Twitter, as of today, can and will sensor tweets, if required by law. Twitter have said as they grow internationally, they enter countries that have different ides about "the contours of freedom of expression".
Some of which can be so different to ours, that Twitter cannot exist there. Twitter have said that others are similar but, for historical and cultural reasons, restrict certain types of content, such as France or Germany, which ban pro-Nazi content.
Up until now, Twitter had to remove the content globally. Today brings change. Twitter have given themselves the permission to reactively withhold content from users based in a specific country, while keeping it available to everyone else. Twitter have also built-in a way to communicate transparently to users when content is withheld, and why.
Samsung have posted their Q4 2011 official earnings, and they have done quite well indeed. Samsung had an operating profit in Q4 2011 of $4.7 billion from $42 billion in sales.
How did Samsung reach this success? Oh, by selling more than 300 million smartphones last year alone. Mobile accounted for roughly 40-percent of Samsung's sales, and nearly 50-percent of their operating profit, Samsung's semiconductor business also did very well, taking in more than $2 billion in profit over the same period.
Samsung's Display Panel business was improved year-over-year compared to 2010, thanks to LED TVs, with sales up almost 20-percent to $7.6 billion. Samsung expects good things for 2012, with mobile business to grow, LTE and new market segments like the Galaxy Note to drive sales. TVs are expected to continue their rise, with Samsung releasing more Smart TVs, and the 2012 London Olympics will help, too.
Intel have pulled out their credit card today and swiped down a purchase of patents from RealNetworks to the tune of $120 million. RealNetworks Inc. in the agreement hand over a large number of patents, which is set to help Intel's portfolio for streaming media on not only smartphones, but laptops and other devices.
Intel will receive roughly 190 patents and 170 patent applications, as well as next-generation software that allows for the quick compression or decompression of video for streaming. RealNetworks are still allowed to use the patent in current and future products, and will now work with Intel on continued development of the software and related products.
RealNetworks Chief Executive, Thomas Nielsen, said in an interview:
To bring new technology like that [video software] to market requires significant reach into the consumer and business markets. A partner like Intel has the capacity and size to do that.
Apple's Tim Cook says at Town Hall all Apple employees get $500 off Macs, $250 off iPads, starts in June
Apple had an amazing quarter, and to thank their employees, Tim Cook has said at today's Town Hall meeting that there will be some new "employee benefits". This is just a way Apple want to show their appreciation to those who have worked so hard to continue pushing the company to where it is today.
Cook announced that starting in June of this year, Apple employees will be given $500 discount on purchases of new Macs and $250 discounts on purchases of new iPads. There are some conditions, though. Apple employees may only take this opportunity every three years, and have to have been working at Apple for 90 days or more.
Another condition is the Mac discount cannot be used on the Mac mini, which is priced pretty close to the $500 Mac discount which would make it nearly free. Apple employees already receive a 25-percent discount on Macs, so that $500 is going to go a long way.
President Obama did what he does best at his State of the Union speech, talked. Obama can say a lot, and not really mean it. He comes across as this beacon of light that is going to introduce change, but nothing really changes. He allows no reform, employs half of Wall St, ex-bankers and ex-CIA to be his left and right-hand men and women.
Anyway, he has laid out his plans for an economic recovery where he references the technology sector and said:
An economy built to last is one where we encourage the talent and ingenuity of every person in this country.
Steve Jobs' wife, Laurene Powell Jobs was in the audience at this time, when Obama said:
That means women should earn equal pay for equal work. It means we should support everyone who's willing to work; and every risk-taker and entrepreneur who aspires to become the next Steve Jobs.
Apple had quite an amazing 3 months, with a record-breaking $46.3 billion in revenue, 37 million iPhones sold and 15.43 million iPads being sold. That last number, 15.43 million iPads.
15,430,000 iPads sold, compared to the total number of HP's personal computing devices is actually strong. HP only sold 14.7 million, which means Apple sold more iPads than HP sold PCs. This is a seriously huge number.
Considering its only one iOS-based device, and not even the iPhone, this shows Apple mean some serious fruity business. This HP figure, to be fair, doesn't include the TouchPad. "Sources familiar with HP's build plans" say that the initial TouchPad order was between 1.8 and 2 million units.
NVIDIA has warned that its current quarter's sales would fall short of expectations. NVIDIA, whose fourth quarter ends January 29, has said it now expects quarterly revenue of around $950 million.
