Calif. – Apple (NASD: AAPL) announced on
Tuesday that downloads of applications for its iPhone and iPod touch from the
company’s App Store have surpassed three billion. "Three billion
applications downloaded in less than 18 months — this is like nothing we’ve
ever seen before," said Apple CEO Steve Jobs.
"The revolutionary App Store
offers iPhone and iPod touch users an experience unlike anything else available
on other mobile devices, and we see no signs of the competition catching up
The App Store, which launched in July 2008 and is now
available in 77 countries, reached 2 billion downloads just two months ago.
Shanghai – Baidu (NASD: BIDU), the top search engine in China, has partnered with Hulu investor
Providence Equity Partners to create a similar video portal in China that will
feature licensed professional content, Reuters reported.
Providence reportedly invested $60 million in
the joint venture, while Baidu will inject $10 million into a fund that will be
used to secure content licenses, sources told Reuters.
investment firm is also a backer of Hulu, the video portal joint venture between
News Corp., NBC Universal and Disney.
Reuters noted that Baidu is also a
financial backer of PPLive, another licensed video site in China.
Conn. – Gartner (NYSE: IT) announced on
Tuesday that it has acquired fellow information technology market research firm
Burton Group for $56 million in cash.
Utah-based Burton Group counts 41
research analysts and will see projected 2009 revenue of $30 million.
Gartner said the deal will expand its product and service offerings, and
increase its IT research market opportunity, while also providing operational efficiencies
and cost savings.
"Gartner has traditionally focused on providing
strategic insight to CIOs and senior IT executives, while Burton Group has
built a leading niche providing practical, how-to advice to front-line IT
professionals," said Gartner CEO Gene Hall.
"Thus, Burton Group is a
great strategic fit for Gartner and should enable us to offer a more complete
solution to every level and functional expert within an IT organization."
Mass. – Quattro Wireless, a
provider of mobile advertising services, announced on Monday in a blog post that
it has been acquired by Apple (NASD: AAPL). While financial terms of the transaction were
not disclosed, PaidContent’s source pegged the purchase price at $270 million.
Founded in 2006, Quattro offers a mobile Web and in-application ad network
utilized by clients including Netflix, CBS Interactive, Disney and Microsoft.
The company’s network partners include Gawker, NFL, NHL, Hachette, Time, imeem
"We remain focused on delivering more engaging, relevant and
useful ads to mobile devices, and improving the measurement and execution of
digital campaigns," said Quattro co-founder and CEO Andrew Miller — who was
named a vice president of mobile advertising at Apple.
Apple, we look forward to developing exciting new opportunities in the future
that will benefit our customers."
Quattro raised over $28 million in
funding, from backers including Highland Capital Partners and Globespan Capital
– PowerReviews, a site that aggregates user-generated product reviews and makes
them available to online retailers, has raised $4.9 million of an anticipated
$9 million round of new funding, PaidContent reported, citing a regulatory
Founded in 2005, San Francisco-based PowerReviews provides
user-generated product reviews to more than 3,000 online retail clients,
including Orbitz, Staples, REI and Warner Home Video.
The company’s last round
of funding in 2007 was led by Lehman Brothers Venture Partners.
– U2 frontman Bono took to the Op-Ed page of The New York Times over the
weekend, in part to rail against the sharing of music on peer-to-peer networks,
and ISPs — the "rich service providers, whose swollen profits perfectly
mirror the lost receipts of the music business." "A decade’s worth of
music file-sharing and swiping has made clear that the people it hurts are the
creators — in this case, the young, fledgling songwriters who can’t live off
ticket and T-shirt sales like the least sympathetic among us," Bono wrote.
The band’s manager, Paul McGuinness, has taken a vocal stance against
file-sharing, and in particular called on ISPs to do more to police the
Ill. – Redbox, a unit of
Coinstar (NASD: CSTR) that operates automated DVD rental kiosks, announced on Mondy that
consumers rented more than two million DVDs on New Year’s Eve from the
company’s kiosks, breaking its previous one-day rental record by more than
170,000 rentals. The company, which operates more than 19,000 locations
nationwide, reported more than 350 million rentals in 2009.
– Hulu, the video portal joint venture between News Corp. (NYSE: NWS), NBC Universal (NYSE: GE) and
Disney (NYSE: DIS), said that its monthly users grew by 95% in 2009, to over 43 million,
while monthly streams increased 307%, to 924 million. Over 6.4 million Hulu
players were embedded on third-party websites, up 237% from 2008, while the
company’s library of content grew to 14,000 hours. The most popular clip of
2009 was SNL’s "Motherlover," while the most popular full episode was
Family Guy’s "Stew-Roids."