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iPhone sales trample expectations as profit sets global record

Apple CEO Tim Cook looks at a new IMac after presentation at Apple headquarters in CupertinoApple Inc quarterly results smashed Wall Street expectations with record sales of big-screen iPhones in the holiday shopping season and a 70 percent rise in China sales, powering the company to the largest profit in corporate history. Apple's cash pile is now $178 billion, enough to buy IBM or the equivalent to $556 for every American. Apple Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri told Reuters in an interview that the company did not sell more iPhones in China than the United States, despite some earlier predictions by research analysts. The company's success in the competitive Chinese market can be attributed to its partnership with China Mobile Ltd , the largest global mobile carrier, and the appeal of the larger screen size of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus.

Facebook to sell real-time Super Bowl ads, taking on Twitter

A man is silhouetted against a video screen with an Facebook logo as he poses with an Dell laptop in this photo illustration taken in the central Bosnian town of ZenicaThis Super Bowl Facebook is taking a page from Twitter's playbook, for the first time during a football championship selling ads that target people based on what they are talking about in real time. These include video ads that will play automatically on Facebook's newsfeed, triggered by key words that members mention in their posts as they watch the American football game on Feb. 1. Smartphones and tablets provide a second screen for the Super Bowl's 100 million television viewers to comment about the game as it proceeds, giving advertisers a more precise way to target messages.

Icahn on CNBC says his son was right on Netflix, wished he bought more

Billionaire activist-investor Carl Icahn gives an interview on FOX Business Network’s Neil Cavuto show in New YorkBillionaire activist investor Carl Icahn said on Wednesday that he sold Netflix Inc shares too soon, admitting that his son Brett and fund co-manager David Schechter were correct to believe the stock was significantly undervalued. Icahn sold 2.99 million shares of Los Gatos, California-based Netflix in October 2013 after the stock rose more than fivefold in 14 months. "What I was worried about and conservative about Netflix - and obviously I wished I hadn't been as conservative - was 'net neutrality.' which has seemed to go away," Icahn said in an appearance on CNBC, referring to the U.S. Federal Communications Commission's work to set new regulations for Internet service providers. "That one storm cloud has gone away so I agree completely now with Brett and Dave on Netflix.

China regulator blasts Alibaba for illegal business on its websites

File photo of people riding a double bicycle past a logo of The Alibaba Group at the company's headquarters on the outskirts of HangzhouBy John Ruwitch SHANGHAI (Reuters) - A China regulator has accused Alibaba Group Holding Ltd of failing to clean up what it called illegal business deals on the e-commerce titan's platforms, in an unusually strong government criticism of one of the country's biggest private companies. The State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC), in a report published on its website on Wednesday, said many products sold on Alibaba's e-commerce websites and services infringed upon trademarks, were substandard or fake, were banned or endangered public security. Alibaba declined to comment on the report. SAIC said its report summarized a July 16, 2014, meeting between government business regulators and Alibaba, and said it had delayed releasing the report until now to avoid affecting Alibaba's September initial public offering.

SS&C Tech in talks to buy Advent Software for $2.3 billion: Bloomberg
(Reuters) - Financial software company SS&C Technologies Holdings Inc is in talks to buy accounting software maker Advent Software Inc for about $2.3 billion, Bloomberg reported, citing a person with knowledge of the matter. SS&C plans to offer $45 per share for Advent, the Bloomberg report said. SS&C declined to comment on the report, while Advent could not immediately be reached. Advent's shares were up 7.6 percent at $40.8 in afternoon trading on the Nasdaq on Wednesday, while SS&C's share were up 5 percent at $56.10.
Head of games leaves Angry Birds company Rovio

Employee works inside an office of Rovio, the company which created the video game Angry Birds, in ShanghaiHELSINKI (Reuters) - Finland's Rovio and the head of its games operation, Jami Laes, have parted company as the business behind Angry Birds continues to grapple with an increasingly competitive mobile games market. Though Rovio has expanded its hugely successful Angry Birds brand into an animated TV series and consumer product licensing, the company has struggled to produce more hit games and recently said it would cut about 14 percent of its workforce. Laes said on Wednesday that he had left Rovio recently and is planning to launch a new start-up but declined to comment further. ...

