Samsung's legal team make iBooBoo in Apple vs. Samsung case, publicly release inadmissible evidence from trial
The Apple vs. Samsung trial is underway at the moment, and it looks like Samsung's legal team have made a pretty bad move, with the team in trouble with Southern District Court Judge Lucy Koh. Samsung have been going on about the 'Sony-style' design mockups this week, and this is what has landed them in trouble.
There were some mockups from Apple designer Shin Nishibori that were designed in order to show how Sony's design sensibilities could be melded with Apple's, in order to create a phone. The design was said by Samsung to exemplify that Apple were working from another company's designs when they were creating the iPhone, which is exactly what Apple are accusing Samsung of.
Apple then pulled out a prototype predating Nishibori's design that dated back to 2005, where they argued that Sony designs were just a riff on what it had done before. At this point, it had negated Samsung's point, in the eyes of Judge Koh. Koh then ruled that Samsung could not present evidence related to these 'Sony-style' designs, or another prototype design that Samsung says it was working on in 2006.
Officials over at the US Federal Trade Commission have agreed to let Google pay a settlement for circumventing privacy settings with Safari, Apple's web browser. Unnamed sources have told Reuters that Google will be seen handing over $22.5 million to avoid further proceedings, but it will not be forced to admit liability.
Google were accused of implementing code that bypassed Safari's default security provisions in an attempt to enable Google+ users to take advantage of the social network's +1 button. Google, at first tried to argue that initial reports had mischaracterized the method, which was limited to signed-in users and associated with cookies that didn't take any personal information.
Critics have said that Google's strategy had allowed its own DoubleClick ad network to track user activity, all without providing any notification of doing so, but Google eventually disabled the function. This case marks the biggest single fine ever served by the FTC at $22.5 million, with the penalty believed to be comparatively high due to consent decree that Google agreed to last year, barring the company from misrepresenting its privacy practices to its users.
Internet streaming sensation Spotify has released its latest figures, one of which is that it now has 4 million paying customers. The music service has been a massive hit ever since it was released, and these latest figures show just how big it is. Spotify's Ken Parks, speaking at a panel in the Global Business Summit on Creative Content in London, updated everyone with the running totals.
Talking to a 'Future for the Music Industry' panel, Parks announced that Spotify now sports 15 million active users, of which four million are willing to pay for the service. Spotify is a massive competitor to Apple's iTunes and is popular with users who don't want to be locked into an ecosystem as Spotify is multi-platform.
Earlier this month, it was announced that steaming accounts for 89% of music sales in Spotify's home market of Sweden. Parks will be looking for subscription numbers to increase as more countries start to become comfortable with music in the cloud. Based upon the numbers from Sweden, it appears people already are, at least in that country.
Yahoo have been in the news quite a lot lately, for all the right reasons, with ex-Google exec Marissa Mayer appointed the new CEO and president of the company. But, interim CEO, Ross Levinsohn has confirmed that he's leaving the company after not being named for the permanent position.
Levinsohn had allegedly been telling candidates for senior positions that he would be the next CEO, and according to reports, Yahoo employees were hoping that he would stay on with the company in some capacity, as well as help guide the company itself. But, over the weekend, Levinsohn e-mailed, saying:
I wanted to let you know that my time at Yahoo has come to an end. It has been an incredible journey for me and I could not be prouder of what we accomplished over the past few years helping define Yahoo as a leader in digital media and advertising. Yahoo is an amazing brand and company, and I leave knowing we did all we could to help inform and entertain more than 700 million users each month. Leading this company has been one of the best experiences of my career, but it is time for me to look for the next challenge.
Research firm Strategy Analytics has some new numbers for everyone to peer at, with the US Android handset sales dropping in Q2, but iOS sales went up. Overall, smartphone shipments for all manufacturers fell a little, by 5-percent to 23.8 million, compared to 25.2 million from the same quarter last year.
