AP Technology NewsBrief at 7:23 p.m. EST
(Associated Press Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) What holds energy tech back The infernal batteryWASHINGTON (AP) _ As 21st century technology strains to become ever faster, cleaner and cheaper, an invention from more than 200 years ago keeps holding it back. It's why electric cars aren't clogging the roads and why Boeing's new ultra-efficient 787 Dreamliners aren't flying high. And chances are you have this little invention next to you right now and probably have cursed it recently: the infernal battery.
Google's 4Q earnings rise despite Motorola woesSAN FRANCISCO (AP) _ Google eked out slightly higher earnings in the fourth quarter, despite a financial drag caused by the Internet search leader's expansion into device manufacturing and a decline in digital ad prices as more people gaze into the smaller screens of smartphones. The results announced Tuesday pleased investors, helping to lift Google's stock by nearly 5 percent in extended trading.
Software growth helps IBM boost 4Q earningsNEW YORK (AP) _ Growing software businesses such as Internet-based computing and data analytics helped IBM boost earnings per share for the 40th consecutive quarter _ a full decade _ even as revenue was largely flat. IBM's stock price increased more than 4 percent in after-hours trading following the announcement, as the results seemed to ease investor worries about the uncertain global economy dampening corporate and government spending on technology. The results beat Wall Street's expectations, as is often the case with IBM. The technology bellwether's guidance for 2013 was also stronger than expected.
Can Apple maintain its shine NEW YORK (AP) _ For many investors, Apple's best days are behind it. Competitors are catching up, they believe, and the latest iPhone is stumbling. The company's doubters have backed their conviction with billions of dollars. Last week, the stock fell below $500 for the first time in 11 months. Since Apple's stock peaked at $705.07 on Sept. 21 _the day of the iPhone 5's release_ it has fallen nearly 30 percent, cutting Apple's market capitalization by nearly $200 billion.
Reports: Microsoft may invest in Dell buyoutNEW YORK (AP) _ Microsoft has joined the negotiations to buy struggling computer maker Dell, according to media reports. Both CNBC and The Wall Street Journal reported that Microsoft Corp. may invest some of the money needed to take Dell Inc. private after 25 years as a publicly traded company. Tuesday's stories cited unidentified people familiar with the negotiations.
Pentagon researches new life for dead satellitesLOS ANGELES (AP) _ Call it space grave robbery for a cause: Imagine scavenging defunct communication satellites for their valuable parts and recycling them to build brand new ones for cheap. It's the latest pet project from the Pentagon's research wing known for its quirky and sometimes out-there ideas. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is spending $180 million to test technologies that could make this possible.
Verizon posts record 4Q loss on pension adjustmentNEW YORK (AP) _ Verizon strengthened its position as the top dog of the wireless industry in its latest quarter by raking in new subscribers and selling millions of iPhones, but also posted a record loss. The loss of $4.23 billion, or $1.48 per share, for the fourth quarter was mainly due to adjustments to the value of its pension funds and obligations, an annual routine for Verizon Communications Inc.
AT&T to buy Alltel operations for about $780MDALLAS (AP) _ AT&T Inc. said Tuesday that it has reached a deal to buy remnants of the Alltel wireless network for about $780 million to boost its spectrum holdings in rural areas. The Dallas-based phone company is buying the licenses, retail stores and network assets, along with about 585,000 subscribers, from Atlantic Tele-Network Inc. The news sent the Beverly, Mass.-based company's shares up $4.73, or 12 percent, to $44.10 in late afternoon trading. AT&T shares added 30 cents to $33.74.
Ahead of the bell: Google's 4Q to give ad insightsSAN FRANCISCO (AP) _ Google's fourth-quarter earnings report should provide a barometer on how much more advertising shifted to the Internet during the holiday shopping season. The results, due out after the stock market closes Tuesday, will also give investors a better sense on how the growing popularity of smartphones and tablet computers is affecting the prices in the digital advertising market.
Atari US files for Ch. 11 to separate from parentNEW YORK (AP) _ Video game maker Atari's U.S. operations have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in an effort to separate from their French parent company, which is filing a similar motion separately in France. In a statement, Atari says the move is necessary to secure investments it needs to grow in mobile and downloadable video games.
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