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Sprint to offer Total Equipment Protection on iPhones starting Jan. 25

By: Trace Hagan | More News: BREAKING STORY | Posted: Jan 17, 2013 2:49 am

Previously, Sprint customers only had one option when it came to insurance and extended warranties for Apple iPhones: Apple's very own AppleCare. However, a leaked internal screenshot shared anonymously with Engadget shows that starting January 25, Sprint customers will be able to purchase Total Equipment Protection (TEP) for iPhones.




The monthly charge is an additional $11 on top of your current bill and a large $150 or $200 deductible if or when your device needs to be replaced. This is opposed to AppleCare, which costs just $99 up front and a $50 deductible when a device is damaged.


I'd have to lean towards AppleCare being the better choice. However, if you can't afford that extra $99 up front, you will soon have another option.

Another court agrees: Galaxy Tab doesn't infringe upon iPad

By: Trace Hagan | More News: BREAKING STORY | Posted: Jan 17, 2013 2:05 am

Yet another court agrees that the Samsung Galaxy Tab does not infringe upon patents held by Apple regarding the iPad. It turns out that in the Netherlands, round corners are not patentable, or at least don't belong to Apple. The district court in The Hague ruled that the rounded corners of the Galaxy Tab 10.1, 8.9, and 7.7 do not infringe on the iPad.




"We continue to believe that Apple was not the first to design a tablet with a rectangular shape and rounded corners and that the origins of Apple's registered design features can be found in numerous examples," reads a Samsung statement.


The Dutch court apparently cited previous rulings made by British courts as precedent. There are still plenty of other legal battles still going on between the two tech giants, including hashing out the details of the $1.05 billion judgement that Apple got against Samsung last year.

AMD says ex-employees provided NVIDIA with stolen documents

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jan 17, 2013 1:05 am

AMD is on the offensive claiming that ex-employees have provided NVIDIA with stolen documents containing some of AMD's most sensitive trade secrets. NVIDIA hired away former AMD executive Robert Feldstein, a person that was instrumental in getting AMD's graphics chips into the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Nintendo Wii.




"The volume of materials that these three defendants collectively transferred to storage devices, each of which is unaccounted for, as they left to work for AMD's competitor, exceeds 100,000 electronic files," AMD claims.


Not only is AMD accusing these ex-employees of stealing sensitive documents, AMD says that the former VP violated a "no-solicitation of employees" promise when he worked on bringing over other AMD employees to NVIDIA. We're likely to see a court battle where more evidence and details will come out.

RumorTT: Xbox 720 to use Blu-ray discs for games, not play Blu-ray movies

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jan 17, 2013 12:53 am

There are many rumors surrounding the Xbox 720 and nothing can really be confirmed until Microsoft decides to spill the beans. Microsoft has been significantly tight-lipped about the next-gen Xbox, though rumors have tried to fill in the gaps, grasping at the smallest piece of information to try and figure out what will happen.




The latest rumor to join the crowd is that Microsoft is planning to equip the Xbox 720 with a Blu-ray drive, but limit the device so that it can only be used for games and not media playback. An interesting choice, considering the PlayStation 3 enjoyed numerous sales because of its ability to play Blu-ray discs.


On the otherhand, it makes sense for Microsoft to limit media playback, as they enjoy profits from streaming media content to the Xbox through their Xbox Live service. In the end, none of this rumor has been confirmed, but it's unlikely that Microsoft wouldn't use a Blu-ray drive as games continue to get bigger and bigger.

Microsoft teases Surface Pro release, rapidly approaching 90-day timeline

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jan 17, 2013 12:03 am

Microsoft isn't quite ready to spill the beans on exactly when it will be launching the Surface Pro. Previous rumors and speculation has placed the date around January 29, and this looks to be fairly accurate. Panos Panay, the general manager of Microsoft's Surface line, tweeted about checking out the Surface Pros coming off of the production line.




"On my way to the factory to check out #Surface Pro coming off the line...arriving in the coming weeks," the tweet read.


If Microsoft wants to make its 90-day deadline, the Surface Pros would have to come out next week, as Saturday, January 26 is 90 days from the general release of Windows 8. The 64GB Surface Pro is set to retail for $899, and the 128GB is set to cost $999. The Touch Cover and Type Cover will set you back an additional $120 and $130, respectively.


We'll be sure to let you know when a solid release date is given.

