If you're not an IT manager or an employee of a company with a sizeable tech infrastructure, feel free to skip this post. But if either of those descriptions fit you, you may be interested in Amazon's latest foray into B2B services. Amazon WorkSpaces is a remote, virtualized desktop - basically your own personal Windows machine that lives in the cloud - and it's got an Android client just one day after the service was launched.
The Chameleon Launcher turned some heads when it more than doubled its goal on Kickstarter last year. The final product wasn't quite as amazing as we hoped it would be, but Teknision did at least deliver the app to Google Play. It appears that Teknision is moving on now – it has been acquired by a company called Synacor. Never heard of it? Don't feel bad – you are not alone.
Wall Street analysts always read the tea leaves to come up with predictions of how a company will perform each quarter. If said company does better, investors are happy. If it does worse, investors are angry. The financial system is really based on our primal urges. Today, investors are very happy with Google. The company that spawned Android announced Q3 earnings last night that beat expectations, and the markets are going wild – Google stock is currently trading over $1000 per share.
After 14 years together, Verizon and Vodafone are calling it quits. Verizon will buy out Vodafone's 45% stake in Verizon Wireless to gain full control of the company. The two wireless giants have agreed to a deal valued at $130 billion, which includes $58.9 billion in cash, $60.2 billion in Verizon stock, and $11 billion in additional cash from smaller deals. This confirms rumors that began surfacing late last week.
Verizon is perhaps the most intimidating fish in the sea of US cellphone carriers (okay - it's more of a pond). Now the Big Red is in talks to buy Vodafone's 45% stake in the company for $130 billion, and signs suggest that this deal could be completed within a week. If this goes through, it will mark the closure of a deal Verizon has wanted to secure for years.
If you aren't familiar with Vodafone, it's a British company with roughly four times the number of subscribers that Verizon has and the largest mobile network operator outside of China.
The partnership between HTC and the Beats By Dr. Dre company has been one of the more visible aspects of the former's branding over the last three years. Ever since HTC bought 50.1% of the company for an estimated $300 million in 2011, the headphone maker's iconic logo has had a reserved spot on both devices and software. But according to a report from the Wall Street Journal, Beats is looking to end the relationship in order to find a new partner for greater expansion.
People think that working from home as a freelancer is a great way to make a living. And most of the time it is - being able to complete a project at 4AM sans pants is something that rarely works in a cubicle. But when you're self-employed, all the burdens that are normally handled by an accounting department fall on you. That's where popular iOS app and recent Android pilgrim FreshBooks comes in.
Manufacturing smartphones is a competitive game. I'm talking playing StarCraft in South Korea rough. Succeeding in this market is akin to getting into an Ivy League university, then going on to join the NFL. It's not impossible, but neither is becoming president. If you can't handle the heat, get out of the kitchen. It must be too hot for NEC, as they're bowing out of the smartphone market. Given that this was one of their latest models, the news doesn't come as too much of a surprise.
It's not much of a surprise at this point, but the Federal Communications Commission has approved the tri-company merger deal involving Japanese carrier SoftBank, Sprint, and Clearwire. The FCC ruling follows Justice Department approval several weeks ago, and some delicious drama that ended with Dish Network being shut out of the deal.
SoftBank is throwing $21.6 billion at Sprint to acquire a 78% stake in the company. Sprint is now also free to buy the remaining 49% of Clearwire it doesn't already own, giving it a big juicy slice of wireless spectrum.
Google Voice is a great service for replacing your carrier's voicemail and texting options. If you need something that's a bit more robust, however, SendHub has launched on Android and allows business-class users to set up a phone number (or set of numbers) and get texting and calling for free or cheap, depending on what class of service you need.
Free users can get 60 voice minutes, 500 messages, and 3 groups of 50 contacts for their first line.