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Business, Financial & Legal Posts - Page 11

Woolworths now allowing eBay parcel pickup, Australia Post unfazed

I certainly didn't see this coming - popular online auction service eBay has partnered with the Australian supermarket Woolworths for the power of good, allowing users to pick up their online purchases from a store closest to them.

 

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Announced yesterday, Australian residents in the states of New South Wales and Tasmania can have their precious goods sent to a collection of 90 Woolworths and Big W shopfronts where they can drop in and pick up their orders. eBay isn't looking to stop here, with plans set in place to expand to 250 merchants within the next two months alongside Woolworths claiming to be researching up to 12,000 web retailers for future possible partnerships.

 

Australia Post is reportedly not worried about this partnership, although it is already "facing its first full-year loss in its 30 year history as a statutory business" as reported by iTnews. A spokeswoman has informed media that this company will play "an integral part of the new eBay/Woolworths partnership," adding that "we will still pick up the parcels from the different eBay merchants and deliver the articles as addressed to Woolworths collection sites."

 

Is this a service that you would like to take advantage of? Let us know your thoughts on Facebook or in the comment section below.

Chinese government relying more on home grown hardware, technology

China has turned its back on Cisco, Apple, McAfee, and other major US technology companies, dropping the companies from its approved purchase lists. Instead, Beijing has approved thousands of Chinese-made hardware and software vendors, in an effort to boost the Chinese technology industry.

 

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One-third of foreign tech brands were cut from China's approved list, as domestic brands increased to almost 5,000.

 

"The Snowden incident, it's become a real concern, especially for top leaders," said Tu Xinquan, associate director for the China Institute of WTO Studies at the University of International Business and Economics, in a statement to Reuters. "In some sense the American government has some responsibility for that; (China's) concerns have some legitimacy."

Continue reading 'Chinese government relying more on home grown hardware, technology' (full post)

Apple spending big dollars investing in two new Euro data centres

Ireland and Denmark are in Apple's sights, with the tech giant announcing that we will see an environmentally sustainable data center constructed in each which country - set to cost them €1.7 billion ($1.93 billion US).

 

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These centers will be 166,000 square meters in size each and used for Apple online and cloud services for European customers. These fully renewable energy supplied facilities will be supporting Apple's iTunes, App store, iMessage, Maps and Siri applications.

 

No details have been provided just yet of exactly how this renewable energy will be generated and when asked by iTnews "on the design for power usage efficiency, total rack space capacity and server hardware choice for the data centers" no answer was given.

 

The Danish facility is set for construction in Viborg, Jutland and is located next to one of the largest electric substations. It's worth noting that excess heat produced by this data center will be used as part of the Viborg district central heating system.

Continue reading 'Apple spending big dollars investing in two new Euro data centres' (full post)

The countdown to House of Cards season three begins, 5 days left

Netflix will be unleashing the third season of House of Cards on February 27, but before then, the streaming giant has released a very short teaser, which you can view below.

 

 

The teaser itself shows off some of the familiar characters having a conversation, but what are those conversations about exactly? Then we have the shoes... the damn shoes. Just release it already, Netflix - my binge watching awaits!

Continue reading 'The countdown to House of Cards season three begins, 5 days left' (full post)

US Marshals will auction Ross Ulbricht's 50,000 bitcoin stash

Silk Road operator Ross Ulbricht's stash of 50,000 bitcoins will be auctioned by the US Marshals in an auction on March 5. Pre-registered participants will have the chance to place bids during a six-hour window, with the winning bidder contacted on March 6.

 

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The value of bitcoins has decreased from $1,147 in December 2013 down to $238 over the weekend.

 

"This sealed bid auction is set for 50,000 bitcoins separated into two series: Series A (10 blocks of 2,000 bitcoins), and Series B (10 blocks of 3,000 bitcoins," according to a public statement from the US Marshals. "You will not have the opportunity to view other bids. You will not have the opportunity to change your bid once submitted."

Continue reading 'US Marshals will auction Ross Ulbricht's 50,000 bitcoin stash' (full post)

Bitcoins have major potential in Africa, changing banking industry

The bitcoin cryptocurrency is struggling in the United States and other developed nations, but could have a major impact in sub-Saharan Africa. Around 75 percent of the population don't have a traditional bank account, and while more users rely on mobile phones to make transactions, it can be a slow and expensive process.

