Apple hosted a second product unveil event for the fall, and tech darlings start revealing third-quarter report cards as earnings season heats up. This is is your tech rewind of the week.
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At Apple’s (AAPL) Thursday product event, which was much quieter than its sparkly September shindig, the company revealed a slew of new devices including a super-slim iPad Air 2, which is thinner than a No. 2 pencil. The tech titan also took the wraps off a new iPad Mini 3, a Mac Mini and an eye-popping iMac with Retina 5K display. New iPad models, which are available in gold, space gray, and white, are open for pre-order starting Friday,and in-store next week. Both the Mac Mini and iMac begin shipping Friday as well. Additionally, consumers can begin using their new iPhones as wallets on Monday when Apple Pay kicks off. Apple said it is working with more than 500 banks on its mobile payment system.
CEO Tim Cook described the slew of goodies as “the strongest lineup of products Apple has ever had.” Yet investors were seemingly less impressed this time around as shares were pretty flat after the event. Oh, and in case you missed it, Stephen Colbert, who made a quick virtual appearance, is Apple’s (unofficial?) new “Chief of Secrecy.”
And Twitter (TWTR) is letting users stream audio content through its new Twitter Audio Card, where users can listen music, podcasts and other audio directly on their timelines. The social media titan’s third-party partners on the venture so far include SoundCloud and iTunes.
A new way to enjoy audio on Twitter: https://t.co/x43OimDgf5— Twitter (@twitter) October 16, 2014
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Twitter also announced this week it’s testing in France a way for users to pass money to each other via tweet.
As Ebola fears grow stateside, Facebook (FB) CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan have pledged $25 million to the CDC to help fight the deadly epidemic.
President Obama highlighted the importance of payment card security and EMV chip card technology, which PCI General Manager Stephen W. Orfei applauded, saying, “the PCI Security Standards Council has long been a supporter of EMV chip technology … we view it as a critical layer in any payment security strategy.”
Meanwhile, earnings results have so far been somewhat mixed for the tech sector.
Google (GOOGL) posted a third-quarter miss, on both the top and bottom lines, as growth in its advertising business slowed. Shares of the Internet search giant were modestly lower Friday. Blue-chip chip maker Intel (INTC) posted a third-quarter beat, while American Express (AXP) logged mixed quarterly results with revenues coming in short of expectations. EBay (EBAY) beat bottom-line estimates by a penny, but shares were still off more than 4% on the news as investors reacted to downward revenue guidance. Shares of the e-commerce giant rebounded Friday, ending the day slightly higher.
Midweek, HBO announced it is going all-digital for viewers who prefer to watch TV online. Those interested will be able to sign up for HBO’s new stand-alone streaming service next year. Netflix (NFLX) shares fell on the news, but CEO Reed Hastings sent a letter to investors saying while HBO is the company’s “primary long-term competitor,” their decision to stream was “inevitable and sensible.”
Also on Wednesday, Netflix revealed disappointing third quarter results, with subscriber numbers coming in well-below expectations. The video-streaming giant expected 3.69 million but reported 3.02 million, and despite a 20% increase in revenue from the same time last year, shares tanked as much as 26% on the news. But there is a silver lining – at least for “Friends” fans.
They will all be there for you, Jan.1, 2015 https://t.co/EdGNWtFsZl— Netflix US (@netflix) October 15, 2014
Netflix tweeted a video announcing that the entire collection of the beloved show will be available online in the U.S. and Canada on New Year’s Day.