Tech News Today 475

From The Official TWiT Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Tech News Today
Episode 475

Tech News Today 475: Stop The Boat Pirates

Facebook drops $1 billion on Instagram, AOL grabs $1 billion of Microsoft's dough for patents, how iPad might be like Aspirin, and more.

Submit and vote on story coverage at


Top Stories

  • AOL sells patents to Microsoft in $1.1 billion deal
  • AOL Sells 800 Patents For $1.1 Billion To Microsoft (Memo To Staff)
  • Attention Marc Andreessen: Microsoft Just Bought (Part Of) Netscape
  • AOL patents could help Microsoft battle Google Maps
  • Analyzing Microsoft’s Patent Play With AOL
    • 800 Patents transferred, specifics as to which ones not released ($1.056 billion in cash)
    • The companies entered into a non-exclusive license for the patents, following an auction.
    • MS gets a non-exclusive license to 300 patents & patent applications still owned by AOL
    • "This is a valuable portfolio that we have been following for years and analyzing in detail for several months,” Brad Smith, Microsoft’s general counsel
    • AOL said that it will return a “significant portion” of the sale’s proceeds to shareholders, and that the deal is expected to close by the end of 2012, after regulatory approval."
    • AllThingsD:
      • As part of the transaction, AOL announced that it was selling off “stock of an AOL subsidiary” at a loss. ATD says it's Netscape.
      • MS will buy the underlying patents for the old browser, but AOL will hang onto the brand
    • CNet:
      • Thinks the deal covers Mapquest IP (Mapquest was bought by AOL in 1999 for $1.1B)
      • (that should be true, but which batch is the Mapquest IP in, the retained AOL or the purchased ones? Either way, MS has a license)
    • Envision IP, a firm that analyzed AOL’s patent portfolio late last month, says the bulk of the patents Microsoft is buying or licensing cover things like online communications and messaging.
  • Lumia 900 Tops Online Sales, Network Connectivity Issues Reported
  • On Release Date, Crucial Nokia Phone Is Hard to Buy in New York
  • The Lumia 900 Becomes Amazon’s Best Selling Phone, Topping The RAZR MAXX And Galaxy Nexus
  • Microsoft gives away 'free time' to promote Windows Phone
  • Some Nokia Lumia 900 handsets having trouble connecting to data networks
    • Lumia 900 Amazon's "biggest gainer" in cell phone sales ranks in last 24 hours. Lumia 900 landed at number 5 in best sellers + service plans on Sunday, by today jumped to #1 & #2 with the black version preferred over blue.
    • Amazon priced at $50 with a 2-year service plan. $50 less than AT&T’s price and $150 less than Droid RAZR MAXX, former #1 at Amazon
    • Online purchases necessary for many due to Easter and Passover. Some AT&T/Microsoft stores were closed for the holidays. NYT called AT&T stores within 5 miles of Times Square around noon Sunday, 18 of them played an automated message saying they were closed for Easter with a short advertisement for the iPhone 4S and made no mention of the Lumia 900. 19 stores didn't answer the phone, and 2 AT&T resellers that were open didn't have the Lumia 900 yet.
    • Times Square on Friday night, Nokia sponsored a performance by the pop singer Nicki Minaj to spread the word about the phone.
    • analysts seem puzzled by timing but Amazon launch seems healthy
    • Reports of network connectivity issues. Phone Arena's workaround: Remove the SIM card > Perform a Master Reset (Settings > About) > Boot up without the SIM card > Turn off the Lumia 900 > Verify that the SIM card is LTE-enabled > Insert SIM and boot up.
    • To drum up attention for Lumia & HTC Titan II, Microsoft has set up "free-time machines" in NY, SF, and Chicago, offering freebies for meals, personal shoppers, grocery delivery, cleaning, and dog walkers. Personal concierges. point being a windows phone can be all of these things. for everyone

Discussion Stories

  • Ailing giant Sony to axe 10,000 jobs worldwide after four years in the red
  • Sony to ax 10,000 jobs in turnaround bid: Nikkei
    • Nikkei newspaper reported on Monday; Sony axing 10,000 jobs or around six per cent of its global workforce,
    • Sony has been in the red for four years
    • As of end-March 2011, Sony had 168,200 employees on a consolidated basis, according to its website.
    • Investors will closely monitor a briefing on Thursday by Hirai
    • The Nikkei said half of the latest round of job cuts would come from consolidating the firm's chemicals and small and midsize LCD operations.
    • Sony may also ask its seven executive directors who served through the fiscal year to end-March, including Stringer, who is now chairman, to return their bonuses, the Nikkei said.
  • Analyst downgrades Apple stock over market concerns, high expectations
  • Brand Name Goes Generic: Apple's 'iPad' Is The Only Tablet People Know
    • a report by the AP's Mae Anderson suggests iPad may be turning into a generic term for all tablets
    • Is it like iPod was or as big as Walkman or Kleenex?
    • Nilay Patel of The Verge disagrees vehemently, saying on Twitter that Apple's defense of the iPad brand is far too strong to allow for any trademark dilution that would lead to generic status. He says that the AP's story "badly distorts" trademark law.
    • Apple has been downgraded from Buy to Neutral by BTIG Research analyst Walter Piecyk.
    • Cites post-paid phones, an expected (by him) iPhone price cut, and lack of a 'revolutionary' product this year.

News Fuse






"Hi TNT Crew,

I’d like to share a thought about an application or Google Glasses. I recently did an eight-year stint volunteering for a non-profit that provided day care for seniors with Alzheimer’s. It would seem to me that Google glasses married with facial recognition software would be a great benefit to people with memory disabilities. Name and relationship prompting would be a huge benefit to a memory disabled person. As well as such basic reminders of, date, year, time of day, and where there are. “It is April 9, 2012. The person looking at your is your son Bob. You are in in Bob’s house, which is in the city of…” You get the idea.

The current generation of seniors might not be able to adapt to technology like Google glasses, but people of the TNT crew’s generation would probably adapt well to Google Glasses prompts should they need them as they age.

Love the show, John Heitmuller Glen Allen, VA"



  • ad times: :49-1:01 and 19:19-20:58

Production Information

  • Edited by: Jason
  • Notes:
Info.png This area is for use by TWiT staff only. Please do not add or edit any content within this section.