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Tech News: The Google Vs. Facebook Vs. Amazon Arms Race

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Plus, RIM shares hit 13-month high with hopes of strategic alliances for the company after the launch of its BB10 OS.

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This column brings you the most interesting and useful business and financial commentary on the world of technology every day.

ZDNet
Link: Google's Q4 Earnings: Signs of an Arms Race Ahead?

"The search giant is expected to report fourth quarter earnings of $10.52 a share on revenue of $12.36 billion. However, Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) indicated last week that Wall Street figures may not account for Motorola Home as a discontinued business. That unit was sold to Arris (NASDAQ:ARRS) in the quarter. Translation: Wall Street estimates are too high."

"Simply put, Google's typically strong fourth quarter will be muddled by Motorola's (NYSE:MSI) expenses and so-so revenue. Also: Google's Motorola purchase: Was it worth it?"

"A research note from Pivotal Research highlights a few other issues. According to Pivotal analyst Brian Wieser, Google's capital expenses may indicate an infrastructure arms race between it and Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), not to mention Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and others."

GigaOm
Link:
Verizon Sees Big Q4 Influx of 4G Activations Including 3.1M LTE iPhones
"The combination of Verizon's (NYSE:VZ) now nationwide LTE network and the holidays produced a distinctly 4G quarter for the country's biggest operator. It sold 7.3 million LTE devices the last three months of 2012, and it activated 9.8 million smartphones in total. It activated 6.2 million iPhones, about half of which were the LTE-enabled iPhone 5."

"Data usage is now swinging strongly towards LTE. Though only 23% of Verizon's 98 million retail devices have LTE radios, they now account for nearly 50 percent of all data traffic."

Reuters
Link: RIM Shares Rise to 13-Month High on Strategic Review Hopes
"In an interview with a German newspaper on Monday, Thorsten Heins, the chief executive, said RIM's (NASDAQ:RIMM) ongoing review could potentially lead to the sale of its handset business or the licensing of its software to rival smartphone companies."

"'The main thing for now is to successfully introduce BlackBerry 10. Then we'll see,' Heins was reported as saying."

TechCrunch
Link: Amazon Extends Its In-App Purchasing Option to Mac, PC, and Web-Based Games
"Amazon today announced that it would extend its in-app purchasing API to cover games for Mac, PC, and Web platforms, letting players purchase virtual currency and goods in games using its back-end billing. The move speaks to two important trends: the first is how Amazon is targeting ever more platforms, beyond Android devices, where it can generate revenue through its billing system; the second is how strong a role gaming is playing in that strategy."

CNET
Link: 3D Printer to Carve Out World's First Full-Size Building
"Sure, we've heard of 3D-printed iPhone cases, dinosaur bones, and even a human fetus -- but something massive, like a building?

"This is exactly what architect Janjaap Ruijssenaars has been working on. The Dutch native is planning to build what he calls a 'Landscape House.' This structure is two-stories and is laid out in a figure-eight shape. The idea is that this form can borrow from nature and also seamlessly fit into the outside world."

"Ruijssenaars describes it on his Web site as 'one surface folded in an endless mobius band,' where 'floors transform into ceilings, inside into outside.'"

No positions in stocks mentioned.
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