Your Facebook feed is going to be unbearable during the Super Bowl

HILVERSUM, NETHERLANDS - JANUARY 28, 2014: Facebook is an online social networking service founded in February 2004 by Mark Zuck

Watch people lose it over Tesla's 'insane mode'

Watch people lose it over Tesla's 'insane mode'Tesla's souped-up electric car takes acceleration to the next level, eliciting priceless reactions from surprised passengers.>

25 jobs that most Americans would kill to have

25 jobs that most Americans would kill to haveDo you hate your job? If so, then you’re probably wondering how to find a new one that would make you happier. And now there’s a way you can find out which career field has the most satisfied workers, as Glassdoor has put together a list of the 25 best jobs in America that you can get right now. RELATED: Aspiring techies should join these companies if they want to get paid How is such a list calculated, you ask? Glassdoor writes that it’s “determined by weighting three factors equally: earning potential (average annual base salary), career opportunities rating, and number of job openings.” So jobs that are plentiful, pay well and offer the most opportunities for advancement are rated the highest

Dell aims upgraded laptop at Mac-using creative pros

Dell aims upgraded laptop at Mac-using creative prosLooking for a profitable niche, the PC maker gives its 15-inch M3800 workstation a 4K display, Thunderbolt 2 and new storage options to coax video editors and others who use Apple laptops.>

Amazon takes on Microsoft, Google with corporate email service

Amazon takes on Microsoft, Google with corporate email serviceThe e-commerce company continues to move into enterprise by taking advantage of its successful cloud-based computing service, Amazon Web Services.>

Rolling Stone opens its archives on Google Play Newsstand

Rolling Stone opens its archives on Google Play NewsstandRolling Stone is opening up its archives, making select stories from its nearly 50 years of publication free for anyone to read. The stories will all be available through Google Play Newsstand, making this a big grab for Google that should help to promote the app's sales of digital magazines and use as a news reader. Fast Company reports that three to four big stories from each issue will show up in the open archives, which Rolling Stone reportedly plans to augment with sound and video content next year. Newsstand is available on both iOS and Android, so a wide audience should be able to access these stories. It's not stated exactly how that'll be used, but the end goal appears to be getting more people reading Rolling Stone and opening up Newsstand.

'Please don't bring drones to the Super Bowl,' says FAA in dystopian PSA

'Please don't bring drones to the Super Bowl,' says FAA in dystopian PSAThe FAA has produced a YouTube video encouraging attendees of the Super Bowl to "leave your drone at home." The video resembles other public service announcements, from the stock photos of anti-smoking ads to the diabolical use of the head rhyme of "Don't Copy That Floppy" — the video's titled "No Drone Zone."

Dell offers new Ubuntu Linux workstation laptop

Dell offers new Ubuntu Linux workstation laptopDell is continuing to support Linux developers with new Linux-powered laptops.

Life When You Can't Google It

Life When You Can't Google ItTo my surprise, when I first moved to China it was easy to adapt to almost everything. Pollution, dirty tap water, and crowds? No problem, I'll use face masks, bottled water and elbows to get by. But as a former New Yorker virtually glued to the Internet, I couldn't wrap my head around adapting to a life without Google.After all, it was my...

