Tech News Today 398
Recorded: December 21, 2011
Published: December 21, 2011
Tech News Today 398: Microsoft Leaves CES
Microsoft pulls out of CES, Chinese hackers hit chamber of commerce, Irish regulators not smiling over Facebook, and more.
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- Tom Merritt ( )
- Sarah Lane ( )
- Iyaz Akhtar ( )
- Jason Howell ( )
- Tim Stevens
- Microsoft Pulling Out of CES After This Year
- Microsoft says this CES is its 'last major appearance' at the show
- Microsoft announced 2012's CES is the last CES where it will have a major presence
- No more booth or keynotes, MS reps still there to take meetings
- Announcement made via The Official Microsoft Blog by Frank X. Shaw, Corporate Vice President, Corporate Communications, Microsoft
- Cites MS product "news milestones generally don't align with the show's January timing."
- Said MS looks "forward to working with CEA for many years to come,"
- CEA isn't crying saying they wish MS well and says "we have received expressions of interest for that space from the long waiting list for Central Hall exhibit space."
- China Hackers Hit U.S. Chamber
- Chinese hackers target U.S. Chamber of Commerce, report says
- WSJ reports a group of hackers in China breached the computer defenses of America’s top business-lobbying group and gained access to everything stored on its systems, including information about its three million members,
- WSJ cites "several people familiar with the matter."
- break-in at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce
- Chamber officials say internal investigators found evidence that hackers had focused on four Chamber employees who worked on Asia policy, and that six weeks of their email had been stolen.
- Yahoo to Consider Sale of Asian Assets
- Yahoo is only worth $1 billion?
- Yahoo Intensifies Search for CEO (With Hulu’s Kilar as One Dream Unicorn Candidate)
- DealBook reports that Yahoo is considering selling its Asian assets like Alibaba Group to their majority owners.
- Yahoo would move approximately $17 billion in assets by selling stock at $14 per share.
- However, Yahoo would still own 15% of Alibaba. DealBook's sources say that if Yahoos board rejects the offer, Alibaba, Softbank with private equity partners are ready to bid for the entirety of Yahoo.
- Dan Primack at Fortune did some quick math and if the $17 billion figure is accurate, the remaining Yahoo would be worth just $1 billion based on its $18 billion market cap.
- ATD's Kara Swisher says that Yahoo's board is targeting several candidates for its new CEO including Hulu CEO Jason Kilar, who is considered a long shot.
- WSJ: Microsoft and Nokia also casually considered jointly buying RIM
- Microsoft, Nokia Flirted With RIM
- WSJ reports that MS and Nokia were also interested in jointly bidding on RIM
- State of the talks aren't known
- Yesterday Reuters reported on Amazon's interest
- Irish Regulators Order Facebook to Boost Privacy Protections
- Ireland Gives Facebook’s International Privacy and Data Protection a Passing Grade
- Facebook Not Creating 'Shadow Profiles,' Irish Privacy Audit Finds
- In order to satisfy Ireland's recent privacy audit by the Office of the Irish Data Protection Commissioner (DPC), Facebook will: create additional notifications explaining facial recognition photo tagging, reduce data logging and data retention for non-logged in users, more specifically warn users when their info is shared with 3rd party apps. this will happen in time for a follow-up Irish Data Protection Commission audit in July 2012
- Facebook’s international headquarters are in Dublin, and oversee Facebook’s compliance in all regions other than the U.S. and Canada. "This audit was the most comprehensive and detailed ever undertaken by our office," says deputy Irish data commissioner Gary Davis
- back in October 4-year-old Austrian law student, Max Schrems, asked Facebook to turn over the data it had stored about his Facebook activity and was shocked enough to file 22 separate complaints with the DPC, notably the idea
that Facebook is creating ""shadow profiles"" with data imported from phones, email contacts, IMs, friend invites, etc. however, the DPC investigation concluded that Facebook isn't doing this.
- Facebook's agreement with the FTC was a bigger deal... 20 consecutive years of audits and a long apology from Mark Zuckerberg.
- Amazon Releases Performance-Enhancing Kindle Fire Update
- Kindle Fire no longer blocks Android Market website
- Kindle Fire Software Update Doesn’t Fix Laggy Browser
- How to update the Kindle Fire and get much-needed performance fixes
- Amazon updates Kindle iOS app with new magazine options for iPad, built-in PDF reader
- Amazon updated the Kindle Fire software today
- Supposed to “enhance fluidity and performance, improves touch navigation responsiveness, gives you the option to choose which items display on the carousel, and adds the ability to add a password lock on Wi-Fi access. The update will be automatically delivered to your Kindle Fire.”
