With its lawsuit filed today to block AT&T's proposed $39 billion acquisition of T-Mobile, the U.S. Department of Justice made clear its position on the deal that would create the country's largest carrier. The agency said the transaction would "substantially lessen competition," leading to higher prices, fewer choices, lower quality service, and fewer innovative products for millions of Americans.
Will CNN's acquisition of Zite turn out to be the death knell for the personalized news reader app for the iPad? Another promising startup snuffed out by the suffocating embrace of a media giant grasping at the latest digital trend? It could well be. Consider Google just shuttered Slide, the once-hot social app developer it acquired only last year for about $200 million.
The other shoe dropped Friday when Facebook pulled the plug on its Deals offering just days after killing the mobile-only version of Places. As the demise of Places was welcome news to Foursquare, Gowalla and others so the end of Facebook Deals should provide a measure of relief to Groupon and Living Social--one less competitor to worry about.
Given the dominance BlackBerry once enjoyed in the U.S. among smartphone makers, the news that Research in Motion will allow Android apps to run on its latest phone models still comes as something of a surprise. RIM will make the as-yet-unreleased QNX operating system compatible with Android software in the new BlackBerry handsets coming next year, according to reports this week. The company may also release an upgrade of its PlayBook tablet to Android apps later this year as well.
Since Steve Jobs announced his resignation as Apple CEO on Wednesday, the encomiums have been piling up faster than new iPhone models flying off the shelves. Hey, what's one more? Among his broader achievements revolutionizing consumer technology, he created what has arguable become the world's most important mobile company.
Well, it looks as if Facebook Places hasn't turned out to be a Foursquare killer after all. A year after many predicted the company's doom with the arrival of a rival Facebook's check-in service, Facebook is the one that wound up throwing in the towel.
The rapid growth of smartphone adoption in the North American market means that very soon, the majority of mobile users will be walking around with very small, always connected laptops in their pockets and purses. Naysayers suggest this spells the end for many other forms of media. While that overstates matters, smartphone usage will invariably change the way media consumed. But suggestions from some quarters that digital place-based media is rendered immaterial by smart handsets are simply wrong.
A week after Google announced its $12.5 billion acquisition of Motorola, analysts continue to sift the implications of the mega-merger. There seems to be a consensus that even if the purchase is mainly a defensive move to strengthen Google in its patent wars with Apple, Microsoft and others, it will help revitalize Motorola and bolster the Android ecosystem overall.
It will be fascinating to watch how Google's proposed acquisition of Motorola Mobility plays out over the coming months and potentially years. It appears as though Google is looking to acquire Motorola for a number of reasons, some defensive, others offensive.
Glam Media is accelerating its expansion to handheld devices. It is rolling out mobile tools for advertisers and publishers, as well as iPhone and Android apps for flagship properties, including Glam.com, Bliss.com and DailyMakeover. GlamMobile, a full-service mobile ad management platform, is debuting.