 

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There were up to $1.8 billion in remittance fees, with a traditional money transfer charging a 12 percent transfer fee. Embracing bitcoins would help speed up the process, so money arrives to the recipient faster, while also being much cheaper.

 

"Bitcoin can greatly alter the remittances industry and beyond," said Michael Kimani, head of the African Digital Currency Association, in a statement to CNN. "From seven days [for a transaction to clear] using banks and PayPal, down to 20 minutes speaks volumes."

Continue reading 'Bitcoins have major potential in Africa, changing banking industry' (full post)

Apple Pay taking over mobile payments as rivals struggle to compete

Since its public launch in October, Apple Pay continues its march towards becoming the mobile payments leader - with consumers testing the service, and more businesses willing to give it a try. Apple Pay now has two-thirds control of the surging mobile payments market, according to the Robert Baird's analyst group.

 

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Whole Foods embraced Apple Pay and mobile payments have increased 400 percent, the company said. Meanwhile, Apple Pay is responsible for 80 percent of mobile payments, with that number rising even higher.

 

"There are still a limited number of vendors that are supporting it, but our expectation is that's going to continue to grow just given the early success the early vendors are having with it," said Will Power, senior research analyst of Robert Baird, told CNBC. "Right now, the Apple iPhone - hard to believe - seven years later or so is as well positioned competitively really as it's ever been."

Continue reading 'Apple Pay taking over mobile payments as rivals struggle to compete' (full post)

AMD is hiring a CPU performance engineer to optimize its GPU drivers

AMD has been spending considerable time on the software side of its hardware game with technologies like HSA, Mantle, and the still fresh Omega drivers.

 

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But now it looks like it's time the company really spreads its wings when it comes to its Catalyst driver suite, with AMD hiring a CPU performance engineer to help them optimize their graphics drivers in CPU heavy gaming workloads. AMD has a few specific requirements for this engineer to join the team, where it has listed on his job description: "The responsibilities include analyzing CPU bound benchmarks and games to identify a variety of CPU bottlenecks in drivers, optimizing the drivers, and providing optimization actions to ISVs".

 

The job description continues: "The candidate will analyze new CPU architecture impact on driver performance and translate into actionable tasks. This position requires the candidate to collaborate with graphics and CPU architects at multi-sites across multiple graphics driver components".

Sony to more than double down on its investment into PlayStation

It's kind of an end of an era for Sony, with the Japanese giant falling on its sword in multiple of its failing divisions. We've seen the company sell of its VAIO laptop business, which is now making a comeback, but there's some more news that many will be sad over.

 

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Sony wants to make a 25-fold increase in its profits, by concentrating on products that actually make the company money. Considering the company has just recorded its sixth net loss in seven years, many can see why. Sony's stock on the other hand has actually grown by 80% in the last 12 months, as its CEO, Kaz Hirai, has been restructuring the core of Sony's business.

 

Hirai has been able to do this by focusing on making less products, to ensure they're making the right products, that sell well. This effort of restructuring will continue, but now the company has announced it will be pulling out of more markets. In the end, Sony will be making the PlayStation its near sole purpose, as well as making Sony camera sensors for companies like Apple. The company has thought of pulling out of the TV market with its Bravia brand, as LG and Samsung have been making serious inroads in the TV business over the years.

Continue reading 'Sony to more than double down on its investment into PlayStation' (full post)

David Thodey steps down as CEO of Telstra, Andrew Penn as replacement

Today it was announced that David Thodey will be stepping down as the Telstra CEO, with chief financial officer and group executive international, Andrew Penn, taking up the role as of May 1, 2015.

 

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As revealed this morning by Telstra chairman Catherine Livingston, Thodey was praised as an "outstanding chief executive," with further mention that the company has seen a double in their value since his appointment in 2009. Thodey, 60, will be helping Penn transition into the position over the next few months - stating that "our journey to being a world class customer service organization is generational progress. We have achieved much change but there is a lot more to do."

 

Working in Melbourne, Australia - Penn will be receiving a fixed remuneration package of $2.325m, including superannuation and the eligibility of short-term incentives. It might sound like quite a lot, however Telstra has reported another record half-yearly profit, with its $2.085 billion figure meaning a 22.4 percent increase when compared to the previous period.

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