By Deepa Seetharaman SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc posted a much larger-than-expected loss in the second quarter as it continues its rapid pace of investment in new businesses such as digital content and consumer electronics. Amazon's stock price has dropped 10 percent so far in 2014, with investors leery of betting on its long-term growth at the expense of little to no profit. Amazon is investing heavily in new businesses and hardware products, as it prepares to take on major tech rivals from Apple Inc and Google Inc to Netflix. Chief Financial Officer Tom Szkutak said Amazon had a "tremendous amount of opportunities" and its investments were "certainly impacting short-term results." The company is spending more than $100 million on original video content in the third quarter, a substantial increase compared to last year and the second quarter, Szkutak said.
By Chuck Mikolajczak NEW YORK (Reuters) - In the days after its infamously mishandled initial public offering in May 2012, it looked as if Facebook would struggle to become a must-own for fund managers. The gains represent a reversal of fortune for the social media company.
By Julia Fioretti BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Google's GOOGL.O handling of "right to be forgotten" requests from European citizens came under fire by regulators after the search engine company restricted the removal of Internet links to European sites only, a person familiar with the matter said. Regulators quizzed Google over its decision to remove search results only from its European search engines such as google.co.uk, which means that anyone can easily access the same information by switching to the widely used google.com, said the source, who was present at the meeting. The European Union's top court in May ruled that people have a right to request that years-old personal information that is no longer relevant be removed from Internet search results. Google has so far approved more than half of roughly 90,000 incoming requests, sought additional information in about 15 percent of cases, and rejected around 30 percent of them, according to a source close to the company.
By Nate Raymond NEW YORK (Reuters) - A U.S. judge on Thursday expressed concern over a proposed $450 million settlement of claims Apple Inc conspired with five publishers to fix e-book prices, saying its provisions could drastically reduce money paid to consumers depending on appeals. U.S. District Judge Denise Cote in Manhattan said she found "most troubling" a clause requiring Apple to pay only $70 million if an appeals court reversed her finding that the company is liable for antitrust violations and sent it back to her for further proceedings. She also took issue with the lack of any requirement for Apple to pay interest while the appeals go forward. The comments came a week after 33 U.S. states and territories and lawyers for a class of consumers submitted the settlement for Cote's preliminary approval, and to avoid a scheduled Aug. 25 damages trial.
Shares of Facebook Inc hit a record high on Thursday after a surge in mobile advertising revenue helped the world's No. 1 social network trounce analysts' expectations for quarterly profit and revenue. At that price, Facebook's market value is just short of $200 billion, putting the company in position to overtake IBM Corp as the fourth-largest U.S.-listed tech company. The top three are Apple Inc , Google Inc and Microsoft Corp . At $100, Facebook would be valued at more than $250 billion.
By Noel Randewich SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc's new "Fire" smartphone, aimed at extending the online retailer's reach, includes chips from Qualcomm Inc, NXP Semiconductors NV and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, according to repair firm iFixit, which pried one open on Thursday. The phone, powered by a Qualcomm quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor, also touts a "Firefly" feature that allows users to point the phone at an object and be directed to Amazon's online store to buy it. Dismantling a just-delivered Fire handset, tear-down and device-repair specialist iFixit discovered radio frequency, power amplifier, audio and WiFi chips that were also from Qualcomm.
(Reuters) - Pandora Media Inc forecast current quarter adjusted profit below analysts' estimates as it plans to plow money back into the business. Analysts on average were expecting an 8 cents per share in profit on revenue of $234.6 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. Pandora Chief Financial Officer Mike Herring said in an interview that adjusted profit forecast was because the company plans to "reinvest aggressively." Pandora faces stiff competition from Spotify, Apple Inc's Beats online streaming service, Google Inc and Amazon.com Inc in the fast-growing music streaming business as downloads decline. "That said, there has been for years and we have continued to grow market share." Advertising revenue, where Pandora makes the bulk of its money, jumped 39 percent to $177.3 million in the second quarter helped by strong mobile advertising revenue growth.