ZTE Blade S6 delivers octa-core Android 5.0 on a budget

ZTE Blade S6 delivers octa-core Android 5.0 on a budgetThis new handset is aimed at a younger demographic.>

Facebook wants to replace Twitter as your Super Bowl companion

Facebook wants to replace Twitter as your Super Bowl companion

Apple’s killer quarter in charts

Apple’s killer quarter in chartsApple’s fiscal first quarter was a complete blowout, sending the company’s stock soaring in after-hours trading on Tuesday night. We already gave you all the numbers: $18 billion in profit… $74.6 billion in revenue… 74.4 million iPhones sold… gross margin that climbed to 39.9%… it’s all simply staggering. Of course, there’s no better way to put Apple’s killer quarter in content than by visualizing some of the key figures from Apple’s report. DON’T MISS: 5 reasons Google’s move to become a wireless carrier may be doomed to fail Mobile analyst Benedict Evans from Andreessen Horowitz is a well-respected Apple watcher, and he’s always quick on the draw when it comes to charting Apple’s results. On Tuesday evening, he ran a quick post on his blog that

Amazon is taking on Microsoft Exchange with its own enterprise email service

Amazon is taking on Microsoft Exchange with its own enterprise email serviceAmazon wants to bump Microsoft's Exchange out of its cozy position in the enterprise world. To do that, the company has announced WorkMail, a secure email and calendar platform aimed squarely at businesses. With WorkMail, Amazon is trying its hand at the backend services that Microsoft has built a strong reputation around. WorkMail includes many of the perks that are musts if Amazon hopes to find any success competing against Microsoft.

Mobile provider TracFone to pay $40M in federal settlement
WASHINGTON (AP) — The nation's largest prepaid mobile provider, TracFone Wireless, will pay $40 million to settle government claims that it misled smartphone customers with promises of unlimited data service.
Budweiser's 'Lost Dog' Super Bowl ad has all the feels

Budweiser's 'Lost Dog' Super Bowl ad has all the feelsKeeping up with its recent tradition of Super Bowl ads that tug at your heartstrings, Budweiser's "Lost Dog" spot follows one lost puppy's long journey home.>

War against IS group spreads to Twitter

The fight against Islamic State jihadists is taking place online as well on the battlefield, with 18,000 Twitter accounts linked to the group suspended in recent months, according to a US expertThe fight against Islamic State jihadists is taking place online as well on the battlefield, with 18,000 Twitter accounts linked to the group suspended in recent months, according to a US expert. IS supporters "are under significant pressure, with the most active and viral users taking the brunt of the suspensions" J. M. Berger, a fellow at the Brookings Institution who tracks militants on social media, told lawmakers on Tuesday. Twitter has suspended nearly 800 confirmed IS accounts since the fall of last year but this "may be the tip of the iceberg," as almost 18,000 accounts "related" to the jihadist network were suspended over the same time period, according to a forthcoming survey by Berger and another expert, Jonathon Morgan. Although tens of thousands of Twitter accounts remain online, advocates for the IS group online have called the suspensions "devastating," Berger told the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.

Dramatic video shows lightning strikes from space

Dramatic video shows lightning strikes from spaceUsing the Nightpod camera stand aboard the International Space Station, an astronaut captures a series of dramatic lightning strikes as seen from above our clouds.>

This skull may provide a new link between Neanderthals and modern humans

This skull may provide a new link between Neanderthals and modern humansIt's history frozen in time: an expansive cave in Northern Israel where early humans lived for thousands of years, locked away and preserved after its entrance collapsed some 30,000 years ago. It's in this time capsule of human evolution that researchers say they've found a partial skull that serves as a "connecting link" between ancient and modern humans — "the first direct fossil evidence that modern humans inhabited the Levantine corridor" about 55,000 years ago. At a point in that timeline, between 40,000 and 60,000 years ago, anatomically modern humans (AMH) from Africa expanded across Europe and Asia. "It's an important puzzle in the big story of human evolution," says Israel Hershkovitz, the Professor in the Department of Anatomy and Anthropology, Sackler Faculty of Medicine at Tel Aviv University, who's leading up the excavation team that discovered this skull fragment dubbed "Manot 1." The findings, published this week by Nature, provides insight into that migration.

