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Business, Financial & Legal Posts - Page 11

Microsoft set to up Surface Hub price and delay shipment

By: Chris Smith | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Dec 23, 2015 4:07 pm

Not only has Microsoft pushed back the Surface Hub release from 1 January 2016 to sometime in the first quarter of 2016, it has also jacked up the price by $2,000 on each model.




ZDNet reported that the original pricing for Microsoft's 55-inch Surface Hub was set for $6,999, packed with an Intel Core-i5 processor, compared with the 84-inch model and Intel Core i7 which was set to cost $19,999. This August-announced pricing has now changed, seeing Microsoft now announce a pricing of $8,999 and $21,999 respectively for these two models.


Those who have already pre-ordered Surface Hubs are protected though, with officials stating that the original pricing will be kept for those thinking ahead. Touching on the pricing increase, a Microsoft spokesperson said that "After evaluating the market opportunity and considering the unique collaboration scenarios Surface Hub offers, we believe these are the right prices to drive the business and the category forward." Another reason for this price hike is apparently due to Microsoft "finalizing our manufacturing plan with a view towards delivering the best product experience."

Adam Sandler works with Netflix because it 'rhymes with Wet Chicks'

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Dec 23, 2015 11:44 am

With the debut of Adam Sandler's first show on Netflix, 'Ridiculous 6', the comedian is back in the headlines in a very big way. Something we seemed to have missed when the deal went through between Sandler and Netflix, is the reason why he signed with the content streaming giant.




Back in October 2014, Sandler said that when Netflix called him up with the deal, he "immediately said yes for one reason and one reason only. Netflix rhymes with Wet Chicks". Interesting reason, Mr. Sandler. The full statement from Sandler was "When these fine people came to me with an offer to make four movies for them, I immediately said yes for one reason and one reason only. Netflix rhymes with Wet Chicks. Let the streaming begin!!!!"


Netflix Chief Content Officer, Ted Sarandos, said "People love Adam's films on Netflix and often watch them again and again. His appeal spans across viewers of all ages - everybody has a favorite movie, everyone has a favourite line - not just in the US but all over the world. Sandler also reportedly makes $80 million per movie in Hollywood, and Netflix has pockets deep enough to keep handing over servers full of money to the creator of huge hits like Billy Madison and Happy Gilmore.

Toshiba sheds 6800 staff due to accounting scandal

By: Chris Smith | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Dec 22, 2015 2:32 pm

While we reported that Toshiba are looking at a hefty $60m fine thanks to some 'creative' accounting mishaps, the aftermath of this massive blowout has resulted in 6800 staff being let go.




The cuts are happening within the consumer electronics division only and are set to be part of a Toshiba HQ reconstruction. In addition to this, reports claim that Toshiba is also looking to offload its television and washing machine manufacturing facilities in Indonesia, while this tech giant is also looking at investors to assist with healthcare ventures.


With Sony purchasing Toshiba's sensory fab for $155m and board resignations happening due to this accounting scandal, there's no saying what the next step will be.

Valve is being sued, lawsuit demands the right to resell Steam games

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Dec 22, 2015 7:44 am

Well, Valve is being sued by French consumer group UFC-Que Choisir, with the consumer group demanding the ability to resell Steam games.




The group claims that Valve's policy violates the European Union's right to resell legally purchased software, and as proof, the UFC-Que Choisir said that a 2012 Oracle case saw a judge ruling that there was no difference between reselling disc-based copies of software, and their downloaded equivalents.


The French consumer group also doesn't agree with Valve's self-given right to reuse user-made Steam content, arguing that the company should refund any leftover credit if you close your Steam account.

CEO that raised prices on AIDS medicine has been fired from his job

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Dec 22, 2015 6:41 am

The CEO of KaloBios Pharmaceuticals has been fired after he increased the price of AIDS medicine from $13.50 per pill to $750 per pill. Most recently, Martin Shkreli had been arrested with fraud charges.




Shkreli has been "terminated" from his position, and he has resigned from the board. The 32-year-old former hedge fund manager pleaded not guilty in Brooklyn federal court and was released on $5 million bail. Shkreli has been charged with securities fraud and conspiracy.


Prosecutors have said that from 2009 to 2014, Shkreli lost some hedge fund investors' money through bad trading. In order to pay back his angered clients, Shkreli took $11 million from another pharmaceutical company, Retrophin, where he was the CEO. US Attorney Robert Capers said on Thursday: "As alleged in the indictment, Shkreli essentially ran his companies like a Ponzi scheme, where he used each subsequent company to pay off the defrauded investors in the prior company".

Amazon looks at leasing 20 Boeing 767s for air cargo duties

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Dec 19, 2015 9:31 am

Amazon's reach is about to get a whole lot bigger, with the company reportedly in talks with Boeing over leasing a fleet of 767s for Amazon's air cargo duties, according to The Seattle Times.




