Monthly Archives: August 2013

According to media reports this week, HTC is developing an operating system for Chinese mobile phone users. The company has now issued a statement – but it makes for a pretty unconvincing denial.

HTC says it is in conversations with the Chinese government and telephone operators. But the troubled Taiwanese company did so, i) without denying the OS exists, and ii) in a way that suggests it isn’t in charge of its own destiny. 

Tim Bradshaw

Four billion check-ins later, Foursquare is finding new ways to use all the location data that users have shared with the four-year-old smartphone app.

That includes both new features for users – and new ways to make money from the body of data it’s collected, with third parties. 

From the makers of Candy Crush Saga and Farm Heroes Saga… Court Room Saga!

King, one of the UK’s hottest start-ups, is suing rival 6Waves for allegedly copying two of its games, and has provided screenshots (below) to back up the claim.

6Waves denies the allegations and said it did not copy King’s games.

King’s app offering is highly dependent on a few successful hits and, as the company prepares an IPO in New York, it needs to show potential investors that it is prepared to defend its brands. 

Facebook has agreed to pay $20m to settle a class action lawsuit, after it included users’ names and photos in paid advertisements.

Some 614,000 users who appeared in a Sponsored Story on the site without giving their consent will now receive $15 each. That’s slightly more than anticipated under an earlier proposal, partly because lawyers and activists will receive less.

For Facebook, whose market cap has just surpassed $100bn, this is hardly an Erin Brockovich moment. But it’s another reminder that there’s a fine line between social advertising – which uses your friends’ buying habits to influence your own – and anti-social advertising, which just annoys everyone. 

After thirteen years in the role, the ever-quotable Steve Ballmer will step down as Microsoft chief executive within twelve months. Here are some of his most memorable soundbites:

On the iPhone: “There’s no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share. No chance. It’s a $500 subsidized item.” (April 2007)

On Apple: “In every category Apple competes, it’s the low-volume player, except in tablets.” (October 2012) 

Tim Bradshaw

Trading may have been halted on Nasdaq-listed stocks but the tweets were still flowing on Twitter.

Step forward Carl Icahn, the activist investor, who picked this moment to update his 67,000 followers on his campaign to persuade Apple to hike its share buyback

Tim Bradshaw

Many thought that Instagram’s addition of 15-second videos to its photo-sharing app would kill Vine, Twitter’s fledgling video app.

Apparently not.

Twitter on Tuesday said that 40m people have signed up to watch and share six-second videos on Vine. 

This film image released by Open Road Films shows, from left, Josh Gad as Steve Wozniak, Ashton Kutcher as Steve Jobs, and Ron Eldard as Rod Holt in a scene from "Jobs." (AP Photo/Open Road Films, Glen Wilson)©AP

Steve Jobs is not short of devotees in Silicon Valley. Almost two years after his death, his influence is arguably felt even more now than it was in his prolific final decade, as entrepreneurs and technologists here attempt to emulate his savviness.

So the audience in a San Francisco cinema was well primed at a preview screening of Jobs, a biopic that opens in the US this week. 

Tim Armstrong, chief executive of AOL, has apologized to employees of the internet company for firing an employee last week in front of more than 1,000 coworkers, writes Emily Steel

During a conference call to discuss the future of AOL’s struggling network of local Patch sites, Mr Armstrong told the group’s creative director to immediately put down a camera then declared that he was fired. A recording of the call has been making rounds on the internet and been listened to more than 1,000 times. 

Tim Bradshaw

Count Larry Ellison among the Apple bears. The Oracle chief executive, who has described himself as one of Steve Jobs’ closest friends, told CBS News that the iPhone and iPad maker’s prospects are dim without its “brilliant” co-founder.