This is short of their original expectations of approximately $1.066 billion. NVIDIA have said that the shortfall is due in part by the PC-market impact from a global hard-drive shortage because of the unfortunate and devastating Thailand floods.
Because of this, fewer systems were shipped, and some PC makers decided to scale back on graphics to account for their inflated hard-drive costs. NVIDIA have also said that its Tegra 2 mobile chip business declined more rapidly than it had expected.
NVIDIA is currently ramping production for Tegra 3, which will replace the Tegra 2 chip over time.
Tim Cook congratulates employees over e-mail, tells them to attend Town Hall tomorrow to discuss "some exciting new things going on at Apple"
Apple have had an amazing Q1, with some uber-strong numbers blowing even analysts expectations. You'd have to be happy being the CEO right now, and Tim Cook seems to be over the moon. Cook sent a short e-mail to Apple employees not only congratulating them on both a record setting holiday quarter, but starting 2012 with the launch of a ground-breaking initiative for education with iBooks textbooks.
Cook has told all employees to report to Town Hall tomorrow, either in person or through AppleWeb at 10AM PT to discuss "some exciting new things going on at Apple." His full e-mail is below:
Thanks to everyone's hard work, we're off to a great start in 2012. Last week in New York we launched a groundbreaking initiative for education with iBooks textbooks, and today we reported the strongest quarter in Apple's history.Please join me tomorrow morning at 10 a.m. in Town Hall. We'll review our record-setting results and discuss some exciting new things going on at Apple.The meeting will be broadcast live to many sites in Cupertino and other Apple locations. Please check AppleWeb for details.
This is definitely something that I did not expect, but WikiLeaks' founder Julian Assange is set to host his own new television show that will have him featuring interviews with key political players from around the world.
The theme of the interview show is "the world tomorrow" and is scheduled to hit in mid-March. Assange is said to be planning 10 weekly half-hour episodes where he will explode what he says is the future of our world with political players, thinkers and revolutionaries. He hopes to examine his guests' philosophies and struggles in a deeper way than what has been done before.
The program is set to be shown to over 600 million viewers across cable, satellite and terrestrial broadcast networks based on initial licensing commitments, but no specific networks or providers have been listed.
At the moment, there has also been no mention of planned guests.
Apple just posted their earnings, and what a quarter they had. How did their Apple Store's go? Well, they experienced 110 million people walking through the Apple Store doors, worldwide. This breaks down to roughly 22,000 customers per Apple Store, per week.
These customers aren't just window shoppers, either. $6.1 billion of Apple's quarterly revenue came from their retail stores. This works out to be roughly $17 million from each of Apple's 358 retail stores.
Considering that most people, and competitor Amazon have rung the bell of death for brick-and-mortar retail stores for a while now, Apple are seeing as Borat would say "great success" in their Apple Stores.
Apple's Q1 2012, which runs between September 25th to December 31st, 2011 is quite special. It included the iPhone 4S launch and the holiday sales. How did Apple fare up? Well, quite brilliantly.
Apple took in $46.3 billion in revenue (compared to $28.3 billion in the previous quarter), with a record quarterly profit of $13.06 billion. 37.04 million iPhones were sold in this period, compared to just 17.07 million sold in the previous quarter.
iPads saw a nice shipment total, too, with 15.43 million iPads being sold, compared to 11.1 million in the previous quarter. Macs and iPods saw 5.2 million and 15.4 million, respectively. Compared to the previous quarter of 4.89 million and 6.62 million, respectively.
This has been Apple's first $40 billion quarter.
The average annual salary of a Silicon Valley technology worker has surpassed the $100,000 mark this year. Tech-jobs website operator Dice Holdings Inc. has said that salaries for software and other engineering professionals in California's Silicon Valley rose 5.2-percent to an average of $104,195 last year.
This beat the average 2-percent increase to $81,327 in tech-workers' salaries nationwide. It was also the first time since Dice began the salary survey in 2001 that the numbers broke the $100,000 mark, said Tom Silver, a Dice senior vice president. It comes at a time where companies such as Facebook Inc., Zynga Inc., and Twitter Inc., that have reignited the web boom.
