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Foxconn, a major Apple manufacturing partner, are planning a huge expansion of their operations in 2012. The expansion is set to dramatically increase production of iPhones and iPads to meet the never-ending demand.
Foxconn is reportedly working with the Chinese city of Zhengzhou to double the size of its workforce at the facility there, where another 10,000 employees will be hired. This is the same number of employees hired in 2011 alone.
The expansion is valued at $1.1 billion and would make the Foxconn factory the largest smartphone production facility in the world. Foxconn's Zhengzhou plant currently pumps out close to 200,000 iPhones each and everyday. Doubling their workforce and having a larger factory is only going to increase that, by, well, a lot.
I've covered SOPA-related news for the past few days, as it is getting quite serious with GoDaddy being hit hard. It has just been announced that Jimmy Wales decision to find a new home for Wikipedia, away from the SOPA loving hands of GoDaddy.
Wales is quite unhappy with GoDaddy's position on the Stop Online Privacy Act, by announcing the shift in the following tweet:
I am proud to announce that the Wikipedia domain names will move away from GoDaddy. Their position on #sopa is unacceptable to us.
He then updated, and posted another tweet the next day:
Wikia is also moving several hundred domains from godaddy. Which registrar has quality and price right?
SOPA is starting to snowball into a serious issue, it needs as much airtime as possible.
It looks as though the iOS platform is the platform for mobile shopping, with a retail analysis coming from RichRelevance. In the months between April and December 2011, RichRelevance analyzed 3.4 billion shopping sessions and found that consumers making purchases from mobile devices accounted for roughly 3-percent of total sales.
Let's take April, where 88-percent of these purchases were made from an iOS-powered device, mostly the iPad and iPhone. Fast-forward to December and it increased to 92-percent. The increase in mobile shopping is being spearheaded by iOS. RichRelevance also add that the average order value (AOV) of purchases made from an iOS device is also more than the other platforms. iOS's AOV sits at $123 in December, where Android's AOV is just $101.
RichRelevance CEO, David Selinger says:
The numbers across our retailing partners sites demonstrate just how powerful the iOS platform is enabling mobile web shopping and, while still below 5 percent in total conversion, mobile traffic's doubling in eight months is a trend we only see accelerating.
After a 7-year partnership with S-LCD, Samsung have acquired all of Sony's shares in the joint-venture for close to $939 million. S-LCD will now become a wholly owned subsidiary of Samsung. Up until now, Sony owned 50-percent of S-LCD.
On top of this, both companies have entered into a new strategic agreement for the supply and purchase of LCD panels, with the end goal of increasing the competitiveness of both Sony and Samsung. The agreement also allows Sony and Samsung to continue cooperative engineering efforts focused on LCD panel technology.
Go Daddy have gotten a fair amount of news lately, we reported a few days ago that if Go Daddy supported SOPA, Reddit would be closed down. If Reddit were closed down, 90-percent of my Internet browsing would go with it. GoDaddy have since reversed their decision to support SOPA, and customer service representatives are even taking the phones to beg you to keep your domains with Go Daddy.
According to TheDomains, 21,054 domains were transferred away from Go Daddy on Friday alone. A nice early Christmas present for them and at $6.99ea, this would make for a loss of $147,167. This doesn't take future accounts into consideration. In the days leading up to Friday, they lost 8,800, 13,000, 14,500, and 15,000 on Monday through to Thursday, respectively.
It looks like this could get worse for Go Daddy, but we need these stances from not just people, but companies if we don't want laws like SOPA pushed upon us. Obviously the Government has no idea, and should be "for the people" but like to push these things in while insulting other countries like China for building their firewall. Irony, you're funny.
SOPA is continuing to mark its territory with news of anti-SOPA rallying the tech world's best. Cheezburger (who also does I Can Has Cheeseburger, FAIL Blog, Know Your Meme, and more) CEO Ben Huh has announced that they would be moving their array of over 1,000 domains away from GoDaddy unless the registrar recants their support of the act.
The question now is, will Huh's threat be enough to get GoDaddy on his side? GoDaddy is a large enough company with plenty of controversies under their belt, so they're used to this sort of heat. But, the more news, the more awareness is being raised on the issue.
If SOPA is supported by GoDaddy, it could be not only a big change to Cheezeburger, but to virtually the entire Internet as we know it. With Cheezeburger's 1000 domains, just imagine the implications of SOPA to the rest of the world.
Microsoft have announced that their attendance at CES 2012 will be their last, where on January 9 at 6:30PM, CEO Steve Ballmer will give his third keynote speech. Microsoft will continue to attend to connect with partners and customers, but won't deliver a keynote or schedule a booth.
Microsoft have explained that CES simply doesn't gel with its marketing strategy. Microsoft asks:
What's the right time and place to make announcements? Are we adjusting to the changing dynamics of our customers? Are we doing something because it's the right thing to do, or because it's the way we've always done it?
One would presume that ASUS had deal written up with Hasbro over the use of the Transformer name, but that is not the case. Hasbro have just filed a lawsuit alleging that ASUS is infringing on the Transformers trademark. What I would like to know, is a few things.
First, why did it take Hasbro this long to get onto a lawsuit, it has been nearly a year since the Transformer has been released. I think it mainly has to do with ASUS releasing the next-gen tablet, Transformer Prime. If you're not up with it, Prime comes from Optimus Prime, from Transformers.
Did ASUS step over a boundary here? Should Hasbro just feel proud that their name is making it into the technology world? Or is it just business as usual, use my name and I'll sue the hot pants off you, ASUS. I'm putting it out there, but ASUS can use my full name for their next tablet, it has a ring to it: The ASUS Anthony Garreffa tablet. I'd buy one.
Apple have just completed a deal to purchase Israeli flash memory firm, Anobit. The deal is reportedly worth between $400-$500 million, which makes it Apple's largest acquisition since NeXT which cost $404 million. A tweet from the Twitter account of Israel's Prime Minster has said:
Welcome to Israel, Apple Inc. on your 1st acquisition here. I'm certain that you'll benefit from the fruit of the Israeli knowledge.
It is not just exciting for Apple, but for consumers, too. Apple's new investment in Anobit shows their commitment to requiring fast flash memory, as Israel is a country known for technological breakthroughs, such as its early work in mobile phones and instant messaging.
Anobit explains their technology:
Anobit's MSP (Memory Signal Processing) technology is comprised of proprietary signal processing algorithms combined with advanced error correction and innovative flash management schemes, resulting in a dramatic improvement in endurance, performance and system cost. Specifically, MSP enables SLC (one bit-per-cell) endurance and performance with MLC (two bits-per-cell) NAND, and MLC endurance and performance with TLC (three bits-per-cell) NAND, resulting in a significant reduction in cost per-bit.
If you haven't heard of SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act), then I suggest you do some serious reading, because last week the House Judiciary Committee discussed it, and the results of SOPA would not be good, at all.
There was an abrupt end to the markup session on Friday, with a new hearing date set for this week. Opposition to SOPA is growing, with the General Manger of Reddit stepping in and saying that the bill would "almost certainly mean the end" of Reddit.
On Wednesday, the House Judiciary Committee will continue discussing SOPA to decide whether the bill should move to the full House. Until then, lobbying groups for and against the bill continue with their efforts to influence the votes of committee members.