If Facebook's 19 billion dollar deal to buy WhatsApp didn't convince you that messaging apps are big business, then... well, this probably won't convince you either, but you'll be even more wrong. Tango Messenger, a solid entry in the crowded text chat market, has been given a huge investment by a group of companies including China's Alibaba.com. Alibaba invested a whopping $215 million, with an extra $65 million coming from previous Tango investors.
There's big money in online storage, in case the presence of Google, Microsoft, and a seemingly endless parade of startups didn't tip you off. Box.com has been one of the more consistent rivals to Dropbox, Google Drive and
SkyDrive OneDrive, and it looks like the small company is about to up its game in a big way. According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, Box is preparing for an initial public offering.
Sure, Verizon's running those ads that tells you how obvious it is their network is best, but AT&T wants you to know it's not sleeping on the job. Today, the carrier announced that it plans to have LTE coverage for 300 million people by the end of 2014. For those counting, that leaves only about 10 million out in the entire country.
The plan comes as part of a $14bn investment into wireless and wireline services—$8bn of which is going to wireless—that is expected to be carried out over the next three years.
SoftBank, a Japanese telecommunications and Internet corporation, has confirmed via a press release and a live event in Tokyo the $20.1bn investment that would give SoftBank a 70% ownership of Sprint. The news hit the rumor mill 3 days ago and was pretty much confirmed by CNBC yesterday. The transaction is expected to close in mid-2013 pending regulatory approval.
Roughly $12.1bn will be paid to the shareholders at $7.30 a share and $8bn will be used to "strengthen Sprint's balance sheet," grow the network, and perform "strategic investments."
Sprint's shares closed at $5.73 last Friday for a +144.87% gain this year so far.
We've heard rumors that Sprint is considering outbidding T-Mobile for MetroPCS's affection. Just in case that doesn't work, though, Sprint wants us to know that there is another plan in the works: being purchased by Softbank. Since most of you likely aren't up to date on Japanese telecoms, here's the deal: Softbank is a Japanese telecom. The third largest wireless carrier in the country, so a bit of a kindred spirit with Sprint.
Finance radio! Are you excited yet? Good. Bloomberg has released an app for the company's 24 hour network of audio shows discussing economics, business, and investment. Through Bloomberg Radio+ you can either choose to listen to whatever's on the air right now, or pull from a list of on-demand shows. You can even download the episodes for offline listening.
The app actually looks very well made. It's as feature-packed as one would want a streaming radio service to be.
Well, this might be one of the most (potentially) awesome stories we cover this week. GameFly, the company best known for setting up a Netflix-style gaming rental service, has announced that it plans to open up a third-party gaming store on iOS and Android (think TegraZone, but with less hardware tie-ins). This would, presumably, be in addition to the already-existing GameFly app. Additionally, the company has "set aside a game development fund" that it will use to fund game developers with great ideas, but less cash flow.