Last February, rock-and-roll legend Chubby Checker sued the companies, asking for $500,000 while claiming the third-party app called the Chubby Checker "adversely affects Chubby Checker's brand and value." The app itself, which was first released in 2006, would estimate penis length from whatever shoe size was inputted. Nonetheless, Chubby Checker — whose real name is Ernest Evans — went after the companies, arguing that the app infringed on a number of his trademarks.
BGR recently reviewed LG’s new flagship G3, which just launched last week in the United States. We called the phone Android’s new king, supplanting Samsung’s lackluster Galaxy S5, which has been something of a disappointment for many consumers and for Samsung’s bottom line. While LG has a long way to go before it catches up to Samsung in terms of shipments, the company on Thursday reported record smartphone sales for the second quarter. FROM EARLIER: LG G3 review: Android has a new king LG posted a June-quarter net profit of $400 million on revenue across all divisions that totaled $14.9 billion. The company said mobile sales rose 16% on-year to $3.5 billion on record smartphone shipments that came in at 14.5 million
Qlik Technologies Inc forecast current-quarter revenue largely above Wall Street expectations, citing strong demand for its business analytics software. Qlik's shares rose more than 8 percent after markets closed. The company's flagship product, QlikView, helps companies to organize vast amounts of data in the form of reports, charts and infographics. Customers include American Apparel Inc, Coca-Cola Co and healthcare company Omnicare Inc. Chief Executive Lars Björk said "continued strong demand for QlikView", combined with Thursday's launch of the company's Qlik Sense software, would drive sales in a growing market for self-service visualization and data discovery.
Baidu Inc, China’s biggest Internet search company, blew past Wall Street's targets with a 34.1 percent jump in quarterly net profit, helped by a surge in mobile revenue. On Thursday, the company often likened to a Chinese Google said it now gets 30 percent of its revenue from mobile services, up from around 20 percent in previous quarters, as online advertisers migrate to mobile devices. Revenues for the second quarter rose 58.5 percent to 11.986 billion yuan from 7.56 billion yuan a year earlier, in line with Baidu’s own forecasts of between 11.82 billion yuan and 12.11 billion yuan. Baidu had struggled to keep up with rivals on mobile devices such as smartphones as they invest in an array of apps to keep users engaged.
By Deepa Seetharaman SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc is spending more than $100 million on original video content in the third quarter, considerably higher than its spending a year ago and in the second quarter, Chief Financial Officer Tom Szkutak said on Thursday. The largest U.S. online retailer, which also reported a larger-than-expected second-quarter loss Thursday, is beefing up its digital content. Szkutak told analysts during a call that members of Amazon's Prime membership program are increasingly streaming free videos online.
The iPhone 5s is amazingly solid for a smartphone made entirely of glass and ultra-thin aluminum. It looks great, it feels great and it can survive its fair share of drops as long as it doesn’t hit a hard surface on its corner. But can it survive being run over by a speeding train? No, of course it can’t. YouTube user TechRax recently posted a video of not one but two iPhone 5s handsets being run over by speeding trains. Why? We have absolutely no idea… but that didn’t stop us from watching the video out of sheer morbid curiosity. The full video is embedded below.
Amazon has a pretty stable pattern when it comes to reporting earnings. For the last couple years that has kept the company's share price on a steady upward climb. Today Amazon announced its second quarter earnings, and losses were nearly twice what analysts had predicted, leading to a more than 5 percent drop in its share price during after-hours trading. More importantly, Amazon predicted that its losses for next quarter would be between $410 and $810 million, or more than 16 times the amount it lost during the third quarter of last year.
RF Micro Devices Inc forecast quarterly results above market expectations, helped by higher demand for its chips that connect devices such as Apple Inc's iPhone and Samsung Electronics Co's smartphones to networks. The chipmaker, which supplies cellular radio frequency chips for use in mobile handsets, notebook computers and tablets, forecast second-quarter adjusted earnings of 27 cents per share. Analysts on average were expecting earnings of 20 cents per share on revenue of $328 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. "We will probably hear that it has a lot to do with their largest customer, which they won't name, but obviously is Apple and the smartphone growth coming out of China right now is just on fire," Northland Capital Markets analyst Tom Sepenzis said.
