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Microsoft being sued by patent troll alleging technologies used in Skype infringe on patents held by the company
Microsoft is the latest to fall victim to a patent troll. Microsoft is being sued by CopyTele, a company that prides itself in being "specialists in patent monetization and patent assertion." They allege that some of Skype's technology relies on patents held by its subsidiary, Secure Web Conference Corp.
The specific patents alleged in the complaint are: "Method and apparatus for securing e-mail attachments" and "Portable telecommunication security device." Both were granted to the company in 2005 and both relate to security for Web-based peer-to-peer communications.
The second patent listed above specifically covers a security device and CopyTele is alleging that a PC or smartphone falls within that definition.
Nintendo pushes out message to Internet-connected Wii consoles explaining Wii U is an 'entirely new system'
We've reported on the rather slow sales of the Nintendo Wii U, but the cause of these slow sales has been a bit more elusive. Nintendo apparently thinks they know why sales are slow and are attempting to fix the problem...by sending out a message to all Internet-connected Wii consoles.
Did you know that you can play nearly all your existing Wii games on Wii U? Your Wii controllers and many Wii accessories can also be used with a new Wii U console -- along with any downloaded games, save data, and other info stored in your existing Wii console.
It's time to discover Wii U
Wii U is the all-new home console from Nintendo. It's not just an upgrade -- it's an entirely new system that will change the way you and your family experience games and entertainment.
The second screen on the included Wii U GamePad controller enables never-before-seen ways to play games and enjoy TV. And for the first time ever, you can see Mario and your favorite Nintendo franchises in glorious HD.
Learn more about Wii U at Nintendo.com/WiiU
Apparently Nintendo believes that Wii owners think the Wii U is just a Wii with a GamePad. We obviously know the difference, but for the less technically inclined, I can see where the problem may be. For instance, they have extremely similar names. However, whether or not this message will help clear up confusion and drive Wii U sales remains to be seen.
Last year was a totally different game, with iOS completely dominating the tablet market share game, this year, not so much. IDC's market share estimates point for the first quarter of 2013 are out, and they paint a very interesting picture.
As you can see, the top tablet OS market share for Q1 2013 has changed from the same quarter of last year. Android now have the top position with 56.5%, pushing iOS into second place with 39.6%. Apple lost quite a lot of ground in the past twelve months, as this time last year they had 58.1% of the tablet OS market share, leaving Android with 39.4%.
All of Apple's lost ground is sucked into the vacuum that is Android. Microsoft saw Windows' market share increased from 1% last year, to 3.3% this year. In terms of shipments for the quarter, IDC's estimates peg iOS-based tablets (iPad, iPad mini) at 19.5 million units, and Android-based slates (countless companies and models) at 27.8 million. Windows-based tablets saw 1.6 million units shipped and Windows RT-based tablets shipped just 200,000 units.
According to data released by Net Applications, BlackBerry picked up a bit of market share in the month of April. Net Applications watches mobile web usage, which is different to normal market share estimates that are based solely on the number of devices sold and in circulation.
Net Application's data shows that BlackBerry gained a small amount of market share. BlackBerry climbed to 1.51 percent for April, up from February's 1.39 percent. iOS, meanwhile, fell by about 1.5 percent to a still-impressive 59.04 percent. Android claimed 26.02 percent of the market, up about one percent.
Facebook has reported its first-quarter earnings today, with mixed results. In some regards, Facebook has done well; in others, Facebook didn't quite make the mark. For instance, Facebook pulled in a total of $1.46 billion in revenue, up 38 percent year-over-year. This beat analyst expectations of $1.44 billion.
On the other hand, Facebook reported earnings per share of 12 cents, which was below the analyst expectations of 13 cents per share. Mobile advertising accounted for 30 percent of Facebook's advertising revenue that totaled $1.25 billion.
Facebook is touting 1.11 billion active monthly users as of March 31, with 665 million being daily users. Mobile monthly active users came in at 751 million, a 54 percent growth year-over-year. Facebook still has some issues to work out, but at least it didn't completely miss the mark. Shares closed at $27.43, but are up slighting in after-hours trading.
Siri creator claims study that showed voice texting as bad as normal texting while driving was flawed
We recently reported a study which showed that using voice commands to text, such as Siri, was as bad for safety as texting manually. However, Siri's co-inventor, Adam Cheyer, claims that the study's findings is invalid. He argues that the study "seems to have misunderstood how Siri was designed to be used."
According to Cheyer, they purposely designed a car mode for Siri. When in car mode, Siri is prevented from running commands that would require looking at the screen or pushing buttons. "Of course your driving performance is going to be degraded if you're reading screens and pushing buttons."
Siri will automatically read back dictated text when connected to a wired or Bluetooth headset. Texas Transportation Institute, when asked about this, confirmed that the study did not make use of Siri's car mode, which does validate the claim of Cheyer that the study's findings may not be completely applicable to iPhones.
It seems the legal woes aren't over for Hitachi-LG Storage.
After shelling out $21.1 Million in criminal fines and subsequently pleading guilty to bid-rigging and price fixing of optical disk drives in September 2011, a suit brought on by the Department of Justice, Attorney General Pam Bondi of Florida is suing Hitachi-LG for price fixing once again saying:
Price-fixing hurts healthy business competition and costs Florida's businesses, consumers, and governmental agencies by requiring them to pay higher prices for products," stated attorney general Pam Bondi. "My office is committed to protecting Floridians, and we will work to obtain relief for those affected by this alleged price-fixing scheme.
Company's such as BenQ, Lite-ON, Sony, Samsung and Quanta are also named as conspirators in this forth coming suit. More to follow as it develops.
This morning T-Mobile finalized its deal to merge with MetroPCS and has begun trading on the US stock market at $16.25 a share.
The merger is the result of a deal between T-Mobile and MetroPCS stock holder, where MetroPCS acquired all of T-Mobile's capital stock from Deutsche Telekom.
T-Mobile will continue to operate both companies as a separate entity with the ultimate goal of creating a unified network. The new company, which is headquartered in Bellevue, Washington, will have John Legere as its CEO, and the former MetroPCS vice chairman and chief financial officer J. Braxton Carter will take the CFO position.
Nevada gamblers get ready, as your state has become the fifth state in the US to allow legal online poker for money. Station Casinos' UltimatePoker.com was legalized for online poker in February, and currently operates under a 30-day license.
This is coming from A. G. Burnett, chairman of the Nevada Gaming Control Board, while UltimatePoker.com works out "the kinks" before their official license is granted to them. Burnett adds "we have others right behind them". Players can compete in nightly games with a prize pool of $1,000 and two $10,000 Sunday games, which is operated by Station Casinos' subsidiary, Ultimate Gaming.
Chris Krafcik, North American research director online gaming analysts Gambling Compliance, said in an e-mail to Reuters:
Other states will be watching Nevada closely to see whether it can effectively implement technology solutions that allow gambling businesses licensed there to identify the age, identity and location of their customers.
It looks like Apple's 7.9-inch iPad mini tablet is doing well, according to unnamed sources of DigiTimes. Their sources have said that Apple have shipped 12.5 million iPad mini's in the last quarter, which accounts for around 64% of all iPads shipped.
DigiTimes compares this to the Google Nexus 7 tablet, which has a round 4.5 million units shipped since it launched last summer. Apple are reportedly working on a new iPad mini, one that would feature a Retina display, and a cheaper version that would better compete against the cheaper Nexus 7 and Amazon Kindle Fire HD.