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8:20 AM ET, January 7, 2012

Techmeme

 Top Items: 
Tom Warren / The Verge:
Microsoft will no longer provide detailed Windows Phone update information  —  Microsoft is planning to remove detailed Windows Phone update information from its site, the company announced on Friday.  Where's My Phone Update? has served as a popular destination with carrier specific update information …
Mark Gurman / 9to5Mac:
iOS 5.1 beta reveals Apple's plan to soon ship iPads, iPhones with quad-core chips  —  Speed increases are an expected part of Apple's iOS device hardware upgrades, but what Apple has up their sleeves for speed enhancements is typically up for debate.  The first-generation iPad clocked around 1GHz …
Agam Shah / Computerworld:
OLPC's XO-3 tablet to debut at CES  —  OLPC will defy skeptics by delivering the XO-3 on time and at the projected price point of under $100  —  One Laptop Per Child's XO-3 tablet is ready to ship after years in the making, and working units will be shown next week at the Consumer Electronics Show …
Nathan Ingraham / The Verge:
Safari 5 for OS X, Firefox 9 for Windows 7 crowned victors of browser benchmark battle  —  Tom's Hardware has been running its meticulously detailed Browser Grand Prix since early 2010, and today it has crowned two new winners: Firefox 9 won in the latest Windows 7 Ultimate tests, while Safari 5 was the top browser for OS X Lion.
Richard Lawler / Engadget:
Vizio's next market?  Desktop and laptop PCs (Update: pictures!)  —  Just when it seems like everyone is running away from the PC business, well known HDTV company Vizio has apparently decided that after dabbling in lightbulbs, it's a great time to get in.  Chief Technology Officer Matt McRae revealed …
RELATED:
Ian Sherr / Wall Street Journal:   Vizio Jumps Into PC Fray
Tiernan Ray / Tech Trader Daily:
Apple: Building a NAND Empire, Says Bernstein  —  Sanford Bernstein's Toni Sacconaghi today weighs in with his view on the rumored purchase recently by Apple (AAPL) of an Israeli company called Anobit and what it means in the context of Apple's being the world's largest buyer …
Carey Gillam / Reuters:
Sprint ousts 4 executives, merges consumer/business  —  (Reuters) - Sprint Nextel (S.N), the No. 3 U.S. mobile service, is merging sales and marketing for its business and consumer operations as part of a streamlining that includes the departures of four top executives, according to Sprint CEO Dan Hesse.
RELATED:
Daniel Eran Dilger / AppleInsider:
Apple to open new store-within-a-store outlets inside Target this year  —  Apple will be opening new store-within-a-store locations in select Target locations later this year, enabling the company to expand its retail reach into smaller metro areas.  —  According to a source familiar with Apple's plans …
Marco Arment / Marco.org:
The limited world of auto-renewable subscriptions  —  Apple's In-App Purchase system permits two types of subscription purchases.  The documentation suggests that Auto-Renewable subscriptions are the right choice in almost every case: … When developing Instapaper 4.0 …
Discussion: MacStories
Wall Street Journal:
Yahoo Seeking New Board Members  —  Yahoo Inc. is searching for several new board candidates to replace possible outgoing directors and has hired executive search firm Heidrick & Struggles International Inc. to assist in that effort, people familiar with the matter said.
RELATED:
Wall Street Journal:
Yahoo Explores for New Directors
John Paczkowski / AllThingsD:
Stymiest Looks to Be a “Lock” for RIM Chair  —  Research In Motion's 2011 was about as ugly as they come.  And with few indications that 2012 will be much better, the company is preparing to make some significant management changes.  —  Sources close to the company say that co-founders Mike Lazaridis …
Discussion: PhoneArena and Stowe Boyd
Steve Kovach / Business Insider:
WARNING: All That Free Spotify Music You've Been Enjoying Is Going To End Soon  —  Spotify made its big U.S. debut on July 14, 2011.  —  In one week, we'll be marking the streaming music service's six-month anniversary.  —  And in one week, all those users who signed up for the free …
Mary Jo Foley / All about Microsoft Blog:
AT&T has a stake in Microsoft's Windows 8 tablets, too  —  Summary: At a pre-CES developer conference, AT&T and Qualcomm execs are going to be talking up LTE-charged Windows 8 tablets.  —  It's already well established that AT&T seems to be Microsoft's best friend among the four U.S. carriers for Windows Phone.
John Gruber / Daring Fireball:
Spaghetti Against the Wall  —  Jun Yang, reporting for Bloomberg on Samsung's quarterly results: … So Jony Ive leads the design team at the two most-profitable phone makers.  Impressive. … In what regard can Apple be considered behind Samsung, other than unit sales …
J.B. / Fusible.com:
Warner Bros. to launch photo sharing social network called Out My Window  —  With photo sharing one of the fastest growing segments of social networking and services like Flickr and Instagram exploding in popularity, it looks like Warner Bros. is throwing its hat into the ring with a new photo sharing service called Out My Window.
Discussion: Out My Window and The Next Web
James Temple / The Technology Chronicles:
Breaking: Salesforce.com signs biggest SF lease in a decade  —  Salesforce.com has signed a 400,000-square-foot lease in San Francisco, striking what Mayor Ed Lee's office says is the largest office deal in the city in a decade.  —  The transaction at 50 Fremont St. doubles …
Discussion: @benioff and bizjournals
Josh Constine / TechCrunch:
Facebook Says Privacy Advocates Should Applaud Timeline, EPIC FTC Probe Unnecessary  —  TechCrunch has received a response from Facebook to the Electronic Privacy Information Center's letter urging the US Federal Trade Commission to investigate Timeline for privacy violations.
RELATED:
Manan Kakkar / India IT Blog:
Have RIM, Nokia & Apple provided Indian Military with backdoor access to cellular comm?  —  Summary: In exchange for mobile presence in India, RIM, Nokia and Apple have allegedly provided backdoor access for the Indian intelligence to spy on communication.  —  On January 6th reports of Symantec …
Mike Masnick / Techdirt:
Al Gore Comes Out Against SOPA/PIPA  —  Well, check this out.  Al Gore has come out strongly against SOPA and PIPA, angrily denouncing the bill and its supporters.  It's a quick 2-minute video taken at a CareerBuilder event, and it's in response to an audience question.
RELATED:
Ben Dimiero / Media Matters for America:
REPORT: News Networks Ignore Controversial SOPA Legislation
Discussion: GigaOM, ReadWriteWeb and WebProNews
 
