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Apple Donating Portion of Sales to AIDS Research

Apple Donating Portion of Sales to AIDS Research

BUSINESS

  • Twenty-five special apps will be offered
  • Percentage of Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales will be donated
  • Charity has raised millions since 2006

Apple Inc. is partnering with the (RED) campaign to raise funds for AIDS research.

Between Nov. 24 to Dec. 7, the Apple app store will sell 25 (RED)-branded apps. U.S. customers also will have the ability to purchase (RED) gift cards. For each card distributed, Apple will make a donation.

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Blackberry Urges North American iPhone Users to Switch

Blackberry Urges North American iPhone Users to Switch

BUSINESS

  • iPhone users could get up to $550 in rewards
  • Other smartphone users can take advantage of deals
  • Blackberry devices service a niche market

Blackberry Ltd. is hoping holiday deals will lure American and Canadian iPhone users away from Apple Inc. and encourage them to switch to the Blackberry Passport.

Apple iPhone 4 through iPhone 6 users will be offered up to $550 to trade models, depending on the condition of the phone, with up to $400 paid in cash and $150 paid by a Visa gift card.

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Redbox Increasing U.S. Rental Rates in December

Redbox Increasing U.S. Rental Rates in December

BUSINESS

  • Video games also will see price increase
  • Company says funds will increase services
  • DVDs compete with video-streaming services

Outerwall Inc., the owner of Redbox, will be raising its DVD and Blue-ray rental rates in the United States December 2.

DVD rental fees will increase 30 cents and Blue-ray fees will increase 50 cents.

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Mystery Malware Used to Spy on 10 Countries

Mystery Malware Used to Spy on 10 Countries

BUSINESS

  • Malware has been circulating since 2008
  • Multiple layers make malware difficult to detect
  • Malware’s creator unknown

A newly discovered surveillance Trojan program has been spying on computers worldwide. The malware has been nicknamed Regin by cybersecurity firm Symantec, the creator of Norton Antivirus which studied it.

Regin has been found in ten countries on computers in the energy, telecommunications and hospitality industries as well as research institutes and government entities. Half of the infections were with Internet service providers.

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Firefox Replacing Google with Yahoo as Default Search Engine

Firefox Replacing Google with Yahoo as Default Search Engine

BUSINESS

  • Firefox users conduct 100 million searches yearly
  • Default search engine also changed in China, Russia
  • Yahoo hopes to return to being a large search engine

Internet browser Firefox, run by nonprofit Mozilla, is replacing Google with Yahoo as its default search engine for U.S. users.

The change will go into effect in December when Google’s $1 billion contract expires. Google has been the default Firefox search engine since 2004.

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Family Dollar Delays Vote to Buy Dollar Tree for $8 Billion

Family Dollar Delays Vote to Buy Dollar Tree for $8 Billion

BUSINESS

  • Delay allows more time for review
  • Vote now expected in late December
  • Dollar General offer to buy Family Dollar closes Dec. 31

Family Dollar Stores Inc. has delayed voting on its $8.5 billion takeover of Dollar Tree Inc. as it awaits an update from antitrust regulator the Federal Trade Commission.

Voting was delayed from Dec. 11 to Dec. 23. Originally, the deal was expected to close by December. The combined company would be expected to compete against stores such as Wal-Mart, which serve low-income shoppers. In September, Dollar Tree said it was confident the FTC would approve the deal if the retailer closed as many stores as possible.

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Candy Industry Forecasts Chocolate Shortage by 2020

Candy Industry Forecasts Chocolate Shortage by 2020

BUSINESS

  • Demand outweighing supply
  • Weather in Africa the largest factor in decreased supply
  • Industry experts forecasted shortages earlier in decade

Barry Callebaut, the world’s largest chocolate manufacturer, and American candy manufacturer Mars Inc. warn the days of a plentiful chocolate supply are limited, according to a report by The Washington Post.

“Chocolate deficits, whereby farmers produce less cocoa than the world eats, are becoming the norm,” the Post said. “Already, we are in the midst of what could be the longest streak of consecutive chocolate deficits in more than 50 years. It also looks like deficits aren’t just carrying over from year-to-year – the industry expects them to grow.”

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Facebook Testing Business Network to Compete Against LinkedIn

Facebook Testing Business Network to Compete Against LinkedIn

BUSINESS

  • Social network reportedly testing business network
  • Facebook entering crowded industry space
  • Business network would need to solve some problems

Social network Facebook Inc. is developing a business collaboration tool, according to The Financial Times, that would compete against LinkedIn and other business sites.

Facebook at Work is in the testing stages. Like Facebook for personal use, it would allow employees to send messages, join groups and read their newsfeed. Information from Facebook at Work would be separate from personal accounts.

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Warren Buffet to Buy Duracell for $4.7 Billion

Warren Buffet to Buy Duracell for $4.7 Billion

BUSINESS

  • Purchase will be funded by exchanging shares
  • Duracell has had multiple owners
  • Procter & Gamble selling lower growth brands

Conglomerate Berkshire Hathaway Inc., run by the billionaire Warren E. Buffett, is purchasing Duracell from Procter & Gamble Co.,the world's top household products manufacturer, in a deal worth $4.7 billion.

Berkshire Hathaway will fund the purchase by exchanging its 52.8 million shares in Procter & Gamble. This will allow both companies to avoid significant taxes. P&G will put $1.8 billion in cash into the business before the exchange, its largest divestiture.

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Macy’s Third Quarter Below Expectations

Macy’s Third Quarter Below Expectations

BUSINESS

  • Same-store sales dropped 1.4%
  • Company blames weather, economy
  • Same-day delivery service to start in major cities

Department store giant Macy’s, which also operates Bloomingdale’s stores, reported a lackluster third quarter.

Revenue was $6.2 billion,1.3% lower than the third quarter of 2013; analysts had forecasted $6.3 billion.

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