Here's an interesting tidbit for those Maximum PC readers who were wondering why the two biggest players in mechanical hard drives have yet to seriously jump into the SSD waters: OCZ's shares are currently spiking after insider rumors claimed that Seagate and Micron are considering buying out the company.
It is official; Electronic Arts has purchased PopCap Games for $750 million in cash and stock. You might not know PopCap by name, but they are responsible for making some of the most addictive casual games of the last few years. Their titles include Plants vs. Zombies, Peggle, and Bejeweled.
We might finally be nearing the end of a grueling MySpace sale. News Corp started entertaining take over bids months ago, but no one wanted to pay the $100 million asking price for the faltering social network. As with all things, the true value of MySpace may have found its equilibrium at a rumored price of $30 million. The buyer is said to be a company you’ve never heard of, and likely won’t remember tomorrow.
Everyone was a little flummoxed last week when Microsoft announced it had acquired Skype for a whopping $8.5 billion. The price seemed to be excessive and Microsoft to be an unlikely suitor. But today Microsoft co-founder and chairman Bill Gates has told the BBC that he advocated for the deal.
AT&T has taken the first official step in gaining regulatory approval for its proposed purchase of T-Mobile USA. The FCC has received AT&T's application to take over the wireless spectrum licenses held by T-Mobile, as well as supporting documentation. This begins the (likely) long process of hearings and investigations that could end with AT&T swallowing up the nation's smallest carrier.
Two of the oldest names in the electronics industry have announced they’re getting together. Texas Instruments is buying National Semiconductor for $6.5 billion. That's a pretty hefty 77% premium over the company's $3.4 billion market cap. The deal is about infrastructure as much as it is about technology, sources say.
You may not have heard of mobile messaging service Beluga, but Facebook heard of it. They apparently liked what they heard so much, they bought it. TechCrunch is reporting that Facebook has acquired Beluga; both the product, and the team that makes it.
The news just broke shortly ago that the Comcast-NBC deal has been approved by government regulators. The FCC approved the sale of NBC Universal to Comcast by a 4-1 vote. Commissioner Michael Copps was the lone holdout. In a statement he said the deal "opens the door to the cable-ization of the open Internet." We had been expecting the FCC to ok the deal, but the Justice Department was always more of an unknown.
Almost immediately after the FCC vote, the Justice Department also approved the deal, according to a Comcast press release. Now that both agencies have given their stamp of approval, the acquisition is expected to go through by the end of January. This will make Comcast a first of its kind media powerhouse.
Early indications are that at least some of the FCC's conditions will be in place for the deal to proceed. Comcast will be required to allow online video distributors (read: Netflix) access to their content. Additionally, Comcast will be allowed to retain its stake in Hulu, but will have to relinquish its decision making role. How do you feel about the deal?
A report from the Business Insider today claims that Google was recently very close to acquiring Spotify or Rhapsody, but the deal came apart thanks to some differing opinions inside the search giant. According to the tipster, the deal was as good as done, but there were three different groups in the company that were fighting over control of the service. We'd bet dollars to robots that one of those groups was the Android division. As a result, the deal was abandoned.
This is not an uncommon situation in Google, sources say. Big decisions are often made by committee. The belief is that Google will be able to respond more quickly to changing market conditions with more voices at the table. But it can also cause pandemonium, and abandoned deals.
Instead of purchasing a streaming service, and handling with all the licensing deals it would include, Google is reportedly working on a digital locker service. Parts of this system seem to have been demoed at Google I/O in May. Do you think passing on Spotify was a missed opportunity?
Not that long ago, it looked like the excellent Xmarks bookmark syncing service was toast. After failing to find a business model, the company was making plans to close up shop. The massive outpouring of support from the Internet at large refocused efforts to find a buyer for Xmarks, and now that has happened. LastPass, makers of the cross-platform password syncing tool of the same name, have acquired Xmarks. Seriously, businesses don't get much more complementary than this.
Firstly, the standard Xmarks we've all grown to love will remain free, but there will be a new paid version with more features. This will cost user $1 per month and includes handy features like apps for Android and iPhone, and tech support. Users will have the option to purchase a bundle of LastPass and Xmarks for $20 per year.
New competition from built-in bookmarks syncing with Firefox and Chrome nearly drove Xmarks out of business. Only time will tell if users will be willing to pay for the enhanced features. But over 30,000 did pledge to do so when the initial news of the shutdown broke. Are there any Xmarks users out there planning to buy the paid version of the service?