E Ink revenues nose dive 60% in January

By on February 8, 2012 at 11:35 PM.

E Ink revenues nose dive 60% in January

E Ink, the popular company that provides paper-look gray-scale displays for eReaders, reported consolidated revenues of $48.02 million in January, down 63.6% from the same month last year and 11% sequentially. The growing popularity of media tablets with full-color displays likely played a big role in the decline — sales of Amazon’s Kindle Fire and Barnes & Noble’s Nook Tablet are thought to be eating into the companies’ respective dedicated eReader businesses to an extent. Even though E Ink’s revenue took a nose dive in January, the company said that it expects to post revenues of $1.35 billion this year, up 5% from 2011.

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Sprint to expand 4G LTE to Kansas City and Baltimore this year

By on February 8, 2012 at 8:10 PM.

Sprint to expand 4G LTE to Kansas City and Baltimore this year

Sprint announced on Wednesday that it expects to activate its upcoming 4G LTE network in Baltimore and in Kansas City. The carrier has already said that it will flip the switch on its first 4G LTE networks in Atlanta, Dallas, Houston and San Antonio by mid-2012. The carrier’s first LTE devices will include Samsung’s Galaxy Nexus, the LG Viper 4G LTE and the Sierra Wireless Tri-Network mobile hotspot. Sprint said it also expects to improve the 3G coverage in each of the aforementioned markets. Sprint’s CEO Dan Hesse also said Wednesday that 86% of the phones his company sold during the fourth quarter were smartphones and that 66% of Sprint’s subscriber base now use smartphones, and the carrier’s 4G LTE network will certainly benefit any smartphone user that may be looking for faster download and upload data speeds. Sprint’s full press release follows after the break. More →

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Amazon announces content agreement with Viacom for Kindle Fire, Prime customers

By on February 8, 2012 at 3:30 PM.

Amazon announces content agreement with Viacom for Kindle Fire, Prime customers

Amazon on Wednesday announced that it has entered into a new agreement with Viacom to provide a larger selection of television content to its Kindle Fire and Amazon Prime customers. Under the deal, Amazon’s customers will have access to episodes of The Real World, Chapelle’s Show and the The Sarah Silverman Program from Comedy Central, as well as a number of hit shows from Nickelodeon. “This deal with Viacom brings Prime customers and Kindle Fire users thousands of comedies, kids’ shows, reality TV and much more from some of the best cable networks available,” Amazon’s director of video content acquisition Brad Beale said. “We now offer more than 15,000 movies and TV shows in Prime Instant Videos and are working hard to add even more great content.” Amazon’s full press release follows after the break. More →

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Nokia on smartphone strategy: We don’t have a Plan B

By on February 8, 2012 at 2:55 PM.

Nokia on smartphone strategy: We don’t have a Plan B

There’s no question that Nokia is betting big on the success of Windows Phone, and we have to admit that it has already unveiled several of the best Windows Phone handsets out there. But the Finnish phone maker is reportedly so convinced that Windows Phone will succeed that it doesn’t have a backup plan of any sort. “Plan B is that Plan A is to succeed,” Nokia manager Victor Saeijs is said to have told Swedish financial newspaper Dagens Industri. We know Nokia is cooking something up for its low-end phones so all of the vendor’s eggs really aren’t in one basket, but its good to see Nokia so confident in its strategy. Nokia will reportedly unveil at least one new high-end smartphone later this month at Mobile World Congress, and we’ll be on hand to bring you all the news as it breaks, More →

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ARM-powered Windows 8 devices will likely support desktop apps

By on February 8, 2012 at 1:10 PM.

ARM-powered Windows 8 devices will likely support desktop apps

Contrary to a number of reports that have suggested otherwise, ARM-powered Windows 8 devices will likely be able to run full desktop applications. Microsoft had failed for some time to provide a straight answer as to whether or not ARM-powered devices would be limited to simply running Metro-style applications. However, ZDNet‘s Mary Jo Foley noticed a Microsoft post that specifically discussed power states on Windows 8 ARM devices for “both desktop and Metro style apps,” which clearly suggests that support for desktop applications will be included. Microsoft still hasn’t officially confirmed this, but as Mary Jo Foley points out, we suspect that Microsoft was diligent with its writing and that it didn’t just drop in a reference to desktop support accidentally. We’ll likely have to wait just a little longer until the official word drops, but for now it appears full desktop applications will be supported on Windows 8-powered ARM devices. More →

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LG teases new 5-inch Optimus Vu Android smartphone [video]

By on February 8, 2012 at 9:05 AM.

LG teases new 5-inch Optimus Vu Android smartphone [video]

LG recently began teasing a new smartphone that could very well make its debut during the Mobile World Congress trade show later this month. The device, dubbed the Optimus Vu, will offer a 5-inch display with a 4:3 aspect ratio, and rumor has it the phone will also come equipped with a 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor, 8GB of storage, support for NFC, 1GB of RAM and an 8-megapixel camera. Unfortunately, the Optimus Vu will reportedly run Android 2.3 Gingerbread instead of the latest Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) operating system. So far we’re not seeing a whole lot to be excited about other than the massive screen, since most of the specs are similar to what we’ve already seen in the LG Optimus LTE phone. We expect LG will have more surprises up its sleeve during the show, however. More →

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Nokia Lumia 800 to launch in U.S. on February 14th as part of $900 bundle

By on February 8, 2012 at 12:45 AM.

