The technology business week: RIM rebrands as BlackBerry, Amartus raises €1.2m investment


4 Feb 2013

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A digest of the top business technology news stories from the past week.

RIM is no more, it is now simply BlackBerry

Research In Motion (RIM) no longer exists. The company has rebranded itself as simply BlackBerry with a new trading name, BBRY.

The company’s CEO Thorsten Heins announced the rebrand on 30 January in New York, as he took the wraps off BlackBerry 10, the company’s new operating system.

Heins said the new OS marks a change in the smartphone dynamic and that BlackBerry plans to be a leader in the internet of things.

He also introduced two new devices, the Z10, a touchscreen device, and the Q10, a device with the familiar BlackBerry keyboard.

Dublin telecoms software firm Amartus raises €1.2m investment

Amartus, a Dublin-based developer of next-generation service delivery solutions for the telecommunications industry, has raised €1.2m as part of a syndicated investment to expand its technology into new markets.

Kernel Capital, through the Bank of Ireland Seed and Early Stage Equity Fund, led the €1.2m investment, with the remainder of the funds being provided by angel investors from a technology investment syndicate, Enterprise Ireland and company promoters.

Amartus will use the funds to market, sell and expand the capabilities of its Chameleon OS service delivery software solutions.

According to the company, the Chameleon OS management platform allows service providers to rapidly deploy and operate equipment vendor network solutions.

Facebook reports Q4 revenues of US$1.58bn, profits fall to US$64m

Social network Facebook’s revenues came in at US$1.58bn for the fourth quarter, up 40pc year-on-year, bringing full-year revenues for 2012 to just over US$5bn. However, profits of US$64m for the fourth quarter were down substantially from US$302m this time last year.

Facebook generated about 23pc of its Q4 advertising revenue from mobile, that’s up from 14pc in the third quarter.

Overall revenue from advertising was US$1.3bn, up 41pc on last year. Advertising represents 84pc of Facebook’s total revenue.

Other fees, such as payments, generated via games and other online transactions, amounted to US$256m for the quarter.

Monthly active users of the social network rose to 680m, up 57pc year-on-year.

At the end of 2012, Facebook had cash and other assets of US$9.6bn.

Twitter snaps up app crash-reporting start-up Crashlytics

Twitter has acquired the Boston-based start-up Crashlytics, which has developed a reporting tool to help developers figure out what causes their apps to crash.

Twitter already uses Crashlytics in its own app, as well as Vine, Yelp, Kayak, TaskRabbit and Waze.

Via its blog, Crashlytics revealed it is merging with Twitter, although the company did not disclose the terms of the deal.

Crashlytics  co-founder Wayne Chang said "much will remain the same" for Crashlytics following the Twitter acquisition. He said the company would continue to work with its existing customers to deliver app performance insights.

Cisco to acquire security firm Cognitive Security

Computer-networking equipment maker Cisco is to acquire security company Cognitive Security to enhance its network security platform in the face of mobility and cloud computing technologies.

Headquartered in Prague, Czech Republic, Cognitive Security takes research in network security and applies artificial intelligence techniques to detect advanced cyber threats.

Under the deal, Cognitive Security’s employees will join Cisco’s Security Technology Group.

The acquisition is expected to close in the third quarter of Cisco’s fiscal year 2013, subject to customary closing conditions.

Financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

Philips to exit consumer entertainment business

Electronics giant Philips is exiting the consumer electronics business to focus on the home appliance and healthcare areas, as the company is selling its home entertainment side, including its audio and video unit, to Japan’s Funai Electric.

Under the terms of the deal, Funai is set to pay €150m plus a brand licence fee to take over the Philips product lines.

Philips said that the deal for its audio, multimedia and accessories businesses is expected to close in the second half of 2013. Meanwhile, Philips’ video business is set to transfer to Funai in 2017 as a result of existing intellectual property licensing arrangements.

BlackBerry image via Shutterstock

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