News:TiVo settles patent lawsuit with Verizon for at least $250 million, is ‘exploring’ Redbox Instant support
While some patent lawsuits continue to drag on, the battle between TiVo and Verizon over DVR technology has come to a resolution. In exchange for cross licensing their patents and dismissing all pending litigation, the two parties have agreed Verizon will pay TiVo $100 million up front followed by recurring quarterly payments totaling $150.4 million through July 2018, as well as monthly license fees for each FiOS DVR user above certain levels. Now that they’re no longer at war the two companies may find a few things to work together on, and there is a provision for “certain commercial initiatives” which, if pursued this year, could count as credits toward the amount Verizon has agreed to pay.
Additionally, the press release indicates they are exploring support for the upcoming Redbox Instant service (which Verizon is a partner in) on TiVo’s DVRs. This all follows TiVo’s $215 million settlement with AT&T earlier this year and last year’s $500 million agreement with Dish Network. Meanwhile, lawsuits are still pending against Cisco, Time Warner Cable and Motorola.
Myspace Plans a Reboot — Again
Myspace, the long-beleaguered social network, announced plans Monday for a site-wide redesign that will include a complete visual refresh.
Details of the new site were unveiled in a promotional video that previewed a drastically different, horizontally oriented user interface and a continued emphasis on music, one of the site’s strong points in its nearly 10-year existence.
The brief unveiling comes more than a year after News Corp. (AllThingsD’s parent company) sold Myspace at a half-a-billion-dollar loss to Specific media for $35 million, after suffering through years of a flagging user base, in sharp contrast to the skyrocketing success of Facebook, the world’s largest social networking site.
Redesigns are not new to Myspace’s efforts to kickstart its site’s activity. Last year, Specific media made the rounds to advertisers to make the case for Myspace, billing the site as the “#1 online community music destination,” relying heavily on the existing content rights agreements that it had with the four major record labels. Specific went so far as to call Myspace the “Hulu of music.”
In 2010, there was another attempt to revive the site with then-CEO Mike Jones at the helm; back then, the aim was to create a “social entertainment site” aimed at Gen-Y, Web-savvy users. The redesign was largely ignored by the crowd the company was targeting; News Corp. sold less than a year after relaunch.
We’ll see if the leadership of Justin Timberlake, one of the site’s major backers, can help with the renewed push into emphasizing music as the site’s platform.
RIM CEO Thorsten Heins: ‘we have a clear shot at being number three’
Speaking to the press today shortly after the unveiling of the latest beta version of BlackBerry 10 and a new developer device, RIM CEO Thorsten Heins discussed BlackBerry 10′s chances on the market. He argues that BlackBerry 10 is going to have a chance to beat Windows Phone 8 out as the next platform after iPhone and Android. “We have a clear shot at being the number three platform on the market. We’re not just another open platform on the market, we are BlackBerry.”
“It has all the table stakes we need to have for consumer [success],” Heins said. He pointed out that the unique features of BlackBerry 10, including the BlackBerry Hub and its new multitasking UI, add on to those stakes to represent a real contender. He was careful to note that the BlackBerry Hub, in particular, is more compelling than it seems at first blush, “BlackBerry Hub is not just a unified inbox.” He also continued a theme that RIM has been hitting often lately, that the iPhone UI is getting a little long in the tooth. That’s something that Microsoft has also pointed out, that jumping in and out of apps may not be ideal for power users. For Heins, it’s about better multitasking: “The application grid is a reservoir,” he says, from which you can simply “throw [apps] into your multitasking zone” where you will actually use them. It is indeed a new smartphone interaction model, but whether it will appeal to the audiences that RIM is trying to reach — consumers, power users, enterprise users, and those oft-mentioned “BlackBerry People” — remains to be seen.
Geek This Week:
Aaron: Querying out my book after 4 years.
More Doctor Who
Gozer: Avengers. X2 Movie review: End of Watch & Cabin in the Woods
Koss PortaPro Hadphones Review
Featured Segment: Borderlands 2 review
Set five years after the events of Borderlands, Handsome Jack, the game’s main antagonist, has taken over the Hyperion corporation, has declared himself Dictator of Pandora and stolen all of the credit for finding the Vault, going so far to claim responsibility for killing the Destroyer. Jack has also blotted out much of the light on the planet by having a giant orbiting H-shaped base set in front of Pandora’s stationary moon. The new team in Borderlands 2 is tasked with killing Jack and returning peace to Pandora.
Borderlands 2 initially has four player characters:
4 Player Co-op and 2 player split screen
Weapons: Gun Manufacturers 6 different kinds, elemental damage for certain guns, do not affect enemies who have that elemental skill
Feedback & Items of Note:
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