- David Pogue said the update does work as advertised, but calls the magazine reading experience "an exercise in frustration"
- GigaOm noticed that the update gives users access to Google's Android market, no more redirects (but you can't install apps that way).
- Wired says the update doesn't help the "laggy" browser
- Update also breaks root
- Amazon also updated its iOS app adds in PDF reader
- Magazine, newspapers, and print replica textbooks are also available on iPad
- Verizon's LTE data service was disrupted last night, although voice calls, text messaging, and its 3G network were not affected. This is the second LTE outage for the company this month. This morning, Verizon issued a statement saying that LTE data service is returning to normal, but did not detail the exact issue that caused the outage.
- Bradley Manning's defense has rested after calling a total of two witnesses in his hearing. The witnesses served with Manning in Iraq and one said he "wanted to be a good soldier." The prosecution called up 21 witnesses in its case.
- Android head Andy Rubin says that Google activates over 700,000 Android devices every day. Rubin explained that Google does not count re-sold devices - these are 700,000 unique devices per day that are sold and then put on a wireless network.
- Yesterday reports circulated that Sony apologized for PS Vita issues - according to a UK Sony rep, those reports are incorrect. Like TNT surmised yesterday, a poorly translated apology for difficulty in reaching tech support was misinterpreted by many as a general Vita apology. The spokesperson also said that Sony has not seen widespread Vita problems.
- MIT's Technology Review got its hands on Intel's Medfield-powered smartphone and tablet prototypes; both ran Android. Technology Review said the phone could handle Blu-ray quality video and web browsing was "smooth and fast." The tablet ran Ice Cream Sandwich was also pleasant. Intel claims that its Medfield SoC offers better performance and lower power consumption than the top three smartphones available today.
- Nokia's upcoming "Symbian Belle" phones will actually be called "Nokia Belle" phones. The devices still run Symbian, but the name is now missing from Nokia's naming scheme. Nokia has pledged that the OS will be supported up to 2016 and the Bell update e will be available in February 2012.
- RBC Capital Markets analyst Jonathan Atkin says if T-Mobile wants to bring its network up to par with other U.S. wireless carriers, it will cost $9 billion. Sure, the failed AT&T merger garnered Deutsche Telekom $3 billion in cash, but none of that is going into T-Mobile unless DT bets that $3 billion on a horse race or something.
- Speaking of T-Mobile, the company has reported to Senator Al Franken that the company put Carrier IQ software on 9 models of phones, but that's 450,000 handsets. Motorola also disclosed that the software was put on four of its pones at the request of AT&T and Sprint. Those phones are the Admiral, Atrix, Bravo and the Titanium.
- The Sunday Times reports Ireland's Office of the Data Protection Commissioner ordered the country's largest ISP, Eircom, (Ire-com) to dump its three strikes system targeted at booting illegal file-sharers. Eircom had come up with this three-strikes scheme after an agreement with several large music companies in 2009.
- HP has posted a Pre 3 WebOS update, 2.2.4. it's being pushed out to European and US Pre 3s. Pre 2s got the upate last week.
- EA just put almost all of its iOS games on sale for 99 cents including Trenches II, Battlefield: Bad Company 2, and more.
- Today is a big day for BlackBerry users - Spotify comes to some GSM BlackBerry phones and Angry Birds hits the PlayBook!
- Next March and April you'll be able to get Ice Cream Sandwich on your Sony phones
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I'm a chemist and love building computers, PC gaming and technology. I watch the show as much as I can during my lunch breaks on my iPod Touch and enjoy the discussion and guests. As much as I love all things tech, I still can’t submit to purchasing a smart phone. The yearly cost for such devices is mind-blowing. I could purchase and throw away a new PC gaming system every year for the same cost of a new iPhone and associated charges. With this in mind, I’ve noticed a trend of the technology show turning into the phone show. Sometimes it seems like nearly half of the show is devoted to phone company X in who bought who, which new android is coming out, etc. Don’t get me wrong, I think this information fits the show. It’s just that there has to be other tech news out there. I mean, would it hurt to have ONE phone free day per week? Perhaps ""Phone-Free Fridays"" at TNT. Lately it feels more like Phone News Today (PNT).
On a side note, I love the new commercials of using the sponsor’s products. Both the printer and Ford work is great. Thanks for your time, keep up the great work.
Shawn R. Wyatt Greenville, NC"
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Love the show. --MMc
Michael McLennan, Ph.D. Purdue University"
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- Edited by: Jason
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