Category Archives: IT NEWS

Apple acquired partial technology of Omnifone to enhance music app performance

TechCrunch reported that Apple just acquired partial technology of Omnifone for $ 10 million. Omnifone is a global music platform.

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It had been reported that this acquisition started from this July, however, the difference is Apple did not acquire Omnifone completely. The acquisition is excluded the patent portfolio of Omnifone.

In addition, Omnifone employees revealed the change of personnel on LinkedIn profiles. There were about 16 Omnifone employees’ profiles showed that they work for Apple, most of them are engineers.

TechCrunch assumed that those engineers were poached to work for projects of iTunes and Apple Music so that Apple integrates Omnifone new technology to iTunes and Apple Music apps.

It is unclear which technologies of Omnifone were acquired. Omnifone has over 50 patent portfolios concerning musical technologies, including digital media recognition, streaming media and download technology.

Omnifone was established in London in 2003. The operation of music cloud platform is its core business, including the tech support of MusicStation. In addition, Omnifone offers tech support for the music services of Samsung, Blackberry, Sony, Vodafone,and PonoMusic.Samsung Milk Music is based on the application of Omnifone.

Apple has been paid much attention to its music business in recent years. It is considered as a new strategy to solve the problem of smartphone growth.Apple earnings in Q3 showed that its music business revenue increased by 24% yoy, up to $630 million. That is one of the reasons why Apple seeks for potential music companies to acquire or cooperate.

Google Capital buys more shares of Snapchat

Google Capital, Alphabet subordinate investment department, had announced to rename as CapitalG last Friday. In the meanwhile, it revealed that it would buy more shares of Snapchat. However, Google Capital did not confirm the date, reason and share ratio of investing Snapchat. Winnie King, Google spokesman, confirmed that Snapchat is one of the companies that Google Capital invests on. Snapchat spokesman made no comment concerning financial details.

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Google Capital was established in 2014. It specializes in investing on mature enterprises. It stated its goal on official website that it aims to make investments

Customized Amazon Prime comes to Chinese consumers

A blue Prime logo pops up at the side of commodities’ price when you open Amazon China website. Amazon released the customized Chinese Prime membership system one week ago. Amazon offers free delivery service for customized Amazon Prime members yearly if they buy over 200 yuan goods for cross-boarder orders, while no limit to domestic orders when they purchase the blue Prime logo commodities.

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China is the first country that Amazon offers free-delivery service for cross-boarder orders among 12 membership countries. This service covers 9 million terms on Amazon China and about 4 million terms from oversea markets.

In United States, consumers need to pay$ 79 to become Prime memberships so that they can enjoy freely two-day shipping service. It costs a lot for logistics and labor in United States. Therefore, the subscription fee for Prime sounds reasonable and convenient.

Prime Membership system is a key to Amazon business. It obtains a variety of users. Prime membership, marketplace and AWS are considered as three pillars of Amazon by Jeff Benzos.

Amazon Prime members are over 65 million so far. Wall Street analyst predicted that Prime service contributed $ 7 billion revenue in cash to Amazon.

It is hard to copy that business mode in Chinese market. Oversea shopping is demand point that Prime found in Chinese market. Chinese consumers have great demand on overseas commodities now. However, they balance the delivery fee and delivery time for their purchases. They would rather choose cheapest delivery mode. Amazon aims at attracting more Chinese consumers by introducing customized Prime service.

It hopes to introduce Prime service to more Chinese consumers before November 11th and Black Friday. By August, 2016, Chinese consumers made over 10 million oversea orders Amazon oversea sites, increased by 400% yoy.

It faces the competition from Tmall.com and JD.com in China. Time will tell us whether Prime service works in China.

Google Daydream View is coming soon

Google made announcement through blog on November 2nd that Daydream View would be released on November 10. In the meanwhile, Google opens Google Store for this VR helmet which is priced at $ 79. From now on, consumers can make pre-orders for Daydream View helmet.

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Daydream View helmet is also available from Verizon and Best Buy in United State market. Other retailers and mobile companies will also sell this VR helmet in Canada, UK, Germany and Australia.

Daydream view is the first helmet that Google aims at supporting Daydream VR platform. Daydream VR platform is made under the compatibility of Android Nougat operating system. Judged by the current situation,its VR helmet needs to connect with Google Pixel and Pixel XL mobiles. Google is supposed to release other smartphone devices that compatible with VR helmet in a few months.

By far, Google only provides one color option for Daydream View VR helmet,that is, dark bluish grey. It will release other two color options for Daydream View later, they are dark red and snowy white. All models of Daydream View are made of soft cloth and foamed materials and configured with plastic framework. The accessaries of Daydream View include a plastic monitor, charging with USB-C. Consumers can either purchase an independant cable or apply the USB cable of Pixel phone.

