Nokia announced on Wednesday that it has officially sold its 1.5 billionth S40-powered cell phone since the first S40 device — the Nokia 7110 — was released in 1999. A 21-year old Brazilian woman made the historic purchase in São Paulo, the company said, noting that the woman purchased a Nokia Asha 303 from a Magazine Luiza store. “We are incredibly proud to reach this milestone,” said Mary McDowell, Executive Vice President for Mobile Phones at Nokia. “Having 1.5 billion Series 40 devices sold is a hard-to-reach mark, let alone one attainable in a single line of products. At a time when we are maintaining our commitment to connecting the next billion customers around the world – it is gratifying to consider how Series 40 devices have made mobile technology accessible and help continue to change people’s lives for the better.” Nokia is set to announce its earnings on Thursday after the market closes. The company’s full press release follows after the break. More →
According to CNBC, Facebook may go public during the first quarter of next year, and sources expect the company could be valued at more than $100 billion. Facebook could find an IPO more attractive once it surpasses a total of 500 investors, because after that milestone it will be required to file financial information with the SEC each quarter — otherwise known as the “500 rule” of the 1934 Securities and Exchange Act. CNBC said that Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer, recently said that an IPO would be “the next thing that happens” and that such a move is “inevitable.” More →
It’s more like a pre-prenuptial agreement, but you get the idea. T-Mobile’s parent company, Deutsche Telecom, has confirmed that it stands to receive a $6 billion settlement from AT&T should the companies’ proposed merger fall through. According to DT, a $3 billion cash payment would be made along with additional spectrum and a national roaming agreement. While the exact valuation of the spectrum and roaming agreement was not disclosed, Reuters appraises the two intangibles at close to $3 billion. Congress, the Federal Communications Commission and Department of Justice are all scrutinizing the proposed deal, which would make AT&T the largest wireless provider in the United States. There are sure to be plenty of twists and turns along the way, but once thing is certain: a large sum of money is going to be debited from AT&T’s coffers no matter the regulatory outcome. More →
Analytics company Flurry has published an interesting study involving Android, iOS, and the U.S. video game market. Following up on a report from 2009, the company notes that the two mobile operating systems accounted for 8% of all U.S. video game sales in 2010 when calculated by revenue. What’s even more interesting is where both Android and iOS are taking their share from: portable gaming players. Console software revenues grew by 5% from 2009 to 2010 — 71% to 75% respectively — with portable gaming systems (e.g. Sony PSP, Nintendo DS) revenue falling nearly 8% in during the same period. Combined, Android and iOS accounted for 34% of all U.S. portable gaming software revenues — behind the Nintendo DS with 57% and ahead of Sony’s PSP with just 9%. Portable game software was a $2.4 billion business in 2010, with overall U.S. video game software revenues hovering around $10.7 billion. “Over 2011, we expect to see continued and significant smart-device game growth fueled by the recent launch of iPad 2, iPhone coming into distribution on Verizon, the expected release of iPhone 5, a relentless expansion of Android devices by leading OEMs across all major U.S. carriers, and Google’s enablement of in-app purchase billing, a proven key driver in iOS game revenue,” reads Flurry’s report. Smartphones and tablets may not be immersive enough for the most hardcore mobile gamers, but they seem to be more than adequate for most. More →
Apple’s mysterious new billion-dollar data center in North Carolina has been a recurring topic of interest among tech sites for quite some time now. The massive facility is thought to be a hub that will power Apple’s next generation of cloud-based services, which may or may not include a subscription streaming music service tied to iTunes and a personal digital locker product. With future core Apple services relying on the new facility, the company had to ensure it found a seasoned veteran to run the data center, and it looks like Apple may have found its man: Kevin Timmons. A new rumor suggests that Apple recently poached Timmons from rival Microsoft, where he has held a General Manager position since 2009. Prior to that, Timmons was Yahoo!’s Vice President of Operations for 10 years. Microsoft confirmed that Timmons recently left the company, but it would not address his future plans. More →
