad, considering Microsoft ruled the vulnerabilities roost in 2010.

Adobe dominates Kaspersky Lab’s top ten PC vulnerabilites list originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 19 May 2011 21:19:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink The Inquirer  |  sourceKaspersky Lab  | Email this | Comments

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Adobe releases preview of Wallaby, a Flash-to-HTML5 conversion utility [video]

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011

Via a brief blog post, software giant Adobe has announced a preview of its “Wallaby” Flash-to-HTML5 conversion tool. The company is describing Wallaby as “experimental technology,” but notes that it will facilitate the viewing of FLA files on iOS devices. “This [Wallaby] allows you to reuse and extend the reach of your content to devices that do not support the Flash runtimes,” writes Adobe. “Once these files are converted to HTML, you can edit them with an HTML editing tool, such as Adobe Dreamweaver, or by hand if desired.” Not all Flash features are supported by the conversion utility and Adobe does warn of a handful of documented, known issues. Hit the jump to see a video of the utility in action.

[Via 9t05 Mac]

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Microsoft: 74% of workplace PCs are 4.4 years old and still running Windows XP

Monday, July 12th, 2010

windows-7-packaging-small

Microsoft seems to be in a bit of a pickle – it has a fancy, schmancy OS in Windows 7 but a majority of its prized business customers are still clinging onto the now nine years old Windows XP operating system. On Monday at Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference, Tammi Reller, the CVP of Microsoft Windows, dropped the bomb that 74% of business PCs are still running Windows XP. The reason for this slow adoption was not provided but presumably it has to do with the poor reputation that has plagued Windows Vista and possibly its successor Windows 7, which, thought its not being adopted, has fared better than its counterpart in the reputation department. Economics may also play a part as businesses have apparently been slow to upgrade hardware with the average business computer boasting of 4.4 years of faithful service. Rather than take a pessimistic view, Microsoft is putting a positive spin on this circumstance and viewing it as an opportunity to compel businesses to jump into the latest generation hardware and software. Microsoft is pretty upbeat- according to CEO Steve Ballmer, the software giant expects to sell 350 million Windows 7 licenses in 2010 alone.

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