#thecircuit

October 26, 2012

Pandora: Pandora took a beating in the last minutes of trading Thursday, after Bloomberg resurfaced rumors that Apple would be entering the streaming music space early next year.

Trading in Pandora shares was halted after it fell over 11 percent when the reports began circulating. It recovered slightly to close at $8.20 on Thursday, but continued to fall in Friday trading.

The Internet radio company has been a frequent subject of conversation on Capital Hill lately, as it lobbies for a bill that would charge all radio companies — on and offline — the same royalty rates for songs. On Thursday, Pandora and others launched the Internet Radio Fairness Coalition, to raise awareness about their position.

Tech and elections: Around 10 percent of campaign donors are sending their money in via text message, The Washington Post reported. A recent study form the Pew Research Center’s Internet and American Life Project found that Democrats were more likely to contribute to presidential campaigns online or through cellphones, while Republicans tended more toward donating by mail, phone or in person.

Technology has played a big part in this year’s elections, whether it’s from people tuning in to political events on services such as Xbox Live, raising awareness and funds through social networks such as Facebook, or getting information from places such as YouTube. Microsoft’s Bing division announced Friday that it’s launching a new elections site, with content and analysis from news organizations.

Facebook IPO fine: The Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth has fined Citigroup $2 million, charging that an analyst at the firm gave confidential information to the media ahead of Facebook’s initial public offering. Citigroup has not admitted or denied wrongdoing, the Associated Press reported, but has agreed to the fine and said it will review its policies regarding analyst communications.

According to the report, the state regulator believes a junior analyst at the firm shared information with TechCrunch about Citigroup’s guidance on Facebook. That analyst was fired in September.

FTC finalizes settlement with peer-to-peer firms: The Federal Trade Commission announced it had finalized a settlement with two companies charged with illegally sharing the personal information of thousands of customers via peer-to-peer file-sharing software.

The settlements, approved unanimously, require the companies to establish and maintain information security programs.

Apple, Amazon report earnings: Apple and Amazon both missed analyst expectations Thursday as they prepare for a big retail quarter, The Washington Post reported. Amazon posted its first operating loss in years, citing its investment in the Washington-based daily deals company LivingSocial and high operating costs. Apple, meanwhile, exceeded expectations for iPhone sales, but missed even lowered estimates for the iPad as consumer expectation for new devices dampened sales.

Microsoft, Google, Barnes & Noble, Best Buy and even Toys R Us have their sights on the tablet market headed into December, meaning consumers will have plenty of options to consider.

Microsoft launches Windows 8: Microsoft has begun selling its new operating system, Windows 8, as the company mounts a reboot of its most iconic product.

In a launch event Thursday, the company said it had “shunned the incremental” as it designed the system, remaking it to be more tablet-friendly.

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.
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