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Business, Financial & Legal Posts - Page 60

Google: "we have no current plans regarding Bitcoin"

What are Google's plans with digital currency, Bitcoin? Nothing it seems, with the Mountain View-based giant talking to The Next Web, confirming the news that it doesn't have any immediate plans to use Bitcoin.

 

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A Google spokesperson told TNW: "As we continue to work on Google Wallet, we're grateful for a very wide range of suggestions. While we're keen to actively engage with Wallet users to help inform and shape the product, there's no change to our position: we have no current plans regarding Bitcoin".

 

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Google was forced to come out and talk about it after a recent Reddit thread that tackled the digital currency issue, after a Reddit thread was titled "Google confirms their payments team is working to incorporate bitcoin". The user who posted the thread said he had e-mailed Google's Senior Vice President of Social, Vic Gundotra, asking him if the company was going to support Bitcoin.

 

Gundotra then allegedly forward the email to Sridhar Ramaswamy, Google Wallet's Senior VP, who replied with: "We are working in the payments team to figure out how to incorporate bitcoin into our plans".

Continue reading 'Google: "we have no current plans regarding Bitcoin"' (full post)

Bill Gates wants to see 'no poor countries by 2035'

The co-founder of Microsoft, Bill Gates, has made quite the prediction in the Gates Foundation's annual letter. Gates has said that there will be "almost no poor countries by 2035."

 

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The Gates Foundation is expected to give away the entire Gates fortune of around $67 billion once the couple has been dead for over 20 years, has published a letter for each of the last dive years, detailing global philanthropic progress. Gates talked with Forbes Magazine's Editor, Randall Lane, where he said there will soon be a point where "you'll have to give a reason why a country is poor."

 

Gates wrote: "I am optimistic enough about this that I am willing to make a prediction. By 2035, there will be almost no poor countries left in the world. Almost all countries will be what we now call lower-middle income or richer. It will be a remarkable achievement. When I was born, most countries in the world were poor. In the next two decades, desperately poor countries will become the exception rather than the rule. Billions of people will have been lifted out of extreme poverty. The idea that this will happen within my lifetime is simply amazing to me."

Continue reading 'Bill Gates wants to see 'no poor countries by 2035'' (full post)

Jamaican bobsled team raises $30,000 in dogecoins, needs John Candy

The cash-strapped Jamaican bobsleigh team is in dire need of funds to reach the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games, and it looks like they might get there thanks to the crypto-currency, dogecoin.

 

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A fundraising campaign was put together following news over the weekend that Team Jamaica had qualified for the Winter Olympics for the first time since 2002. Winston Watt, who leads Team Jamaica, spent his own money transporting the team to training sessions, but didn't have enough funds to make it to Russia.

 

Watt then opened a PayPal account, hoping to raise the $40,000 or so required to attend. Dogecoin founders, Liam Butler, Jackson Palmer and Billy Markus, all happen to be fans of the Jamaican bobsleigh team, with Butler telling the Guardian: "As someone who grew up in the '90s, Cool Runnings was the ultimate feel-good movie about underdogs out of their element achieving their dreams. When I was about seven years old, my best friend and I had a billy-cart that his dad built. When we would start our run down his driveway, we would shout out the catchphrase from the movie: 'Feel the rhythm, feel the rhyme, get on up, it's bobsled time!"

Continue reading 'Jamaican bobsled team raises $30,000 in dogecoins, needs John Candy' (full post)

Verizon picking up Intel TV for less than $200 million

New details have emerged on a deal that could see Verizon take ownership of Intel's Internet TV project. Today, two sources have opened up and said that Verizon has agreed to pay less than $200 million for the Internet-TV startup which include about 350 employees moving employment status from Intel to Verizon.

 

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"We will have the opportunity to enhance, expand, accelerate and integrate our delivery of video products and services to better serve audiences on a wide array of devices," Verizon Chief Executive Officer Lowell McAdam said in the statement.

 

This deal could spell out big bucks for the nations largest mobile device and internet carrier, as it has been trying to dominate the streaming entertainment arena for quite some time now. While official news of the sale will remain silent until quarterly earning reports are released, today's news should have some effect on Intel and Verizon's market prices tomorrow morning.

Candy Crush Saga developer now owns the word 'candy'

So... the word "candy" has been trademarked, by the developer behind Candy Crush Saga, King.com. The US Patent and Trademark Office approved it on January 15, with King.com Limited's filing for it all the way back in February of last year.

