Kogan Technologies Blog has an interesting piece on the current GST-free retail world that Myer and now Harvey Norman are wishing for. Gerry Harvey has announced he wants to follow in Myer's footsteps by offering a China-based website to sell direct to Australian Shoppers, GST free.
The blog pulls up some interesting points, but personally I do not see the point - Harvey Norman and Myer need to realise, like any retailer (with myself working in the IT retail sector as well as the super-hero posting TweakTown magician) that retail cannot continuously go up and up and up. It will fall eventually.
Well isn't that interesting! In October last year Seagate rejected a takeover bid from Western Digital. According to "two people with knowledge of the matter" Western Digital was willing to offer between 10 and 15 percent more than a competing takeover from TPG Capital which had already flashed $7.5 billion dollars under Seagate's nose.
However the sheer size of the proposal supposedly led to the refusal, not only would it have created a mammoth company, it would have also lead to huge product overlaps (internal, external HDD's, etc) and would've led to many managerial departures - on top of all of this, significant antitrust obsticles.
Well, it looks like Google's money isn't good enough for the folks at Groupon. Google reportedly offered up to 6 billion dollars for the local coupon site, but this deal wasn't sweet enough for Groupon who now reportedly pulls in around $2 billion a year in revenues.
This $2 billion figure is a lot higher than the original projections that had Groupon pulling in around $500 million a year. Groupon sees half of this amount as the other 50 percent goes to the merchant, but the full figure is counted as revenue. Three years worth of revenue obviously wasn't enough for Groupon, who is also possibly considering going public with an IPO next year.
Just two days after WikiLeaks released 251, 287 U.S. diplomatic cables to major media organizations such as The New York Times, international police organization, Interpol has placed Julian Assange on it's wanted list for "Sex Crimes" in a warrant issued by the Public Prosecution Office in Gothenburg, Sweden.
If Assange returns to Australia (his home country) he may face criminal charges. He is also under investigation in the US for espionage. The Interpol charges are relating to rape allegations made by two different women in Sweden back in August.
In the words of the great Ron Burgundy, "Boy, that escalated quickly. I mean, that really got out of hand fast!" And by getting out of hand, I mean Facebook's value, $50 billion!!
The last company valuation put them at $35 billion, at the moment there are 2.5 billion shares at around $20.76 a share.
Digital Realty Trust are a data centre reseller and hosting provider to Facebook, the company is setting a flag in Sydney for 2011 where it plans to spend $350 million on a data centre.
Digital Realty has partnered with Macquarie Capital to bid for the NSW government's data centre consolidation project. Kris Kumar who is the Asia-Pacific chief has said that it [Digital Realty Trust] have ambitious plans for regional growth, saying "I'd like to see 10 per cent of global revenue coming from Asia-Pacific in the next few years."
Finally - the future of this countries broadband seems to be making a step forward instead of sitting around gathering dust, the Australian Labor Party-backed National Broadband network is another step closer to reality as the Senate voted in favour of an AU$11 billion for Telstra's copper network.
The vote also approves the split of Telstra into both a retail group and a wholesale network group. The House of Representatives will weigh in on Monday - with it looking like all thumbs up from them too.
HP announced a few months ago that it has planned to move out of the area in the below picture, Apple have purchased the 98 acre area of land that will roughly double their current HQ in Cupertino.
The move helps Apple, as they're bigger than ever right now - they have hired an extra 12, 300 employees which raises their workforce to 46, 600 workers - many of them in Cupertino.
A report out by Bloomberg is saying that Sony is looking to take the current CEO of Sony, Howard Stringer and replace him with PlayStation boss Kaz Hirai.
Howard stepped up to the CEO plate in 2009, would keep his role as CEO and chairman but it's said that putting "fresh blood" in as "deputy" will both make Howard's job easier and give whoever gets the Deputy position a chance to shine and show they can handle the reigns of the position if he ever moves on.
You may not be able to see them from standing outside and looking up in the sky - but there is literally tonnes and tonnes of 'space junk' floating around just outside the Earth's atmosphere.
Russia has announced they are planning on spending $2 billion on a craft to clean up around 600 pieces of the space junk.
No, not Opera, the web browser - Oprah as in one of the most powerful women in the world, Oprah. Telstra today announced it has secured a deal with The Oprah Winfrey Show to supply network support for the live shows as well as ensuring network coverage for the show's 300 guests next month.
Back in September, The Oprah Winfrey Show announced that it would fly 300 audience members out to Australia to film two live shows at the Sydney Opera House on 14th of December - the trip is partly paid for by a $3 million fund from the Australian Government.
It has to suck to be a higher up manager at the Foxconn plant in China. The company has been under very close scrutiny over the last year after workers started to kill themselves by jumping off the buildings at the campus. Workers have also alleged that the factory has poor working conditions and some allege they were poisoned at work by toxic fumes.
