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Tech News: Apple Loses $35 Billion of Market Cap in a Day

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Plus, more speculation on the poor performance of Microsoft's Surface tablet.

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This column highlights the most interesting and useful business and financial commentary on technology from around the Web.

Venturebeat
Link: AAPL Sheds a Yahoo, Yelp, and LinkedIn Worth of Market Cap Today: $35B
"Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) stock dropped like a rock today, dropping 6.43 percent of its value - nearly $35 billion - in heavy trading. But the big question is why.

"Nothing fundamental has changed about Apple."

PaidContent
Link: Amazon and Google Both Launch Brazilian eBookstores
"Both Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) launched digital bookstores in Brazil this week. The companies join Kobo in an attempt to get a piece of Brazil's nascent but quickly growing ebook market. Eighteen percent of Brazilian adults with internet access have bought an ebook, according to Bowker statistics from June.

"Google launched books and movies on Google Play Wednesday, and Amazon.com.br - which only sells ebooks for now - opened Thursday. The Brazilian Kindle store, promising "the lowest prices of any ebookstore in Brazil," has over 1.4 million ebooks, including over 13,000 Portuguese-language books (1,500 of which are free). For now, Brazilians can only read the Kindle books through Android and iOS apps, but Amazon says the Kindle e-reader 'will go on sale in Brazil in the coming weeks, with a suggested retail price of R$299 [USD $143].'"

Slash Gear
Link: Microsoft Expected to Sell Only About 500,000 Surface RT Tablets Due to Poor Distribution
"Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) had boasted that it expected to sell between 2 million and 4 million of its Surface RT tablets in Q4 2012. Analysts believe that so far Microsoft has only managed to sell between 500,000 and 600,000 of the tablets. The Surface RT tablet has a number of things working against it including atrocious distribution.

"So far, the tablet is only available online and in the rare Microsoft retail stores scattered around the country. That means consumers can't get hands-on with the device and most who buy simply have to order online and hope they like it. Analysts from Detwiler Fenton say that Microsoft's tablet strategy is in 'disarray.'"

GigaOm
Link: How Netflix Wants to Change Television Forever
"Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos called his company's newly-announced Disney (NYSE:DIS) deal a game changer when quizzed about it by Harvey Weinstein during Wednesday's UBS Media conference. The deal, which will bring new and catalog titles from Disney, Marvel and Pixar to the service, marks the first time a major Hollywood studio has chosen Netflix over a traditional pay TV network.

"But Sarandos also made it clear that he doesn't just want to steal away big blockbusters from the likes of HBO and Starz (NASDAQ:LMCA). Throughout the conversation, he explained that Netflix aims much higher: it wants to change television forever. Asked about how TV will look like in five years, Sarandos replied: 'It's gonna look nothing like we're seeing today.'"

Wall Street Journal
Link: Zynga Takes Gambling Step in Nevada
"Zynga Inc. (NASDAQ:ZNGA) has taken its first official step toward offering real-money gambling games in the US by filing preparatory paperwork in Nevada, as the embattled firm maneuvers to take advantage of a shifting legal landscape.

"The Nevada Gaming Control Board confirmed that Zynga filed an application Tuesday for a preliminary finding of suitability to hold a gaming license in the state. Nevada has allowed companies to offer online poker, though Zynga's filing doesn't seek specific permission to offer particular types of online games."
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