Maybe Amazon's purchase of Comixology isn't the worst thing to ever happen after all. Comic book readers on iOS have been fuming over the loss of in-app purchases following the company's acquisition, but today during a panel at Comic Con, Comixology announced a new feature that users are certain to love: DRM-free backups. Customers can now download and store copies of books without being bothered by a DRM system that limits what they can do with content they rightfully own. "For those out there who have not joined the comic reading community because of DRM, you have no excuse now," said co-founder John Roberts.
DC Comics decided to honor Batman's 75th anniversary yesterday, and — while he's a day late — Zack Snyder is joining in on the action too since he's at the helm of a film starring the hero. Snyder published a close look at Ben Affleck's Batman on Twitter today, the second photo yet of him from the set of Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. We don't really know what happens in the movie yet, but one thing continues to be evident from the early photos: everyone is sad. Batman and Superman both looked down in their first images, and this second photo of Batman shows him just as gloomy. Snyder also had a bit of fun on Twitter this morning, messing with Star Wars fans by posting a photo of Henry Cavill — his Superman — as a lightsaber-wielding Jedi.
Finally there's a reason to invest in smart light bulbs. Syfy and Philips have announced that Sharknado 2: The Second One viewers will be treated to a custom light show designed to sync up with the film when it premieres on July 30th. It's all made possible with Syfy's "Sync" second-screen app, which listens for audio cues from the film and then sends lighting commands to the Philips Hue system. Beginning at 7PM, any Philips smart bulbs in your living room will change color "to reflect the increasingly stormy weather conditions, chainsaw-induced shark carnage, and more." (Don't worry, the "light track" will repeat during Syfy's 9PM encore presentation.)
Following several reports that the two were in talks, Google has reportedly reached a deal to acquire streaming video giant Twitch for approximately $1 billion. With more than 50 million monthly active users, Twitch is a wildly popular service that allows gamers to stream live video of themselves as well as live feeds of whatever video games they might be playing. Venturebeat reports that Google’s YouTube division is in charge of the deal and will presumably oversee Twitch in some capacity moving forward. Google has not yet confirmed the acquisition.
Facebook stock jumped to record highs Thursday as strong earnings from the leading social network sparked fresh buying. The rise lifted Facebook's market value to some $190 billion. Facebook said Wednesday that profits leapt to $791 million during the three months ended June 30, a 138 percent increase from a year earlier. Revenue in the quarter surged to $2.91 billion, with approximately 62 percent of that money coming from ads served up on mobile devices such as smartphones or tablet computers.
Amazon is preparing its third round of TV show pilots, and Deadline reports that one of the upcoming titles will be an adaptation of a Philip K. Dick novel in which Germany and Japan have won World War II and taken over most of the United States. Titled The Man In the High Castle, the show will be based on Dick's 1962 Hugo award-winning book of the same name. A writer from The X-Files will reportedly create a script for the pilot, which will be directed by David Semel — who was also behind the first episode of Heroes. This is one of the occasions that Amazon's pilot process is a huge win for viewers.
Jimmy Kimmel is the best in the business when it comes to making unsuspecting passersby look like complete morons. On a recent episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live, Kimmel’s crew took to Hollywood Blvd. with Apple’s unreleased iTime smartwatch, first revealed in a patent application earlier this week, to gauge the public reaction. The only problem was that the watch in question was actually a $20 Casio watch with an Apple logo stuck to the back. As you can probably guess, a lot of people didn’t catch on, and the resulting video is pretty hysterical. Of course, it’s just a bit on a late night talk show, but considering how impressed everyone was by a watch that you can find in the discount section at your
At San Diego Comic-Con 2014, Microsoft has finally provided the very first look at Halo: Nightfall, the original new live-action show based on the sci-fi video game series. The show stars Mike Colter with Ridley Scott serving as executive producer, and based on this first glimpse it looks quite a bit like some of Scott's earlier work, most notably Prometheus. "With Halo: Nightfall, we're pioneering a new medium in terms of interactive storytelling on Xbox," says Scott. Colter plays agent Jameson Locke, a character who will play a relatively large role in the upcoming Halo 5: Guardians, which is expected to launch next fall.