The company wants to not go through the troubles UPS and other carriers did, with Amazon already using trailers on the road to get its goods to their distribution centers. Amazon is reportedly looking at leasing 20 Boeing 767s, and if it does get its hands-on the planes, Amazon will have a better handle on delivery times. Not only that, but Amazon could eventually not need the cargo services from companies like UPS, FedEx, and the USPS. The Seattle Times also notes that Amazon could open up extra space on its jets to other companies, providing a nice income stream, which would have it competing directly against UPS, FedEx, and others.

With a long break between episodes, take a look back at Star Wars fans

By: Chris Smith | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Dec 18, 2015 3:29 pm

While The Mercury explains that it has been 3865 says since the last Star Wars cinema showing, we're here to give you a look into some Star Wars fan history, via Gizmodo.




The images in this article showcase Star Wars fans throughout different eras, including sequels and prequels alike, giving us a look at some favorite characters, cosplayers, and hairstyles of the ages. While the internet is a fairly new invention in terms of the history of mankind, some of these poor souls were lining up for days or weeks in order to get tickets for their Star Wars fix.

Continue reading 'With a long break between episodes, take a look back at Star Wars fans' (full post)

2K Games hires former PlayStation UK marketing boss

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Dec 18, 2015 10:31 am

After 10 years with 2K International, Neil Ralley has stepped down from his position as General Manager. Replacing Ralley is Murray Pannell, who up until now served as PlayStation UK's Marketing Director, and previously he served Senior Marketing roles with Ubisoft, Xbox and EA.




2K President Christoph Hartmann said in a statement: "During his tenure, Neil helped grow our market share and distribution across Europe and beyond, led our international teams in reaching our 10-year milestone as a label, and helped us achieve our recent historic financial results. We are very grateful for his role in the successful launches of our many franchises and the overall growth of our label. Neil has graciously offered to stay on through the end of our fiscal year on March 31st, and to assist with the onboarding of our new VP of Publishing, Murray Pannell.


He continued: "Murray joined on December 17th and comes to us from Sony PlayStation, where he served as marketing director for UK and Ireland. Murray is a proven leader with a wealth of experience at major publishers like Ubisoft and EA, as well as further first party experience at Microsoft Xbox. We are sad to see Neil go, but we are pleased to formally welcome Murray into our management team in time for what we believe will be another stellar year for 2K in 2016".


2K has a big year ahead of them in 2016, with XCOM 2 dropping in February, and let's not forget Battleborn in May.

HP, Acer, NEC, Nokia group and more paid $0 Australian Tax last year

By: Chris Smith | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Dec 18, 2015 4:13 am

Due to laws passed in the recent past by the Australian Labor Government, the Australian Tax Office (ATO) has gained the ability to start publishing tax figures for companies earning over $100 million annually. With the 2013-2014 financial year just gone being the first opportunity for these figures to be published, the public has learned of some seriously large tech companies that ended up paying nothing, this time around.




Overall there have been 554 Australian public companies and 985 business' that have over 50 percent foreign ownership posted in this report, showcasing that 26 percent of these companies paid no tax in the 2013-2014 financial year. The no-payment list includes big names such as Acer, Alcatel-Lucent, Amaysim, ASG Group, Citrix, Cubic Transportation Systems, Dimension Data, HP, Ingram Micro, Macquarie Telecom, NEC, the Nokia Group, NTT, Verizon and Vodafone, reported iTnews.


A select few of these companies including Ingram Micro and HP posted no tax payments due to making an overall loss, with the ATO outlining that approximately 50% of these no-tax paying companies have been subject, or are currently subject to, official ATO reviews in the last three years.

Australia jumps head first into Android Pay adoption

By: Chris Smith | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Dec 17, 2015 2:32 pm

Australia's big banks are backing the launch of Android Pay in the land down under, with ANZ, Westpacm St George, Bank of Melbourne, Bank of South Australia, Bendigo Bank, Cuscal, ING Direct, and Macquarie Bank signing up their full support for 2016, ZDNet reported.




As announced in a Google blog post, this new service is set to be released in Australia "in the first half of 2016," with Android Pay gaining access to girft card storage, loyalty card intergration and select special offers.


Available for phones running Android 4.4 or later, customers will now gain the ability to pay for purchases in brick-and-mortar stores by using their increasingly-hand smartphone, working thanks to NFC. The service will require users to unlock their phone (due to safety concerns) and simply hold it near any contactless payment device, in what Google hopes will be a method to remove the need of plastic credit card payments in the future.

Continue reading 'Australia jumps head first into Android Pay adoption' (full post)