Carl Icahn Is Still Challenging the Dell Buyout
The activist investor Carl Icahn and Southeastern Asset Management
have joined forces to propose an alternative to Michael Dell and
private equity firm Silver Lake's plan to take
) private. Dell and Silver Lake have proposed a $24.4 billion
buyout, or $13.65 per share, to purchase the world's third largest
computer maker. Today, news surfaced that Icahn and Southeastern,
who together own about 13% of the company, have a plan wherein
shareholders get $12 for every share they own and are able to
retain their stock. The cash portion of this approach to
privatization would be $21 billion.
To help finance such a deal, Icahn told Reuters he would personally
contribute from his own wealth to come up with the $5.2 billion
bridge loan the arrangement would require. Later, he told CNBC he
had talked with several investment banks about the loan, one of
them being Jeffries.
This continues Icahn's saga to get a Dell buyout on his terms; he
had previously offered to buy 58% of the company at $15 per share.
Additionally, in April, Icahn joined forces with
The Blackstone Group LP
) to challenge Michael Dell's buyout plan. Blackstone has since
abandoned the cause.
State Department Orders Website to Take Down Blueprints for
3D Printed Gun
Yesterday, the website
, a kind of Wikipedia for weapons, was ordered by the Department of
Defense Trade Controls to take down blueprints for a gun called
"The Liberator," which is a weapon that can be fully manufactured
with a 3D printer.
is the page where the blueprints were posted, replaced now by the
logo for the US Department of State and a notice reading, "Until
further notice, the United States government claims control of the
The State Department has said that the blueprints may be in
violation of US export controls. Since the blueprints could be
downloaded by anyone, they could be printed abroad; in the eyes of
the government, this could pose a potential risk.
Before Defense Distributed removed the blueprints, over 100,000
users had downloaded them. Through file sharing networks, the file
has certainly reached many more people than that. That being said,
the vast majority of people won't have the equipment necessary to
manufacture The Liberator; Defense Distributed used an $8,000 3D
printer, which is still a rare device.
Companies with 3D printing endeavors like
), as well as their investors, ought to be paying attention.
As Defense Distributed's founder Cody Wilson tweeted yesterday,
"Some shapes are more dangerous than others."
A New Report on Android's Dominance Over Apple and
Microsoft... What's Next?
Yesterday, the the tech research firm Canalys released a Q1 2013
report on the sale of smart mobile devices during the quarter:
Global shipments grew an impressive 37.4%, and leading the pack
were devices powered by
(GOOG) Android operating system, with a 59.5% share of the market.
(AAPL) came in second place with 19.3%, and
(MSFT) was in a close third with 18.1%.
Leading sales growth in smart mobile devices were tablets, which
saw a huge 106.1% growth since Q1 2012. Despite Android's overall
market share dominance, Apple's iPad continues to lead in tablets,
with 46.4% of total market share.
Smartphones and tablets saw big growth in sales, but only 50.5
million laptops were sold, accounting for a 13.1% drop since Q1
2012. Though laptops and desktops are being superseded by
smartphones and tablets, the possibility of Google moving its
Android OS to computers could potentially be profitable for the
company. Although it was only launched in 2007, Android has handily
become the smart device leader. Are laptops next? Google's Chrome
OS already runs on the new, cheap Chromebooks, made predominantly
(OTCMKTS:SSNLF), and many have speculated already about the
possible combination of Chrome and Android
YouTube's Paid Subscription Pilot Program Begins
Yesterday, YouTube launched a pilot program that lets video makers
on the site charge users to subscribe to their their channels; they
can charge as low as $0.99 per month. All of the new paid channels,
including offerings from HDNet, UFC, and the PGA Digital Golf
Academy, offer a 14-day free trial and discounts for users who
subscribe for at least one year. SmartTV.com plans to offer a
network of seven channels from its Entertainment Studios Networks
for $10 per month, which is a full $2 more per month than
(NFLX). In total, the pilot program includes 53 paid channels.
This program is the newest addition to YouTube's growing revenue
stream, which includes the sales of movies, episodes of TV shows,
and pay-per-view events. If the program catches on with users,
YouTube could help Google be competitive with Apple should the much
rumored Apple TV ever materialize.
FCC Has Plans to Make In-Flight Wi-Fi Faster
Seeking to lower the cost and quicken the speed of Internet service
on commercial planes, the FCC yesterday proposed the auction of
rights to use newly available wireless spectrum. This would be the
first step in the agency's plans to guarantee that in-flight
Internet service is as fast as Internet speeds on the ground.
Julius Genachowski, the chairman of the FCC, said of the proposal,
"This will enable business and leisure travelers aboard aircraft in
the United States to be more productive and have more choices in
entertainment, communications and social media, and it could lower
It could probably also increase sales, and benefit broadband
providers with airline relationships.
As of now, about 25% of domestic flights offer Wi-Fi, according to
Routehappy.com, and it is generally limited to 3 megabits per
second per plane, which is half the speed of the average household
The new proposed system would work with a 500-megahertz bandwidth,
which is far wider than the current 4-megahertz bandwidth for
transmitting data from ground to land. That system could transmit
300 gigabits per second to all aircraft in the sky.
For more on the question of freeing up more wireless spectrum,
It's Not Super WiFi, but It's Still Important:
The Debate Over 'Unlicensed Spectrum'
Google Leads Recycling of TV White Space for
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