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Amazon’s new Fire phone commercial features tech-savvy 9-year-olds who read Sheryl Sandberg’s book

First Gary Busey, now 9-year-olds. Amazon’s first TV commercial for its new Fire Phone debuted today. You can watch the 30-second spot here, or at the bottom of this post. The ad features two kids touting the fact that customers who purchase Amazon’s new smartphone will receive a $99 one-year Amazon Prime membership for free. To begin the… Read More

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Startup Spotlight: Workfrom helps people find the best places to work remotely

It’s a familiar scene — professionals and students packed into Starbucks typing away on tiny end tables and chairs fashioned into laptop desks; surrounded by standing hopefuls eyeing their valuable real estate. It’s easier than ever to work remotely and that makes a coffee shop with WiFi a hot commodity. Though there are plenty of work-friendly businesses beyond the ubiquitous… Read More

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ESPN partners with Valve to broadcast Dota 2 video game championships

If you tune into ESPN this weekend, you might catch some British Open golf action, perhaps some Sunday Night Baseball, or maybe a little MLS soccer. But the leading sports network is airing something rather peculiar on Sunday: A video game competition. Electronic sports — e-sports for short — has officially made its way to ESPN, which will broadcast Valve’s Dota 2… Read More

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Google reports quarterly revenue of $16 billion, misses on earnings again as top business exec departs

Google announced today that it brought in $15.96 billion in revenue for the second quarter of 2014, an increase of 22 percent from the same period a year ago. That beats expectations of $15.61 billion in quarterly revenue from analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters. The Mountain View-based tech giant also reported earnings of $6.08 a… Read More

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With difficult cutbacks, Satya Nadella starts to make his mark on Microsoft

When Satya Nadella was named Microsoft’s CEO earlier this year, one of the concerns among investors was that the company veteran would maintain the status quo, largely sticking to the gameplan laid out by his predecessor, Steve Ballmer. This morning Nadella made it clear that won’t be the case, cutting 18,000 jobs in the largest layoffs in Microsoft… Read More

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Zillow exec tries to assuage real estate agents’ fears over ‘Coming Soon’ listings: We ‘don’t want to be a MLS’

SAN FRANCISCO–Zillow has taken heat from real estate professionals in recent weeks over its new “Coming Soon” feature, with some claiming that its one way for the Seattle online real estate powerhouse to bypass multiple listing services. But Zillow Chief Revenue Officer Greg Schwartz — speaking today at the Real Estate Connect Conference — says… Read More

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Sprint, T-Mobile looking to raise $10 billion for auctioned wireless airwaves

As Sprint and T-Mobile prepare to merge, the companies are now reportedly looking to raise money to bid for wireless airwaves. The Wall Street Journal notes that the wireless giants want to raise $10 billion for a 2015 auction of airwaves owned by television broadcasters. The money would be part of a financing package between the companies that, as… Read More

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Microsoft cuts will also hit ‘shadow workforce,’ going beyond announced layoffs

Microsoft’s decision to cut 18,000 jobs from its workforce represents the largest round of layoffs in the company’s history, but it also understates the impact on the company and the job market. In addition to those core cuts, the company is aiming to significantly reduce its reliance on contingent workers — the thousands of vendors and contractors who… Read More

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. (Microsoft file photo)

Full text: Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella explains big job cuts

Long-term progress will require short-term pain. That’s one of the underlying messages delivered by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella today as he outlined his plan to streamline Microsoft’s engineering as part of a larger set of 18,000 job cuts at the company. Here’s the full text of Nadella’s email to employees, made public by Microsoft. From: Satya… Read More

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Microsoft cutting 18,000 jobs, 14% of company, in largest layoffs in its history

Microsoft will cut 18,000 jobs over the next year, including 12,500 related to its acquisition of Nokia’s Devices and Services business, the company confirmed this morning. The overall figure represents about 14 percent of the 127,000 people employed by the company as of last month. It’s the largest job reduction in the company’s history — a major… Read More

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Suck it, Colbert: Amazon still top U.S. brand despite PR blip

The Colbert effect may not take as much of a toll on the teflon coating of Amazon.com as you might think. Despite a concerted attack by the legendary late night comedian over Amazon’s antics with book publisher Hachette, Amazon retained the top ranking among U.S. brands, according to the YouGov BrandIndex report. The report placed… Read More

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Roll the credits: T-Mobile’s John Legere named executive producer of “Love Child,” a film coming soon to a screen near you

Is there anything that this CEO can’t do? T-Mobile’s John Legere generally has his hands full trying to revive the Bellevue-based carrier, but here’s something else he can add to his resume: Executive Producer. We noticed recently that Legere’s name popped on the credits for “Love Child,” a film currently being pushed nationwide through various film festivals and… Read More

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Xbox One sales double, one month after $100 price cut

Offering up a cheaper Xbox One is helping Microsoft sell quite a bit more consoles. The company announced today that since it began selling a $399 version of the Xbox One without the Kinect sensor on June 9 — a $100 price cut from the Xbox One with Kinect — sales doubled in one month. We’ll have more… Read More