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2:55 PM ET, December 29, 2011

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Kellex / Droid Life:
Verizon to Charge Customers $2 Fee When Paying Bills Online or Over the Phone Starting January 15  —  Time to set up “auto pay” through your Verizon Wireless account.  According to our sources, Big Red will start charging you a $2 fee both over the phone and online for your monthly bill transaction unless …
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Kevin Fitchard / GigaOM:
Verizon's New Year's vow: Cut back on credit cards  —  Like every operator looking to cut billing costs and buff its green credential, Verizon Wireless has spent much of the last few years encouraging its customers to move to paperless billing.  But now with millions of customers checking …
Discussion: CNET and LAPTOP Magazine
DigiTimes:
Apple to unveil two versions of next-generation iPad in January, sources claim  —  Apple is set to unveil its next-generation iPad - which will come in two versions - at the iWorld scheduled for January 26, 2012, according to sources at its supply chain partners.
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Darrell Etherington / GigaOM:
Three models of iPad in January? Not very likely
Leena Rao / TechCrunch:
Amazon: We Sold Over 4 Million Kindle Devices This Month; Gifting Of E-Books Up 175 Percent  —  Amazon has just released new data regarding its Kindle sales for the holiday season.  According to the e-commerce giant, Amazon customers purchased millions of Kindle Fires and millions of Kindle e-readers.
Paul Thurrott / SuperSite for Windows:
Exclusive: Microsoft'S LTE Plans For Windows Phone  —  Since other sites are starting to leak glimpses of what Microsoft is doing with Windows Phone and LTE in 2012, I've decided to simply reveal what's happening.  And as you might expect, Microsoft and its Windows Phone partners do indeed intend …
Jack Purcher / Patently Apple:
Apple Envisions Face & Presence Detection Security for iOS Devices  —  On December 29, 2011, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that reveals one of the next chapters for device security.  In 2009, Apple's presence detection patent first came to light in relation to future MacBooks.
Christina Bonnington / Gadget Lab:
Why Windows 8 Tablets Will Surprise Everyone  —  At Microsoft's Build conference, Michael Angiulo, corporate vice president of Windows Planning, Hardware and PC Ecosystem, displays a prototype Windows 8 tablet.  Photo: Microsoft  —  Windows-based tablets haven't been treated kindly by the test of time.
Dave Copeland / ReadWriteWeb:
Twitter Ignored Request To Keep Subpoena Under Wraps [UPDATED]  —  Twitter appears to have forwarded a subpoena requesting user information to at least one of the owners of the accounts in question, despite a request from the Suffolk Massachusetts District Attorney's office that the request not be disclosed …
Tom Anderson / Google+:
Dear +MG Siegler, Are you seriously upset about your photo removal?  (MG's complaint here: http://bit.ly/sp8mLo) I thought I'd offer an alternate opinion here in the public and see what happens.  (An opinion that PR from Google+ will probably not take the time to express, because they're busy and have better things to do.
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Ina Fried / AllThingsD:
Apple's iPad Looms Large as Small Businesses Start Making Tablet Plans  —  Nearly three-quarters of small businesses are planning on buying a tablet over the next year, with the iPad topping the consideration list, according to a new survey from NPD.  —  Even the smallest of businesses …
Arik Hesseldahl / AllThingsD:
Hurd Loses Appeal to Keep Accuser's Letter Confidential  —  Former Hewlett-Packard CEO and current Oracle president Mark Hurd has lost an appeal before a court in Delaware in which he sought to keep confidential a letter that contained allegations of sexual harassment.
Kunal / Sammy Hub:
Samsung ships 1 million Galaxy Note units globally; coming soon to US  —  The phone / tablet hybrid devices sales are pretty good, going by the numbers released by Samsung today.  The Korean giant has shipped over a million units since its launch in late October.
Chris Ziegler / The Verge:
Verizon says LTE outage is resolved, 3G never affected  —  We've received a brief statement from Verizon this morning regarding the LTE outage it suffered yesterday afternoon: … As the company notes, 3G data service was totally unaffected — the problem is that LTE-enabled phones …
Sebastian Haley / VentureBeat:
Ocean Marketing fiasco addressed in official press release  —  Ocean Marketing, a one-man PR firm led by Paul Christoforo, underwent instantaneous destruction this week, as we reported yesterday.  —  It's hard to judge precisely when Christoforo's career ended: Was it after the heinously rude …
Jane Wakefield / BBC:
British teenage designer of Summly app hits jackpot  —  Nick D'Aloisio talks to Jane Wakefield about the inspiration for his app  —  Most teenagers will find any reason under the sun not to do their homework.  —  But 16-year-old South Londoner Nick D'Aloisio's excuse is better than most …
Jennifer Van Grove / VentureBeat:
Google and Facebook reign as the most-visited sites of 2011  —  Facebook may be growing in popularity, but Google is still the web brand to beat.  —  In 2011, an average 153.4 million people in the U.S. visited Google sites each month, making the search giant the most-visited U.S. web brand of the year, according to Nielsen.
Azrienoch / xda-developers:
HTC Unlocks Its Verizon and AT&T Bootloaders  —  Today, Peter Chou makes good on his word to no longer lock the bootloaders on HTC Android phones.  Just in time for those New Year's Resolutions.  —  XDA Junior Member nightwings noticed, when trying out HTCDev's bootloader unlocking tool on his HTC Rezound …
Evelyn M. Rusli / DealBook:
Ahead of I.P.O., S.E.C. Pressed Groupon on Accounting  —  Ahead of Groupon's highly anticipated initial public offering in November, the Securities and Exchange Commission repeatedly pressed the daily deals giant to defend its business model and its accounting measures, according to comment letters recently disclosed.
Discussion: AllThingsD, Pulse2 and @karaswisher
Amir Efrati / Wall Street Journal:
Bid for Same-Day Delivery Taps the Smartphone Boom  —  Numerous start-ups have tried to go after the Holy Grail of e-commerce—delivering things to people's homes and offices on the same day they ordered them—and have failed.  —  Postmates Inc., a San Francisco Internet start-up that launched …
Deborah Gage / Wall Street Journal:
Start-Ups Need Staff To Get Investors' Cash  —  Many Silicon Valley start-ups have had a tough time finding qualified computer engineers amid a growing talent war.  Investors are adding to the pressure.  —  Venture capitalists and Bay Area entrepreneurs say local start-ups face extra hurdles …
Matt Brian / The Next Web:
Report: 300 million users now access Facebook via its mobile apps  —  Christmas gadget gifting appears to have boosted Facebook app use, with it being reported in the last couple of days the world's largest social network saw monthly active users of its mobile apps pass 300 million users.
 
