Also: Softbank to buy Sprint Nextel for about $20 billion; 13-inch MacBook Pro may be unveiled later this month.
If Amazon buys out Texas Instruments' mobile chip business, it would mark a dramatic shift for the e-retail giant. Amazon uses Texas Instruments' processors in its mobile devices, including the latest Kindle Fire HD. Barnes & Noble, one of its chief competitors, does, as well. It's not clear whether Amazon would continue to sell chips to competitors or use its own technology for itself.
Softbank to buy Sprint Nextel for about $20 billion [THE WALL STREET JOURNAL]
In a statement, Softbank said it would acquire a majority stake in the U.S. carrier by buying $8 billion of shares directly from Sprint and then buying another $12.1 billion of shares in the market.
The deal would transform Softbank, a relative newcomer in the telecommunications industry, into one of the world's largest telecom groups with about 90 million subscribers when combined with Sprint. It expects to complete the deal by mid-2013.
Alongside the smaller iPad, Apple will debut a 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display, according to a consistently reliable source at a high-profile U.S. retailer.
This new 13-inch MacBook Pro with a Retina Display is said to pick up the thinner and lighter enclosure of the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display that was released in June.
Microsoft to compete against Spotify with Xbox Music [TECHCRUNCH]
Xbox Music seeks to combine all the best aspects of the existing music services, by enabling free and paid models for streaming a vast library of content, as well as the ability to purchase and download music to your devices. Microsoft has licensed music from all the major labels, as well as a ton of independents, giving the Xbox Music services more than 30 million songs in its catalog.
Disruptions: Seeking privacy in a networked age [THE NEW YORK TIMES]
A feature that allowed users to opt out of being mentioned could actually benefit companies like Facebook and Twitter. It would entice people who are afraid of being in the cast of "Nothing's Private Anymore" to sign up, knowing that they can hide at any given time.
Mr. Malik said he had simply resigned himself to the reality that most of the things he does in public, no matter how banal, will end up on the Internet. "But an offline switch would be a welcome addition for it would give me an illusion of privateness (if not privacy)," he wrote in an e-mail.
In the filing, Zynga claims that Patmore amassed 760 documents from his work computer, and backed them up online before his last day. Further, Zynga claims in the complaint that the data is important enough that it could be used to "improve a competitor's internal understanding and know-how of core game mechanics and monetization techniques, its execution and ultimately its market standing to compete more effectively with Zynga."
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But Apple's slick new laptop may not be for everybody out there. Read this review to find out if it's the right Mac for you.
FORTUNE -- Apple's new 15-inch notebook may look thinner and lighter than older MacBook Pro models, but there's no mistaking this for a MacBook Air. For $2,199, users get a more powerful 2.3 GHz quad-core Intel i7 processor, 8-gigabytes of RAM, a 256 GB solid state MOREJP Mangalindan, Writer - Jun 18, 2012 3:56 PM ET
We got our hands on Apple's much-coveted new laptop. Here's a first read.
FORTUNE -- Don't call it a MacBook Air. Apple's newest 15-inch uber-notebook may be thinner and lighter than older MacBook Pro models, but its redesigned aluminum body houses a potent array of features. For $2,199, users get a 2.3 GHz quad-core Intel i7 processor, 8-gigabytes of RAM, a 256 GB solid state drive, two USB 3.0 ports, and MOREJP Mangalindan, Writer - Jun 13, 2012 12:55 PM ET
For once, an educational success story that's not really about the computers
Kudos to the New York Times' Alan Schwarz for seeing beyond the Apple (AAPL) angle -- those 4,400 MacBooks, the school district's cutesy slogan (iBelieve, iCan, iWill), the fact that the DOE's director of educational technology worked for Apple for eight years -- in his front page story Monday praising the Mooresville (N.C.) Graded School District as a "shining MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Feb 13, 2012 5:33 AM ET
Apple's U.S. MacBook sales came in softer than expected in December, according to NPD
In a note to clients issued Tuesday, Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster offered his analysis of the NPD Group's final PC retail sales data for 2011.
The news, as he sees is, is good and bad.
Domestic Mac unit sales were up 12% for the quarter, according to NPD, which isn't bad given that sales of Microsoft (MSFT) Windows PCs MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Jan 17, 2012 8:08 AM ET
A 60-minute version of Mike Daisey's one-man show is now available online
UPDATE: This American Life retracted the episode described below. See here.
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If you couldn't make it to the Berkeley Rep or Washington's Wooly Mammoth or New York's Public Theater to catch monologist Mike Daisey's brilliant, funny, disturbing report on working conditions in the Shenzhen factories where most of Apple's (AAPL) products are assembled, Ira Glass has done you MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Jan 10, 2012 10:46 AM ET
Biggest savings on Macs. Best deals on accessories. But beware the malware.
Apple (AAPL) posted its Black Friday sale prices at 12:01 a.m. Pacific Time Friday and they were exactly as rumored.
The savings on Apple-branded products range from a high of 15.94% on $69 accessories like the Magic Trackpad to 7.02% -- less than the sales tax in 25 states -- on the $299 Time Capsule 2TB.
A guide to the best deals:
WARNING: MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Nov 25, 2011 6:30 AM ET
The voice of Windows in the enterprise discovers that Mac users are more productive
That 41% of enterprises won't let Apple (AAPL) PCs anywhere near their computing services -- not even e-mail or the Internet -- should come as no surprise to the IT professionals who subscribe to Forrester Research's market research reports. After all, it reflects the advice that Forrester has been giving information technology departments for decades. Take, for MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Oct 27, 2011 8:00 AM ET
Greeted with long lines and stock outs when it arrived in Hong Kong this week
In a note to clients Friday, Ticonderoga's Brian White reported that the new MacBook Air -- which was launched in the U.S. more than four weeks ago -- was greeted with long lines and stock outs when it finally arrived in Hong Kong this week.
Not only did stores run out of certain MacBook Air models, but MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Aug 26, 2011 7:40 AM ET
When Apple released the latest version of its featherweight notebook last week, it killed the MacBook line and positioned the 11-inch Air as the "ultimate everyday notebook." But can it really be your one-and-only?
Billed as the "world's thinnest laptop" when it launched three years ago, Apple's (AAPL) MacBook Air always struck me as a notebook that was easy on the eyes but lacked muscle.
I enjoyed the svelte look and featherweight MOREJP Mangalindan, Writer - Jul 27, 2011 12:24 PM ET
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