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Business, Financial & Legal Posts - Page 260

Facebook releases Zuckerberg's Harvard emails, wants lawsuit dismissed

Facebook is currently stuck in a lawsuit with Paul Ceglia regarding whether or not he is entitled to half of the company. Facebook's CEO Mark Zuckerberg has released a cache of personal emails which refute those claims. Many of these date back to his years back at Harvard where the social network was first created.

 

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Facebook and Zuckerberg are hoping that the emails will be enough to refute Ceglia's claim to Facebook and have the case dismissed. The emails paint Zuckerberg in somewhat of an unflattering light, but should refute any claims to the company. Ceglia has previously released his own emails. Well, at least the content portion of the email.

 

This is an important point. Ceglia didn't have the entire email to release, but instead released Word documents in which he had copied and pasted into. Forensic investigators have since proven the documents to be forgeries. Ceglia's legal team hasn't quite given up yet:

 

We have made a preliminary review of Facebook's Motion, which attempts to have this matter ended before Facebook has to provide any discovery and before going to a jury. The Federal Rules of Evidence say a jury should weigh the evidence in this case, including experts' declarations in Mr. Ceglia's favor about the authenticity of his contract with Mr. Zuckerberg. Mr. Ceglia deserves his day in court, where the jury will resolve this dispute over the ownership of Facebook.

Sprint killing off WiMax in favor of LTE

I think I'm getting screwed. I have an Epic 4G which I think uses WiMax for its 4G technology. Now, Sprint's senior networks VP Bob Azzi has said in a presentation that WiMax is coming to an end on the Sprint network. Sprint will no longer be launching any WiMax devices but instead will be rolling the effort in to the LTE rollout.

 

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"The technology works and delivers more benefits than we expected," he said. Some of these benefits would most likely involve lower cost. The project is consolidating the voice, 3G, and 4G access sites into a single site. This is expected to cut prices in half for voice and data. The switch in device types should occur quickly. 15 are expected by the end of the year, with the first about next week in the form of the HTC Evo One.

Apple's Siri smacked with false advertising lawsuit

We've all seen those ads that focus on Apple's personal assistant Siri. But does it really perform that seamlessly? Well according to a lawsuit filed on Tuesday in the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, it doesn't. This isn't the first time that someone has accused Apple of falsely advertising Siri either.

 

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"Through its nationwide multimedia marketing campaign, Apple disseminates false and deceptive representations regarding the functionality of the Siri feature," Jones charges, according to the LA Times, which obtained a copy of the suit. "For example, in many of Apple's television commercials, consumers are shown using Siri to make appointments, find restaurants, and even to learn the guitar chords to classic rock songs. In its advertisements, Apple depicts these tasks as easily accomplished 'just by asking' Siri."

 

Often times, according to Jones, Siri misunderstood what he was asking or when Siri did understand what he was asking, she returned the wrong answer. In Apple's defense, they have publicly said that Siri is in beta and acknowledged that it is a work in progress. Whether or not this will help if the case gets to trial, only time will tell.

Android not very high revenue for Google, only $550 million since 2008

It would appear, if the figures released as part of a settlement offer with Oracle are to be believed, that Android is not very profitable for the search giant Google. Additionally, the figures show that the iPhone is four times greater for revenue than Google's own Android. The figure suggests that Android handsets only make Google around $10.

 

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Part of the reason the iPhone is so much more profitable is because of its use of Google Maps, YouTube, and other Google services. PC advertising makes up the majority of the massive $38bn total revenue from 2011. This equates to around $30 per PC, but not all PCs are connected to the internet, so this figure is a bit higher.

 

Google has never released any sort of numbers regarding the revenue from Android. It provides Android free to handset makers, and only profits off of adverts and App sales. Once again, these numbers are calculated off of court documents, so their accuracy is likely to vary depending on who calculates them.

Apple grabbing more patents, Siri-like system for controlling cameras, PMPs through a computer or smartphone

Everyone and their uncle loves messing around with Siri by trying to get her to swear, both successfully and unsuccessfully, but it really is a cool piece of technology. The art of voice recognition is a pretty tough field, yet Siri works surprisingly well. It would appear that Apple is patenting a Siri-esque system that would be used to control cameras or portable music players through a computer or smartphone.

 

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"Siri, turn on the flash and take two pictures with my camera after waiting three seconds." This is a representative of what could be possible with this new patent. Apple filed the patent way back in 2010, but it was just now posted online. An excerpt reads:

 

One embodiment may include a first electronic device communicatively coupled to a server and to a second electronic device. The second electronic device may be a portable electronic device, such as a digital media player, that includes a voice user interface. The second electronic device may be capable of accurate speech recognition, but may not include additional computation hardware and/or software for training the speech recognition engine. As such, the bulk, weigh, and cost for manufacturing the second electronic device may be reduced, resulting in a more portable and affordable product.