Social networking giant Facebook may be looking to conquer another market, Wall Street. After news spread of a $500 million investment — $450 million from Goldman Sachs and $50 million from Russia’s Sky Technologies — Facebook was given a valuation of $50 billion by market analysts and firms. The eleven figure price tag was placed upon the privately held company even as the government’s Securities and Exchange Commission has, purportedly, launched a formal inquiry into Facebook’s private-share trading activity. According to the Times, the SEC is investigating the “increasingly hot private market for shares in Internet companies, including Facebook, Twitter, the gaming site Zynga and LinkedIn.” The government agency is looking for loopholes in the public disclosure laws that companies, investors, and firms may be exploiting through the use of private shares. A $50 billion valuation of Facebook makes the company’s youthful CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, worth an estimated $15 billion — more than double the estimated $6.9 billion net-worth put on Facebook’s founder back in September. More →
Microsoft has issued a statement describing Steve Ballmer’s plans to sell up to 75 million shares in order “to gain financial diversification and to assist in tax planning”. A sale this large is bound to ring alarm bells with shareholders, however Ballmer has cleared the air of any brewing conspiracy theories. “Even though this is a personal financial matter, I want to be clear about this to avoid any confusion. I am excited about our new products and the potential for our technology to change people’s lives, and I remain fully committed to Microsoft and its success,” said the Redmond CEO. SEC filings indicate that Steve Ballmer has already sold 49 million shares, making him a cool $1.3 billion. With capital gains tax said to increase to 20 from 15% in January, Steve Ballmer has just saved himself some serious money.
South Korean electronics powerhouse Samsung has announced its Q3 financials via a press release. The outfit raked in an impressive $35.8 billion in revenue and $3.98 billion in operating profits, and about 25% of that profit came by way of its thriving telecommunications business. Samsung chiefs were quick to credit their mobile communications wing, which shipped 71.4 million phones during Q3 — a 19% increase on last year’s figures. Samsung claims to have sold 7 million Galaxy S phones during the quarter and expects to sell 10 million by the end of the calendar year. Go on Samsung, pat yourself on the back. Press release after the break. More →
What, you thought McDonald’s and Chuck Norris were the only two entities that could make claims of “billions and billions served”? Today, via a tweet, Google announced that its mobile advertising agency, AdMob, had eclipsed the 300 billion adverts-served mark; the company accomplished this in just under three years. We would like to extend our congratulations to Google on their success. With the proliferation of smartphones, we’re sure it will take AdMob far fewer than three years to serve-up their next 300 billion.
Today, Intel announced that it would purchase antivirus maker McAfee for $7.68 billion in cash. The deal will see McAfee shareholders paid out at $48 per share, a 60% premium on the stocks current $30 price tag. Intel CEO Paul Otellini had this to say: “In the past, energy-efficient performance and connectivity have defined computing requirements. Looking forward, security will join those as a third pillar of what people demand from all computing experiences.” Intel and McAfee were advised by Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley respectively. More →
We jumped the gun on this one the other day, but it’s finally official, so break out the noise makers, throw up the confetti, and let the parties begin. Apple iTunes has reached its ten billion song download milestone today. For those that are counting, that is an astounding ten billion songs downloaded in a mere seven years of operation; nine billion of which have been downloaded since February 23, 2006, the date iTunes reached its one billionth song milestone and almost four years ago to the date. With Apple rumored to be moving iTunes to the cloud using the talent and technology it acquired in its recent Lala purchase, we can most likely assume this number to continue to climb at its astounding rate and in less than five years from now, we may be celebrating the 20th billion download. More →
Well holy crap. Exactly 287 days after the iTunes App Store opened its virtual doors and made its first sale, Apple has served up its billionth App Store download. It’s an impressive feat no doubt, but at the moment we’re more interested in finding out exactly who it was that pushed the counter into ten digits because they’ve won a 17-inch MacBook Pro, a 32GB iPod touch, a $10,000 iTunes gift card and a Time Capsule. That’s right — one lucky S.O.B. has $13,746 worth of Apple goods headed his or her way, likely in a gift basket milled from a single piece of aluminum.