Google sells Motorola Mobility to Lenovo for $2.91 billion [Updated]

(Via TheVerge)

“Lenovo has the expertise and track record to scale Motorola Mobility into a major player within the Android ecosystem,” Google CEO Larry Page says in a statement. “This move will enable Google to devote our energy to driving innovation across the Android ecosystem, for the benefit of smartphone users everywhere.”

2012: Google acquires Motorola for $12.5 billion.
2013: Sells off Motorola’s set top box unit to Arris for $2.35 billion.
2014: Sells off Motorola Mobility to Lenovo for $2.91 billion. Keeps bulk of the patents it acquired originally from Motorola.(14,600 granted patents and 6,700 pending patent applications, worldwide, as of January 2011)

At most, Motorola’s patent portfolio has generated pocket change for Google, which if you do the Math, was valued at an insane $7.24 billion.

Update: Motorola had $3 billion cash in hand and about $1 billion in tax credits when Google acquired Motorola. So that puts Google’s payment at about $3.24 billion for these patents. Not as bad as the $7.24 billion that I had calculated initially. But that still doesn’t change the fact that these patents have not generated anything significant for Google to talk about.

Donald Trump dumps Apple stock with an advice

One disgruntled investor wants Apple to release big screen iPhones. Another disgruntled investor wants Apple to come out with new products and wants a larger share buyback.

In 2013, Carl Icahn’s investment fund returned 31%, Nasdaq Index appreciated by 33%.

(Via Forbes)

So how much would your investment have returned, if you had invested in an Index Fund instead?
On Jan 04 2013 the Nasdaq Index was at 3101.7. An year later on Jan 03 2014 the Nasdaq index was at 4131.9. A growth of 33.2%. That 31% return doesn’t look delicious anymore does it?

Final Apple Q1 2014 estimates

(Via CNN)

So, If Apple announces top range of results from it’s own guidance, it still fails to beat about half of the analysts’ estimates. I wouldn’t be surprised if Apple stock prices fell post announcement of results, even if it beat it’s own guidance. That is unless next quarter guidance hints at the possible release of a new line of products.

ChargeKey for iPhone

(Via HelloNomad)

IMG_0265 IMG_0269

Received the Nomad ChargeKey for my iPhone 5 about a week back. No more anxiety attacks worrying about my iPhone running out of charge. The best thing about the product is that I no longer have to remember to carry around the lightning charging cable anymore.  I am always carrying it along with my set of keys. And just the perfect size for it to blend into my key set. The ChargeCard looks like an equally amazing product (taking up roughly the size of a Credit Card). The ChargeKey only comes for Micro USB (if you have an Android phone) and Lightning (for iPhone 5 and up). The ChargeCard on the other hand is also available for the older 30-pin iPhone connector. I personally prefer the ChargeKey due to its smaller size.

 

Google-Samsung patent deal

(Via ArsTechnica)

Google’s Deputy General Counsel for Patents Allen Lo said “We’re pleased to enter into a cross-license with our partner Samsung. By working together on agreements like this, companies can reduce the potential for litigation and focus instead on innovation.”  Dr. Seungho Ahn, the Head of Samsung’s Intellectual Property Center, chimed in with “This agreement with Google is highly significant for the technology industry. Samsung and Google are showing the rest of the industry that there is more to gain from cooperating than engaging in unnecessary patent disputes.”

Unnecessary jab at Apple. Easier for Google and Samsung to cooperate when Google makes Android for Samsung’s smartphones and Samsung sells tons of Android smartphones for Google. Apple on the other hand will always stand to gain more by engaging in patent disputes (monetarily as well as by enforcing differentiation with competing Android OEMs).

TuneCore and INDmusic – YouTube Claims

(Via Billboard)

Dunne, who writes game music, told The Escapist that his YouTube channel was “riddled with third party claims from INDmusic — the irony being they were being claimed on my behalf for using my own songs which I wrote and performed.”

TuneCore struck a deal with INDmusic last month to monetize YouTube videos. The deal allowed INDmusic to scour YouTube for videos that play any of TuneCore artists’ music and then claim copyright ownership of those videos. Because Dunne and Cavanaugh use TuneCore to distribute their songs to iTunes and other online retailers, INDmusic automatically flagged the videos on Dunne’s YouTube channel as well.

Motorola’s $50 phone

(Via ArsTechnica)

In much of the world $179 is a lot of money, so there’s a big market at a price point of less than $179. We’re going to look at that, and just delivering on that value promise is super important. I mean, why can’t these devices be $50? There’s no reason that can’t happen, so we’re going to push that.- Dennis Woodside

Motorola might be able to deliver a $50 phone in 2-3 years time. For the last 6 years, the mobile performance has been roughly doubling every year at the same price. Mobile performance is at a point where any more improvements in performance will not result in much perceived improvement in user experience. If you were to keep mobile performance constant, and only decrease the associated costs every year, considering that the costs decreased by only 35% yearly, a Moto G equivalent experience at $50 is only 3 years away. Motorola being a Google company, has a higher priority to get an Android phone into as many hands as it can. Motorola might not make any money on the $50 phone, but it doesn’t have to, considering that Google will make enough money delivering ads to a majority of the population on the planet. The other Android OEM’s do not have the luxury of selling their smartphones at cost price.

Convergence of Mac OS and iOS a non goal

(Via MacWorld)

“To say [OS X and iOS] should be the same, independent of their purpose? Let’s just converge, for the sake of convergence? [It’s] absolutely a nongoal,” Federighi said. “You don’t want to say the Mac became less good at being a Mac because someone tried to turn it into iOS. At the same time, you don’t want to feel like iOS was designed by [one] company and Mac was designed by [a different] company, and they’re different for reasons of lack of common vision. We have a common sense of aesthetics, a common set of principles that drive us, and we’re building the best products we can for their unique purposes. So you’ll see them be the same where that makes sense, and you’ll see them be different in those things that are critical to their essence.”

 

Free space on your 16 GB device

(Via Which)

How much free space does your 16GB smartphone have?
iPhone 5c – 12.6 GB
Nexus 5 – 12.28 GB
iPhone 5s – 12.2 GB
Xperia Z1 – 11.43 GB
Blackberry Z30 – 11.20 GB
HTC One Mini – 10.44 GB
LG G2 – 10.37 GB
Galaxy S4 – 8.56 GB

And a word about Samsung Galaxy S4 from the article:

Running on Android, Samsung has heavily customised the S4 with their Touchwiz interface. This includes many of Samsung’s own features but, while it looks pretty and grabs headlines, most of the stuff is next to useless. Eye tracking technology that pauses video when you look away from the screen sounds attractive but in reality it works badly, gulps down your battery and monopolises your internal storage.