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AfterDawn: News

Microsoft's stock craters following earnings report

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 27 Jan 2015 17:49

Microsoft's stock craters following earnings report Yesterday, Microsoft announced their quarterly earnings and the company's stock was destroyed today following the not-so-hot results.

The company had revenues of $26.47 billion for their fiscal 2015 Q2, and profits were $0.71 cents per share ($5.86 billion). Both of the headline numbers were in-line with what was expected, but profits were down nearly 9 percent year-over-year.

Despite the seemingly strong numbers, the company's stock fell nearly 10 percent as investors were scared by some of the other data. Commercial licensing of Windows and Office to business customers saw a hiccup overseas due to the conditions in China and Japan and a strong U.S. dollar (nearing 10 year highs) has reduced profits from overseas.

Additionally, now that Windows XP is officially dead, the upgrade cycle for newer Windows is seemingly over, as well and other sales fell across the board for Microsoft. Windows Pro edition revenue fell 13 percent as did non-Pro revenue. Windows volume licensing revenue only grew 3%.




AfterDawn: News

Here is the iPhone 6 clone that runs Android

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 27 Jan 2015 12:20

Here is the iPhone 6 clone that runs Android Chinese OEM Dakele has unveiled their latest smartphone, the Dakele 3, a clone of the iPhone 6 that runs Android.

From a design standpoint, the devices are identical. The Dakele 3 has grey aluminum curved edges and a black face. The home button is circular just like the iPhone (although it is notably missing Touch ID). The back is identical, as well, minus the slight bump for the camera.

Under the hood, the device's specs are solid, as well. The Dakele 3 has a 5-inch display with 1080p resolution, 3GB RAM, a 64-bit Mt6752 octa-core processor clocked at 1.7Ghz, Mali-T760 GPU, and 16GB internal storage. Even the cameras are solid, with a 13MP rear camera and an 8MP camera up front for FaceTime, err, video chatting.

Most importantly, the device is priced at just 1500 yuan ($250 USD), a third of the price of an unlocked iPhone 6.

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AfterDawn: News

Google expanding Google Fiber to four new cities

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 27 Jan 2015 11:49

Google expanding Google Fiber to four new cities Although still unconfirmed, it appears that Google is expanding its gigabit Internet Fiber service to four new cities, including its biggest metro yet.

According to multiple reports, Fiber is headed to Nashville, Tenn.; Charlotte, N.C.; Raleigh-Durham, N.C.; and Atlanta, Georgia.

Atlanta would be far and away the largest metro city to receive the fast Internet service which is over 15 times faster than most ISP's "high-speed" options.

Google had placed the four cities on their "Future of Fiber" list, but there is never a time frame for Fiber.

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AfterDawn: News

Twitter unveils group direct messages and new mobile video features

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 27 Jan 2015 11:34

Twitter unveils group direct messages and new mobile video features Twitter has unveiled a few features that it previously announced in September, including group direct messages.

Explains Twitter: "The group function lets you start conversations with any of your followers and they don't all need to follow one another in order to chat. You can create a group in just a few taps. When you're added to a group, you'll get a notification. If you're brand new to Direct Messages, here's a good resource to learn more."

The experience will mirror what most mobile users are already doing via other apps, such as WhatsApp, GroupMe or good old texting.

In addition, Twitter will now allow you to capture and edit videos right from within the app.

Says the microblogging giant: "Tweets have been more than 140 characters for some time. The Twitter you experience today is rich and immersive, full of images, gifs, Vines, audio files and videos from some of the world's most recognizable figures and brands. And starting today, everyone will soon be able to seamlessly capture, edit and share videos right from the Twitter app, too.

We designed our camera to be simple to use so you can capture and share life's most interesting moments as they happen. In just a few taps you can add a video to unfolding conversations, share your perspective of a live event, and show your everyday moments instantly, without ever having to leave the app. Viewing and playing videos is just as simple: videos are previewed with a thumbnail and you can play them with just one tap."

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AfterDawn: News

Google wireless service will reportedly be able to switch between Wi-Fi hotspots, T-Mobile and Sprint for best signal

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 27 Jan 2015 10:58

Google wireless service will reportedly be able to switch between Wi-Fi hotspots, T-Mobile and Sprint for best signal According to the WSJ, Google's upcoming mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) service will be able to switch between T-Mobile, Sprint and Wi-Fi hotspots instantly to route your voice, text and data traffic through the best available signal.

The service, which was just reported on last week but is still not confirmed by Google, is expected to go live by June and will be nationwide.

For the rumors to be true, Google would have to offer only devices that can connect to all the spectrum bands that Sprint and T-Mobile currently use, and have the ability to dynamically switch when a signal weakens. By breaking dependency on just one carrier, Google appears to be caring more about connectivity than anything else.