New zero-day Java exploit shows up online, for sale in online forum for $5k

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jan 16, 2013 11:38 pm

Java seems to be one of the most exploited pieces of software running on a computer. Unfortunately, most computers are running Java for websites and other interactive features online. Just earlier this week, Oracle had to rush out a patch for Java that secured up a critical bug that allowed hackers to run code on a victim's machine.




An administrator for an exclusive cybercrime forum posted up Monday an offering for a new zero-day exploit that has yet to be patched by Oracle. It also has yet to be rolled into one of the exploit kits, some of which rent for upwards of $10,000 a month. The starting price for the exploit? $5,000.

Continue reading 'New zero-day Java exploit shows up online, for sale in online forum for $5k' (full post)

Google's Street View car did not kill a donkey in Botswana

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Current Affairs | Posted: Jan 16, 2013 11:04 pm

Contrary to the stories and accounts going around the web, Google's Street View car did not hit and injure or kill a donkey while collecting imagery in Botswana. The mistake is an easy one to make, as vehicles are driven on the left side of the road in the country, opposite that of the United Sates. This results in what looks like the Street View car hitting and killing the donkey.




Google has countered these claims with a blog post entitled "Never Ass-ume," in which it details that the Street View car came upon the donkey taking what appears to be a dust bath in the road. The donkey then got up and moved to safety and then peered curiously at the car after it passed.


In the blog post, Google says that they "hope you continue to enjoy some of the spectacular images of Botswana and its wildlife, big and small."

Things looking up for Facebook as Bank of America raises price target to $35 thanks to 'innovation' with Graph Search

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jan 16, 2013 10:09 pm

With the "innovation" of Graph Search, some investors are seeing a brighter future ahead for Facebook. Bank of America Merrill Lynch has revised their target price for Facebook stock, increasing it to $35 from $31. Justin Post, an analyst for the bank, says Graph Search was "an example of Facebook's ongoing innovation to increase engagement and potential to add revenues to the platform."




Facebook's stock is actually trading down by about 0.8 percent, at the time of writing, which could be investors having some uncertainty about the Graph Search product that was introduced yesterday. Investors are likely not happy that Facebook unveiled something that couldn't be monetized immediately.


Bank of America continues to suggest buying the stock.

Google hosting hackathons in SF and NYC for early backers of the project

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jan 16, 2013 9:27 pm

For those developers who supported the Google Glass project early on by ponying up $1,500 to buy a developer set, Google will be hosting two hackathons, one in San Francisco and one in New York City, where early backers will be able to go hands on with early prototypes of the wearable computing devices.



Google's hackathon in San Francisco will take place January 28 and 29 and the hackathon in New York City will take place shortly after on February 1 and 2. The events are called Glass Foundry, a fitting name for the hackathons, and both events appear to follow the same agenda.


The first day will introduce the device and let developers use it on-site. After that, the hackathons will dive into the Mirror API and development with Google engineers at attendees' sides to answer any questions. Space is limited, so if you put out the $1,500 to get an early pair, you should get in contact with Google before all the slots are taken.

Continue reading 'Google hosting hackathons in SF and NYC for early backers of the project' (full post)

iPhone 4S users on AT&T will finally be able to use FaceTime over cellular data

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Apps | Posted: Jan 16, 2013 9:04 pm

AT&T has been slowly reducing restrictions on Apple's FaceTime. The latest reduction in regulation comes in the form of AT&T allowing iPhone 4S users on a tiered data to use FaceTime over their cellular data. Previously, AT&T would not let non-LTE devices use FaceTime over the network. This change also means that other smartphone devices that don't feature LTE will be able to video chat over cellular data, again, provided that they are on a tiered data plan.




AT&T Mobility VP Mark Collins:


When FaceTime over Cellular launched in September 2012, we explained that we wanted to roll it out gradually to ensure the service had minimal impact on the mobile experience for all of our customers.


As a result of ongoing testing, we're announcing AT&T will enable FaceTime over Cellular at no extra charge for customers with any tiered data plan using a compatible iOS device.


This means iPhone 4S customers with tiered plans will be able to make FaceTime calls over the AT&T cellular network. AT&T previously made FaceTime over Cellular available to customers with a Mobile Share plan and those with an LTE device on tiered plans.


Of course, FaceTime over Wi-Fi remains available for all customers who have a compatible iPhone or iPad.


The new update to video chat regulations will roll out automatically over the next few weeks. AT&T says everything is automated, so all you need to do is be patient.