Israel-based CDN startup Cotendo is about to be sold to Akamai to the tune of $300 million. There has been no comment from either Cotendo or Akamai, with Akamai giving the usual response of "our policy is not to respond to rumors".
Cotendo has 90 employees and lists Google, Facebook, Microsoft and AOL amongst its customers. In addition to a number of VC funds, Cotendo has Citrix and Juniper as shareholders and strategic partners. Cotendo's revenues for 2011 are expected to reach between $20 and $30 million.
One year ago, MIT and Akamai filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Cotendo, shortly after AT&T announced it will use Cotendo's technology.
er 1000 workers based in Shenzhen, China have gone on strike against their employer Jingmo Electronics Corporation (JEC), which supplies goods for companies such as Apple and IBM.
According to China Labor Watch (CLW), a New York-based watchdog for labor rights in China, and an advocate of ethical consumerism, "the motivation behind the strike was the factory's decision to make workers work nightly overtime."
CLW adds that the workers had been asked to work from 6pm to midnight and sometimes even up to 2am on top of the usual four to four and half day shifts from 7am to 11:30 or 1pm to 5pm. CLW adds "commonly worked anywhere from 100 to 200 hours of overtime a month," but the factory actually refused to let them put the hours in at the weekend because under Chinese labor law JEC would have had to double their wages.
Thanksgiving is a great time for not just consumers, but retailers. IBM reported that online Thanksgiving 2011 sales were up over 39-percent from last Thanksgiving, with mobile shopping on the rise. eBay and PayPal are seeing similar things, with PayPal Mobile announcing a 511-percent increase in global mobile payment volume when compared with the 2010 Thanksgiving.
On Thanksgiving in the U.S., consumers shopping through mobile via PayPal most frequently between 6pm and 7pm PST. Compared to the rest of the world where consumers shopped on mobile most frequently between 1pm and 2pm PST. There was more than a 350-percent increase in the number of global customers shopping through PayPal mobile on Thanksgiving compared to last year. These shoppers were mostly located in New York, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami and Chicago.
Microsoft have some pretty decent Black Friday sales, with the Microsoft Store retail site putting up a page teasing their lineup of upcoming Black Friday sales, which start at 12am Pacific time Friday. A few highlights are a Samsung RC512 laptop sporting Windows 7: $499, normally $799!
Xbox Ultimate Gaming Bundle has $200 off, Kinect Sensor Bundle (with Fruit Ninja, Gunslinger and Kinect Adventures) is just $99, down from $149 and also included in the Black Friday sales is a free Windows Phone with a two-year service contract.
Europe has ruled that ISPs can't be forced to block pirate sites, NZBs and torrent users cry pirated tears of joy.nzb
This is some good news for those who are based in Europe, your ISP cannot be forced to monitor or block you from using the Web. A European court has ruled that record labels and film studios can't use the courts to instruct your broadband ISP to track or try to block you.
The European Court of Justice ruled:
EU law precludes the imposition of an injunction by a national court which requires an Internet service provider to install a filtering system with a view to preventing the illegal downloading of files.
ISPs have been the magnet of blame shifting from record labels, film studios and other owners of copyrighted music, movies or media, where they've tried to steer governments into making ISPs responsible for piracy. They've tried to argue that ISPs should record what you're doing online, and if they notice you downloading illegally accessed copyrighted material, courts should order the ISP to boot you off the Internet.
China's largest e-commerce firm, Alibaba.com, posted an 11.9-percent rise in quarterly net profit, which is their slowest growth in nearly two years, which has led to Alibaba.com raising conerts due to a weak trade outlook coming from debt worries in Europe and the US.
Alibaba.com's third-quarter results missed analysts forecasts and were attributed to a weak macroeconomic climate that led to a slower pace of customer additions. Dick Wei, an analyst with JPMorgan says:
They are focusing on the quality of suppliers and also improving the overall quality of products that they are offering, such as some of the newer services to help buyers to check the quality of products before they are shipped. If you look at customer growth, there are no new initiatives and growth is not that top priority at this point," Wei said. "Revenue will pick up again later in 2012 or 2013.
Microsoft back in 2008, had a very public failed takeover attempt of Yahoo, where they were willing to dish out $46 billion to purchase Yahoo. It failed, and now according to reports, have signed a confidentiality agreement with Yahoo which allows them to take a closer look at the struggling company's business as they explore various options for striking a deal.
Microsoft are joined by private-equity firms such as TPG Capital and Silver Lake, where they're going line for line over Yahoo's books and operations. Microsoft this time, is not looking for a complete takeover, but is only looking to help finance a bid as part of a consortium and not buy Yahoo outright, in a move to safeguard their ongoing web-search partnership with Yahoo.