The new report also confirmed previous reports that Sprint has added a "volume trigger" to its contract, meaning if Google's service becomes very popular, Sprint can renegotiate or terminate their deal.

MVNOs have seen varying success in the U.S., but FreedomPop, Net10 and Republic Wireless are household names at this point.

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AfterDawn: News

Facebook apologizes for small downtime

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 27 Jan 2015 10:19

Facebook apologizes for small downtime Last night, Facebook and a number of other sites went down for around 30 minutes, leading to suggestions that the sites might be under attack.

Instagram, Tinder, MySapce, AIM and Hipchat were also down for varying times and the Lizard Squad, the group that took down Xbox Live and PSN last month, were quick to suggest they were responsible for the downtime. It appears now the group had nothing to do with the site outage.

Facebook says the downtime was "not the result of a third party attack but instead occurred after we introduced a change that affected our configuration systems." We have "moved quickly to fix the problem, and both services are back to 100% for everyone."

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AfterDawn: News

Analyst: Apple Watch slated for March release

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 27 Jan 2015 9:40

Analyst: Apple Watch slated for March release KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, well known in the industry for his accurate forecasts on Apple products, says that the Apple Watch will finally see the light of day in March.

The Apple Watch was first announced in September, and given the very broad "by early 2015" time frame for release. Most interpreted that to mean the Q1, and if Kuo is correct, the Watch will be released sometime before the end of the Q1.

Kuo also says Apple is likely to have supply issues with certain parts of the watch which could limit shipments to under 3 million for the quarter. Kuo has accurately predicted new products and their release dates for a few years now.

You can read more about the Apple Watch here at AfterDawn.

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AfterDawn: News

You can thank Apple for the Nexus 6's missing fingerprint scanner

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 26 Jan 2015 20:55

You can thank Apple for the Nexus 6's missing fingerprint scanner According to former Motorola Mobility CEO Dennis Woodside, Nexus 6 owners can blame Apple for their device's lack of a fingerprint sensor.

Motorola had planned to place a fingerprint scanner in the dimple on the back of the device that now holds the Motorola logo, but Apple bought fingerprint sensor maker AuthenTec, who was the "best supplier."

When asked why the device has the dimple that is completely unused, Woodside said "the secret behind that is that it was supposed to be fingerprint recognition, and Apple bought the best supplier. So the second-best supplier was the only one available to everyone else in the industry and they weren't there yet."

AuthenTec was the first supplier with tech that allowed users to just hold their finger over the sensor for recognition. All other companies at the time required some sort of swiping motion. Apple first used the tech for its Touch ID sensor in the iPhone 5S.

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AfterDawn: News

Lizard Squad defaces Malaysia Airlines site, promises data dump

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 26 Jan 2015 20:15

Lizard Squad defaces Malaysia Airlines site, promises data dump Lizard Squad, the group behind the DDoS that managed to take down Xbox Live and Sony's PlayStation Network on Christmas, has defaced Malaysia Airlines' site today, adding a tasteless joke, as well.

Besides their standard lizard with a top hat and monocle, the site added the text "404-Plane Not Found" referencing flight 370, which disappeared in March, killing over 200 passengers. Additionally, the group said "Hacked by LIZARD SQUAD-OFFICIAL CYBER CALIPHATE," referencing the group that claims association with the extremist terrorist group ISIS.

Malaysia Airlines confirmed the DNS compromise, but said they expect to be fully up and running within 72 hours. All user data is said to be secure, but Lizard Squad still promised a data dump and showed a screenshot purporting to show passenger's itineraries.

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AfterDawn: News

isoHunt offers plentiful bounty to developers, mod and uploaders for 'Old Pirate Bay'

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 26 Jan 2015 19:32

isoHunt offers plentiful bounty to developers, mod and uploaders for 'Old Pirate Bay' Last month, following the raids and take down of The Pirate Bay, the team behind isoHunt launched The Old Pirate Bay, a copy of the original, but without some key features.

Regardless, the site now has over 1 million visitors per day, as it brings together torrent links from other sources into one repository. isoHunt is now offering money to make sure the site continues to develop. The Old Pirate Bay is offering $100,000 in Bitcoins to uploaders, developers and moderators who can clean the site over the next six months.

Reads the posting: "In order to boost that process we are announcing an unprecedented move. $100,000 for developing OldPirateBay.org, are you ready for that?! Anyone can take part in the website development and moderation which will result in public recognition. Also addition to your pay check would be a nice surprise."

Starting on March 1st, Old Pirate bay is adding upload and moderator capabilities, and $5000 a month will be split between the top contributors and mods for that month. $10,000 a month will be divied up between the developers who contribute the best features to the code of the site.

"The idea behind this message is to empower the community to create OldPirateBay.org as they see it. And we're ready to reward the most active participants along the way," the Isohunt.to team added. "The main idea is that community should develop the site in the way they want. So if there will be enough initiative the site will be developed by people. We just want to stimulate it."

