Here are the top 10 stories from Tech News Today for July 16, 2013:
- Engadget passes along that Calcalist reports Apple is in early talks to buy PrimeSense. Recognize the name? They're the company that made the original hardware and chip used in the first generation Microsoft Kinect. They also make the tech in some lesser known 3D sensing products like the Asus WAVI Xtion and EyePlay by EyeClick. A source from PrimeSense poured cold water on the idea, telling TechCrunch it was "a delusion based on unverified and twisted hints." The source also scoffed at the $280 million valuation mentioned by Calcalist, saying PrimeSense is worth 10 times that. Read more at engadget.com.
- AT&T will start offering its flexible “Next” plans for smartphones and tablets, on a post-paid basis on July 26th. Customers can trade in their smart devices every 12 months, provided the customer pays a monthly installment fee based on a 20-month cycle. So for example, you would take the full retail price of an iPad, divide it by 20 and add that cost to your monthly AT&T plan. After 12 months, you can trade in that iPad for a new device, and your cycle starts over. Read more at allthingsd.com.
- Apparently, Apple is still working on some kind of TV service. According to former Wall Street Journal reporter Jessica Lessin, Apple approached networks and cable companies with a service that would allow premium subscribers to skip ads. Customers would pay Apple for the service and Apple would pay the networks and cable companies for lost revenue. Will it work? Stay tuned, gumshoes. Read more at theverge.com.
- Apple announced the launch of Logic Pro X, the latest version of its pro audio software that competes with the likes of ProTools. The extensive revamp brings a new virtual drummer and integrated pitch editing, as well as a free iPad companion app. Logic Pro X sells for $199.99 in the Mac App Store. Companion live performance app MainStage 3 is also out for $29.99. Read more at macrumors.com.
- A secret court has ruled that Yahoo will be allowed to prove that it fought against the National Security Agency’s Internet spying program, PRISM, and conduct a declassification review. Yahoo, Google and other Internet companies are fighting against the Federal Government's gag order that prevents them from disclosing more details about the program. As information leaks out, it's been revealed that Yahoo already lost a fight to prohibit the government from monitoring its users. Read more at techcrunch.com.
- Guess where Gowalla Co-founder Josh Williams won't be checking into any more? Facebook. Williams joined Facebook back in 2012 when Gowalla was swallowed whole by Zuckerberg and company. Williams hasn't posted any information as to why he left and what he will do next, but AllThingsD's sources say he will start working on a new company in San Francisco. Read more at allthingsd.com.
- Want to split a cab? Uber just made it easier. Tap the arrow by the driver's name in the latest version of the Uber app and you'll see a split fare button. You can then add your ridemate from your contacts list and they'll get a text prompting them to launch their Uber app and agree. All fares are split equally. Read more at techhive.com.
- If you're looking a phone running Firefox OS and the Alcatel One Touch Fire and ZTE don't wow you, maybe you'll like spanish company Geeksphone's Peak+ or the lower-end Keon. Both are for developers who want to contribute to Mozilla's Firefox OS project or to make sure their Web apps will work on the browser-based OS, but Geeksphone says it will sell a "new and improved" version of the Peak for consumers, too. Read more at news.cnet.com.
- The LG Optimus G Pro is coming to 40 more countries soon across Europe, Russia, the Middle East and Latin America. The phone has a user-replaceable battery and a pretty 1080p 5.5-inch IPS LCD display along with dual-camera video recording. Sharif Sakr at Engadget reports no update on UK availability. Sorry Brits. Read more at engadget.com.
- Chinese Android handset maker Xiaomi sold 7.03 million handsets in the first half of this year racking up $2.16 billion in revenue. In 2012, the company made under a $1B for the whole year. If you're unfamiliar with Xiaomi (like I was this morning) the company was founded by Lei Jun and made headlines when it introduced the Xiaomi Phone - a low cost smartphone in 2011. Oh, and the company is rumored to be working on a Smart TV - so take that, Apple. TV rumors for all! Read more at techcrunch.com.
For insight, analysis, and discussion of these topics and more, check out Tech News Today for July 16, 2013.