These changes in numbers are attributed to a combination of things, such as a volatile economy, and changes in upgrade policies by major carriers. Android sales in Q2 2011 were 15.3 million, taking up 60.6-percent of the market. This year, with the launch of flagship models such as Samsung's Galaxy S III, Android-based phones managed just 13.4 million sales, with 56.3-percent of the market, representing a drop of almost two million handsets over the period.
iOS was the only platform to not lose its footing, where it rose by nearly two million units, the same number Android lost, to reach 7.9 million units sold. It also increased Apple's marketshare from 23.2- to 33.2-percent, even with rumors of a new iPhone coming in the next few months. BlackBerry OS lost a million sales or so, and shrank to 1.6 million, or just 6.5-percent of the current market. This is believed to be the lowest market share RIM has ever had in recent history.
Ever since the whole SOPA debacle, GoDaddy have been having a hard time. This hard time has turned into the company's CEO, Warren Adelman stepping down after just eight months on the GoDaddy throne. Adelman had replaced former CEO, Bob Parsons, and will be succeeded by major GoDaddy investor, Scott Wagner of KKR Capstone. Adelman said in a release:
I am proud to have been part of a team that has built a terrific business. I've spent close to a decade with Go Daddy, and it has been an amazing and rewarding time in my life. As much as I have enjoyed my roles as CEO and formerly as President and Chief Operating Officer, I have reached a juncture in my life when I would like to spend more time with my family.
GoDaddy really fizzled out with their support for SOPA, but the company still found success by reporting they hit $1.1 billion sales, as well as hitting the 10 million user mark.
Seagate have been rumored to be looking at scooping up an SSD maker, where it piled up into a RumorTT post regarding Seagate acquiring OCZ. The news flared up again this week with tech blog side the Bright Side of News reporting that the deal between the companies was "done". But, it appears that it is not actually done and that Seagate might not acquire OCZ at all, at least, not right now.
Since the BSN post, OCZ shares jumped up 30-percent on Friday, and up 66-percent since mid-July all based on speculation that Seagate were to acquire the company. But, it looks like those highs are over, and OCZ's share prices are falling back down to more reasonable levels. OCZ shares topped at $7.60, and have now dropped to $6.36. On Thursday, the prices were hovering at around $5.40 a share.
After the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled that software downloads can be resold, GameStop has started looking into options for reselling downloadable games. While it's not clear if GameStop is doing this because of the ruling, it is likely the cause of their exploration into options regarding the matter.
GameStop would like to add this to its business as reselling used games is a big portion of its revenue. In 2011, GameStop managed $2.6 billion in used game sales alone, a number which has steadily increased since 2002's $300 million. Curiously enough, used game sales still make up roughly the same percentage of revenue. In 2002 that number was 22% and in 2011 the number rose to only 27%.
Game developers and publishers don't like the used game market as it cuts into their sales. As they receive no cut from any of the sales, each used game sale is roughly a lost sale to them. Not every used game sale would have been a new sale, however. They'd be happy if used game sales would completely cease to exist.
Apple acquired Authentic, who is a leading provider of mobile and network security for the tidy sum of $356 million last week. Under the deal, Authentic are set to become a wholly owned subsidiary of Apple.
Shares of Authentic closed at $5.07 on the 27th of July, with Apple paying a 58-percent premium on this valuation at $8 per share. This means that share holders of Authentic would've had a nice surprise for the weekend just gone. Authentic are best known for producing fingerprint sensors, NFC chips and security software for mobiles.
Authentic has some big customers in their pockets, such as Samsung, HP, Fujitsu, Dell and Lenovo. Apple seem to have secured a firm which deals in security, after the many many stories of their OS being not as secure as they're previously stated. We should hopefully see the effects of Apple's latest acquisition in the coming years.
Considering Apple's next major market is mainland China, with a population of over one billion people, its strange to hear that Apple has just a very small portion of Chinese customers. The news has also leaked that Apple's revenues in the market have slipped.
In the third quarter of this fiscal year, Apple's sales have experienced a drop when compared to the two previous quarters, with a big portion of this decline coming from their iPhone. Revenue for the third quarter in Greater China came to $5.7 billion, which is a total of 16-percent of Apple's total revenues. Considering revenues were up 48-percent from the same quarter last year, it had fallen by a sharp 27-percent from the previous quarter.
Increased competition from companies such as Samsung as well as domestic Chinese smartphones brands, the iPhones momentum has been slowing down over the past few months according to Li Yi, the secretary of China Mobile Internet Industry Alliance. Apple have sold 26 million iPhones last quarter, down a very sharp 26-percent, something I noted on last week. These sales figures were below what was expected by Wall St analysts.
