AP Technology NewsBrief at 4:41 p.m. EST
(Associated Press Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Google settles on patents, other antitrust claimsSAN FRANCISCO (AP) _ Google is pledging to license hundreds of key patents to mobile computing rivals under more reasonable terms and to curb the use of snippets from other websites in Internet search results in a settlement that ends a high-profile antitrust probe. In a major victory for Google, the Federal Trade Commission unanimously concluded that there isn't enough evidence to support complaints that Google unfairly favors its own services in search results.
6 takeaways from Google's antitrust settlementGoogle Inc. has settled an antitrust probe that largely leaves its search practices alone. In a major win for Google, the Federal Trade Commission unanimously concluded that there is not enough evidence to support complaints from rivals that the company shows unfair bias in its search results toward its own products. Below are six of the biggest takeaways from the decision announced Thursday:
It's 'cash only' now for tourists at the VaticanVATICAN CITY (AP) _ It's "cash only" now for tourists at the Vatican wanting to pay for museum tickets, souvenirs and other services after Italy's central bank decided to block electronic payments, including credit cards, at the tiny city-state. Deutsche Bank Italia, which for some 15 years had provided the Vatican with electronic payment services, said Thursday that the Bank of Italy had pulled its authorization after Dec. 31.
Review: Nintendo's TVii tops button-laden remotesLOS ANGELES (AP) _ Nintendo's TV-watching tool for the new Wii U game console beats my regular remote control hands down. Called TVii, the service transforms how you watch television in three key ways. It turns the touch-screen GamePad controller for the Wii U into a remote control for your TV and set-top box. It groups your favorite shows and sports teams together, whether it's on live TV or an Internet video service such as Hulu Plus. And it offers water-cooler moments you can chat about on social media.
Media stocks buoyant after 'fiscal cliff' dealLOS ANGELES (AP) _ Shares of media companies rose Wednesday as fears of an advertising slowdown based on slower economic growth abated somewhat due to a deal to avert the so-called "fiscal cliff." Movie studio owners could also benefit from a one-year extension of certain film and TV tax credits in the budget deal passed Tuesday.
NY comptroller sues Qualcomm on political spendingALBANY, N.Y. (AP) _ New York's comptroller has sued Qualcomm Inc. in an attempt to compel the wireless technology company to disclose its political spending to him and other shareholders. The lawsuit filed Wednesday in Delaware seeks a court order to inspect company records, saying prior requests for the information have been rebuffed by the San Diego-based corporation. The suit cites studies that say corporate political spending tends to hurt investor returns.
Google chairman heading to North KoreaSEOUL, South Korea (AP) _ When he lands in North Korea, even Google's executive chairman will likely have to relinquish his smartphone, leaving him disconnected from the global information network he helped build. Eric Schmidt is a staunch advocate of global Internet access and the power of Internet connectivity in lifting people out of poverty and political oppression. This month, he plans to travel to the country with the world's most restrictive Internet policies, where locals need government permission to interact with foreigners _ in person, by phone or by email _ and only a tiny portion of the elite class is connected to the Internet.
LG beats rivals in race to sell new OLED TVsSEOUL, South Korea (AP) _ LG Electronics Inc. started taking pre-orders on Wednesday for the world's first big TVs that use an advanced display technology promising startlingly clear images on wafer-thin screens. The South Korean company said the 55-inch TVs, which use a technology called "OLED" and have a price tag of 11 million won ($10,335), will be delivered to buyers in its home market next month. The new TVs will be available in North America, Europe and the rest of Asia before the end of March, LG said in a statement.
California newspaper defies trend to shrink costsSANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) _ New and expanded sections to cover business, automobiles and food. A nearly five-fold increase in community news pages and more investigative reporting. Even daily color comics. It feels like a throwback to an earlier era at the Orange County Register, where a first-time newspaper owner is defying conventional wisdom by spending heavily to expand the printed edition and playing down digital formats.
Tribune exits bankruptcy with new TV-focused boardCHICAGO (AP) _ More than four years after crushing debt and plunging advertising sales forced it to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, Tribune Co. has emerged with a new television-focused board and over $1 billion in new financing. Led by such creative and technology heavyweights as Ross Levinsohn, the former interim CEO of Yahoo Inc., and Peter Murphy, former strategic officer of The Walt Disney Co., the board's roster suggests a focus on the company's TV assets rather than newspapers, which haven't managed to turn around declines in readership and advertising. Peter Liguori, a former TV executive at Discovery Communications Inc. and News Corp.'s Fox, is expected to be named CEO in the next several weeks.
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