Google also launches all kinds of apps for Daydream View, including VR news apps of New York Times and Wall Street Journal, FPS of Gunjack and Danger Goat.

Google Express online shopping covers 90% of United States

Google Express quit the delivery of Fresh food lately. This action helps it to spread its business quickly in United States. It was reported last month that Google Express was introduced to some more eastern cities in United States, serving over 70 million consumers. Google Express is similar to Amazon Prime, covering about 90% districts of United States.

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Google teamed up with many famous retailers to provide goods. What does it mean to consumers? This action of Google may replace the service of Amazon Prime. Amazon Prime obtained many existing users and its service is quite good. However, its subscription fee at $ 99 per year keeps many potential consumers away for a try to shop online.

With Google Express, more and more citizens can shop their favorite goods without going out. Google Express provides a variety goods from retailers and offer several subscribed options: $ 10 monthly subscription fee, $ 95 annually subscription fee or $ 5 a single delivery.

It is worth noting that the single delivery charge is based on the same store. If consumers make orders on different stores, he may need to pay several times of $ 5. By contrast, Amazon Prime charges a fixed fee for each good at $ 5.99, delivered in a few hours at the soonest.

The partners include Costco, Kohl, Walgreens, The Vitamin Shoppe and Petsmart. The supply of goods that you made on Google Express are from local retial stores. Consumers don’t need to wait long till they receive them.

With a single click on the button of any partners, consumers can check all goods online, such as pets food, gadgets, home furnishing, health products/cosmetics, baby products and daily provisions.

Apple will release Q3 earnings on Tuesday: iPhone 7 sales is concerned

Apple adjusted the Q3 earnings meeting from October 27 to October 25. iPhone 7 sales volume will be one of the focuses of Q3 earnings.

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Apple released to models of iPhone in the beginning of September and introduced them worldwide in the same month. Thus, the new iPhone will affect the sales volume and revenue of smartphone business in Q3.

New York Times predicted that the Q3 earnings will show the public how iPhone 7 performs. The accident and recall of Samsung Galaxy Note 7 may contribute to more sales of iPhone 7 as many potential consumers quit purchasing Note 7 when this scandal revealed.

The crisis of Note 7 started from the beginning of September. Note 7 was stopped selling. Earlier in September, Samsung Electronics started recalling Note 7 and offered alternative update phones to consumers. However, there were still accidents occurred with the new phone. Finally, Samsung announced to stop selling and producing Note 7 for good.

It is well-known that Apple and Samsung obtained most market share of high-end smartphone in US. The public assumed the Note 7 recalls will finally benefit Apple. Samsung Electronics also took measures to relieve the affect of Note 7 scandal.

Apple suffered difficulties to obtain more market share for iPhone. It declined by 1.5% in Q1 and Q2. The reason for sales decline was that iPhone 6s with fewer updates. Apple aimed at attracting more new consumers to purchase iPhone 7 to rebound smartphone sales.

Some Wall Street analyst predicted that Apple sold about 45 million iPhones in Q3. The smartphone sales is said to decline by 9% yoy by the end of September.

The sales in desktop, smartphone, laptop and watch all suffered decline with more than 10 % in the first half of this year. IDC statistics showed that Apple PC is with a 13% drop. iPhone 7 has turning point to obtain more share, while other hardware business sections are hard to get their turning points.

eBay introduces ShopBot of Facebook Messenger

eBay just imported personal shopping assistant ShopBot of Facebook Messenger. This ShopBot helps consumers to search the most reasonable items on eBay.

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ShopBot is still on trial. Users can apply this assistant through the log-in page or search eBay ShopBot on Facebook Messenger. Once users start using ShopBot, they can use the natural language:” I am looking for a pair of black suede shoes.” Then ShopBot will ask users the related questions and search the similar items for options. Users can also upload the image of some item so that ShopBot can search the similar items on eBay based on the image.

RJ Pittman, who works as eBay CPO,claimed they aim at providing causual shopping environment on eBay for consumers no matter they are seeking for some items or inspiartion by browsing website.

The release of ShopBox is one of the investments that eBay made in AR field. In the early of this month,eBay announced that it would acquire Corrigon company for classifying images automatically. Earlier this year, eBay acquired machine learning startup ExpertMaker and SalesPredict.

Pittman said AI technology can provide the ability of situation analysis, prediction model and machine learning. To integrate AI with a great amount of items and exclusive boutiques on eBay, it will offer a more comfortable and humanize shopping experience for smartphone users.

