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TITLE: The Stalking PillowThe Inflated Nickel | Microsoft Management Mixup | The Stalking Pillow

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Motorola's design-it-yourself phone, Samsung snaps up Boxee? and Microsoft's unstoppable Julie Larson-Green http://live.twit.tv/GUEST: Natali Morris
LOWER THIRD URL: www.crashtestmom.com, @natalimorris

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Today's date

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This is 'Tech News Today' for Wednesday April 16 2014

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Welcome to Tech News Today, I'm Tom Merritt --- I'm Sarah Lane --- I'm Sparky Anderson -- I'm Jason Howell

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We'll keep you up to date on the most important stories in the tech world, and put them in context for you.

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We start with the top 10 stories of the day in the News Fuse

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http://bridgeurl.com/tnt788/all

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News Fuse - Top 10VIDEO

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tmMotorola has an ad and a sign-up page for the much-rumoured Moto X phone showing up in today's papers in the US. The ad claims the phone will be "Assembled in the USA" and somewhat more intriguing, says it will be the "first smartphone you can design yourself." So in my case, the design won't be that good.http://venturebeat.com/2013/07/02/motorolas-mysterious-moto-x-will-be-the-first-phone-you-can-design-yourself-ad-says/

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slBloomberg reports that Apple and Time Warner Cable are close to a deal to let subscribers stream programming with their Apple TV, according to Bloomberg, and maybe be live in "a few months." If true, the partnership would be Apple TV's first offering of live TV along with video on demand. Time Warner Cable already allows third-party products like Roku, and soon the Xbox 360 to act as an extra cable box, as long as the customer already has a subscription. http://www.theverge.com/2013/7/2/4487750/apple-time-warner-cable-nearing-deal-stream-cable-apple-tv

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iaMore murmurs about the Microsoft management mixup. Bloomberg says that Steve Ballmer is considering putting Tony Bates in charge of acquisitions and relationships with software developers. Bates is currently the president of Skype. Windows head Julie Larson-Green would move to oversee hardware engineering for the entire company. The final plans for the Microsoft are expected to be announced as early as next week. No mention was made of whether Clippy would become head of Office. http://news.cnet.com/8301-10805_3-57592106-75/microsoft-reorg-would-expand-roles-of-key-execs/

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tmYouTube has renewed its deal with music video distributor VEVO. This means YouTube's most popular videos will remain available but YouTube's Google had to throw some cash at the problem to make it happen. YouTube said in a statement, "We made an investment in VEVO.” Billboard estimates Google bought a 7 percent stake in VEVO.http://techcrunch.com/2013/07/02/youtube-renewed-vevo-deal/

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slYahoo cannot stop buying companies. As previously rumored, iOS app Qwiki is Marissa Mayer's latest acquisition: a social video sharing service with filters, photo transitions and soundtracks to create "stories." Qwiki gives Yahoo its own video sharing platform, a hot commodity on the web these days. The deal is said to be around $50 million.http://www.engadget.com/2013/07/02/yahoo-acquires-qwiki/

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iaA security breach at Ubisoft has the company warning its account holders that some of their data may have been compromised. Ubisoft says that subscribers' credit card and debit card details are safe. However, email addresses, usernames, and encrypted passwords were "illegally accessed." Ubisoft said its database housed information for 58 million people.http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-23159997

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tmThe Washington Examiner reports the US State Department spent $630,000 on a marketing campaign to increase Facebook Likes from 100,000 to more than 2 million. In a report the agency's inspector general said Many in the bureau criticize the advertising campaigns as 'buying fans'. See? You don't need secret server access, just spend money on a Facebook program and people will just give you all their info.http://washingtonexaminer.com/article/2532629

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slApple has hired Paul Deneve, the former CEO of fashion house Yves Saint Laurent, to work on "special projects". His new position hasn't been further defined, but, in a statement provided to Bloomberg, Apple confirmed he'd be a VP reporting straight to CEO Tim Cook. http://www.theverge.com/2013/7/2/4488306/apple-hires-yves-saint-laurent-ceo-paul-deneve

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tmSeveral Israeli news sources report this morning that Samsung has purchased Boxee for $30 million and will use Boxee tech in Samsung TVs. Boxee told Engadget "We can't comment on the accuracy of those reports." and Samsung has not responded to inquiries. http://www.engadget.com/2013/07/03/samsung-buys-boxee-report/

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iaYou know what we don't cover enough of? Feature phones! And we're about to fix that right now. Nokia introduced the Nokia 207 and 208, two new feature phones. They both run Nokia's Series 40 OS. They both have a 2.4-inch display, 64MB of RAM, and 256MB of intenral space. So what's the difference between the 207 and the 208? The 207 doesn't have a rear facing camera and the 208 will be available in a dual SIM variant. They will cost 52 Euros and go on sale in the third quarter of this year. http://thenextweb.com/gadgets/2013/07/03/nokia-207-208-and-208-dual-sim-unveiled-as-the-cheapest-3g-enabled-series-40-feature-phones/

