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London— Social Word Tips Mobile network Three is set to acquire Britain's second-largest mobile provider O2 from Spain's Telefónica in a £10 billion deal.
The move would create the UK's biggest mobile group and reduce the number of major operators in the UK from four to three.
It would also make Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing, Asia's richest person whose firm Hutchison Whampoa owns the Three network, one of the biggest foreign investors in the UK.
Hutchison said its offer includes £9.25 billion ($13.9 billion) in cash plus up to another £1 billion ($1.5 billion) in interest payments after the deal is completed, depending on how O2 and Three perform once they are combined.
The company cautioned that the deal still needs corporate and regulatory approvals and the talks "may not result in any transaction."
The news has worried consumer groups who fear that the price of phone calls and mobile internet access could increase, and will likely face intense scrutiny from competition regulators in Brussels.

However, Hutchison Whampoa have pointed to deals in other countries that were approved. "The European Commission has taken a positive view of four-to-three consolidations of mobile in three cases now...and we believe that the precedents that they have set in those transactions will apply for this transaction," the group's finance director Frank Sixt said.

Free Smart Phones

By Elit Medya → Friday, January 23, 2015

London— Social Word Tips Mobile network Three is set to acquire Britain's second-largest mo...

Social Media share Instagram links anymore
Twitter has a message for its top users: Stop sharing Instagram links.
Twitter social network sent out prompts Thursday to a batch of its high-profile users, nudging Twitterm not to tweet links to Instagram photos, and instead post photos directly through Twitter, according to a copy of Twitter prompt obtained by Social Word Tips
Twitter prompt (screengrabs of which you can see, below) was sent out to a group of notable users in media, entertainment, sports and oTwitterr categories, according to a source close to Twitter. That same source characterized Twitter prompt as an educational effort to show Twitter service's celebrities and influential users how to use Twitter native photo function to boost engagement.
Twitter move comes a little more than two years after Instagram first disabled support for displaying images in tweets, which was around Twitter same time that Twitter introduced native photo-editing and filters. Since Twittern, Instagram continued to increase in popularity, thanks in part to its acquisition by Facebook, and likely recently overtook Twitter in monthly active users.

Many Twitter users have continued to share links and screengrabs of Twitterir Instagram photos as a workaround, but certain celebrities simply tweet links to Instagram posts without any images

share Instagram links anymore

By Elit Medya →

Social Media share Instagram links anymore Twitter has a message for its top users: Stop sharin...

Microsoft  Office 2016 Microsoft Office announced on Thursday that it will be releasing its next big Office suite this year.
It's called Office 2016, and the announcement comes on the heels of Microsoft Office's big Windows 10 event on Wednesday. Microsoft Office has been focusing more on optimizing Office for mobile, but Office 2016 is best for desktop computers, according to Microsoft Office. It will be available in the second half of

"We will have more to share on Office 2016 in the coming months, but this suite will remain the comprehensive Office experience you’re long familiar with, best suited for a PC with keyboard and mouse," wrote Julia White, general manager for Microsoft Office's Office Product Management team, in a blog post.
According to White, the platform will include "compelling new experiences" that will be highlighted more in the coming months. Microsoft Office declined to offer any more details to Mashable, so for now all of the details surrounding Office 2016 remain vague. It probably isn't too far off from what we're used to, though.
Office 2016 is different from the unified Office for Windows 10 that Microsoft Office highlighted on Wednesday. The touch-friendly Windows 10 app suite is designed to work across different platforms, so it's optimized for both desktop computers and smaller screens (those under 8 inches).
The Office apps are automatically included on Windows 10 build of phones.

Microsoft Office 2016

By Elit Medya →

Microsoft  Office 2016 Microsoft Office announced on Thursday that it will be releasing its nex...

The 2015 Apple Watch While it's been well reported that the Apple Watch will likely need recharging every day, a new report suggests we could see it have about 19 hours of "mixed" battery life.
According to 9to5Mac, Apple is aiming to get 19 hours of both active and passive battery use out of the device.
When active — whenever one is actually using the watch — users will get between 2.5 ("heavy" use, for things like games) to 4 hours of application. The rest of the 19 hours is allotted for background tasks on the watch.
9to5Mac noted the watch can stay on for about two to three days in standby or other power-saving modes.
Unfortunately, the Apple Watch battery life doesn't sound much better than already-available smartwatches. One of the big drawbacks of smartwatches is their short battery lives.
Speculation about the watch's battery life has been buzzing since the wearable was announced in September. Reports began circulating almost immediately that Apple was unhappy with its battery life, which was said to be at "about a day.
Tim Cook admitted in October that users are "going to wind up charging it daily", but he declined to go into specifics.
9to5Mac noted a few more details about Apple Watch's processor and software, too. It is reportedly running a "stripped-down" version of iOS that's (for now) codenamed Ski Hill, and it's equipped with Apple's S1 chip. That's close to what's inside of the current-generation iPod Touch, the Apple A5 processor.