Apple is planning to open stores in India which will only sell iOS devices following significant growth in sales of the iPhone and iPad over the past several years. Our sister site BGR India reports that the exclusive stores will contain three weeks worth of supply once they’re up and running and should require just 3-4 employees to operate, including a store manager, an iOS promoter and one or two sales managers. Apple will also take on 50% of the cost for the 10-15 demo units required to appear at each location. This is apparently going to be a relatively barebones operation, but still an encouraging sign for a high-end smartphone vendor in a region where budget devices reign supreme. In fact, sources say that
Instagram appeared to unveil a "one tap photo messaging" app, called Bolt, to a few select users through the Instagram app on Android. Facebook, which owns Instagram, had a similar situation occur with Slingshot, their Snapchat duplicate. Slingshot was available for download in the app store for a very short time, before Facebook yanked it down, saying it was accident that it was released at all. This particular user, Richard Groves, told The Verge he received the Bolt banner on his Nexus 5 device yesterday at around 11:00 p.m. ET.
BlackBerry is up more than 5% on Thursday, buoyed by the CEO’s comments about partnerships that might mirror the recent Apple-IBM pact. That Apple-IBM alliance was seen by some as a fatal blow to BlackBerry, since it gives iOS another boost in the enterprise market. But BlackBerry has recently started resembling a mythical Canadian beast that absorbs fatal blows with polite disinterest, growing only stronger as its prospects weaken. The company’s handset business remains on the ropes, with its last stronghold of Indonesia about to come under siege by a Xiaomi product offensive. The new square BlackBerry phone has been greeted by a sort of incredulous embarrassment, though the company remains relentlessly upbeat about its prospects. But perhaps the biggest recent setback
The Obama administration on Thursday accused Russia of firing artillery from its territory into Ukraine to hit Ukrainian military sites and asserted that Moscow is boosting its supply of weaponry to pro-Russian separatists.
The Dutch prime minister says he is sending 40 unarmed military police to eastern Ukraine as part of a ramped-up effort to find the last victims of the downed Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 still at the wreckage site.
A mother and daughter have died from burns they suffered when a propane tank exploded in the family's food truck in Philadelphia earlier this month, authorities said on Thursday. Jaylin Landaverry Galdamez, 17, and her mother, Olga Galdamez, 42, each were burned on more than 50 percent of their bodies from the explosion on July 2, authorities said. They died just days apart, the mother on July 20 and the daughter on July 22, said Jeff Moran, spokesman for the Philadelphia Medical Examiners Office. The pair was working in the truck at the time of the blast, which sent a propane tank flying 150 feet and injured nine other people.
Three people were shot at Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital in Darby, Pennsylvania, on Thursday and one person was in custody, according to NBC10 television station in Philadelphia. Darby Borough Police were at the scene of the hospital, about 7 miles (11 km) west of Philadelphia, according to NBC10. Authorities said a 911 call identified one of the victims as a doctor but police had not confirmed the identity, NBC10 reported.
Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk announced his resignation Thursday, opening the way for new elections that would reflect the country's starkly changed political scene after the ouster of pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych in February.
A Palestinian child, wounded in an Israeli strike on a compound housing a U.N. school in Beit Hanoun, in the northern Gaza Strip, cries at the emergency room of the Kamal Adwan hospital in Beit Lahiya, Thursday, July 24, 2014. Israeli tank shells hit the compound, killing more than a dozen people and wounding dozens more who were seeking shelter from fierce clashes on the streets outside. Gaza health official Ashraf al-Kidra says the dead and injured in the school compound were among hundreds of people seeking shelter from heavy fighting in the area. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
ROME (AP) — Pope Francis met privately Thursday with a Sudanese woman who refused to recant her Christian faith in the face of a death sentence, blessing the woman as she cradled her infant daughter born just weeks ago in prison.