Foxconn has reportedly been seeing protests by workers over wages they feel isn't fair. One worker has reportedly told Reuters that there were protests over the weekend with as many as 7,000 workers in the streets. The unnamed worker said, "The entire street here was filled with workers." There were perhaps six or seven thousand the worker claims that Foxconn employees are "not satisfied."
This is not something I thought an ISP in Australia would open, an R&D facility, but iiNet seem to be on a roll here, with acquisitions, customer satisfaction, products on offer and competitive pricing/allowance, they're really smashing down the walls of broadband hell that have kept this country in the dark ages of broadband for years.
Speaking at iiNet's annual general meeting today, iiNet chief executive Michael Malone said that iiNet Labs had already commenced with new products to be available in the coming months.
In one of the more confusing announcements of the day, Facebook and MySpace made a joint announcement today that the two "competing" sites will now be sharing data. This "Mashup" will allow people to import their likes and interests from their Facebook accounts to their MySpace accounts with "a simple one-click set-up."
Why Facebook would exactly do this is kind of a mystery; you could call MySpace a direct competitor to Facebook if MySpace's place in the social networking limelight hadn't fizzled out a long time ago. The ability to "Like" someone on Facebook and get hooked up with their MySpace account info doesn't really appeal since most likely their last sign in date will have been in 2008 or so. Most people, including me, are figuring this is MySpace's last ditch effort at a return to relevance; hopefully this is an option that can be completely bypassed.
Qantas has unveiled their next-gen check-in service which involves micro chipped smartcards replacing boarding passes and RFID to track your bags.
The first airports to take advantage of this will be Sydney and Perth - with the latter having live trials since July. Melbourne, Adelaide and Canberra will be enabled throughout the first half of 2012.
When you've become an internet giant, having just one facility in the works just won't do anymore. While they still haven't finished building their first data center currently under construction in Oregon, Facebook has announced today they will be building a $450 million data center in Rutherford, North Carolina as well.
That's right, Facebook will be on both coasts. The North Carolina project is expected to take about 18 months to finish once it is started and will employ 35-45 workers. Facebook has even planned for expansion, with the release also noting that "additional construction phases may be possible in the future, depending on business needs." North Carolina is quickly becoming a tech haven for the U.S., with Apple's 1 billion dollar facility almost finished there as well as Google and IBM's data centers already at work.
A staff engineer at Google was being wined and dined by Facebook, Google in turn offering him an amazing $3.5 million in restricted stock by Google (which means Google is offering $3.5 million worth of stock at todays pricing, which could very well be worth much more than that in the future).
What did he do?
The TiVo personal video recorder is getting a $200 price drop this week and will also get a bundle pack with either free movie downloads or cash back and a Wi-Fi adapter.
Currently it sits at AU$699, the $200 drop will bring it to under AU$500 at AU$499. The price drop takes effect on the 12th of November and includes an AU$50 cash back or AU$100 credit on the TiVo internet TV portal, CASPA.
We all know the trouble semiconductor manufacturing can cause - going to a new process is always hard, but we're going to see much more issues the smaller we go - as it's going to constantly get harder and harder. Because of this, the world's largest semiconductor manufacturers have combined their efforts with Intel, Samsung and Toshiba signing a treaty - the three companies will cooperate on research and development toward a brand new 10nm technology.
The new combined forces will start soon and have invited a further 10 or so companies into the development to help in R&D of the semiconductor manufacturing. The point is to have 10nm tech ready by 2016 when Samsung and Toshiba aim to use the tech for making NAND flash circuits, while Intel is rubbing it's hands together waiting to use the 10nm tech for microprocessors.
TMSC is set to report strong earnings for the 4th quarter of 2010 thanks to large volumes of orders from AMD.
AMD has placed orders at TMSC for their Ontario and Zacate APUs as well as the new HD6000 GPU's. Ontario and Zacate are both reportedly in production on TMSC's 40nm node - the Ontario will take on Intel's Atom processors in the netbook sector and going by the specs - it should have no problem laying the smack down on the Atom SKU.
It is worth noting that while AMD has contracted Globalfoundaries to produce it's 32nm Llano APU - the company decided to shake hands with TMSC's mature 40nm process for Ontario and Zacate in order to escape any possible production issues. All APUs produced by TMSC will be tested and packaged by Siliconware Precision Industries.
The ACCC is doing a fair bit in Australia lately - they have just launched court proceedings against Australia's major tech reseller, MSY Technology - the ACCC are alleging that MSY have engaged in false or misleading warranty representations.
According to a statement made by the ACCC, MSY have made false statements about their warranty in pamphlets, notices, price lists and promotional materials as well as their customers receipts.