Continue reading 'Apple grabbing more patents, Siri-like system for controlling cameras, PMPs through a computer or smartphone' (full post)

EVGA set to unleash a new global warranty policy

EVGA are set to update their warranty policy with a new global-based policy, which will be announced in a week or so. EVGA's "New and Improved Global Warranty" will soon be publicly announced through their website, but between now and then we can look at the basic overview of the biggest changes to their system:

 

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  • Warranties are now transferable - they follow the product, and not the owner.
  • All products purchased on or after July 1st, 2011 have a minimum of a 3-Year warranty, regardless of registration. (except Recertified 90-day, and 1-Year Warranty products)
  • Incentives and bonuses are given out to those who do register within 30 days of purchase - such as eligibility towards EVGA's Step-Up Program and Extended Warranty options.
  • Registration is no longer required for RMAs.
  • If a customer moves to another region, and their product fails, they can now send it to a local warranty center regardless of product origin.

 

On top of this, EVGA will offer a Standard Cross-Shipping RMA service, free of charge. EVGA will cross-ship a replacement product to the customer, as long as the customer provides a valid credit card as collateral, and the customer will pay for the return shipping of their malfunctioning part. At the moment, the Advanced RMA Program covers shipping both ways.

IDC estimates Android will surpass Windows by 2016, could see 1.8 billion devices in the wild

We can feel it now: a massive undercurrent shift of the way we use technology. 10 years ago, if you wanted to use the Internet, you required a desktop, and failing that, a notebook. Notebooks were just too thick, and large, and their battery lives were crap. Desktops were the only route, really.

 

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Now, you can use the Internet on your TV, fridge, smartphone, tablet, iPod, and countless other Internet-connected devices. The IDC has put out a long-term estimate, where they've put mobile and desktop platforms in a single smart device category, where they've estimated that Windows will slip from 35.9-percent market share in 2011, to just 25.1-percent in 2016.

 

Android would move from 29.4-percent to 31.1-percent in the same 2011-2016 time frame. iOS is the smaller puppy here, with just 14.6-percent from 2011, and with an estimated 2016 market share of just 17.3-percent. The total number of smart devices? This goes from a 1.1 billion predicted for this year, to 1.8 billion in 2016.

Continue reading 'IDC estimates Android will surpass Windows by 2016, could see 1.8 billion devices in the wild' (full post)

MegaUpload lawyer asserts feds are impeding defense

MegaUpload would like to gain access to its seized servers in order to collect evidence to prove the innocence of the accused MegaUpload employees. However, officials will not release the $1 million dollars required to do so, hence the claim that the feds are impeding the defense of MegaUpload. "It's hard to reconcile the chain of events in this matter with any other conclusion," Rothken said. "MegaUpload is frustrated and wants to preserve the data for litigation and to defend itself and ultimately -- with the approval of the court -- to provide consumers access to their data."

 

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According to MegaUpload's lawyers, there is no criminal copyright infringement statute in the United States, so if the US get the extradition they are requesting, MegaUpload will be successful in its defense. MegaUpload's lawyers are trying to prepare for the extradition defense, but are unable to because they don't have access to the e-mails, documents, and files on the servers which they claim will refute the charges.

Continue reading 'MegaUpload lawyer asserts feds are impeding defense' (full post)

Facebook asserts trademark on word "book" in new user agreement

The word on the street is that Facebook, in all of its glory, doesn't want me to use its name... That's right, in Facebook's updated version of its "Statement of Rights and Responsibilities," its trying to assert a trademark on the word "book." This is pretty ridiculous. It's like someone trying to trademark the work "car."

 

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An excerpt from the revision details the change:

 

You will not use our copyrights or trademarks (including Facebook, the Facebook and F Logos, FB, Face, Poke, Book and Wall)

 

By this, I can no longer "poke" someone, have a "wall," or read a "book" because I have agreed to these terms when I logged into Facebook. I see the need for someone to protect their brand, but at a point, it becomes pretty ridiculous. And in this case, I believe we have hit that point of ridiculousness.

 

It's about time for me to gather up what little privacy I have left and deactivate my Facebook account, and protect myself from being sued for using common words the next time I make a post somewhere. Just remember, don't sign our guestbook, because it contains the word "book," it's now trademark infringement.

Apple get sued by Australian consumer watchdog, ACCC, says 4G iPad is misleading in Australia

In the words of Nelson from The Simpsons - "HA HA". What a great start to this news, as much as I love Apple (I'm rocking along with the new iPad and I've been loving it so far, there are issues, but it's overall a nice product) the 4G iPad is a huge misleading mess in Australia. When I went down to grab mine, you could see 4G signs and talk of it around the store, and it's just simply pathetic.

 

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Apple are now finding themselves in a pickle in Australia, where Australian consumer watchdog, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has accused Apple of misleadingly calling its new iPad as 4G-capable. The ACCC have said they will be applying to the Federal Court of Melbourne for an order against the company and is moving for the court to impose fines and injunctions against sales.

 

The ACCC is saying that labelling the new iPad as 4G-capable is misleading to customers in Australia. Yes, 4G LTE networks are available here in Australia, but they run on an entirely different band to what the iPad is compatible with. 4G services in Australia provided by Telstra run on the 1800MHz frequency band, which makes them completely unusable on the new iPad. The new iPad only works on the 700MHz or 2100MHz frequency bands for its 4G LTE connectivity.

Continue reading 'Apple get sued by Australian consumer watchdog, ACCC, says 4G iPad is misleading in Australia' (full post)

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