Some companies have gone public, too, with LinkedIn Corp. and Zynga hitting IPOs and Facebook is eyeing an IPO soon, too. Their success has made a domino effect on new start-ups, which has then ignited a hiring war for software engineers and others.
To compare, job growth elsewhere in the U.S. has remained relatively slow. U.S. employers added 200,000 jobs in December, and the unemployment rate ticked down to 8.5-percent, its lowest level since early 2009. Silver said "there's a tussle for talent growing in Silicon Valley and employers have to pay up." Tech-job postings in Silicon Valley on Dice rose to 5,026 earlier this month, up 26-percent from 3,974 a year ago. Nationwide, tech-jobs only rose 11-percent in the same period.
Intel have just announced they have agreed to acquire QLogic's InfiniBand business for $125 billion in cash. The move ie said to enhance Intel's networking and scalable high-performance computing portfolio. The deal is expected to close by the end of the current quarter pending the usual regulatory approvals.
What is InfiniBand? InfiniBand is a switched fabric communications link for data flow between processors and I/O devices used in high-performance computing and enterprise data centers. Intel says that the acquisition supports their vision of innovating on fabric architectures to achieve ExaFLOP/s performance by 2018. An ExaFLOP/s is a quintillion computer operations per second, a hundred times more than today's fastest supercomputers. Fast, huh?
Intel has also said that they expect a "significant number" of InfiniBand employees to join their company. QLogic may have sold their InfiniBand assets, but they will now reportedly work on converged networking, Ethernet and storage area networking (SAN) products.
Groupon have just acquired Bay Area-based Mertado, a social shopping company that helps consumers discover new products. In a statement to All Things D, Julie Mossler said "Groupon is excited to announce it has purchase Mertado.com."
No terms of the deal were disclosed, but Mossler did say several members of Mertado's staff will join Groupon, including founders Mehul Shah, Rajiv Bhat, and Vijay Chittoor, who is also the CEO. The reason behind the acquisition is that Groupon were interested in Mertado's expertise in the social commerce space, which includes the launch of Mertado TV, which combined video content with products.
A post on Mertado's Web site states that they are no longer accepting any new registrations and will officially shut down on February 28th. This is the second acquisition in as many moths for Groupon, where last month Groupon acquired Campfire Labs, which will head up the company's social efforts.
28nm at TSMC and GlobalFoundries are going through teething issues, wakes up during the night screaming
With my beautiful 10-month-old daughter getting multiple teeth at once, it felt right comparing the issues between 28nm and teething. Onto the news! We all know transitioning from an older fabrication to something newer, better, and more exciting can be, well, hard. It's being reported that both TSMC and GlobalFoundaries are both experiencing serious yield issues with their 28nm process nodes, according to Mike Bryant, technology analyst at Future Horizons.
This is reportedly causing a rash of non-working wafers, to the point of having nothing working with some chip designs submitted for production. The problem seems to stem from pressure of bringing these new products to the market, rather than a problem with the technology itself. It takes time, something they don't have, and without said time, they can't iron out all of the issues and they're getting stuck.
Foundries have come under pressure to release cell libraries too early - which end up with designs that don't work. At 45-nm, only NVIDIA was affected. At 28-nm any problems for TSMC will be problems for many customers.
Intel have today reported a full-year revenue of an astounding $54 billion, with an operating income of $17.5 billion, net income of $12.9 billion, and EPS of $2.39. The thing associated with all of those huge numbers? They're all records. Intel had an amazing year in 2011.
Intel generated approximately $21 billion in cash from operations, paid dividends of $4.1 billion and used $14.1 billion to repurchase 642 million shares of stock. Q4 2011 saw Intel post a revenue of $13.9 billion, operating revenue of $4.6 billion, net income of $3.4 billion and EPS of 64 cents. Q1 2012 has been good so far, with their business outlook mentioning revenue sitting at $12.8 billion, plus or minus $500 billion.
Full-year 2012 details are interesting, with stand-outs like Research & Development (R&D) expected to hit $10.1 billion. With Intel heading into the smartphone market, that $10.1 billion could go a very long way. With their lead bulldozing the CPU competition, Intel don't really even need to release something that much faster to stay on top. But, if they slow down, it might give AMD enough time to catch up.
Eastman Kodak, the 133-year-old iconic American company that invented the handheld camera, have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. After years of losing profits, and responding slowly to the ever-changing market, bankruptcy seems to be their only way out.