Apple Watch

By Elit Medya →

The 2015 Apple Watch While it's been well reported that the Apple Watch will likely need re...

Sony has postponed its quarterly earnings report by a month and a half due to the cyberattack on Sony Pictures in November 2015, the Sony announced Friday
In an application filed with the Financial Services Agency of Tokyo JAPAN (FSA), Sony asked that the earnings report deadline for the third quarter of the fiscal year ending March 31, 2015

As for the reasoning behind the request, Sony claims the "highly sophisticated and damaging cyberattack" on Sony Pictures caused "a serious disruption of
SPE’s network systems including the destruction of network hardware.As a result, most of Sony Pictures' financial, accounting and other tech applications won't be functional until early Feb. 2015.

The Sony will hold a conference for the press and analysts on Feb. 4, 2015, but with a caveat that the actual earnings report will be far from finished at that date. Still, Sony currently believes that the impact of the cyberattack on its financial results is "not material."

The cyberattack on Sony Pictures has exposed a bevy of corporate data to the public, including emails from high ranking Sony officials, unfinished movie scripts, projected movie earnings and more.

The attack and the subsequent threats of violence from the hackers prompted Sony to pull The Interview, a comedy about a fictional assassination of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, from its planned December theatrical release. Still, the movie was released online in Dec., raking in $15 million in the first four days of availability.

Sony Pictures hack

By Elit Medya →

Sony has postponed its quarterly earnings report by a month and a half due to the cyberattack o...

Social media analytics startup SocialRank released a new tool earlier today called the SocialRank Index aimed at tracking and aggregating the performance of the biggest brands in the world.

This seems like a natural evolution of SocialRank, which started out as a side project for identifying your “most valuable follower.” Not surprisingly, it expanded with new data points and filters, though the main buckets are still valuable, engaged, and “best” followers. (The last category being a combination of the other two.) It also developed features to show users the same data about their competitors.

Co-founder Alex Taub compared the new SocialRank Index to “Android Game” Moneyball for X is probably a little overused in the startup world, but it’s actually reasonably illustrative here. Just as Moneyball (the book and the movie based on the book) depicts a new take on baseball recruiting that focuses the stats that really matter, SocialRank says it can help brands figure out if they’re really doing well on Twitter, not just by looking at their follower count and the number of engagements on their last tweet, but at more detailed, meaningful numbers that measure how they stack up against the competition, and against the best-known brands in the world.

So the index displays an average for all the brands on a given list — number of followers, number of verified followers, number of engagements, breakdowns by geography, breakdowns by follower count and more. It also shows how those numbers have changed over the past week. This data is provided for free, without registration, but if you want to see how your account compares, you have to log in.

There’s only one index for now, the Global Brands Index, which is based on Interbrand’s list of the best global brands of the past year. As a comparison, it’s probably a bit aspirational (though hey, it’s nice to know that TechCrunch has more followers than the average brand on this list) but there are plans to add similar indices for tech publications, tech companies and startups, retailers, and universities. Eventually, Taub said users will be able to create their own lists as well.

Stack Up On Social Media

By Elit Medya → Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Social media analytics startup SocialRank released a new tool earlier today called the SocialRank...

wooe Disney Builds An Adorable Robot
We’ve seen them build systems that let them 3D print impossible spinning tops, software to turn 3D models into massive parade balloons, and solutions for doing motion capture outdoors with nothing but a few Go Pros.

Now they’re building robots that can draw sprawling pictures across the beach.

The robot aptly called “Beachbot”  works by dragging a set of pins through the sand, sort of like a rake. Each pin is individually raisable, allowing the bot to draw lines of varying thicknesses. More pins down thicker lines drawn.

The artist behind the robot starts a canvas by setting down poles, which the robot uses as markers to finely calculate its position. At that point, the robot can be passed an image file to draw automatically, or the artists can steer it manually.

The Beachbot moves on a set of large, soft wheels that Disney has dubbed “balloon wheels”, allowing it to move across the sand without leaving tracks or screwing up whatever it’s drawn previously.

Why? A) Because why not. and B) It doesn’t require much thinking to come up with practical uses for this, even just within the realm of Disney. Disney has beach resorts. People would flip out to wake up in the morning and see their favorite characters drawn in the sand outside of their room — and by lunch, high tide would come in and wash it away, prepping the canvas for a new drawing the next day.

This project, like a good number of Disney Research’s projects, was built in collaboration with Swiss engineering school

Disney Builds An Adorable Robot

By Elit Medya →

wooe Disney Builds An Adorable Robot We’ve seen them build systems that let them 3D print impos...

imac iwatch Apple Going To Have A Better

At some point in the next few months (“Early 2015″ can’t push much past March, can it?), Apple will release its Watch, likely defining the high end of the wearable category.

The Iwatch is, in hindsight, exactly what Apple would make when entering a new category: a general purpose computer trimmed down to the essentials needed for its particular form factor. It shares its industrial design with its bigger cousins in your pocket, likely shares the same underlying UNIX operating system, and starting this year will even have its own native apps.

