News Fuse for November 5, 2013

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Here are today's top 10 stories from Tech News Today for November 05, 2013:

  1. Let’s start off with Snow leaks. Snowden fallout? Crawl into the snow den? Anyway three leaks. Italy’s l’Espresso reports the UK’s GCHQ and US NSA, tap the Net from Britain’s Ayios Nikolaos intelligence station on Cyrpus. Cyprus is a hub of several fiber-optic undersea cables. Leak 2, from the UK’s Independent reports, probably not that surprisingly, that the GCHQ and NSA spy on the Net from diplomatic buildings, most interesting to Angela Merkel, in Berlin. And leak 3 is a follow-up. NSA Director Keith B. Alexander denied the NSA had access to Google or Yahoo servers, neatly skirting the question of taps on fiber. The Post responded with more details that the NSA does access Google and Yahoo’s internal data center communications. And that’s your Snowden leak roundup. Let it Snowden! Read more at repubblica.it.

  2. Google Helpouts, Hangout-like video chats where experts are matched with people looking to gain knowledge or level up a particular skill, has launched, and Google's calling it “real help from real people in real time.” Helpouts uses your Google+ identity, Wallets payment features, and Hangout’s video technology to service its marketplace of providers. Google has assembled a collection about 1 thousand brands, like Sephora for cosmetic tips, and individuals so that the service is up and running from day 1. Read more at techcrunch.com.

  3. The Jeff Bezos biography titled "The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon" is the subject of a one-star review at Amazon.com. Normally, that wouldn't be news, but the review is written by Jeff Bezos' wife, MacKenzie Bezos, who says the book is full of inaccuracies. She also says the book ignores positive aspects about Amazon to build a more dramatic book. The author, Brad Stone, says he spoke to 300 people to create his work and said of the review " there are details of this story that only Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos can know. If they point to errors, I'll gladly correct them." Amazon VP of Global Communications Craig Berman gave a statement to TechCrunch and said "By beginning with 'Bezos said,' [Stone] obligates himself to get it right." Read more at techcrunch.com.

  4. Verizon announced its own branded tablet called the Ellipsis 7. Specs are light but the 7-inch Android tablet has some kind of HD screen, LTE, a front-facing camera and goes on sale November 7th for $250. That’s right for $30 more than a Nexus 7 you can get a vaguely-spec'd Jelly Bean tablet probably made by FoxConn or Quanta that comes with RedBox pre-installed! Read more at theverge.com.

  5. Nike's Nike+ Move app has launched, which takes advantage of the iPhone 5S's M7 motion coprocessor. Specifically, the app harnesses data from the M7 chip to "capture your every move," turning the information into "Nike Fuel," a unit of measurement the company uses to track daily activity levels. Nike Fuel is used in a range of products, including the Nike FuelBand SE wearable fitness tracker. Read more at appleinsider.com.

  6. Apple's bringing jobs to Mesa, Arizona in the form of a manufacturing facility. The endeavor is in partnership with GT Advanced Technologies, a mineral crystal specialist, and will make sapphire materials for Apple products. All in all, 2,000 jobs will be created - 700 in manufacturing and 1300 in construction. Read more at reuters.com.

  7. Acer chairman and CEO J. T. Wang announced he will step down from the post of CEO as of January 1st. Acer reported a net loss of $446 million in Q3 and plans to cut 7% of its global staff. Acer’s PC sales dropped 35%. The PC market is not rising as a whole, though Dell, HP and Lenovo all experience growth in the their most recent quarters. Read more at theverge.com.

  8. T-Mobile reported third-quarter subscriber growth that beat the street, its second straight quarter of growth after four years of customer losses. T-Mobile US, which is 74% owned by Deutsche Telekom AG, has been vocal in criticizing its bigger rivals in its marketing and positioning itself as more consumer-friendly. It added 648,000 net subscribers in the quarter, compared with the average expectation for 444,000 subscribers, according to seven analysts contacted by Reuters. Read more at reuters.com.

  9. A couple years ago HTC decided it had to make a Hero phone to get back on top. Since that didn’t work, now HTC says it will cut operating expenses by around 25% and focus on selling cheaper handsets. HTC confirmed a Q3 net loss of NT$3 billion, its first ever quarterly loss. How can they make more money while selling cheaper phones? Volume! CFO Chialin Chang told Reuters, ““We’re looking at broader products in this quarter… we aim for higher volume into 2014 that will give better profitability.” Read more at techcrunch.com.

  10. And rounding out earnings-palooza - AOL reported its third quarter results. The good news: revenue was up thanks to better advertising sales. The bad news: earnings fell due to issues with AOL property Patch. AOL took a $19 million restructuring charge and a $25 million impairment charge on Patch. That made earnings per share for AOL only two cents. Without the charge, EPS would have been 55 cents. Read more at reuters.com.

For insight, analysis, and discussion of these topics and more, check out Tech News Today for November 05, 2013.