YouTube's HTML5 video a big nail in Flash coffin

YouTube's HTML5 video a big nail in Flash coffinBy using Web standards by default to deliver YouTube video, Google helps the Web root out Adobe's Flash. The next challenge for the Web: competing with mobile apps.>

Canada's digital spies are watching what you download

Canada's digital spies are watching what you download

HP still leads notebook pack, but Lenovo is on its heels

HP still leads notebook pack, but Lenovo is on its heelsHP snagged 20.1 percent of the notebook market worldwide in 2014, according to research firm TrendForce, but Lenovo is catching up fast.>

Apple's crazy iPhone sales prove that hardware still matters

Apple's crazy iPhone sales prove that hardware still mattersApple’s $18 billion profit over the last three months of 2014 was driven primarily by growing iPhone sales, which accounted for more than two-thirds of the company’s $74.6 billion in revenue. At a time when smartphones are being dismissed as undifferentiated slabs of composite materials, Apple’s making more money from the hardware it sells than it ever has before, and the average price of every iPhone sold has actually risen. With iPads and Macs counted alongside the iPhone, Apple sold 101 million devices in the last quarter, and once you factor in iPods, the Apple TV, and peripherals like Beats headphones, 93.5 percent of all its revenue came from hardware sales. There’s no denying, of course, that some of the iPhone sales euphoria is pure, unadulterated hype.

3 Essential Secrets to Retaining Your Best Employees

3 Essential Secrets to Retaining Your Best EmployeesYou can't do it all alone. In order to succeed, it's essential to build exactly the kind of staff you want. But building your staff doesn't end at the hiring process. You've got to be able to foresee the challenges ahead. And when it comes to creating an amazing team, you can count on the fact that employee retention will be a challenge....

This brand new free iPhone app finds you cheap flights by predicting the future

This brand new free iPhone app finds you cheap flights by predicting the futureTravelling is stressful enough without the added pain of wondering if you’ll be able to afford this month’s rent if you book a direct flight to your destination. Air travel can be remarkably expensive, to the point where there are hundreds of websites dedicated to finding you the best price for a plane ticket. Most of them operate in much the same way, by scouring airlines’ websites and searching for the best prices on flights that meet your search criteria. But now there’s a brand new iPhone app that takes a very different approach to finding you cheap flights: It predicts the future. DON’T MISS: Video: Watch terrified passengers’ reactions when the driver floors it in a Tesla P85D Instead of giving you

Laser-filled earbuds flash to music, and maybe your steps and heartbeat too

Laser-filled earbuds flash to music, and maybe your steps and heartbeat tooYou'll definitely look like a future-forward partier with these glowing green, red or blue earbud cords draped around you. But is the price worth it?>

Amazon taking aim at Google, Microsoft corporate email service

Amazon taking aim at Google, Microsoft corporate email serviceAmazon WorkMail falls under the Amazon Web Services umbrella, suggesting more of a back-end approach into the collaboration software space.

You can ask Bill Gates anything right now on Reddit

You can ask Bill Gates anything right now on RedditBill Gates has dropped by Reddit a couple times in the past, and he's doing it again this afternoon for an AMA starting at 1:15PM ET / 10:15AM PT. Though the spirit of an AMA is that people on Reddit can ask the person anything, Gates is probably interested in talking about his recently published annual letter, which outlines his views for how technology can help improve the lives of the poor. Last week, we spoke with Gates at length about what the next 15 years are going to look like — as you can see in the video above — and he's even guest-editing The Verge in February to help us find out. ...

Deflategate: NFL consults with physicists

Deflategate: NFL consults with physicistsTechnically Incorrect: It seems one can never know enough about how temperature affects the air pressure in a football. As part of its investigation, the NFL team reportedly is researching gas physics. Really.>

Look like Hoth stuff in this 'Star Wars' AT-AT driver costume

Look like Hoth stuff in this 'Star Wars' AT-AT driver costumeIn an Empire state of mind? Wear this highly detailed Anovos "Star Wars" costume to relive all your favorite Battle of Hoth moments from "The Empire Strikes Back." No AT-AT required.>

FCC says blocking wireless hotspots is illegal

FCC says blocking wireless hotspots is illegalThe agency issues official statement that blocking an individual's personal hotspot, as hotels and convention centers have done, is against the law and subject to fines.>

The phone designed to protect your information had a big hole

The phone designed to protect your information had a big hole

After setting iPhone record, what does Apple do next?

