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Business, Financial & Legal Posts - Page 4

Sony raising $4 billion, will go all-in with camera sensors

Sony has already said that it wants to lead the smartphone camera sensor market, with the Japanese giant pulling out of most of its other markets, apart from camera sensors and the PlayStation brand.

 

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Now the company is looking to push out new shares, with the new shares to raise the equivalent to 10% of what Sony is worth. With Sony worth around $40 billion, the company will be raising $4 billion, all of which it's going to invest in camera sensors. Sony said in a statement: "In addition to securing funds for active and concentrated investment in businesses that are driving growth. Sony ... aims to secure its ability to make future further investment".

 

Chief Portfolio Manager Common Assset Management, Takatoshi Itoshima, said: "It's positive that it is investing in the sensor business which is seen promising. But short-term investors may question the strength of its balance sheet, or wonder whether the company could've slashed more of its businesses before raising money from the market".

Continue reading 'Sony raising $4 billion, will go all-in with camera sensors' (full post)

Spotify under fire for 'silly' free streaming model by Rdio executive

Spotify offers a free membership and $9.99 per month subscription to its popular music service, but the No. 1 streaming service is effectively cannibalizing the industry, according to Rdio CEO Anthony Bay.

 

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"The idea that giving it away for free leads more people to buy is flawed. You will convert a large number of people who would normally pay for something to the free service," Bay recently told CNBC.

 

Rdio has a free offer to stream radio stations, $3.99 stripped down tier, and $9.99 per month unlimited version as it offers radio and streaming stations. Unlike Spotify, music listeners don't control the music they listen to - but can purchase songs if they like it. However, Spotify is willing to be patient and wait for free users to upgrade to the paid subscription:

Continue reading 'Spotify under fire for 'silly' free streaming model by Rdio executive' (full post)

Pressure is on for Apple Music, as music industry needs major help

The public launch of Apple Music is just hours away, and it looks like Apple will once again carry the entire weight of the music industry. Years ago, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) received help from iTunes at a time when music listeners were fully embracing illegal file sharing - and it seems like it could be up to Apple once again.

 

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There is a new fight, one which the RIAA is struggling with, as more music listeners turn to online streaming services while listening to music. Millions of people use legal services such as Pandora, Spotify, Google Play Music, but don't pay.

 

After a free three-month trial period, users will be forced to pay $9.99 per month for Apple Music - or find a different service.

Continue reading 'Pressure is on for Apple Music, as music industry needs major help' (full post)

Microsoft reportedly interested in acquiring AMD

We're only a couple of weeks into the Radeon R9 Fury X being on the market, but buyout rumors continue to flow onto the Internet, with Microsoft now reportedly interested in acquiring AMD.

 

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KitGuru is reporting from their sources that Microsoft is interested in acquiring AMD, which would make sense. But, remember that Microsoft has a very tight relationship with Intel when it comes to their products and Windows. Microsoft also maintains a very close relationship with AMD, as their Xbox One is powered by an APU made by AMD.

 

Microsoft has a huge $95.3 billion in cash, so it wouldn't take much to buy AMD at their market cap of $1.81 billion right now. If you consider the current value of AMD right now, it is three times less than what AMD paid for ATI Technologies back in 2008. With analysts estimating that Microsoft pays around $100 per APU to AMD for its Xbox One, Microsoft has already shelled out $1.26 billion or so to AMD with its 12.6 million Xbox One units sold.

Continue reading 'Microsoft reportedly interested in acquiring AMD' (full post)

Taylor Swift decides to make '1989' available on Apple Music

Apple Music hasn't even launched yet, but has caused quite a stir in the streaming music market and among musicians. For Taylor Swift fans, however, here is a bit of good news: her "1989" album will be available on Apple Music.

 

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Swift decided to pull her album from the service, before it even launched, in what she described as a fight to support indie musicians. Apple reversed course and said it would pay musicians during the free three-month trial period that users can sign up for - and that was enough for Taylor Swift.

 

Swift offered the following comments via Twitter:

Continue reading 'Taylor Swift decides to make '1989' available on Apple Music' (full post)

Smashing Pumpkins singer Billy Corgan discusses Apple Music drama

The ongoing drama involving Apple Music, which has been pitted as Taylor Swift vs. Apple Music, has given other musicians the chance to speak out. Apple Music launches on June 30, and there is a bit of drama and chaos regarding the music service already, so the streaming music market could be even more exciting.