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AfterDawn: News

20th anniversary Sony PlayStation 4 with serial 00001 sells for $128,000 at auction

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 26 Jan 2015 19:14

20th anniversary Sony PlayStation 4 with serial 00001 sells for $128,000 at auction During a recent auction, a buyer paid the incredible sum of 15,135,000 ($128,000 USD) to be the proud owner of the first 20th anniversary Sony PlayStation 4.

Sony announced in December that it would be celebrating the history of the PlayStation console by launching a special edition PlayStation 4 in the gray colorway of its two-decade old predecessor.

The winning buyer will now have serial 00001 of 12,300 special consoles, and all the proceeds have been donated to the "Save the Children Japan" charity.

Sony was surprised and delighted at the success of the auction: "We appreciate all who participated in the auction and are surprised at the highest bid price, which was higher than our expectations".

Other, later serial models have been selling on eBay for over $2000, on average.

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AfterDawn: News

Cyanogen wants to have no ties to Google in the future

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 26 Jan 2015 18:22

Cyanogen wants to have no ties to Google in the future Cyanogen Inc. CEO Kirt McMaster really, really, really wants to break his company's dependence on Google.

Based on the open-source Android operating system, CyanogenMod is an OS that is built for speed, efficiency and openness, and the company recently raised millions of dollars from venture capitalists as it looks to expand from beyond a niche player.

Speaking at the "Next Phase of Android" event in San Francisco, McCaster made it very clear that the future of Cyanogen is devoid of Google. In introducing himself, McCaster said: "I'm the CEO of Cyanogen. We're attempting to take Android away from Google. We're making a version of Android that is more open so we can integrate with more partners so their servicers can be tier one services, so startups working on [artificial intelligence] or other problems don't get stuck having you have to launch a stupid little application that inevitably gets acquired by Google or Apple. These companies can thrive on non-Google Android."

The company wants to bill itself as a platform where other companies can build services that integrate into the core of Android, like Google's own Google Now. Google would not approve of that, so Cyanogen wants to break all ties:

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AfterDawn: News

The cable industry does not want to give Americans faster Internet

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 26 Jan 2015 15:54

The cable industry does not want to give Americans faster Internet The cable industry apparently does not want to give Americans faster Internet, with the industry's lobbying group opposing the FCC's wishes.

In 2014, the FCC set in motion plans to change the definition of 'broadband' to 25Mbps down and 3Mbps up, meaning ISPs offering slower connections could no longer market their Internet as broadband. The numbers certainly seemed fair, as the U.S. currently has some of the slowest broadband speeds on the planet, with the most expensive prices.

The National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA) opposes this notion: "25Mbps/3Mbps isn't necessary to meet the legal definition of high-speed, switched, broadband telecommunications capability that enables users to originate and receive high-quality voice, data, graphics, and video telecommunications using any technology," the NCTA added. "Notably, no party provides any justification for adopting an upload speed benchmark of 3Mbps. And the two parties that specifically urge the Commission to adopt a download speed benchmark of 25 Mbps--Netflix and Public Knowledge--both offer examples of applications that go well beyond the 'current' and 'regular' uses that ordinarily inform the Commission's inquiry under Section 706" of the Telecommunications Act."

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AfterDawn: News

Week in Review: Microsoft shows off Windows 10 and HoloLens, WhatsApp hits your browser, Google getting into wireless carrier business

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 25 Jan 2015 21:48

Week in Review: Microsoft shows off Windows 10 and HoloLens, WhatsApp hits your browser, Google getting into wireless carrier business This week was pretty heavy in major tech news, headlined by Microsoft's unveiling of Windows 10 and HoloLens.

Here were the top stories for the week:



Microsoft shows off Windows 10 on PC, smartphones and tablets
Microsoft unveiled Windows 10 for PC, smartphones and tablets, the first of their operating systems to be truly universal. More importantly, Microsoft says the OS will be available as a free upgrade for devices running Windows 7 and Windows 8.1.

Read more about all of the new features of Windows 10, here: Windows 10 in-depth at Afterdawn



WATCH: Microsoft's HoloLens fills world with holograms
Microsoft also unveiled the first stages of HoloLens, an incredible piece of tech that allows you to interact with your world via holograms. It is easier to watch the video, and read on to learn more here at Afterdawn.

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AfterDawn: News

Google issues statement in response to Android's WebView security issues

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 25 Jan 2015 19:52

Google issues statement in response to Android's WebView security issues Over the past month, there have been multiple major reports relating to the web security flaw of older versions of Android that could allow for remote attacks.

The flaw is related to WebView, the mobile framework that allows apps to display websites without a separate browser.

Adrian Ludwig has posted a long Google+ article discussing why Google cannot upgrade older versions of Android and what hundreds of millions of users can do to stay protected. Read it in full, here:

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