In this Saturday, Jan. 3, 2015 photo, shoppers walk by the Apple Store along the the Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica, Calif. Apple Inc. reports quarterly financial results on Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel)SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Apple CEO Tim Cook says consumer demand for new iPhones has been "staggering" and "hard to comprehend." That helped the company report record-smashing earnings for its latest quarter and sent the stock climbing more than 7 percent on Wednesday.

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Hillary Clinton agrees to testify on Benghazi

REUTERS NEWS PICTURES SERVICE - PICTURES OF THE YEAR 2013The former secretary of state will appear before a House select committee.

Russia says Kiev's actions will escalate Ukraine fighting

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, center, speaks to participants of consultations between representatives of the Syrian government and the Syrian opposition in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015. Lavrov said the meeting should pave the way for further talks on conditions for a political settlement. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)By Thomas Grove MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia said on Wednesday military action by the Ukrainian government would prompt an "inevitable further escalation of the conflict" with pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine and undermine any peacemaking. Russia has stepped up criticism of Kiev since violence has intensified in the conflict, where a ceasefire collapsed after rebels drove Ukrainian government forces out of Donetsk airport. The separatists say they want to drive back government forces and their artillery out of range of the cities they hold and improve their grip on strongholds. "The latest military actions provoked by Kiev will lead to the inevitable further escalation of the conflict (and) undermine efforts taken by the international community to end the bloodshed," Russia's Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Arkansas panel rejects removing Lee from King holiday

In this Jan. 16, 2008, file photo, a note is posted on a door at the Arkansas state Capitol in Little Rock, Ark., indicating state offices will close in observance of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. and Confederate General Robert E. Lee's birthdays. Lee’s birthday would no longer be celebrated on the same day as King under a bill introduced Wednesday, Jan. 21, 2015, by Arkansas Republican Rep. Nate Bell. Arkansas is one of three states, along with Alabama and Mississippi, that jointly celebrate King and Lee. (AP Photo/Danny Johnston, File)LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A bid to end Arkansas' practice of commemorating Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee and civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr. on the same day has failed before a state House panel.

Jordan ready to swap inmate for pilot held by Islamic State

COMBO - This combination of two photographs shows the detail of a poster of an undated photograph of Jordanian pilot Lt. Muath al-Kaseasbeh, left, used during a demonstration calling for his release from the Islamic State group and a still image from video, right, of Sajida al-Rishawi, an Iraqi woman sentenced to death in Jordan for her involvement in a 2005 terrorist attack on a hotel that killed 60 people. Jordan said Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015 it is willing to swap the woman held on death row in Jordan for the Jordanian pilot captured in December by extremists from the Islamic State group. (AP Photo)Jordan says it is ready to trade an Iraqi woman militant for a pilot held by IS extremists.

Dozen killed in suicide attack against Mali rebels

French helicopters are stationed at a base in Goa, Mali on January 2, 2015An attack overnight in northern Mali by a pro-government armed group including suicide bombers killed a dozen people, security sources said Wednesday. "GATIA fighters, accompanied by suicide bombers, attacked a rebel Tuareg and anti-government Arab position in the night from Tuesday to Wednesday near the town of Tabankort. A security source in MINUSMA -- the United Nations peacekeeping mission in Mali -- confirmed the deaths, adding that two fighters blew themselves up while a third was killed before he was able to detonate his explosives. GATIA is the commonly-used name for the pro-government Imghad and Allies Tuareg Self-Defence Group.

Bucking Obama, senior Democrat seeks limits on war against IS

Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif.Rep. Adam Schiff's resolution forbids using ground forces in combat against IS militants.