By David Schwartz PHOENIX (Reuters) - Lawyers for a double-murderer whose lethal injection in Arizona dragged on for two hours called for an outside review of the "horrifically botched execution" and prompted new calls on Thursday for the United States to abandon the death penalty. The ordeal in putting Joseph Wood to death on Wednesday at a prison facility southeast of Phoenix followed lethal injections that went awry this year in Ohio and Oklahoma, renewing the U.S. debate over capital punishment. Corrections officials said Wood was never in pain but Rob Freer, a U.S. researcher with human-rights group Amnesty International, asked, "How many more times do officials need to be reminded of the myth of the 'humane execution' before they give up on their experiment with judicial killing?" States that impose the death penalty have been scrambling to find new suppliers of chemical combinations to use in lethal injections after their former suppliers, primarily European drug makers, objected to having their products used to put people to death.
Advocates for indigenous tribes and Brazilian officials are worried that a group of people in the Amazon who had been living in isolation from the outside world may have contracted the flu — a potentially deadly disease that these individuals had never been exposed to before. On three separate occasions, they voluntarily made contact with Ashaninka people in the village of Simpatia, just across the border in western Brazil's Acre state, said Fiona Watson, a researcher and field director with the advocacy group Survival International, who spoke with Brazilian officials who went to the region. But representatives from Brazil's Indian Affairs Department, or FUNAI, noticed that the group of seven showed signs of influenza during their visit on June 30, Watson said.
Sometime this summer, probably when as many Americans as possible are tanning on a beach and not paying attention, the White House is expected to release a version of a classified report on torture during the Bush years. Actually, what's likely to become public is only the executive summary of the Senate Intelligence Committee's report.
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Gaza health officials say at least seven people were killed when Israeli tank shells hit a compound housing a U.N. school in the northern Gaza Strip during clashes with Palestinian militants.
OUAGADOUGO, Burkina Faso (AP) — The wreckage of the Air Algeria plane that went missing Thursday has been found about 50 kilometers (31 miles) from the border of Burkina Faso near the village of Boulikessi in Mali, a presidential aide said.
BEIT LAHIYA, Gaza Strip (AP) — In the morgue at a small Gaza hospital, the anguished cries of those who lost loved ones in Israeli airstrikes fell silent Thursday when Ahmed Jadallah began attending to the corpses, one by one, on his wooden work table.
Here's your look at highlights from the weekly AP photo report, a gallery featuring a mix of front-page photography, the odd image you might have missed and lasting moments our editors think you should see.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Nearly 300 passengers perish when their plane is shot out of the sky. Airlines suspend flights to Israel's largest airport after rocket attacks. An airliner crashes during a storm, and yet another disappears. Aviation has suffered one of its worst weeks in memory, a cluster of disasters spanning three continents.
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The nation's third botched execution in six months offers more evidence for the courts that lethal injection carries too many risks and amounts to cruel and unusual punishment, death-row lawyers and other opponents said Thursday.
The prolonged execution in Arizona looked troubling, but was it unconstitutional? The U.S. Supreme Court, which upheld the use of lethal injection six years ago, has held that "an isolated mishap" during an execution does not violate the Eighth Amendment. A question and answer look at the current state of executions.
CAPE CHARLES, Va. (AP) — The sky turned black and cellphones pinged with emergency messages. Moments later, a tornado ripped through a sprawling, carnival-like campground Thursday, snapping dozens of trees and flipping over RVs.
Fighting between Ukrainian troops and rebels raged Thursday near the crash site of Malaysian flight MH17, as countries which lost 298 citizens in the disaster moved to deploy their police to secure the impact zone. The Dutch team leading the crash probe was stuck in Kiev, unable to join a handful of international investigators at the rebel-controlled site. Meanwhile, Ukraine's army reported four soldiers killed over the last 24 hours in its offensive to retake the eastern industrial heartland from the pro-Russian insurgents. Two Ukrainian fighter jets were shot down Wednesday 45 kilometres (28 miles) from the crash site, just as the first bodies recovered from the fated flight were flown out to the Netherlands, which counts 193 citizens lost in the disaster.
Sen. John Walsh of Montana said Wednesday his failure to attribute conclusions and verbatim passages lifted from other scholars' work in his thesis to earn a master's degree from the U.S. Army War College was an unintentional mistake caused in part by post-traumatic stress disorder.