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 More Items: 
Ben Worthen / Wall Street Journal:
Battle of the Bands: Tech Firms Compete for Rock Stars
Discussion: Betabeat
Matthew Panzarino / The Next Web:
Twitter promises better tools to 400,000 volunteer translators, launches Swedish
Discussion: Twitter Blog and WebProNews
Robin Wauters / TechCrunch:
No Cable Killer After All: KIT digital Buys Assets Of Sezmi For $27 Million
Laura Hazard Owen / paidContent:
B&N CEO: 'The Nook Will Continue To Be Barnes & Noble's E-Reader'
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Shelby.tv To Launch “Touch Play”: An AirPlay-Based Gesture Remote
Discussion: shelby.tv and Betabeat
 Earlier Items: 
Andrew Allemann / Domain Name Wire:
Amazon's Quidsi appears to be working on Casa.com
Discussion: The Next Web and TechCrunch
Frederic Lardinois / SiliconFilter:
London Gets “Europe's Largest Free WiFi Zone” Ahead of 2012 Olympics
Bob Egelko / San Francisco Chronicle:
State's top court refuses to hear Apple's tax case
Discussion: MacNN
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Siri Sibling Trapit Raises $6.2 Million Series A From Horizons
Mary Jo Foley / ZDNet:
Microsoft to beef up its entry-level Office 365 offering
Bloomberg:
China Unicom Offers Free IPhone 4S for Users Who Sign Multiyear Contracts