Facebook Messenger applied ShopBot to many robots since its release in April. Domino applies ShopBot to deliver Pizza, SkyScanner uses it to help you book cheaper airflight tickets. Though it is the first time that ShopBot applied on Facebook Messenger, eBay claimed it would be applied to more other social networking platofrms.

eBay addressed that ShopBot is still on trial and will be improved with time goes.

Sony will launch several mobile games to attract more users

Sony announced last Friday that PlayStation department would launch five or six mobile games by March, 2018. This is a new strategy that Sony hopes to attract more players for its high-end games.

The PlayStation department, that is, Sony Interactive Entertainment, claimed that those mobile games will be launched through ForwardWorks in Japan. These mobile games will be compatible with iOS and Android platforms.

It is not the first effort that Sony Interactive Entertainment made on mobile devices. In April, it established ForwardWorks company to attract new smartphone players.

So far, mobile games receive a rapid development with large scale so that video or gaming companies can not ignore. Many of casual players only play games on smartphones as they are able to be downloaded for free. Such consumption habit slowed down the development of customized gaming hardware products.

Nintendo encountered difficulties as it focused on the development of game consoles. It attempted to launch mobile games then. With the success of Pokémon Go, Nintendo teamed up with Apple to release Super Mario iOS version in December.

PlayStation 4 received great sales performance worldwide. Its sales volume is over 40 million units since its release in 2013.However, Sony also faces difficulties in developing. Computer Entertainment Supplier’s Association claimed that the scale of smartphone game market share is triple of game console’s.

PlayStation spokesman stated that these games would be released in Japan for the first time, then introduced to other Asian countries. United States and European countries are not included in the plan so far.

Amazon promises refund for Note 7 specialized components

Samsung Note 7 recalls have been headlines recently. Samsung Electronics stopped selling and producing Galaxy Note 7. The purchasers of Note 7 can apply for refunds at retail stores or agency stores.

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What if users purchased Note 7 specialized components? Amazon, the E-Commerce giant, promised to activate refund for those who purchased Note 7 specialized components.

Samsung have recalled 2.5 million Note 7, including 1 million devices sold in US. In addition, the worldwide parts makers also released Note 7 specialized components, including cases and wireless charger.

” Some users stated on Reddit that they have gotten refund for Note 7 components which bought from Amazon, some of orders were make over 30 days,” reported TheVerge.

It is unclear that Amazon carried out the unified refund policy for Note 7 components or just for customized clients. Amazon has been exploring business in China for years. It did not confirm whether Chinese Amazon website supports the refund for Note 7 components there.

In most cases, the refund policy of Note 7 smartphone is also compatible with Note 7 components. US clients can make direct contact with Amazon web support for refund application of Note 7 components.

In most cases, the refund policy of Note 7 smartphone is also compatible with Note 7 components. US clients can make direct contact with Amazon web support for refund application of Note 7 components.

The production halts of Note 7 caused a great loss to those who manufactured cases and components. Samsung also released some expensive components for Note 7, such as vertical protected cover and wireless loud-speaker.

Why bidders quit offering Twitter?

Twitter faces serious challenges for transfer of business. The confirmed source indicated that Twitter acknowledged the potential bidders to finish the negotiation by October 27. However, there are reports showing that the previous bidders quit offering, including Google, Disney, Apple and Salesforce.
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Marc Benioff claimed when was interviewed by CNBC on last Wednesday that:” Twitter is an exciting product, yet it faces lots of challenges in business.”

Twitter share dropped by 20.1% last Thursday, closing at $19.87. Twitter’s capitalization value was shrunk about $ 3 billion.

Besides Facebook,its subordinate Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger pose threats to Twitter. What’s more, Snapchat became a favorite app among the youth contributed to its funny tags and filters. Though different app has different aim, the usage of each social networking app is limited for users.

Twitter announced its users growth in Q2, it had 310 million monthly active users then and only increased by 3%. That’s, it only increased 8 million users from Q3, 2015 to Q2, 2016. Facebook had 1.65 billion monthly active users, increased by 15%. Its users increased by 200 million in past 12 months.

Twitter has been losing money in revenue. About 90 percent of its revenue was from advertisement. It lost $521 million in 2015. The issue price of Twitter share was $26 in 2013, increased to $69 some time in the same year. Then its share keeps declining.

The low conversion ratio of Advertising is also a reason for the situation that Twitter met. Twitter products aim at a large scale of users instead of specific ones. Instagram and Snapchat aim at particular users which led to success.

Twitter directors hold different opinions for the transfer of business. Some of the officers are unwilling to sell its business. They did not make an agreement in this aspect.

Potential bidder also faced pressure from its shareholders. Several investors expressed the unwillingness to acquire Twitter to Marc Benioff at its general meeting of shareholders. They did not feel positive towards this acquisition.