Tech business week: Sweet taste of success for Apple

14 Sep 2015

In tech business news this week, Apple launches new products and operating system, while Ellen Pao announces she is to drop her lawsuit against Kleiner Perkins.

Apple already savours a decisive victory in the smartphone wars

Apple’s cohesion in mobile, personal computers and digital content is in stark contrast to the disarray that its many competitors in the Android world like Samsung now find themselves. And, as witnessed in San Francisco last week, Apple CEO Tim Cook is prepared to move fast and consolidate this victory

The financial travails of players like HTC, LG and Samsung, and not to mention Microsoft, which had to write down billions after acquiring Nokia, show that none of them are winning in the smartphone wars. Not even close.

This phase of the smartphone revolutionary wars is over and the others players – who made no secret of smelling blood when it came to ousting Apple in the smartphone space – are now in headlong retreat. Apple is the only player to have achieved any kind of decisive victory.

Ellen Pao drops lawsuit against Kleiner Perkins

After a lengthy legal battle that brought sexism within the tech industry to the forefront, Ellen Pao has decided to throw in the towel and call an end to the lawsuit against her former employers Kleiner Perkins.

Ellen Pao first filed the lawsuit back in 2012 after being let go from the venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins, which, she claimed, was due to her raising a complaint that she was denied promotions due to her gender, and faced reprisals for suggesting so.

After nearly three years of costly court appearances, the court ruled earlier this year against her case, but Pao seemed likely to appeal the decision, despite Klenier Perkins promising to drop all legal costs if she did not appeal.

Now, according to Re/code, she has decided to drop the lawsuit.

5G connections to hit 240m by 2025, will power IoT

If a new report from Juniper Research is accurate, the amount of devices connected online with 5G speeds will hit 240m by 2025, but only 3pc of the world will actually have access to it.

While 4G speeds are still only now beginning to become standard on some mobile phone networks, network providers and researchers are already working on the next step in evolution, 5G.

In many ways, the 1Gbps speeds that would be achievable on a 5G connection are not only considered an eventual goal in terms of progressing as a technology, but rather one that will be necessary to facilitate the changing environment brought on by the internet of things (IoT).

Paddy Power and Betfair agree merger terms

The boards of Paddy Power and Betfair have agreed terms of the all-share merger of the two companies. The new entity will be known as Paddy Power Betfair Plc and will be headquartered in Dublin.

In recent weeks, betting and gaming rivals Paddy Power and Betfair agreed to a potential merger, which will create one of the world’s largest betting and gaming platforms.

The merger will result in Paddy Power shareholders owning 52pc of the company and Betfair shareholders will own 48pc of the company.

Ashley Madison passwords not actually that hard to crack

Despite numerous security experts offering tempered praise of how Ashley Madison secured its users’ passwords, it turns out they’re pretty easy to crack.

A group called CynoSure Prime claims to have found a quick way of revealing passwords from Ashley Madison accounts, despite previous estimates of it taking decades to do something similar.

Rather than tackling the bcrypt configuration used by the affair website, which was to the power of 12 and therefore a fruitless, near never-ending process, CynoSure Prime looked at the second leak of git dumps for alternative methods.

“We identified two functions of interest and upon closer inspection [discovered] that we could exploit these functions as helpers in accelerating the cracking of the bcrypt hashes,” said the group in a blog post.

Dell to invest US$125bn in China over 5 years

Dell is attempting to make a massive push into the Chinese market after announcing that it intends to pump US$125bn into the country over the next five years.

The announcement was made by none other than Dell’s chief executive, Michael Dell, as the company plans to increase its influence in the world’s second-largest economy.

According to Reuters, the US$125bn will actually contribute approximately US$175bn to the company’s imports and exports, while employing more than 1m people in the country.

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Image of Apple store via Shutterstock

Brigid O Gorman is a former sub-editor of Silicon Republic.