The move follows a long-term restructuring plan by chairman and CEO Antonio Perez, where since 2003, Kodak have closed 13 manufacturing plans, cut its worth force from 145,000 down to 17,000. 15 years ago, Kodak were valued at around $31 billion, its current value? Just $150 million.
Perez has said:
The Board of Directors and the entire senior management team unanimously believe that this is a necessary step and the right thing to do for the future of Kodak. Our goal is to maximize value for stakeholders, including our employees, retirees, creditors, and pension trustees. We are also committed to working with our valued customers.
Amazon lose money on each Kindle Fire sold, as hardware and manufacturing costs of the Kindle Fire exceed its retail pricing, but somehow, Amazon aren't losing money on it. How does Amazon conduct this sorcery? Well, with every Kindle sold is another annuity revenue stream for the company, further strengthening its core retail business.
According to RBC, each Kindle Fire generates more than $100 in additional income, which makes up for the $2-$3 that Amazon make per device. RBC Capital analyst, Ross Sandler, said in research notes to clients:
Kindle Fire unit economics are likely to be more favorable than consensus expectations, based primarily on frequency of digital goods purchases. Our assumption is that Amazon could sell 3-4 million Kindle Fire units in Q4, and that those units are accretive to company-average operating margin within the first six months of ownership. Our analysis assigns a cumulative lifetime operating income per unit of $136, with a cumulative operating margin of over 20 percent.
Google had their turn just before, and now it's Redmond's turn. Microsoft have reported its second quarter 2012 earnings with record revenues of $20.9 billion, a 5-percent increase year-over-year. Microsoft's operating income, net income, and diluted earnings per share for the quarter were $7.99 billion, $6.62 billion, and $0.78 per share, respectively.
Compared to last years results of $8.17 billion, $6.63 billion and $0.77, respectively. The Online Services division, which includes Bing, lost another $458 million and Entertainment, where Xbox lives, as well as Windows operating profits, were also down. COO, Kevin Turner said in a release:
In addition to the continued strength of our commercial business, this holiday season was the strongest in Microsoft history, thanks to good sales execution and compelling products like Xbox 360 and Kinect. We are seeing a lot of excitement for new devices, from Windows 7 Ultrabooks to new Windows Phones, as well as growing anticipation for Windows 8.
Google have activated 250 million Android devices, seen 11 billion apps downloaded from the Android Market
Google had their earnings call a little earlier, where they revealed their growth and revenue for Q4 2011. On top of this, Google CEO Larry Page said that there have been more than 250 million Android-based devices activated worldwide.
On top of this insane number, more than 11 billion applications have been downloaded from the Android Market. Considering that back in October of 2011, Apple said they had sold 250 million iOS devices (which include the iPad and iPod Touch), this means that Google have caught up to Apple. Keep in mind that Apple have a two-year head start in the smartphone market.
Google have activated 50 million devices since its last earnings report back in October 2011. It'll be interesting to see where these numbers sit at this time next year, Google have so many handset makers wanting to one-up each other, where Apple just slowly release their products. I think Google will really overtake Apple within 6 months, within 12 months we should see a nice lead.
Google have released some financial results that might interest some, with Q4 011 and fiscal year ending December 31, 2011 being released. CEO of Google, Larry Page, says:
Google had a really strong quarter ending a great year. Full year revenue was up 29%, and our quarterly revenue blew past the $10 billion mark for the first time. I am super excited about the growth of Android, Gmail, and Google+, which now has 90 million users globally - well over double what I announced just three months ago. By building a meaningful relationship with our users through Google+ we will create amazing experiences across our services. I'm very excited about what we can do in 2012 - there are tremendous opportunities to help users and grow our business.
$10 billion revenue for Q4 is very impressive, up 29-percent. Google reported revenues of $10.58 billion for the quarter ending December 31, 2011, an increase of 25-percent when compared to the same quarter in 2010. Google-owned sites generated revenues of $7.29 billion, or 69-percent of total revenues. This is an increase of 15-percent year-over-year. Google's partner sites generated revenues of $2.88 billion, or 27-percent of revenues. This too is a 15-percent increase year-over-year.
International revenues made outside of the United States came to a total of $5.6 billion, representing 53-percent of total revenues for Q4 2011, compared to 55-percent in the third quarter of 2011, and 52-percent from Q4 2010.