It has only just been up until now, that the United States has been the world's biggest market for smartphones, but China has taken that flag and firmly planted it into their soil. Nokia is top dog in China, Samsung are a close second, whereas Apple and HTC lead the U.S. markets.
China has for a long time now, had higher cell phone use when compared to the States, given that China has a population of 1.34 billion, compared to the 310 million U.S. citizens, one would think so. Strategy Analytics reports that 23.9 million units were sold in China in Q3 2011, compared to 23.3 million units sold in the U.S. for the same quarter.
Strategy Analytics researcher Tom Kang says:
China's rapid growth has been driven by an increasing availability of smartphones in retail channels, aggressive subsidizing by operators of high-end models like the Apple iPhone, and an emerging wave of low-cost Android models from local Chinese brands such as ZTE.
The European Commission has approved Western Digital to acquire Hitachi's hard drive business in a cash and stock transaction valued at $4.3 billion. Once the deal is finalized, Western Digital should cover roughly 50-percent of the market, but not until some requirements are met.
Requirements? Well, Western Digital will have to sell off some of its hard-disk drive production assets to a smaller competitor. The idea behind these requirements [in the eyes of the European Commission] is to ensure that competition in the industry is "fully restored before the merger is implemented."
At it stands right now, Apple is currently the second-largest PC vendor worldwide, with Hewlett Packard sitting firmly in first place. But, come to end of 2012, this could very well change. Research outfit Canalys, says Apple's share of the PC market has grown 6-percent in the past twelve months alone.
What is driving this growth? The super-famous iPad, which Canalys considers a personal computer. Canalys Analysis (say that three times fast) Tim Coulling says:
Apple has seen its PC market share expand from 9 percent to 15 percent in just four quarters, though iPad shipments in its core market - the United States - are likely to come under pressure in Q4 due to the launch of the Fire and Nook at extremely competitive price points. HP and Apple will fight for top position in Q4.
With the iPad 3 set to include a high-res 2048x1536 display, it will just make the iPad 3 an even tastier option. Canalys estimates global PC shipments to reach 415 million in 2011, a 15-percent year-over-year increase, thanks largely to the Apple iPad. What I'd like to know is, is this what the "2012 is the end of the world" is going to be... Apple, of all companies, as the number one PC vendor worldwide?
Apple have started sending teaser posters around as announcements of their Black Friday holiday sale for this Friday, November 25th. The first teaser appeared on the Australian online store and will most likely be floating its way around the world by now.
The special one-day Apple shopping event. This Friday, November 25.
Mark your calendar now, and come back to the Apple Online Store for the special one-day event. You'll discover amazing iPad, iPod and Mac gifts for everyone on your list.
Apple's Black Friday discounts aren't usually too bad, but are small when compared to other retailers. Last year, Apple offered $101 discounts on their iMac, MacBook Pro and MacBook Air lines, with $11-$41 discounts on the iPods and iPads. Not bad, but not great, either.
Apple lead Google by a fairly large margin when it comes to revenue generated by apps, with numbers from Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster suggesting Android-based users are conservative when it comes to shopping on the Android Market.
The analysis shows that Android users seem to shy away from purchasing commercial apps, when compared to iPhone and iPad users who have purchased 12 times more paid apps per device. 13.5-percent of iOS customers purchase apps whilst just 1.3-percent of Android users opt for non-free software on their devices.
Those numbers mean nothing unless we're talking dollars, right? The Android Market generated just shy of $350 million in gross revenue, where Apple's App Store pulled in an impressive near-$5 billion. Both companies take a 30-percent cut of these totals, which is very impressive as they're just hosting them.
Microsoft Chairman and co-founder, Bill Gates, has donned his suit, put his hands on his hips and walked into court on Monday in a billion-dollar antitrust lawsuit against Microsoft over Windows 95. Yes, Windows 95.
Microsoft did attempt to get the billion-dollar antitrust case dismissed by a federal court, but failed. Bill Gates was forced to take the witness stand on Monday to defend Microsoft. Novell filed the antitrust lawsuit and are attacking Microsoft over Word Perfect. Novell originally sued Microsoft in 2004, claiming that Microsoft violated U.S. antitrust laws and harmed Novell's range of software products.
Novell has provided an Exhibit of an e-mail from 1994, which was from former Microsoft CEO and chairman Bill Gates to his software development teams. Gates started his testimony with a history of Microsoft (or a commercial) by saying "We thought everybody would have a personal computer on every desk and in every home."
