Sony predicts US$2 bil. loss as smartphones lag

TOKYO — Sony expects its annual loss to swell to US$2 billion and has canceled dividends for the first time in more than half a century after writing down the value of its troubled smartphone business. Citing intense competition, especially from Chinese rivals, Sony said Wednesday it anticipates a net loss of 230 billion yen (US$2.15 billion) for the fiscal year that ends March 31, 2015. Its previous forecast was for a 50 billion yen (US$466 million) net loss.

http://www.chinapost.com.tw/business/company-focus/2014/09/18/417467/Sony-predicts.htm

Spread the news: BBC takes to popular messaging app Line

The BBC has just started using the popular messaging app Line to share news. The British broadcaster now has an official account on Line in 11 countries – the US, Australia, Spain, Germany, Italy, India, France, the Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, and Hong Kong. With this, the BBC is sharing a mix of headlined images and very short video clips overlaid with captions to its followers. It looks like this:

http://www.techinasia.com/bbc-sharing-news-line-messaging-app/

Sony thrashes military defence contractor in court

A federal judge has ruled in favour of Sony Corp in a long-running case, overturning a jury verdict for L-3 Communications Corp and invalidating several parts of an image sensor patent held by the defence contractor. Judge Richard Andrews of the U.S. District Court in Delaware said the jury in 2013 was wrong to find L-3’s patent claims were not “obvious,” a key criteria to ensure an invention is sufficiently unique to be patented.

http://www.thestar.com.my/Tech/Tech-News/2014/09/15/Sony-prevails-in-patent-suit-battle-with-defense-contractor-L3/

Fujitsu chief takes up Dimension Data NZ CEO role…

Dimension Data has appointed Jo Healey as New Zealand CEO to lead its local operations, effective 10 November 2014. With more than 20 years’ experience in the ICT industry, most recently as Managing Director of Fujitsu New Zealand, Healey takes the reins from Nick Halikias, Interim Chief Executive. Sunil Desai, Dimension Data Asia Pacific COO, says Healey’s proven track record will set Dimension Data in good stead as the business advances as a full spectrum IT service provider in New Zealand.

http://techday.com/it-brief/news/fujitsu-chief-takes-up-dimension-data-nz-ceo-role/192181/

Apple a decade behind Japan mobile payment curve

TOKYO: Apple’s proud announcement that its new iPhone could be used to buy goods in a single swipe left customers non-plussed in Japan, where mobile contactless payments have been normal fare for a decade.  A type of Near Field Communication (NFC) chip, known in Japan as FeliCa, was introduced to the Japanese mobile market in June 2004 and has been been implanted in almost all phones sold in the country since.

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/tech/hardware/apple-a-decade-behind-japan-mobile-payment-curve/articleshow/42426439.cms

Pokemon Ruby/Sapphire 3DS Demo Shows Data Transfer for Full Game

Nintendo announced the special demo version of Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire that allows players to transfer some content into the full game on Friday. The Japanese game company said the demo consist of “gameplay that players won’t experience anywhere else.” Nintendo didn’t further explain what exact details they’ll add but teases a familiar Pokemon creature that can now Mega Evolve can be obtained while playing the demo.

http://www.chinatopix.com/articles/10257/20140913/pokemon.htm

Xiaomi Mi4 vs. Sony Xperia Z3: Specs, Features and Price Showdown

The Xiaomi Mi4 was released in August while the Sony Xperia Z3 was launched at the IFA 2014 and will be released in September. Those who are choosing between the Xiaomi Mi4 and the Sony Xperia Z3 may want to check out the comparison on specs, features and price below. Both the Xiaomi Mi4 and the Sony Xperia Z3 are powered by the quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 Krait 400 processor at 2.5 GHz with 3 GB of RAM.

http://www.chinatopix.com/articles/10174/20140912/xiaomi-mi4-vs-sony-xperia-z3-specs-features-and-price-showdown.htm

Line releases regional breakdowns for its 490 million registered users

Today the team behind Line, the popular Japanese mobile messenger best known for its games and stickers, revealed a regional breakdown of its registered user counts. In the past, Line has consistently disclosed its number of users in key markets like Taiwan, Thailand, and Japan, but the whereabouts of its remaining 300 million-some odd users remained unknown. The company regularly claimed to have strong traction in Southeast Asia and the Spanish-speaking world, and while we wouldn’t doubt the company, it’s nice to finally see some numbers next to country names.

http://www.techinasia.com/line-releases-regional-breakdowns-for-its-490m-registered-users/

Japanese fans set up watch for iPhone

TOKYO: It may still be several days before they can even order a new iPhone and more than a week until they can pick it up, but dedicated fans in Japan have already begun queuing.  In a country known for taking its hobbies extremely seriously, Apple acolytes in Tokyo began bagging their spots on the pavement days before the world knew what the California tech giant had up its sleeve.

http://www.thestar.com.my/Tech/Tech-News/2014/09/10/Japanese-fans-set-up-watch-for-iPhone/

NEC wins Defence data centre migration work, from AU

Defence CIO Dr Peter Lawrence said in a statement that the project will “deliver Defence a robust and secure technology environment…  simplifying our service provision and speeding up our response to change.”   Today it was revealed that NEC Australia, acting as a subcontractor to Lockheed Martin, will be doing much of the heavy lifting. NEC Australia has won an IT infrastructure component of the job worth $150 million, providing both migration services and hosting of legacy systems until the end of the migration project.

