Maija Palmer

Clive Sinclair’s C5, Tata’s Nano and baby toys come to mind, apparently. Read more

Animalsnap

Parents spend about $100 downloading an average of 27.2 apps for their children each year. Many would prefer these to be educational, with good privacy policies and no advertising. New apps from Nosy Crow, Oxford University Press and Jajdo offer some safe options for small tablet users.

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Maija Palmer

HouseTrip.com, the Swiss-based holiday rentals website, became the latest technology start-up to raise money in the recent flurry of funding rounds. The C-round brought Accel Partners in as an investor, alongside existing backers Balderton and Index Ventures. It is possibly the first time these three top European VC investors have all piled into the same company, making HouseTrip seem hot property indeed.

The company, which has raised a total of $60m since it was founded nearly three years ago, is a competitor to US Airbnb, which has also been awash with venture investment money and has a valuation of around $1.3bn. HouseTrip says it focuses more on holiday home rentals, rather than short stays in a spare room. Read more

Maija Palmer

News that TV mogul Simon Cowell and Will.i.am, singer with the Black Eyed Peas are considering launching an X-Factor style reality show to find the next Mark Zuckerberg or Bill Gates has caused a combination of amusement and disbelief across the technology sector.

But the idea of bringing a bit of glamour into the industry is not without merit. Read more

Maija Palmer

For a tech start-up the aim is nearly always to “go viral” and spread as far and wide as possible. So it is no surprise that TechHub, which provides work spaces for fledgling technology businesses in London, is looking to colonize more cities starting with Manchester.

The company has teamed up with Town Centre Securities, a  property developer, to open an office with 50 desks permanent desks and a drop-in work space in a Grade II listed building in Manchester’s Piccadilly Basin. Read more

Maija Palmer

SkyDox, the online document sharing company, has bought its larger US rival  Workshare and raised £20m from venture capital groups in order to create a stronger UK challenger in the market for online work collaboration.

Anthony Foy, chief executive of Brick Lane-based SkyDox, said the combination of the two companies, which creates an entity with annual revenues of around £20m,  would allow them to better challenge rivals such as Box and Dropbox in a fast-growing market. Read more

Maija Palmer

Warren East, chief executive of Arm Holdings, sees an opportunity for UK technology companies as rising development costs are forcing the structure of the semiconductor chip industry to change.  In our video interview, he also explains to FT technology correspondent Maija Palmer how the internet of things like intelligent fridges or medical devices will lead to more efficient energy use and better healthcare. Read more

Maija Palmer

Apple’s victory over Samsung in the patents dispute shone an interesting light on the murky world of patents. For one thing it demonstrated clearly that there are two different types of patents around mobile devices that operate very differently.

On the one hand you have patents that are to do with how the phone actually operates, how it connects calls and handles data. These are the standards essential patents and they are the things that companies like Samsung, Nokia and Motorola have a lot of, as they have been in the business of making phones for a very long time. Read more

Maija Palmer

It has not been a great week for Sony employees, as the Japanese consumer electronics group carries out some late-summer pruning on its businesses. Around 1,000 people at Sony Mobile’s operations are to be let go, with two-thirds of the redundancies falling in Lund, Sweden,  as the headquarters of the mobile phone unit moves to Japan.

This was widely expected after Sony bought out Ericsson from their Sony Ericsson joint venture last year. In April this year, Sony had announced plans to cut 10,000 jobs globally. About half of these would come from the sale and spin-off of two subsidiaries, but detail about the rest is just starting to trickle through. Read more

Maija Palmer

The love affair with the mobile phone appears to have faltered a little, with worldwide mobile phone sales down for the second quarter in a row, according to new figures from Gartner. But is this just a small hiatus as consumers wait for the next round of handsets from Apple and Samsung to hit the shelves later this year, or a sign of something deeper?

Gartner is clearly a little worried, as it is paring back its earlier estimates for 2012 handset sales by between 25m and 40m units. Its not a huge drop, only about 2 per cent of the estimated 1.9bn unit sales this year, but Anshul Gupta, analyst at Gartner says he has been a little surprised by the fall.  Read more