News Fuse for October 21, 2013

Apple

Here are today's top 10 stories from Tech News Today for October 21, 2013:

  1. Apple's OCT. 22 press announcement is almost guaranteed to involve new iPads, a release date for OS X Mavericks and the new Mac Pro. We're likely to get new MacBook Pros and Mac Minis as well. Now some pages that appeared and disappeared on Appe's website over the weekend indicate software updates to iLife and iWork apps, and the reduction in price of the Garage Band app from $4.99 to free. Read more at cnet.com.

  2. Facebook experienced partial downtimes this morning, with users unable to post status updates, photos, or like things. When users try to post status updates, they’ll receive a message explaining that there was a problem, and to try again later. The same is true for likes and photo posts. The outage also seems to be affecting the native iOS app and Facebook's Payments service. Read more at techcrunch.com.

  3. Microsoft released a Surface RT recovery image today after users were having issues with updating their Surface RT tablets to Windows RT 8.1. Over the weekend, Microsoft pulled the RT 8.1 update due to installation issues. The Surface RT recovery image weights in at 3.7GB and will restore a Surface RT to its original state. Read more at theverge.com.

  4. Nokia World kicks off tomorrow and the WSJ reports the company will celebrate selling at least 8 million Lumia smartphones between June and September, double the figure from a year ago. Some other announcements have leaked out. A page accidentally published on Nokia's official Chinese TMall store shows a Lumia 1520 with a 6-inch display and 20-megapixel PureView camera. Twitter account EvLEaks posted a picture of the Nokia Guru, a similar product to Apple's iPod Shuffle abut with Near Field Communication built in. Read more at thenextweb.com.

  5. An identity theft service called Superget.info sold Social Security and drivers license numbers — as well as bank account and credit card data on millions of Americans — purchased much of its data from Experian, one of the three major credit bureaus, according to an investigation by KrebsOnSecurity. Back in November of 2011 we heard about Superget.info, a fraudster-friendly site that marketed the ability to look up full Social Security numbers, birthdays, drivers license records and financial information on millions of Americans. Now that the secret service is involved, we can all rest easy. Read more at krebsonsecurity.com.

  6. Research firm Gartner says that tablet shipments will grow 53.4% this year compared to 2012. Traditional PC sales (like desktops and laptops) are expected to decline 11.2% compared to last year. However, if you take a look at all computing devices as a whole - that's tablets, phones, and traditional PCs -- the combined shipments will hit 2.32 billion units in 2013, which is a 4.5% increase compared to 2012. Read more at techcrunch.com.

  7. David Pogue is leaving the New York Times to start a new tech site for Yahoo. Pogue will write blog posts, columns and post videos. CEO Marissa Mayer calls it a major expansion of consumer tech coverage on Yahoo. Read more at techcrunch.com.

  8. Today the Financial Times reported that HTC’s CEO Peter Chou will relinquish some of his daily operational responsibilities to Cher Wang, another of the company’s founders. Chou will use his now freer schedule to focus on HTC’s smartphones.HTC has suffered from bleeding market share, sliding revenue, and a recent nine-figure quarterly loss (USD). Its much-hyped One handset has failed to turn its fortunes. The company is losing money for the first time in its more than decade-long history as a public company. Read more at techcrunch.com.

  9. If you're keeping score on Edward Snowden leaks, this weekend Le Monde reported the US monitored millions of phone calls in France and Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault is shocked, shocked, to find spying going on this establishment! The French Foreign Minister has summoned the US ambassador. Also, Spiegel reports the NSA systematically spied on former Mexican President Felipe Calderon's public email account. The email domain was also used by cabinet members and included diplomatic, economic and leadership communications. Read more at bbc.co.uk.

  10. Crown Castle International just paid AT&T $4.85 billion to purchase 600 of AT&T's towers, as well as lease over 9000 towers. The money ATT receives will let the company upgrade its networks, as well aid ATT in its stock buyback program. AT&T is also rumored to be looking into expansion to Europe -- this money may help that endeavor. Read more at bbc.co.uk.

For insight, analysis, and discussion of these topics and more, check out Tech News Today for October 21, 2013.