BlackBerry Considering a Sale, Stock Opens High
The troubled smartphone company from Waterloo, Canada, has formed a
special committee that will explore strategic alternatives for the
company after a less-than-successful attempt at a reboot. Those
alternatives include joint ventures, partnerships, and perhaps even
a sale of the the company, though no other companies were named in
) press release that announced the special committee.
The company launched its much-touted new operating system,
BlackBerry 10, earlier this year, as well as new phones, the Z10
and the Q10. These new releases have done little to reverse
BlackBerry's loss of market share: According
to the IDC
, the company's global market share of the mobile OS space is 2.9%,
) Android holding 79.3%,
) iOS 13.2%, and
) Windows Phone sneaking past BlackBerry sales with 3.7%.
In response to the special committee news, shares of BlackBerry
have jumped, opening 10.18% higher than they did on Friday.
Currently, the stock is trading at around $10.17, up 4.19%. This
continues an upward trend that began last Monday; since then, the
price of the stock has increased by 14.01%. Since this time last
year the price has increased by 22.68%, though the stock is down
In other BlackBerry news,
of a new smartphone from the company, supposedly called the Z30,
has emerged on the Internet. The phone bears a resemblance to both
(TPE:2498) One and the
(OTCMKTS:SSNLF) Galaxy S4.
The Newest iPhone May Be Announced on September 10
The newest Apple rumor is that the company's next-generation iPhone
will be announced at a special event
on September 10
. Moreover, it is speculated that the new device, which has not yet
been named, could be released as early as September 20 (the last
iteration, the iPhone 5, was released on September 21, 2012).
The new iPhone has been referred to as the 5c, the 5S, and the 6.
Rumors say it may feature fingerprint-identification technology
that would allow users to unlock their phones without the typical
Also rumored is that the phone will be made out of sapphire rather
than plastic, or that at least the home button will be. Analyst
Ming-Chi Kuo of analysis firm KGI posits that the material will be
used, in addition to a new convex design, to improve the home
button, which has always been concave. If the home button is
convex, it will be to accommodate the fingerprint authentication
technology. Being convex, however, the button will be more easily
scratched or damaged, and that's where the new material comes in.
Elon Musk Will Outline His "Hyperloop" Idea Today
On July 15, Elon Musk, the billionaire entrepreneur and inventor
(TSLA), and SpaceX,
, "Will publish Hyperloop alpha design by Aug 12. Critical feedback
for improvements would be much appreciated."
Well, today is the day, and at 5 p.m. ET / 2 p.m. PT, Musk will
reveal his alpha design, and you can follow it on
this live blog of the event
. The Internet has been abuzz since Musk first announced the idea
for a tube that would work like a railgun, firing a passenger car
at high speed through a tube. He has said the system could move
people from Los Angeles to San Francisco in 30 minutes.
Musk has said that he is too busy to actively pursue the
development of a "Hyperloop" transportation system, but that he
wants to see the project undertaken. He has said the plans to be
released today will be open source so that anyone and everyone can
use and improve them.
HTC's New Robert Downey Jr.-Fronted Ad Campaign
Speaking of Elon Musk, Robert Downey Jr. is in tech news today
(Musk was one of the inspirations for Downey Jr.'s portrayal of
billionaire entrepreneur / superhero Tony Stark in the
films). Today, HTC announced its new ad campaign, titled "Change,"
with the famous actor as the centerpiece of the campaign. Downey
Jr. has signed a two-year contract as the company's "Instigator of
Change." Commercials will premiere on YouTube first, starting on
August 15. Television and pre-movie ads will follow.
Initially, the ads will not focus on the successful HTC One
smartphone or any other hardware or software from the company.
Instead, Downey Jr. will, with his comic deadpan delivery, explore
different options for what the acronym HTC stands for ("hold this
cat," "hipster troll carwash," and etc.).
The struggling company retired its "Quietly Brilliant" tagline in
March, and has taken the interval between now and then to cultivate
a massive social media campaign around "Change" and its new front
man. Here is a
of what is to come from HTC's new campaign.
Disclosure: Minyanville Studios, a division of Minyanville
Media, has a business relationship with BlackBerry.
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