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Nest was one of the hottest companies in 2013, and wowed tech insiders world wide with the release of its smart smoke alarms and thermostats. Based in Palo Alto, California, Nest was in the center of silicon valley and had attracted the attention of some of the biggest investors and companies in the business, one of which has just acquired the company.
Google has just announced that it has acquired Nest for a whopping $3.2 billion in cash, which now adds Google's name to yet another market space that directly affects our daily lives. Nest will further Google's push into the so-called "Internet of Things," and will further allow it to continue its growth into the home automation realm.
"We're thrilled to join Google," Fadell, 44, said in a statement. "With their support, Nest will be even better placed to build simple, thoughtful devices that make life easier at home, and that have a positive impact on the world." Google CEO Larry Page said "Fadell and his Nest co-founder Matt Rogers had built a tremendous team that we are excited to welcome into the Google family."
Ford CEO Alan Mulally has confirmed he will remain with the U.S. automaker and not become the next Microsoft CEO, which will be vacated when Steve Ballmer steps down. Last August, Ballmer said he would resign - and leave within 12 months - but is trying to help the company ease into the transition. However, that's going to be difficult when there is uncertainty about the company's short-term stability.
"I would like to end the Microsoft speculation because I have no other plans to do anything other than serve Ford," Mulally told reporters. "You don't have to worry about me leaving."
Microsoft's hunt for Ballmer's replacement has been extremely difficult, as there are only a handful of skilled candidates seeking the job. Microsoft is currently considering both internal and external candidates as the company needs to buckle down and find a new leader.
We've already seen Microsoft change its "Metro" name for "Windows 8-style UI" with all those problems when Windows 8 launched, but now we're seeing a new name, "Mod", which would be the new, new name for the UI.
The news is coming from ZDNet, with Mary Jo Foley reporting that Microsoft applied to trademark the word "Mod", which Foley thinks the software giant will use to refer the new modern design in future iterations of Windows. The company has also filed for more words with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, with the following words: "Windows Mod", "Office Mod", and "Microsoft Office Mod".
The all-digital game creator Zynga has announced that it is launching an experiment, where it will accept Bitcoins for in-game purchases on some of its games.
Zynga is working with Bitpay that will allow gamers to use the digital currency in FarmVille 2, CastleVille, ChefVille, CoasterVille, Hidden Chronicles, Hidden Shadows, and CityVille. Does this change your mind about Zynga, that it is now accepting Bitcoin? It won't do much for most, but it's a step in the right direction for Zynga.
There are countless Galaxy smartphones and tablets in the wild now, but according to Barrons, Jefferies & Co. analyst, Hyunwoo Doh, it looks like Samsung's Q4 2013 profit estimate might not be as strong as previously thought.
The analyst lowered his estimates for Samsung's Q4 2013 "to reflect higher bonus payouts, adjustments to the company's manufacturing of display panels, and the decline of the U.S. dollar against the Korean Won." Doh has faith in the South Korean giants mobile division, which is doing very good business.
He added: "[T]he [IT & Mobile Communications] division should see a decrease in earnings, due to slower high-end smartphone sales and inventory destocking. As such, its share price momentum should weaken until an earnings recovery is seen."
During BlackBerry's event in 2013 announcing BlackBerry 10, the company surprised everyone by appointing singer, Alicia Keys, as the new Global Creative Director. While this position was mostly for publicity, it represented the length that BlackBerry was willing to go to save itself from financial ruin.
Now less than a year later, and with new management steering the ship, Alicia Keys has been relieved of her duty. While no official reason has been mentioned for her departure from her honorary position, it could be due to the fact that Keys never really gave up her iPhone or iPad for BlackBerry devices. Just weeks after the BB10 announcement, Keys tweeted from the iPhone she reportedly gave up for the new at the time BlackBerry Z10.
With the cryptocurrency quickly becoming the next big bubble, new "coins" are popping up every day. Today coders has announced a new digital currency called Coinye West, and is based on the open source Bitcoin code. "Coinye West is a cryptocurrency for the masses," says its creators.
While this is most definitely nothing more than an elaborate joke, the Coinye West coins could take of and actually gain some kind of value, similar to how the Dogecoin, another joke turned real cryptocurrency did. One thing is for sure though, investing is advised as if the Coinye West coins do inflate to anything near the size of Kanye's ego, we all will be billionaires!
HP has been in financial trouble for some time now as a result of a dwindling PC sales market, and today the company is preparing for yet another round of layoffs that could see as many as 5000 more employees fired before the end of the year. In a new SEC 10K filing HPO raised its estimated layoff numbers to 34,000.
While 34,000 people losing their jobs is definitely a tragedy, HP will save $4.1 billion which might be enough to save the company from going under. With HP already having laid off 24,600 employees, it has until October to fire the other 9,000. 2013 was not a good year for big business, with companies like BlackBerry, OCZ, and HP reporting major financial woes. Here's hoping 2014 will be a better year all around!
Netflix is offering a new low-end plan for new subscribers only, that will push out standard definition streaming to a single device. For $6.99, a single device can stream content in SD from Netflix.
This is only $1 cheaper than the most basic HD tier plan that lets Netflix users stream content to two devices at once, which makes the new $6.99 per month plan seem worthless. If you really need that additional $1 per month, then this new plan is for you.
BlackBerry's new CEO, John Chen, says that no one should start counting his company out just yet. In an open editorial for CNBC, Chen said that BlackBerry is "well-positioned for the future," and that even though the company faced "challenging circumstances," he believes that BlackBerry will once again rise to profit.
"It was important to make swift and impact changes to ensure that our customers' investments in BlackBerry's infrastructure and solutions are secure," said Chen. "I'm surrounded by a talented team of industry leaders, including our new leaders for enterprise, corporate development and strategic planning, and marketing. In the coming weeks, I'll continue to build out my leadership team with those who have the skills and passion to get BlackBerry back on the path to profitability."
Chen went on to say that BlackBerry is still king of the enterprise market and that the public should not be fooled by the "competition's rhetoric claiming to be more secure or having more experience than BlackBerry" Chen finished up the editorial by saying: "We've accomplished a great deal in these last couple months, and we're positioned for the long haul. We have a strong cash position with more than $3 billion on hand, a renewed spirit, and trusted technology, network and platform. I believe BlackBerry has a clear lane ahead of us to create new trails as a nimbler, more agile competitor.The journey has just begun."