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[December 18, 2012]
AP Technology NewsBrief at 5:49 a.m. EST
(Associated Press Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) US clicks on rumored Facebook site by Iran leaderDUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) _ The U.S. State Department says it will keep tabs on a Facebook page purportedly created by Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei that includes both positive and derogatory remarks from followers. Iranian officials had no immediate comment, but the page's contents and style _ including an informal photo of Khamenei riding in a car _ raise serious questions about its authenticity.
Judge denies Apple request to ban Samsung phonesSAN FRANCISCO (AP) _ A federal judge late Monday rejected Apple Inc.'s demands that its chief rival in the more than $100 billion global smartphone market cease selling models a jury recently found illegally used Apple technology. The immediate impact of the ruling means that Samsung can continue to sell three of the older-generation smartphones still on U.S. shelves that a San Jose jury in August found ripped off technology Apple used to create its iPhone.
Developers worried about new rules for phone appsWASHINGTON (AP) _ A cellphone game for kids about U.S. geography, "Stack the States," gets rave reviews from parents. Its creator, Dan Russell-Pinson, considered making the 99-cent app better by adding a feature to allow children to play online against one another. But with the Federal Trade Commission issuing more stringent online child privacy rules, he's not even pursuing the idea. "It would require all kinds of data sharing," said Russell-Pinson, the founder and sole employee of Freecloud Design in Charlotte, N.C. "I would be kind of afraid to do that." Mass. fines Morgan Stanley $5M over Facebook IPOBOSTON (AP) _ Morgan Stanley, the lead underwriter for Facebook's troubled public stock offering, has agreed to pay $5 million to Massachusetts' securities regulators after they accused it of disclosing a revenue shortfall only to certain analysts and not the general public. According to state regulators, a Morgan Stanley banker organized phone calls between Facebook's treasurer and the analysts of major underwriters to relay revenue figures that weren't included in revised documents Facebook Inc. filed with U.S. securities authorities on May 9, about a week before the initial public offering of stock.
Sprint raises offer, to buy Clearwire for $2.2BNEW YORK (AP) _ Sprint, the country's third-largest cellphone company, said Monday that it will buy out the portion of wireless network operator Clearwire that it doesn't already own after raising its offer price to $2.2 billion. The deal would give Sprint control of a flailing affiliate, one it depends upon to provide high-speed "Sprint 4G" data services on some of its phones. It would increase Sprint's access to the airwaves, meaning it could boost data speeds in coming years. However, cell towers using Clearwire spectrum have poor range, making it difficult to provide broad coverage.
Apple sells 2M iPhone 5s in China in first 3 daysNEW YORK (AP) _ Apple said Monday that it sold more than 2 million iPhone 5s in China in their first three days of availability, setting a record for that market. IPhone 5, which launched in China on Friday, will be available in more than 100 countries by the end of December.
Review: New Google Maps boasts big improvementsNEW YORK (AP) _ Like a lot of people, I was happy and relieved to see Google Maps return to the iPhone. I'd been frustrated with the Apple mapping software that had replaced it three months ago. For one thing, it didn't have public transit directions, a feature important for New Yorkers like me. Apple's mapping app also wasn't as good as the old Google app in finding destinations. I often had to type full addresses rather than just the name of a business.
Hulu revenue up to $695M; 3 million subscribersLOS ANGELES (AP) _ Online video service Hulu says revenue this year will grow about 65 percent to $695 million. Hulu says it has more than doubled the number of subscribers who pay $8 a month for Hulu Plus. The figure now exceeds 3 million. Hulu Plus gives users a broader selection of back episodes and access over mobile devices, game consoles and Internet-connected TVs. Both free and paid versions of Hulu come with ads.
Census to offer Internet option in gov't surveysWASHINGTON (AP) _ For the first time, the Census Bureau is giving U.S. households a chance to respond to government surveys over the Internet, part of a bid to save costs and boost sagging response rates in a digital age. The new online option will supplement the traditional census mail-out operation. It is a major shift for the agency, which has relied almost exclusively on paper forms since 1970 but is now moving toward a more Internet-based system after spending a record $13 billion on the 2010 census.
Google Maps return to iPhone with new mobile appSAN FRANCISCO (AP) _ Google Maps has found its way back to the iPhone. The world's most popular online mapping system returned late Wednesday with the release of the Google Maps iPhone app. The release comes nearly three months after Apple Inc. replaced Google Maps as the device's built-in navigation system and inserted its own map software into the latest version of its mobile operating system.
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