Nokia Lumia 800 to launch in U.S. on February 14th as part of $900 bundle

Microsoft may be planning to launch a special bundle that includes the Nokia Lumia 800 and several accessories for $899. Citing unnamed industry sources, The Verge said the deal will kick off on February 14th and will include a Bluetooth headset, a Purity HD stereo headset and Nokia’s Play 360 wireless speaker. Microsoft will reportedly not be offering the Lumia 800 as a stand-alone product. $899 seems a bit steep to us, even considering that consumers will be getting an unlocked device and a bundle of solid accessories. After all, AT&T will be launching the sub-$100 Lumia 900 with 4G LTE support and a bigger screen just one month later. More →

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Acer sues former CEO for violating non-compete agreement

By on February 7, 2012 at 11:30 PM.

Acer sues former CEO for violating non-compete agreement

Acer has filed a lawsuit against its former chief executive officer Gianfranco Lanci for allegedly violating a non-compete agreement. Lanci left Acer last March after the company hit a rough patch and was recently named head of Lenovo’s operations in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. “We believe Mr. Lanci has clearly breached the terms of the non-compete agreement he entered into willingly . . . we believe we have a very robust case,” Acer said in a statement given to the Financial Times. The Financial Times notes that Acer has fallen from the second to the fourth largest computer maker in the world while Lenovo has seen recent success and has risen to the No.2 spot. More →

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Nokia to unveil a new high-end smartphone during MWC

By on February 7, 2012 at 3:45 PM.

Nokia to unveil a new high-end smartphone during MWC

Nokia will unveil at least one new high-end smartphone during the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona later this month, Forbes said Tuesday. The Finnish company announced the Lumia 900, a Windows Phone device destined for AT&T, during the Consumer Electronics Show in early January but consumers are still waiting to hear what the company will launch as a follow-up to the Lumia 800 in Europe. Early rumors suggested that Nokia was planning to announce a Lumia 910 device with HSPA+ connectivity and a 12-megapixel camera, but Nokia recently shot down rumors of the camera upgrade. BGR will be reporting live from Mobile World Congress later this month so be we’ll be sure to bring you all the news as it breaks. More →

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Popular ‘Path’ app revealed to secretly upload all iPhone contacts to its servers [updated]

By on February 7, 2012 at 3:00 PM.

Popular ‘Path’ app revealed to secretly upload all iPhone contacts to its servers [updated]

Path, the popular social network that competes with the likes of Instagram, may be uploading your iPhone’s entire address book up to its servers. Arun Thampi from mclov.in noticed the Path app’s steal data dump while trying to create a Mac OS X application for the social network during a hackathon. “Upon inspecting closer, I noticed that my entire address book (including full names, emails and phone numbers) was being sent as a plist to Path,” Thampi said, noting that Path didn’t ever ask for permission to do so. It’s unclear why Path is uploading the iPhone’s entire address book, but Thampi noticed that the social network performs the action during an API call with basic HTTP authentication. It remains unclear if Path’s Android application is also guilty of uploading personal information. Thampi has instructions on how to catch Path in the action on his blog.

UPDATE: A response from Path’s CEO follows after the break. More →

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RIM: BlackBerry apps are more profitable than Android apps

By on February 7, 2012 at 8:35 AM.

RIM: BlackBerry apps are more profitable than Android apps

Research In Motion executivess took the stage during BlackBerry DevCon Europe on Tuesday to clear up a few facts about the company’s success with its BlackBerry App World marketplace. RIM’s new CEO Thorsten Heins said BlackBerry App World is now home to more than 60,000 applications, which is a fraction of what’s available in the Android Market or iTunes App Store, and that BlackBerry devices are among the most popular smartphones purchased in the United Kingdom. RIM’s vice president of developer relations Alec Saunders also said that there are 174 million app downloads per month, or about 6 million applications downloaded per day, The Verge reported. Saunders argued that RIM’s BlackBerry App World has 43% more daily downloads per app than Apple’s own iTunes App Store and he said App World can be more profitable as well — BlackBerry apps supposedly earn about 40% more than their Android counterparts, and 13% of BlackBerry developers have made more than $100,000 from their apps. In addition to the app figures, Saunders and Nokia’s head of Qt announced that RIM’s BlackBerry PlayBook OS now supports the Qt developer framework, originally intended for Nokia devices. More →

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White Nokia Lumia 800 Windows Phone to launch later this month

By on February 6, 2012 at 10:40 PM.

White Nokia Lumia 800 Windows Phone to launch later this month

Nokia on Monday officially took the wraps off a white version of its Lumia 800 Windows Phone.  Nokia originally launched the device in black and cyan, and the white version adopts a gloss finish instead of the matte coloring of the other models. Nokia says the device will be made available later this month. “Since we began selling it late last year, the Nokia Lumia 800 has received rave reviews around the world,” said Ilari Nurmi, Vice President of Product Marketing, Nokia. “Now in white, the Lumia 800 brings with it an even more premium look and feel with its gloss finish, but packed with power and performance underneath its sleek body.” Nokia’s full press release follows after the break. More →

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New Verizon, Redbox joint venture to offer Netflix-like video streaming

By on February 6, 2012 at 7:45 PM.

New Verizon, Redbox joint venture to offer Netflix-like video streaming

Verizon and Redbox-owner Coinstar on Monday announced a new joint venture in which the two companies will offer a new streaming video service. The joint venture was originally called “Project Zoetrope” and initial details began to surface in December of last year. It’s still unclear what the joint venture will be called or what exactly each company’s role will be, however Verizon said that the companies will begin to offer a “video on demand streaming and download service” that will no doubt compete directly with services such as Netflix and Vudu. Verizon’s press release follows below. More →

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