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 More Items: 
Florian Mueller / FOSS Patents:
Not even one of Oracle's six patents-in-suit has been definitively invalidated — but four of them are under pressure
Mike Masnick / Techdirt:
Indian ISP Blocks A Bunch Of Websites To Try To Prevent File Sharing Of A Single Movie
Emil Protalinski / Friending Facebook Blog:
Facebook tries to appease frustrated developers
Discussion: Lincoln's blog and WebProNews
Sakthi Prasad / Reuters:
Stratfor delays website launch after hack attack
Discussion: VentureBeat, Pastebin and CNET
Mike Masnick / Techdirt:
Copyright Office Seeks To Make It More Difficult To Retain DMCA Safe Harbors
Serkan Toto / TechCrunch:
Japan Gets Wi-Fi Dispensing Vending Machines
T.C. Sottek / The Verge:
To build a holodeck: an exclusive look at Microsoft's Edison lab
Discussion: TechNet Blogs and Neowin.net
Stacey Higginbotham / GigaOM:
Getting to a gigabit. How Sonic.net will take on caps, residents and AT&T in San Francisco
Discussion: Aswath Weblog
 Earlier Items: 
Horace Dediu / asymco:
Discerning Apple's international product positioning through the big Mac index
Greg Kumparak / TechCrunch:
Khan Academy Jumps To 4M Uniques Per Month (Up 4X From Last Year)
Darrell Etherington / GigaOM:
Apple's App Store tops 5M free downloads per day in November
Lee Spears / Bloomberg:
2012 To Be Biggest Internet IPO Year Since '99
 

 
From Mediagazer:

Jeremy Barr / Capital New York:
Marty Baron discusses hiring digital journalists, future of WaPo's blogs, and new ownership

Johana Bhuiyan / Capital New York:
Sources at Vocative say their software, touted to mine the deep web for generating news stories, doesn't work as promised

Michael Sebastian / AdAge:
Sorting the Serious From the Silly, BuzzFeed Develops a Mobile App for Real News

 
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