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Tech News: Judge Speeds Up Apple Case, Ticketmaster Allows Digital Transfer


Plus, Sonos brings its Playbar to home theaters.

This column brings you the most interesting and useful business and financial commentary on technology from around the Web every day.

"A judge approved Apple Inc.'s (NASDAQ:AAPL) request to speed up the schedule in a lawsuit filed by star hedge fund manager David Einhorn's Greenlight Capital, part of an effort to get the company to share its huge cash reserves with investors.

"US District Judge Richard Sullivan of the Southern District of New York on Monday brought forward the legal schedule by a few days at Apple's request, which argued that the issue would have a big impact on the upcoming shareholder meeting on February 27.

"Apple told the judge that the request to modify the schedule had the support of Einhorn's counsel. Einhorn, a well-known short-seller and Apple gadget fan, shocked Wall Street last week by suing Apple to stop the iPhone maker from eliminating from its charter the ability to issue preferred stock without shareholder approval."

"Ticketmaster (NYSE:LYV) is launching digital transfer for its North American tickets, whereby buyers can digitally transfer tickets to others at no cost, directly from their Ticketmaster accounts online. Along with its convenience, the platform addresses critics of Ticketmaster's paperless ticketing efforts, which previously had lacked transferability. The platform, which digitizes every ticket, also addresses issues like ticket counterfeiting and scalper fraud.

"'As the industry leader, Ticketmaster continues to introduce transformational products that revolutionize the fan and client experience,' said Michael Rapino, CEO of Live Nation Entertainment, in a prepared statement, calling Ticket Transfer 'the most trustworthy, fastest, easiest, and environmentally-conscious way ever introduced.'
"Ticketmaster's digital ticket transfer technology works with all ticket types, including mobile and paperless, with purchasers able to transfer tickets 'almost instantly' using Ticketmaster's unique ability to reissue bar codes. Through the transfer process, the original barcode is invalidated and the recipient receives a digital ticket with a reissued barcode, enabling the seamless transfer of paper ticket to digital, print at home tickets to digital, etc."

"Sonos continues its righteous quest to dominate every room in your house with easy, awesome wireless music with its new Playbar. Except it's trying to be the easy solution for your home theater, too. The sound bar joins the Sonos subwoofer introduced last year as well as two standalone tabletop systems already available.

"The Playbar has nine drivers inside, including three tweeters and six mid-range drivers. It plugs directly into your TV with a digital optical cable, and integrates seamlessly with the Sonos wireless music system."

"Imagine a day when it cost an arm and a leg to use the phone, especially for long-distance calls. Then imagine that buried deep within the telephone network infrastructure was a flaw -- a hole that allowed those who were aware of it, and capable of exploiting it, to make all the free calls they want.
"These days, phone calls are free -- or nearly so -- and hackers put their energies into computer networks, jailbreaking iPhones, and other more modern pursuits. But back in the 1950s and 1960s, a new group of people emerged, people who were fascinated by phones, telephone networks, and who often just wanted to see how many free calls they could make. Over the years, the roster of the so-called 'phone phreaks' grew to include some very famous people: Apple co-founders Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, and John Draper (aka Captain Crunch).

"Their tools also became part of the lexicon -- blue boxes and black boxes -- despite the fact that today, the number of people who know what those devices could do is rapidly dwindling."

HuffPost Tech News
"Apple might be building a smartwatch that would display your iPhone notifications on your wrist. Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is definitely building a set of smartglasses that will display your Android notifications on a small display in front of your right eye.

"So, reader, what say you: Would you rather wear an iWatch, or Google Glass? Would you rather be dorky in the face, or on the wrist? Four Eyes, or Nerd-Hand?

"It's a battle between so-called "wearable devices" that might soon be raging, in a classic war of Face vs. Fist, should Apple choose to release its smartwatch. Both the iWatch and Google Glass are devices that could shift the way we interact with the Internet and with each other over cellular networks. Both are obviously worn on the body, in locations where the most popular smart-devices are not currently worn."
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