Hunan-based SSD developer and manufacturer, RunCore, have announced they just recently began construction of a brand new state-of-the-art SSD production facility in Changsha's Junzhou New District in Hunan province.
The investment from RunCore is at around $31 million, with the new production facility compromising of more than 360,000 square meters. The first construction phase is set to be completed by the end of this year, and shjould offer the room for the first four new SSD production lines. In the first phase, RunCore will gain production capacity increases of around 400,000 units per year, worth just over $50 million.
Within the next three years, the entire facility should be polished up and finished, and will offer RunCore one of the most advanced production capabilities in the industry. At this time, RunCore hope to have an annual production valued at $156 million.
It's that time again. Everyone is reporting their Q2 financial result to the world and Samsung didn't want to be left out. The world's largest TV and mobile phone manufacturer reported a massive $5.9 billion in profit for the second quarter. Laptops and desktop monitors haven't been doing as well lately, but the Galaxy S III and Note have been boosting sales.
Incredibly, over half (62%) of Samsung's profit came from mobile phone sales, a large portion of which were made up of Samsung's flagship device, the Galaxy S III. Seven million Galaxy S III smartphones were shipped during the second quarter and analysts are expecting that number to increase to around 20 million in the third quarter.
Analysts are also expecting that the upcoming Apple iPhone 5 will put some water on Samsung's hot streak. Furthermore, Samsung is experiencing competition in the low-end smartphone market. Samsung is also coming up against a lawsuit with Apple in California, where Apple has reportedly requested $2.5 billion in damages.
It seems as though Facebook just can't catch a break. So far in premarket trading, Facebook stock has fallen 12.8% to land at $23.40. If Facebook can't get its stuff together and the stock stays near that level, it will be Facebook's lowest closing yet. As of right now, Facebook's lowest closing is at $25.52.
The reason behind this drop is actually fairly simple. Facebook had a disappointing showing in the second quarter. While Facebook met analysts expectations, meeting low expectations isn't something to be proud of. They managed a $157 million loss on $1.2 billion in revenue. This time last year, they posted a $240 million profit.
This latest stock drop comes just two months after the social networking giant went public. The initial public offering was listed at $38, nearly $15 higher than the current stock price. Investors haven't seen the stock at $38, or anywhere near that, since the first day of trading. It doesn't appear to be coming around anytime soon, either.
With the US government continuing to meddle in issues with the Internet, some of the biggest sites in the world including Google, Facebook, Amazon and eBay have teamed up to form the Internet Association.
The group is set to launch in Washington this September, coordinating the big powerhouses of the Internet in order to provide a unified message to lawmakers in the US. There are more to join, with these members being announced at the launch itself. Former adviser to the chairman of the House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee, Michael Beckerman, is taking the lead, where he said that the goal of the group is to educate legislators about the Internet.
With political lobbying being a huge cash cow, with $3.3 billion spent on it last year alone according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Google is one of the biggest spenders, splashing $5.4 million this year so far, with Facebook just throwing $650k into the ring.
Court rules that Apple won't need to publish a notice on its UK website that Samsung didn't copy its iPad design
One week ago we reported that a judge ordered Apple to publish a notice on their UK website and British newspapers that the courts ruling stated that Samsung did not copy Apple's iPad designs.
But now, Bloomberg is reporting that a London court has ruled today that Apple do not need to immediately publish a notice on its UK website that Samsung didn't copy their iPad design.
This new order is stayed until the appeal against the ruling in October. Personally, I don't think it's fair. Apple go after Samsung, Samsung have their hardware pulled from shelves hours afterward. Samsung successfully have a court rule that their design didn't copy the iPad, and Apple get away with it until October.
Facebook posted their Q2 finance reports, where the social network saw $1.18 billion in revenue for the company's first disclosures since its IPO went live in May.
Most of the revenue came from advertising, which raked in $992 million, a 28-percent increase over the same quarter last year. Facebook also posted a $743 million loss for the quarter, compared to the $407 million profit from the same quarter in 2011.
Facebook was expected to outspend its income for Q2, as $1.3 billion in share-based compensation and payroll tax expenses were finally realized. Facebook CEO and mastermind, Mark Zuckerberg said:
Our goal is to help every person stay connected and every product they use be a great social experience. That's why we're so focused on investing in our priorities of mobile, platform and social ads to help people have these experiences with their friends.