Hezbollah carried out deadly attack on Israeli convoy

Israeli soldiers secure the Israel-Lebanon border, Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015. The Lebanese Hezbollah group is claiming responsibility for today’s attack on an Israeli military convoy. Hezbollah claims the attack destroyed a number of Israeli vehicles and caused casualties among "enemy ranks." Israel later fired at least 35 artillery shells into Lebanon. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)Lebanese Hezbollah militants killed and wounded a number of Israeli soldiers in a "big operation" on Wednesday targeting an Israeli military convoy in a frontier area, a Lebanese political source said. The attack in the Israeli-occupied Shebaa Farms area was in response to an Israeli rocket attack in Syria, the source, who is familiar with details of the operation, said.

Obama's pick for attorney general aims to smooth ties with Congress

Loretta Lynch testifies on Capitol Hill in WashingtonBy Aruna Viswanatha and Julia Edwards WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Loretta Lynch, President Barack Obama's pick for attorney general, on Wednesday sought to make a clean break from the testy relationship her predecessor had with Congress, while supporting the legality of Obama's controversial actions on immigration. Lynch, a career prosecutor known for her diplomatic skills, struck a delicate balance during her confirmation hearing, telling the Senate Judiciary Committee, "I look forward to fostering a new and improved relationship." Her willingness to listen to Republican concerns was generally well received by the senators and marked a departure in style from the current attorney general, Eric Holder, an unapologetic liberal voice and one of Obama's closest allies. Still, she defended the administration's legal justification for Obama's November immigration order, which eased the threat of deportation for some five million undocumented immigrants.

Flooding leaves mess in oceanfront Massachusetts after storm

A man emerges from the snow beyond a pine twisted from heavy winds near Nantasket Beach in Hull, Mass., Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015. Massachusetts was pounded by snow and lashed by strong winds early Tuesday as bands of heavy snow left some towns including Sandwich on Cape Cod and Oxford in central Massachusetts reporting more than 18 inches of snow. (AP Photo/The Quincy Patriot Ledger, Gary Higgins) BOSTON HERALD OUT; BOSTON GLOBE OUT; QUINCY OUT (REV-SHARE)By Scott Malone MARSHFIELD, Mass. (Reuters) - Ocean Street in the waterfront Massachusetts town of Marshfield was littered with lobster traps, downed wires and chunks of houses on Wednesday, after a massive blizzard hammered New England. Notably absent was much of the 2 feet (30 cm) of snow that blanketed much of the Boston area, since for much of the storm, Ocean Street was under water because of flooding from a breached sea wall. "This area sees flooding regularly, but we haven't seen damage like this since the blizzard of '78," town planner Greg Guimond said as he surveyed the wreckage. Schools remained closed in Boston and most of its suburbs for a second straight day but life was otherwise returning to normal with the city's transit system and airport resuming service and a travel ban lifted.

North Dakota: oil producers aim to cut radioactive waste bills

An environmental group employee holds a used filter sock in BismarckBy Ernest Scheyder WILLISTON, N.D. (Reuters) - North Dakota's oil industry is pushing to change the state's radioactive waste disposal laws as part of a broad effort to conserve cash as oil prices tumble. The waste, which becomes slightly radioactive as part of the hydraulic fracturing process that churns up isotopes locked underground, must be trucked out of state. The most common form of radioactive waste is a filter sock, a mesh tube resembling a sandbag through which fracking water is pumped before it's injected back into the earth.

One in five U.S. children now rely on food stamps: Census data
By Elvina Nawaguna WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The number of children in the United States relying on food stamps for a meal spiked to 16 million last year, according federal data, signaling a lopsided economic recovery in which lower income families are still lagging behind. The roughly one in five children who received food stamps in 2014 surpassed pre-recession levels, when one in eight or 9 million children were on food stamps, according to the U.S. Census survey of American families released on Wednesday Republicans in Congress have sought to cut back on the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program or food stamp program as part of a larger plan to balance the budget. Other findings of the survey show a rapidly changing America in which more children are being raised in single-parent homes and more young people are delaying marriage. Of the 73.7 million children under 18 in the United States, 27 percent were living in single parent homes last year, tripling the 9 percent in 1960.

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