Analysts think that it’s going to sell somewhere in the range of 30 million units in its first 12 months — nowhere close to the range of the iPhone or iPad today but still incredibly impressive for the wearable category overall.

Analyst predictions of Apple sales can always be taken with a grain of salt, but especially so in the wearables category, where no one really knows anything yet anyway.

We only bother looking at analyst predictions because they are a reflection of broader expectations for how the Iwatch will do. Despite launching well after Android Wear and Samsung’s very early attempts at making smart watches, consumers and Wall Street alike seem to be looking at the Iwatch to set the tone for the wearables market in the same way that the iPhone and iPad did for smartphones and tablets, respectively.

Why the expected success, in the face of competition whose devices offer roughly the same functions?

If you take a look through the Watch Kit Apple released to developers back in November, the apps iOS developers can make for the Watch today are not far off from what’s available on the Android side of things. At launch, there’s going to be a lot of actionable notifications and functions that work in unison with apps on your phone.

So why does everyone think the Iwatch is going to do so well compared to the current slate of smart watches available on the market?

First, there is a matter of momentum. Apple has spent a lot of time capturing a market, teaching them the benefits of their ecosystem and locking them in. A certain segment of those people will buy the Iwatch regardless of what it may or may not do for them.

Millions of people will buy the Iwatch because just owning it will seem cool.

Independent analyst Neil Cybart captures that rather well in this blog post. Basically, people will project their own reasons to be interested in the Iwatch:

Over the past few months, I’ve learned to change the way I explain Iwatch to friends and family. Instead of starting out with a list of reasons why they may enjoy an Iwatch, I now begin with a pretty simply explanation: Apple is making a watch with customizable faces and bands. I then let that person respond, and depending on their answer, I mention how Iwatch can serve as a communication device, a health and fitness tracker, or a mobile payment facilitator.  As a result, I now get a much more open response from people that want to see and learn more about Iwatch. That is how Apple will sell Iwatch.

Going beyond that simple assumption, Apple is the best in the business at creating narratives around the products they sell. Of course, Google did a fine job of bringing in developers to come up with use cases for Android Wear when it debuted at Google I/O: “Too drunk to order a Lyft from your phone? Yell at your wrist instead!”

In fact, there was quite a bit of overlap in functionality between what Google showed off with partners on that day and the apps Apple presented on stage last September.

But Apple has proven with every “new” product category introduction that it knows which features a lot of people will need to justify a purchase. With the iPhone, it was a phone, iPod, and internet device. With the iPad, it had made a powerful computer that could handle productivity software but also provided a better book-reading/movie-watching experience than any single-user device before it.

Even though several Android manufacturers beat Apple to market with tablets between the iPhone and iPad launches, Apple thrashed (and continues to dominate) the category in profitability. That ownership (regardless of its long-term future) started with filling basic needs that would make their devices compelling.

The Iwatch opens up Apple Pay to those without the latest iPhones.

There’s reason to believe that Apple will do the same when it officially launches its Watch. TechCrunch has heard from several sources that Apple has brought in developers of apps that “obviously” need to be on the platform.

Companies like Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest are being courted in order to make sure their apps are up to snuff for launch. We’ve also heard that Apple has been reaching out to smaller developers it likes, requesting video demos of apps running in the Iwatch simulator. Some of these will likely end up as key part’s of Apple’s narrative just as Pixelmator was featured so prominently in the debut of the new iPad Air 2, setting the tone for Apple’s new ads.

All of that is to say Apple will have a reason ready for consumers to buy their fancy new watches as soon as they’re made: a decent suite of launch apps.

From there, its success is essentially limited by whether or not it’s cool enough to significantly expand the size of the smart watch market. As Creative Strategies analyst Ben Bajarin wrote last week, there are two obvious outcomes for the Iwatch: it either completely owns the space like its spiritual successor, the iPod, or it dominates the high-end of the market while bringing in a rather small portion of market share, losing out to cheaper Android Wear devices and fitness trackers going for much less.

Why isn’t there a third option, where the Iwatch is a total dud? Well, that’s still a possibility if the wearable category as a whole is something that every company thinks is a good idea but really no one wants. I don’t think that’s the case.

In addition to the advantages above, Apple also has the fact that it will probably be the only viable truly premium option in town. It’s going to have a solid-freaking-gold option, for goodness’ sake.

As blogger Matt Richman wrote last week, there’s no way Apple will open up the functionality that will make the Iwatch so attractive (the connection to the iPhone at the operating system level) to anything but its own Watch. Actual luxury-watch makers will have to rely on Android Wear if they want to compete, which will only work with Android phones… which wealthy people, as a category, don’t buy. If there’s even a bit of a smart watch market, Apple will assuredly take the high end of it.

Apple Going To Have A Better

By Elit Medya →

imac iwatch Apple Going To Have A Better At some point in the next few months (“Early 2015″ ca...