If you thought Apple's 26 million iPhone shipments during the second quarter of 2012 was impressive, just wait until you hear how many Samsung shipped. Juniper Research says that Samsung managed to double that number to 52.1 million smartphones shipped in the second quarter of 2012, quite the impressive number.
Total shipments of smartphones during the same period totaled 132.9 million, according to estimates. This means that with Samsung and Apple's shipments combined, they make up more than half of the total smartphone shipments. Samsung's sales numbers were likely boosted significantly by the Galaxy S III which sold 10 million units in just 2 months.
To get a feeling for just how well the top two manufacturers are doing, Nokia shipped just 10.2 million in the second quarter. RIM managed only 7.4 million shipments. It's likely Apple will gain some ground on Samsung with the release of the iPhone 5, but at the same time it is unlikely that Samsung will sit idly by.
If Western Digital's financial results reported today are anything to go by, it would appear that the hard drive company has recovered nicely from the flooding that put a majority of its manufacturing capacity underwater less than a year ago. Western Digital managed to pull in $4.7 billion dollars this quarter, Q4 2012.
For the entire 2012 financial year, WD managed to pull in $12.5 billion. These results are large increases over the same periods last year. Net income rose to $1.6 billion, more than double what it was for fiscal year 2011. These financials now include Hitachi, which likely contributed a large portion to enterprise drive shipments that WD achieved last year.
Even more interesting is that WD has again shipped more laptop drives than desktop drives. During Q4 2012, Western Digital shipped 21.2 million desktop drives and 32.8 million notebook models. The difference between these categories has never been this high before and previously desktop drives outsold laptop models.
AOL reported their Q2 earnings report, seeing revenues of $531 million. This makes it AOL's lowest total revenue decline in seven years, with a 2-percent year-on-year decrease.
AOL's legacy income, such as mobile carrier revenues and subscriptions continued to fall, but it was offset by growth in international display advertising and third-party network revenues. Operating income was boosted by the $96 million AOL made from licensing patents to Microsoft.
But, AOL have insisted that its EIBDA grew regardless of this deal with Microsoft, saying that "excluding those items, the remaining Q2 2012 Adjusted OIBDA of $94.6 million reflects an increase of $18 million year-over-year." AOL chairman and CEO, Tim Armstrong said:
Today's results represent a significant milestone for AOL as we returned to Adjusted OIBDA growth for the first time in four years. The strong results and consumer performance we announced today are clear signs our strategic and operating efforts are translating into significant financial progress.
Zynga didn't have high estimates from analysts, but the company didn't even meet those. The company releases their Q2 earnings report, which showed revenue of $332 million, and lost $22.8 million, or 3 cents per share. Analysts predicted Zynga would pull in 5 cents per share on revenue of $344 million.
Zynga have said they have 72 million daily active users, up from 59 million in the previous quarter, and 306 million monthly active users, up from 228 million. Bookings on the other hand, were $302 million, up 12-percent from the same time last year, but a sequential decline of around 9-percent from the previous quarter.
The company has now lowered its outlook going into the rest of 2012 based on delays in launching new games, a faster decline in existing web games due in part to a more challenging environment on the Facebook web platform, and reduced expectations for Draw Something." Zynga are projecting $1.15 billion to $1.225 billion in bookings for the remainder of 2012.
Think back to that deal closed back in May when Google acquired Motorola Mobility for $12.4 billion. Well, in an SEC filing, Google explains just how it valued Motorola's worth and in that we find that Google valued "patents and developed technology" at $5.5 billion, the largest portion of the acquisition.
Other amounts of money were much smaller than the $5.5 billion: $2.9 billion of the purchase price for Motorola's cash, $730 million went to customer relationships, and $670 million to other net assets. The remaining $2.6 billion was for goodwill, or the value of the company above and beyond its assets.
Google from the beginning has said that the acquisition was to acquire the patents that Motorola held. It would appear that they wanted the patents so much that they were willing to pay a $7 billion premium to get their hands on them. Google reported Motorola's financials for the first time last week and they contributed over $1.25 billion to revenue. However, the mobile firm reported a $233 million operating loss.