I found this video on my stumbles through the [sometimes] strange corners of the Internet, where YouTube user 'n0w1kn0w' posted a video with the title "You have 30 days to pay me $5,000,000...", the video is below, watch it first and then read more below:
Now, it starts off all boring - at one point I thought he was building a mobile bomb that he was going to place in some Government building and then keep it there for 30 days waiting for his $5,000,000, but then the video gets quite serious with n0w1kn0w visiting a pyramid in Egypt, and rolling his remote control car into it.
iiNet have just made their acquisition of Canberra-based TransACT official. The deal included iiNet scooping up the company for $60 million, and TransACT happy with the deal as they were reportedly keen to sell because of the impending rollout of the National Broadband Network (NBN).
iiNet CEO Michael Malone was quoted:
iiNet's acquisition of TransACT represents an attractive strategic opportunity to build scale in the ACT market quickly and efficiently. In particular, TransACT's experienced and passionate management team will allow iiNet to grow its presence in the SME, corporate and government market segments, a key growth area for the Company. We are also excited about the strong existing relationship between TransACT and ActewAGL, the leading utility provider in the region, and the resulting growth opportunities for both companies.
The on-going flooding problem in Thailand is only getting worse for the technology industry, with hard drive pricing skyrocketing past what most people would have been able to dream of two weeks ago. People are expecting pricing to rebound soon, but they are wrong, very wrong.
Seagate CEO Stephen Luczo was talking to Bloomberg, where he labels "nonsense" estimates that drive production will return to "pre-flood levels" by next summer. He adds:
This is going to take a lot longer than people are assuming, until the end of 2012 at least. And by then, demand will have gone up.
Another year of inflated prices, where they could really go anywhere from here? Not good for consumers, or those companies who are building cloud-based super servers such as Apple, Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook, etc.
Well, it's finally settled. Rambus was dealt with a pretty big defeat on Wednesday, as a San Francisco jury rejected its claim in a $4 billion antitrust lawsuit against Micron Technology and Hynix Semiconductor. The IP licensing company lost more than 60-percent of its market value following the ruling, where investors' fear that the company won't be able to sustain its business model.
If you didn't know, the case revolved around allegations that Micron, Hynix and others had engaged in price-fixing to keep Rambus' RDRAM memory technology from gaining widespread adoption. If you remember, Intel used RDRAM with the Pentium III and 820 chipset, as well as the Pentium 4 and 850 chipset. If you remember that, you'll also remember how it was quite expensive at the time and DDR ram was just too much of a bully for RDRAM to take off.
The Australian retail market has always been a funny thing, something available online for say $19.99 (like the t-shirt I'm wearing) is $49.99 here in stores, if not more. It's ridiculous and it seems that even a powerhouse retailer like JB Hi-Fi is feeling that pinch.
Today they very quietly launched an online-only direct sales model, at first just selling DSLR cameras and accessories. These prices won't be offered in-store, with only the online store the only way to take advantage of the super-cheap pricing. The store is dubbed "direct import" and offers DSLR camera, lenses, flashes and grips. Funnily enough, it's undercutting its own bricks and mortar JB Hi-Fi stores in the process.
Now, if I had to fly somewhere in the world to do a story, it would be Google X. Most large enterprises like Google have something similar, Apple has reportedly had their room where Steve Jobs would tinker with unreleased, or fantasy products, but Google X... wow.
Only a handful of people even know where this secret facility is located, and even less is known about the lab itself, or the people involved. Google will no doubt be working on some super secret and mind-blowing creations and concepts behind its closed, air-locked, arm-guarded doors. The New York Times reports that when Google employees were asked about the project, very few knew anything at all about it.
On Thursday last week, a US judge ruled that Twitter must release the details of Icelandic MP and former WikiLeaks volunteer Birgitta Jonsdottir's Twitter account and those of two other Twitter users linked to WikiLeaks.
Jonsdottir learned that in January of 2011, her Twitter account was being watched by the Justice Department because of her involvement last year with WikiLeaks' release of a view showing a US military helicopter shooting two Reuters reporters in Iraq. Jonsdottir believes the US authorities want to use her information to try and build a solid case against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
Foxconn have gone through their share of troubles over the years, with 17 employees having committed suicide over the past five years. Foxconn have recently announced they are building a $223 million "robot kingdom" in the Central Taiwan Science Park in the Taiwanese City of Taichung.
The research and development center and manufacturing hub is part of chairman Terry Gou's ambitious plan to build one million robots. Yes, build. One. Million. Robots. Last I heard Foxconn weren't called Skynet, so this is a pretty huge development. According to a September report by the International Federation of Robotics (FDR), the world is on track to reach 1.3 million operating industrial robots by 2014.