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Introduce GuestGUEST: Natali Morris
LOWER THIRD URL: www.crashtestmom.com, @natalimorris

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Discussion Stories

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iaMotorola’s mysterious Moto X is the first phone you can design yourself, ad sayshttp://venturebeat.com/2013/07/02/motorolas-mysterious-moto-x-will-be-the-first-phone-you-can-design-yourself-ad-says/

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Motorola taps into American patriotism to advertise the upcoming Moto X http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2013/07/motorola-taps-into-american-patriotism-to-advertise-the-upcoming-moto-x/

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Moto X Signup Pagehttps://motorola-global-portal.custhelp.com/ci/documents/detail/2/2013-summer-annc-us-en

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- Motorola just put out an ad for its upcoming Moto X phone that will run in the July 3rd editions of the NYT, USA Today, the WSJ & the Washington Post
- The ad reads "The first smartphone designed, engineered and assembled in the USA is coming."
- There's plenty of ad copy talking about how this will be the "first smartphone you can design yourself" and it can be "as unique as you are."
- It features the new motorola logo that debuted last week. If you haven't seen it, the familiar M bat-wings logo is surrounded by a a multi-color ring. The motorola text logo is now all using a softer typeface with all lowercase lettering. The phrase "a Google company" is beneath the new Motorola logo.
- The ad itself shows two people jumping off a dock into a body of water - one is in an "X" position in the air.
- there's no image of the Moto X or any phone in the ad, btw.

Q: What do we think of the ad? What do we think about "designed by you" means for Moto X? Laser etchings? Color choices? BTO?

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tmMicrosoft CEO Said to Restructure Giving Bates Mergers Role http://www.businessweek.com/news/2013-07-02/microsoft-ceo-said-to-give-bates-mergers-role-in-reorganization

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What's behind Microsoft's pending reorg?http://www.zdnet.com/whats-behind-microsofts-pending-reorg-7000017629/

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Bloomberg reports reorg. MaryJoe points out earnings come July 18. MS Sales conference is July 16-19. She hears unlikely at WWPC next week.
- Skype president Tony Bates in charge of acquisitions and relationships with software developers
- Windows chief Julie Larson-Green oversight of hardware engineering (Xbox head Don Mattrick had been a contender for the hardware post)
- Windows Phone software chief Terry Myerson Windows operating system engineering
- Satya Nadella, current head of the server business, would oversee a unit focused on cloud computing and products for corporate customers,
- Qi Lu, chief of the online group, would run an applications and services engineering unit comprised of online businesses such as the Bing search engine as well as Office and Skype engineering, Xbox Live?
- Tami Reller, Windows marketing would run Marketing
- Finance heads would all report to CFO
Q: Can Julie Larson-Green be stopped?

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slBoxee acquired by Samsung for about $30 million in surprise dealhttp://www.theverge.com/2013/7/3/4490362/boxee-acquired-by-samsung-in-surprise-deal-according-to-report

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- Samsung has confirmed to ATD its acquired Boxee. reportedly paid $30 million. a digital video startup that's been trying to figure out how to create an cable-killing service for a few years now. not a big exit if number is accurate
- samsung statement: “Samsung has acquired key talent and assets from Boxee,” a spokesperson for Samsung said. “This will help us continue to improve the overall user experience across our connected devices.”
- Boxee's headquarters are in New York City, but it has a big staff in Israel.
- couple weeks ago ATD reported Boxee looking to raise a big investment round, or find a buyer. It has been looking for cash or an exit since February, when it hired media banker Allen & Co., according to people familiar with the company.
boxee started as web platform to organize video. then, settop box. then, cloud based DVR.
- apple talking to cable co's about partnerships. intel getting into tv... does samsung need boxee? built into samsung smart tvs? something else?
- Right now, Boxee’s hardware is made by D-Link, which helped it launch both the first generation Boxee Box and now also the Cloud DVR.

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UPDATE: Update: The New York Times' Brian Chen has received confirmation of the acquisition from Samsung, though we're still waiting on confirmation of the $30 million figure. A spokesperson from the Korean company has also tells All Things D that "Samsung has acquired key talent and assets from Boxee,” adding that “This will help us continue to improve the overall user experience across our connected devices.”

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iaApple Said to Near Time Warner Cable Deal for TV Programs http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-07-02/apple-said-to-near-time-warner-cable-deal-for-tv-programs.html

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- Bloomberg reports that Apple is nearing a deal with Time Warner Cable that would allow TWC subscribers to view channels on their Apple TV.
- Bloomberg says we'll get an announcement of the agreement w/in a few months
- TWC already has the same kind of deal with Roku, Microsoft (Xbox), with some programming coming to Samsung televisions
- Time Warner Cable spokeswoman told Bloomberg that "We dont' have an agreement with them at this time."
- The same report says that Apple is bringing in Pete Distad from Hulu - he was the Sr. VP in charge of Marketing and Distribution
- Distad will report to Phil Schiller, Sr. VP of product marketing

Q: If the deal happens, does this confirm that Apple TV is just a hobby?

