July 19, 2014, 1:40 PM

Top News

Adrianne Jeffries / The Verge:
How warped incentives for Comcast's “retention specialists” lead to a vexing cancellation call  —  Here's why your Comcast rep is yelling at you  —  Warped employee incentives and an absence of competition make bad customer service inevitable  —  In 2006, a man named Vincent …
Josh Constine / TechCrunch:
Snapchat Files Trademarks To Handle Payments  —  Snappay?  Snapchat may try to monetize by processing peer-to-peer payments, money transfers, or online payments, according to two trademarks it filed earlier this week.  Owned by Snapchat and filed on July 11th by an attorney at Cooley …
Ashlee Vance / Businessweek:
Amazon's Cloud Is One of the Fastest-Growing Software Businesses in History  —  Five billion dollars.  —  That's how much (AMZN) will rake in from its cloud computing business this year, according to a new estimate from Pacific Crest Securities.  If true, it's an incredible figure.
Tweets: @bfrist
Todd Bishop / GeekWire:
Internal memo: Microsoft to cut off all ‘external staff’ after 18 months, imposing mandatory 6-month break  —  An internal Microsoft memo, distributed earlier today, imposes new restrictions on the company's use of “external staff” — including a new limit on people who work on projects for Microsoft through vendors.
Lenovo Newsroom:
Lenovo will continue selling 8" and 10" Windows tablets in the US, new models coming this holiday  —  Clarification on Lenovo Statement on Sales of Small Screen Windows-Based Tablets  —  We will continue to bring new Windows devices to market across different screen sizes …
Chance Miller / 9to5Google:
Google and Samsung's relationship continues to worsen, this time over wearables  —  According to a new report out of The Information, the already tense relationship between Samsung and Google has begun to worsen thanks to both of their own lines of wearables.
Greg Sterling / Search Engine Land:
Yahoo Search Share Falls Below 10 Percent For “All-Time Low”  —  We're on the cusp of new comScore U.S. search market share data for June.  According to financial analyst notes, releasing the numbers early, desktop search declined for the fifth consecutive month after a period of growth in mid-2013.

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A new era of Windows 10 devices  —  Microsoft introduces new Surface, Lumia and Band devices, and shares the latest from HoloLens and Xbox.
CEO Fraud: A First Hand Encounter  —  “CEO Fraud” is a sophisticated social engineering attempt to swindle money from companies — and it's working.  The FBI reports that over 7,000 victims have lost $750 million in the last 2 years from this scam.
M&A Market Analysis: Preview For Second Half Of 2015  —  M&A activity cooled in the first half of this year after a banner year in 2014.  Is this the start of a larger downturn or just a short-term blip?
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