 

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"Apple is making the same mistake Tidal made," Corgan recently said while speaking with Squawk Alley." "I applaud her for taking a stand, but this is going to be played out by the media as 'Taylor versus Apple,' and that's not the real story."

 

Corgan noted that Apple's attention to just the top-tier artists is a mistake, and could make things rather interesting moving forward:

Continue reading 'Smashing Pumpkins singer Billy Corgan discusses Apple Music drama' (full post)

Google announces free, ad-supported version of Google Play Music

Google today launched a free, ad-supported version of its Google Play Music service, in an effort to steal a bit of publicity ahead of the Apple Music launch next week. Google Play Music has been around for a couple of years with a $9.99 per month subscription, allowing music listeners to create their own custom playlists.

 

 

The new public offering won't be available offline and will not have access to some songs - and is a marketing effort to recruit new members. Although many users visit Google Play Music, they don't stick around due to the monthly subscription costs.

 

"We want to attract even more users, give them a taste of the service and hope they subscribe over time," said Zahavah Levine, VP of partnerships at Google Play, in a statement published by USA Today. It seems like offering a free trial - whether ad-supported or a set amount of free testing - is the ideal way to lure in new listeners.

Continue reading 'Google announces free, ad-supported version of Google Play Music' (full post)

Former Pandora exec says Taylor Swift's antics are 'mostly theater'

Apple moved fast to win over Taylor Swift and musicians, when the company announced it would pay artists while users are enjoying a three-month free trial of Apple Music. Tom Conrad, former CTO and EVP of Product at Pandora, recently took to Twitter to discuss the current drama between Apple and Swift.

 

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Apple Music launches on June 30 and will charge $9.99 per month to subscribers, but is offering a three-month free trial. Swift said she would not allow her "1989" album to be available on the service, in an effort to make a stand for rising indie artists - saying it's not fair they wouldn't be paid by Apple.

 

"Spotify, YouTube, Pandora and others all pay artists for their free tiers and trials," Conrad said via Twitter. "It's the right thing to do. Swift took her new album off Spotify not because she's not paid, but because she feels their free service 'devalues music.' Swift never pulled from YouTube which is the most popular free service and certainly devalues music if Spotify does."

Continue reading 'Former Pandora exec says Taylor Swift's antics are 'mostly theater'' (full post)

Apple bows to Taylor Swift, will pay artists during Apple Music trial

Well, it didn't take long before Apple bowed to public pressure from Taylor Swift regarding Apple Music and its free three-month trial period. The company also heard complaints from additional artists, and it was a decision made to help win over musicians to support the music service launching at the end of June.

 

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"Apple will make sure that artists are paid," said Eddy Cue, SVP at Apple, in a Tweet. "Apple Music will pay artists for streaming even during customers' free trial period. We hear you @taylorswift13 and indie artists. Love, Apple."

 

Swift, after announcing she would pull her music from Apple Music in defense of the indie artists, celebrated Apple's announcement:

Continue reading 'Apple bows to Taylor Swift, will pay artists during Apple Music trial' (full post)

Taylor Swift's '1989' album won't be available on Apple Music

Taylor Swift previously pulled the majority of her music from Spotify, the No. 1 streaming music service, and doesn't have any interest in Apple Music. Her record label, Big Machine, has confirmed that the "1989" music album won't be available on Apple's music service, which launches on June 30.

 

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Swift, of course, has issued a statement saying this decision is thinking of the rising musicians and songwriters. It seems Swift is most distraught over the three-month free trial that Apple will provide music listeners before the mandatory $9.99 monthly service kicks in:

 

"This is about the new artist or band that has just released their first single and will not be paid for its success. This is about the young songwriter who just got his or her first cut and thought that the royalties from that would get them out of debt. This is about the producer who works tirelessly to innovate and create, just like the innovators and creators at Apple are pioneering in their field... but will not get paid for a quarter of a year's worth of plays on his or her songs."

Continue reading 'Taylor Swift's '1989' album won't be available on Apple Music' (full post)

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