Top Startup and Tech News Today: 7 Things You Missed Today

Top Startup and Tech News Today: 7 Things You Missed Today

1. Apple Maps Sends Errant Drivers Onto Airport Runway


Ever since Apple kicked Google Maps as its default map application and created its own application, the world has been awry with errors stemmed from incorrect Apple mapping. Although Apple has updated their map time and time again, and less errors have been reported, Apple Maps has done it again – this time, they sent Alaskan drivers down an airport runway. “The company’s Maps app misled drivers, leading them to drive across a main runway” at Fairbanks International Airport, according to The Independent, “Fairbanks International Airport told a local newspaper that twice in the past three weeks drivers from out of town have driven through the airport after being given bad directions by their iPhones.”


Staff of the airport asked Apple to disable directions around the area entirely until the problem was solved. The problem has not been solved and Apple has not disabled directions; so, Fairbanks has resorted to barricading their entrance ramp.


2. One In Eight Single Men Would Choose A New iPhone Over A Girlfriend


In a survey conducted by discount site, one in eight single men said they would rather have a new iPhone 5S instead of a girlfriend. The survey polled 550 single British males and found that 3% said that they were willing to drop their current girlfriend for a new iPhone. “You don’t expect to see one in eight men prepared to forgo love, or in the case of three per cent, ditch their current partner to get their hands on [a new iPhone]” a SaleLand representative said.


It may not be in their best interest to say this – or let their girlfriend hear them say this. No one wants to be left behind for a mobile device – especially when it’s one that will become outdated in a year.

3. Twitter Launches Emergency Alerts


On Wednesday, Twitter launched a system for emergency alerts to help spread information when other forms of communications are down. Twitter alerts can be useful in natural disasters or other emergencies when traditional channels of communication are overloaded or unavailable. “We know from our users how important it is to be able to receive reliable information during these times” said Twitter product manager, Gaby Pena. “Twitter Alerts is a new way to get accurate and important information when you need it most… Today, we’re launching Twitter Alerts, a new feature that brings us one step closer to helping users get important and accurate information from credible organizations during emergencies, natural disasters or moments when other communications services aren’t accessible.”


Users who sign up for Twitter Alerts will receive a notification directly to their phone for tweets marked as alerts. A number of organizations have been authorized to send alerts, and Twitter will expand this to include “public institutions and NGOs around the world.” Some of the already okay-ed organizations include the American Red Cross, Federal Emergency Management Agency, World Health Organization, and government agencies.


4. Samsung: We’ll Have a Gold Phone Too


After seeing the huge uproar caused by Apple’s gold phone, Samsung has decided that it’s going to release a Gold phone too. On Wednesday, Samsung posted a photo on its Twitter feed advertising a gold-colored Galaxy S4 Smartphone, with the caption: “Introducing the new #GalaxyS4 Gold Edition – for a style that’s uniquely yours!” The advertisement even adds on “Elegance is a touch of gold.” The announcement came just two weeks after Apple announced the iPhone lineup would get a new gold color. A Samsung spokesman didn’t respond to a request for a comment about when the company begin planning and implementing the idea for a gold-colored Galaxy S4.


5. T-Mobile No Longer Stocking BlackBerry Products At Retail Stores


With BlackBerry facing uncertainty and hardship in the future, T-Mobile has decided to pull all stock BlackBerry devices from their retail stores, citing weak demand among everyday consumers. Instead, T-mobile will now ship in-store and online BlackBerry orders directly to buyers. VP David Carey of T-Mobile said that business customers represent a large percentage of the BlackBerrys that T-mobile does sell, and that there will be demo models of BlackBerry handsets in stores, it’s just not possible to make a purchase in store. Although sales for BlackBerry are not halting entirely, this is not a strong show of support. Although AT&T and Verizon are still carrying on BlackBerry within their stories, this could change, and a lack of support from the nation’s largest carriers would spell significant trouble for the already burdened phone maker.


6. Apple, China Mobile Deal May Be Coming Soon


Apple may soon announce a deal with China Mobile, the world’s largest wireless carrier. Posters leaked on Thursday show that China Mobile may be getting ready for an advertising campaign to promote the iPhone’s arrival to its customers. China Mobile, which has about 700 million subscribers, is rumored to start carrying the iPhone 5S and 5C. Investors have been waiting for  a deal with China Mobile for a while now, as it has been speculated that the company had been working on a deal for quite a while. A deal with China Mobile could give the company’s iPhone business a large boost in numbers.


7. Fairfax Says It Won’t Abandon BlackBerry Bid

Prem Wasta, the head of Fairfax Financial Holings LTD said that he had every intention of completing the acquisition of BlackBerry. This is in response to the many doubts people have been having about the $4.7 billion deal for the smartphone maker. BlackBerry announced earlier this week that Fairfax signed a letter of intent that contemplating buying Blackberry for $9/share. Fairfax, which is also coincidentally, BlackBerry’s largest shareholder, is trying to attract other investors to get it on the action. There is no breakup fee should Prem Wasta of Fairfax decide to walk away, but Wasta told the Associated Press that he was not in the business of making an offer and then walking away.


We thought long and hard before we offered $9 dollars a share and we’re not in the business of offering a number and at the last minute changing the figure. Over 28 years our reputation is stellar on that front. We just don’t do that.” Said Wasta. Wasta did note that the deal was subject to six weeks of due diligence, but emphasized that he had no plans of abandoning BlackBerry. If the deal goes through, BlackBerry will go private and no longer be publicly traded.

Jessie Yen


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