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Tech News: Microsoft Launches Massive Streaming Music Service


Also, voice over LTE is ready to meet the world, and Feds attempt to rein in Google.

This column highlights the most interesting business and financial commentary on technology every day.

Link: Microsoft Unveils Comprehensive Xbox Music Service, Including Free Streaming On Windows 8
"Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) Zune music service and players utterly failed to steal market share from Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iTunes and iOS devices. But the Redmond, Wash.-based software giant is trying again today with the unveiling of the Xbox Music service for Windows 8.

"With this new service, Microsoft has learned the lessons of Pandora (NASDAQ:P) and Spotify, which have gotten traction with their free music offerings. Microsoft will have a free version of streamed songs with Xbox Music, but it will also offer an offline-based premium subscription service for $9.95 a month. And you can purchase songs or albums a la carte."

Link: Voice Over LTE Now 'Ready For Widespread Commercial Deployment'
"The path to all-LTE networks just got cleared up a bit. After Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) and Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) announced the handover of a voice call from the '4G' standard to 3G back in February, Huawei and T-Mobile Austria – and Qualcomm again – have revealed a much smoother transition that should actually lead to commercial deployment this time.

"Why is this important? Because LTE has only seen a patchy deployment so far. The networks know how to do all-IP Voice over LTE (VoLTE), but that's of limited use if the call dies as soon as the user steps out of LTE coverage. VoLTE only makes sense if the users can continue the call while switching between network types, without noticing."

Link: Samsung Gets Bigger Payday From Apple's A6 Processor Production, but Kept Out of Design
"Apple and Samsung (KRX:005930) depend heavily on one another, despite the fact that they're also at each other's throats in intellectual property legal disputes around the world. But Apple is looking to reduce Samsung's role in the manufacturing and design side of its business, in a move that could have greater long-term repercussions for the Korean electronics giant than for the iPhone maker.

"The Korea Times reported this weekend that Samsung will no longer be involved in any part of its chip business other than manufacturing, according to a Samsung official who spoke to the publication on condition of anonymity."

Wired Business
Link: Feds Move Closer to Suing Google Over Search
"Over the past few years, enough complaints have come Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) way claiming it games its search results to rank competitors lower that the company felt compelled to post a FAQ, 'Facts about Google and Competition.' In response to its self-posed question 'Does Google have a monopoly on search?', the company says: 'No. On the Internet, competition is one click away.'

"For federal regulators, that answer might not be good enough anymore.

"According to reports late Friday, the feds are getting ready to pull the trigger on an antitrust lawsuit against Google for allegedly using its massive scale to squash competition and keep online advertising prices high."

Mashable Tech
Link: Amazon Phasing Out Kindle DX
"It looks like Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is quietly discontinuing the Kindle DX, the large-format version of its classic Kindle eInk e-reader.

"Amazon lowered the price of the Kindle DX from $379 to $299 last week, apparently to help clear out existing stock. Now, Amazon is no longer selling the device on its website, and there's no notice that it will be restocked soon. It is only available for purchase from third-party sellers."
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