AP Technology NewsBrief at 6:53 p.m. EST
(Associated Press Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Pandora CEO Kennedy to step downOAKLAND, Calif. (AP) _ Shares of Internet radio pioneer Pandora Media Inc. shot up on Thursday after the company said CEO Joseph Kennedy is stepping down and it reported a narrower loss and higher revenue in the fourth quarter than analysts expected. Revenue from mobile ads also grew faster than listening on mobile devices, easing a key investor concern about the company's ability to make a profit from the booming segment.
Facebook brings a more personal touch to News FeedMENLO PARK, Calif. (AP) _ Facebook has redesigned the main attraction of its social network to address complaints that its website has turned into a jumble of monotonous musings and random photos. In an attempt to breathe new life into Facebook's News Feed, the company will introduce new controls that allow people to sort streams of photos and other material into organized sections.
Facebook exec's new book urges women to 'lean in'NEW YORK (AP) _ For a book that has yet to be released, Sheryl Sandberg's "Lean In" _ part feminist manifesto, part how-to career guide _ has got a lot of people talking. In the weeks leading up to the book's release on Monday, pundits and press hounds have been debating its merits. New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd called Sandberg a "PowerPoint Pied Piper in Prada ankle boots," and countless bloggers have suggested that Facebook's chief operating officer is the wrong person to lead a women's movement.
Dell buyout in turmoil as Icahn enters the frayA proposed buyout of computer maker Dell Inc. appeared less likely Thursday after activist investor Carl Icahn said Dell should remain a public company and reward shareholders with a big, one-time payout. The proposal further muddies a deal that already faced uncertain odds. Some of the company's biggest shareholders already had objected to the proposed buyout by founder and CEO Michael Dell. They say Dell's $24.4 billion offer undervalues the company.
Review: Despite flaws, voice search has potentialDOVER, Ohio (AP) _ I never thought I'd be telling my phone what to do. But I often find myself talking to various digital assistants _ Siri on the iPhone and Google Now on Android devices _ to request driving directions, restaurant recommendations and answers to all sorts of nagging questions. Until recently, I harbored a small prejudice against this kind of voice technology. I've long been annoyed by automated phone systems that make you speak instructions rather than enter them with a touch-tone phone. These technologies tend to hear me incorrectly and slow me down as I try to make a train reservation or check my credit card account. I also feel odd talking to my phone, rather than with a real human.
Opposition uses tablet to speak out in parliamentWARSAW, Poland (AP) _ In Poland, speaking out in parliament is a privilege mostly reserved for lawmakers, but the opposition has skirted that regulation with the help of a hand-held tablet computer. Nationalist opposition party leader and lawmaker Jaroslaw Kaczynski has introduced a non-confidence motion against the Cabinet of Prime Minister Donald Tusk, and a vote is expected Friday.
Cisco to set up tech training centers in MyanmarYANGON, Myanmar (AP) _ Cisco Systems plans to establish two network training centers in Myanmar, as global technology companies begin to move into one of the least-connected places on Earth. The announcement Thursday came on the heels of a USAID-sponsored delegation of executives from Cisco, Google, HP, Intel and Microsoft to the fast-opening country.
Facebook adds University of Calif chief to boardMENLO PARK, Calif. (AP) _ Facebook says the chancellor of the University of California at San Francisco, Susan Desmond-Hellmann, will join its board of directors. She will be the second woman elected to the Menlo Park, Calif., company's board, joining Facebook's No. 2 executive, Sheryl Sandberg. The company named Sandberg to the body last June after criticism that its directors were all men.
EU fines Microsoft $733M for breaking browser pactAMSTERDAM (AP) _ The European Union has fined Microsoft (EURO)561 million ($733 million) for breaking a pledge to offer personal computer users a choice of Internet browsers when they install the company's flagship Windows operating system. The penalty imposed by the EU's executive arm, the Commission, is a first for Brussels: no company has ever failed to keep its end of a bargain with EU authorities before.
Key dates in EU antitrust action against MicrosoftAMSTERDAM (AP) _ The European Union has fined Microsoft Corp. (EURO)561 million ($733 million) for failing to live up to the terms of a settlement that was to end the company's 15-year run-in with the continent's competition regulators. Here's a look at how a 1998 complaint by Sun Microsystems led to Microsoft receiving fines totaling (EURO)2.2 billion _ $2.9 billion at today's exchange rates.
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