Top News for January 30, 2014

Lenovo

Here are today's top stories from Tech News Today for January 30, 2014:

  1. Google has agreed to sell its Motorola Mobility division to Lenovo. The 2.91 billion dollar sale comes just two years after Google acquired Motorola for 12.5 billion dollars. Google will keep about 15 thousand of Motorola’s patents and Lenovo will take the remaining 2 thousand. Read more at recode.net.

  2. On the surface, Google’s acquisition and sale of Motorola sounds bad -- Buying it for 12.5 billion dollars and then selling it for 2.91 billion? -But what Google sold to Lenovo is a subset of what they purchased. For starters, Google sold Motorola Home the - TV set-top box business - for $2.6 billion to a company called Arris a little over a year ago. Google also kept around 15 thousand patents -- remember, the acquisition was originally viewed as mostly about patents. And finally, Google is keeping Motorola’s advanced research and development group headed by former DARPA head Regina Dugan, which is working on the project Ara (a modular smartphone handset) electronic tattoos and microchip pills, and other projects. Read more at recode.net.

  3. While the focus has been on how the dead affects Google and Motorola, it’s worth taking a look at what it means for Lenovo. Based in Beijing, Lenovo is the world’s biggest PC maker by unit sales. And it’s an empire built on acquisitions. Lenovo IBM's personal computer business and its popular ThinkPad line in 2005 and agreed to acquire IBM’s Intel-based server business in 2014. The company is planning aggressive growth in global smartphone sales. The company is already the #4 or #5 handset maker in the world, thanks mostly to low-end smartphones sold in China. The Motorola buy makes Lenovo #3 after Samsung and Apple. Read more at cnet.com.

  4. The rumors said they'd get it in by the end of the month, and Facebook delivered - the company announced its rumored Paper iOS app this morning. The app is designed to look like a newspaper, but stories are selected both by social algorithms and also human editors, with real heartbeats! Read more at gigaom.com.

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  6. A new, $1.99 app arrives in the Apple app store today called CARROT Fit. The app uses hilarious and rude insults to shame you into getting in shape. It uses the robot speech-to-text engine built into iOS. You enter your weight. And if you don’t, it will enter it for you, and you won’t like what it enters. Then, you choose an avatar. If your avatar doesn’t match the weight you entered, the app mocks you until you pick a more accurate one. The app lets you earn carrots by sticking with your fitness goals, and insulting and harassing you to slimness. Read more at 9to5mac.com.

" For insight, analysis, and discussion of these topics and more, check out Tech News Today for January 30, 2014.