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sl
Apple Hires YSL CEO for 'Special Projects,' Fuels iWatch Speculation
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2421349,00.asp

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Facebook Brings Its Mobile Messaging Stickers To The Web As Their Designer Exitshttp://techcrunch.com/2013/07/02/facebook-web-chat-stickers/MENTION

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- Apple has hired Paul Deneve away from his Yves Saint Laurent CEO perch in France - huge fashion house
- will report directly to CEO Tim Cook, run "special projects"
- not new to apple, Linkedin profile says he was apple's sales and marketing manager in Europe in the '90s.
- iWatch (fashion), or filling Apple retail chief John Browett's departure in January (after less than a year on the job)?
- Facebook’s rolling out sticker fuctionality to web, not just mobile. Sophie Xie, the designer who started the Facebook stickers initiative at a hackathon and was their product designer and art director, has just left the company. Stickers for the web was one of her final contributions

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tmPebble Has Enough Watches For Best Buy, But Not For All Preorders & Kickstarter Backershttp://consumerist.com/2013/07/02/pebble-has-enough-watches-for-best-buy-but-not-for-all-preorders-kickstarter-backers/

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“Double Fine Adventure” Kickstarter over budget, delayedhttp://arstechnica.com/gaming/2013/07/double-fine-adventure-kickstarter-over-budget-delayed/

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In an email to Consumerist, Pebble CEO Eric Migicovsky explained that “After experiencing the trials and tribulations of shipping out over a hundred thousand Pebbles,” they “made a tough decision” to work with Best Buy to “to help get Pebbles out into the wild in the US.” He also explained that “certain colours were harder for us to injection mould,” leading Pebble to offer an opportunity for Kickstarter backers to switch to the black versions and have their watches ship immediately.
- “Kickstarter orders for Black, Red, Orange, and Grey should all have shipping notices now.”
- If you weren’t a Kickstarter but did pay for your pre-order: “Black, Red, Orange, and Grey should all be in Step 3 or later.”
- If you haven't paid for pre-order and want to buy at best Buy, Pebble doesn't mind if you do.
- We’ve fulfilled 93% of our Kickstarter backers already (leaving around 6,000 white watches that are shipping right now). We’ve also shipped out 13,000 pre-order Pebbles to people who have placed paid pre-orders for Pebble. At Best Buy, only Black Pebbles will be available. We shipped out all Black Pebbles to our Kickstarter backers over a month ago.
Tim Schaeffer Double Fine raised $3.2 million for an adventure game now called Broken Age
- Admits they still don't have enough money to do what they envisioned even after extra tip jar support
- first half of the game won't be ready until July 2014, with a final release looking likely in 2015. For a game that had an original asking budget of $400,000 and an original target date of October 2012, these are big problems.

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RandomizerWe will narrow this down to one story, put your initials to the left of the story you like bestVIDEO

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Internet-enabled pillow 'connects long-distance lovers'http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/story/2013/07/02/pillow-talk.html

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CalendarVIDEO

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EE announces 4 July launch for double-speed 4G network across UK - n theory, users will gain access to top speeds of 150Mbps, but EE has revealed that average speeds of between 24-30Mbps are more likely.
http://www.itproportal.com/2013/07/03/ee-announces-4-july-launch-for-double-speed-4g-network-across-uk/

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Lovefilm will cease UK game rentals by August 8th - the Amazon division confirmed via its blog that the option is no longer available to new subscribers.http://www.engadget.com/2013/07/03/lovefilm-to-chop-uk-game-rentals-august-8th/

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Microsoft eyes 2014 launch for Xbox One in Japan - Microsoft Japan President Yasuyuki Higuchi said that the Japanese market is considered "tier 2" by Microsoft, and thus, will not receive the Xbox One until next year.http://news.cnet.com/8301-10805_3-57592126-75/microsoft-eyes-2014-launch-for-xbox-one-in-japan/

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INCOMINGVIDEO

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Email

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I was catching up on the last few episodes of TNT, and a couple of the stories struck me as having a similar thread. Don Mattrick moving from head of the XBOX division to CEO of Zynga, and the rumors of Google and Apple entering the console gaming market. Who would benefit more from the expansion of Android and iOS games into the living room than Zynga, and who better to lead that effort than a former head of XBOX?

Maybe my reading of the situation is too simplistic, but I took these two stories together as strongly suggesting the Android game console rumors are accurate, and game development for it would be a new focus for Zynga.

Technosquid

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