 

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King.com has been granted exclusive rights to use the word pretty much wherever it wants: apparel, video games, gambling services, amusement parks, computer hardware, and more if its application is approved by the assigned examining attorney. It does get worse, with GameZebo stating that developers even mentioning candy in their titles are being approached by King.com's legal department.

 

Its legal department makes them prove that their product doesn't infringe on the Candy trademark, or remove their apps for sale. their product doesn't infringe on the Candy trademark, or remove their apps for sale.

Continue reading 'Candy Crush Saga developer now owns the word 'candy'' (full post)

Amazon wants to read your mind, ship packages before you buy them

Amazon is getting a little scary as we shift into 2014, with a new patent for "anticipatory shipping". This patent will allow the US giant to sent items to shipping hubs in areas where it believes that particular item will sell well.

 

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The new shipping scheme should slice delivery times down, as well as putting Amazon much higher up on the food chain than it already is. The company plans to box, and ship products it expects its consumers will buy preemptively, based on previous searches and purchases, wish lists, and how long the user's cursor hovers over an item online.

 

Amazon wants to go a step further, by having the products "speculatively shipped to a physical address" without knowing if the customer wants it. This would eventuate in returns of unwanted deliveries, but Amazon is willing to take that risk. Amazon stated in its patent: "Delivering the package to the given customer as a promotional gift may be used to build goodwill."

Dropbox reportedly secures $250 million in funding

According to sources of the Wall Street Journal, cloud storage giant Dropbox has just secured itself $250 million in additional funding. A BlackRock investment group is leading the new investment charge, but both Dropbox and BlackRock aren't confirming these reports at the moment.

 

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With the $250 million secured, it would see Dropbox valued at $10 billion. Considering the cloud storage outfit was founded in San Francisco in 2007, and with over 200 million users, it should come as no surprise to see such a giant evaluation. It should see Dropbox better compete with other cloud storage services and the companies behind them, such as Box, SkyDrive, Google Drive and more.

Nintendo feels some pain, forecasts $335 million operating loss

Nintendo had a stellar 2013 with its 3DS console, but overall, sales of its hardware are not impressing anyone. The Japanese gaming giant expects to post an operating loss of 35 billion yen ($335 million) for the year ending March 31, 2014.

 

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It did have a projected operating income of nearly triple that, according to its full-year financial and dividend forecasts. Nintendo projected net sales of 920 billion yen and profit forecast of 55 billion yen for the current financial year. These numbers have been reworked now, dropping to 590 billion yen in sales, and a net loss of 25 billion yen.

 

Nintendo has said that the operating loss is thanks to a "significantly lower" holiday season of sales than it had originally forecasted. This is mostly due to hardware sales not meeting internal targets, and the year-end sales season "constitutes the highest proportion of the annual sales volume."

Continue reading 'Nintendo feels some pain, forecasts $335 million operating loss' (full post)

Intel will not be opening up its Fab 42 plant in Arizona

Intel did plan on opening up a new plant in Arizona that would've manufactured its 14nm technology, but has been put on hold, indefinitely. The facility was meant to open up at the end of last year, but was put off.

 

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The facility was announced all the way back in 2011, with President Obama visiting the Intel facility in Oregon. Obama highlighted the fact that Intel was manufacturing in the US, and that it was a great thing for the US economy. Intel has shrugged the facility off, with the chipmaker stating that its fab utilization remains at 80%, and that it doesn't need to spend money on a new facility right now.

 

Intel spokesperson, Chuck Malloy, said: "If we can maintain that 80 percent capacity with the existing space, why spend the additional capital?" Intel will now use its existing fab space in Arizona to spin up its 14 and 22nm processes simultaneously. The new space won't be put to waste, with Intel using it in the future, but Malloy didn't hint at when this might be.

Apple forced to pay $32.5 million for in-app purchases settlement

Some parents' kids racked up some massive in-app purchases through iOS-based game, which ended up in a Federal Trade Commission complaint. This complaint has ended with Apple having to hand over $32.5 million.

 

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The FTC's complaint alleges that Apple failed to tell parents that by entering a password, they were allowing single in-app purchases, as well as additional purchases that their children could make without the parent intervening again. FTC chair Edith Ramirez said: "This settlement is a victory for consumers harmed by Apple's unfair billing, and a signal to the business community: whether you're doing business in the mobile arena or the mall down the street, fundamental consumer protections apply. You cannot charge consumers for purchases they did not authorize."

 

The FTC had received tens of thousands of complaints about unauthorized purchases by parents of children who used their iOS devices. One consumer saw a massive $2,600 bill from a game called Tap Pet Hotel.

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