http://www.itnews.com.au/News/391966,nec-wins-defence-data-centre-migration-work.aspx

Sony Reveals Full Game Lineup for Tokyo Game Show 2014

Sony has just announced its full lineup of games set to make an appearance at this year’s highly anticipated Tokyo Game Show. Organized by Computer Entertainment Supplier’s Association (CESA) along with Nikkei BP, this year’s show will be held at the Makuhari Messe in Chiba, Japan. The show opens on September 18 but will be open to the public on September 20.

http://www.chinatopix.com/articles/9257/20140909/sony-reveals-full-game-lineup-for-tokyo-game-show-2014.htm

Rakuten confirms Ebates acquisition, Ebates CEO admits Alibaba threat encouraged his decision

At a press conference in Tokyo today, Hiroshi Mikitani, founder and CEO of Rakuten, Inc. (TYO:4755 ), confirmed reports that his company will acquire American online coupon firm Ebates . The ticker price comes in at JPY 105 billion (US$1 billion). Founded in 1998, Ebates offers coupons or cash-back incentives to drive online shopping. Stores register on Ebates and post coupon codes or cash-back terms. Shoppers registered at Ebates can then copy the coupon link, click on the product they want to buy, and make the purchase. For cash-back offers, Ebates will send the user a check four times a year or more.

http://www.techinasia.com/rakuten-ebates-acquisition-confirmed/

Thailand’s tourist police get cute with new sticker sets on Line

If you’re addicted to Line and have plans to go backpacking in Bangkok, you’re in luck – Thailand’s tourist police force has released a free sticker set that users can download after following a dedicated account. The notion of a police force-themed sticker set in Thailand might seem eerily Orwellian given the country is currently under martial law. But the Thailand Tourist Police isn’t a real police force – they’re badged officers (some of whom are volunteers) that settle theft, disputes, and other minor emergencies that aren’t uncommon when traveling.

http://www.techinasia.com/thailands-tourist-police-get-all-cutesy-with-new-sticker-sets-on-line/

NTT America introduces new cloud, IP, data center indirect channel partner program

NTT America’s Global Solution and Data Center Services business unit is taking advantage of this week’s Cloud Partners 2014 to debut its NTT America Global Solutions Channel Partner Program. The service provider said that this indirect program will allow U.S. channel partners to sell NTT America’s suite of domestic and international information and communications technology solutions to business customers.

http://www.fiercetelecom.com/story/ntt-america-introduces-new-cloud-ip-data-center-indirect-channel-partner-pr/2014-09-08

NEC targets hosting providers

The NEC Cloud Platform for IaaS is the first integrated platform for this market, according to NEC Asia Pacific vice president Tatsunori Shibata (pictured). It is based on NEC’s Express5800 server family, the OpenStack (cloud computing platform) and Ceph (object storage) software, and a unified dashboard to control the entire system. Noting that service providers have different requirements to the general market, Mr Shibata said NEC Cloud Platform for IaaS uses the company’s microservers based on the Atom C2000 processor.

http://www.itwire.com/business-it-news/hardware-and-storage/65327-nec-targets-hosting-providers

Rakuten confirms attempt to buy US coupon firm Ebates; stock falls 4% over rumored $1B price

Leading Japanese ecommerce firm Rakuten (TYO:4755 ) released a statement  today admitting the company’s involvement in an acquisition bid for American online coupon firm Ebates . This comes after Nikkei  reported on Saturday morning that Rakuten had nearly finalized a deal worth over JPY 100 billion (US$951 million). Ebates offers coupons or cash-back incentives to drive online shopping. Stores register on Ebates and post coupon codes or cash-back terms.

http://www.techinasia.com/rakuten-ebates-acquisition-admission/

Fujitsu to bring social apps to boost Digital India drive

NEW DELHI: At a time when Prime Minister Narendra Modi successfully won the confidence of Japan’s business fraternity, the country’s IT equipment and services major Fujitsu is planning to bring its social applications to India that will boost the government’s Digital India drive. “There are lots of social infrastructure projects in Japan and Fujitsu has heavily invested in some of them.

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/tech/software/fujitsu-to-bring-social-apps-to-boost-digital-india-drive/articleshow/41941197.cms

Sony mobiles to support PlayStation 4 games

The latest line of top-tier mobiles from Sony, the Xperia Z3, Z3 Compact and Z3 Tablet Compact, will be able to stream console games directly from a PlayStation 4 on the same WiFi network. Announced at the annual consumer electronics show IFA Berlin, the Z3 line will also be accompanied by a Game Control Mount accessory that lets the devices clip on to a PlayStation 4 controller.

http://www.thestar.com.my/Tech/Tech-News/2014/09/06/Sony-mobiles-to-support-PlayStation-4-games/

Toshiba Flaunts New Thinner Chromebooks , Windows Tablet

Japanese electronics and engineering conglomerate Toshiba has announced a number of new Chromebook models, as well as a new 7-inch Windows tablet set to hit retailers in the fall. The gadgets Toshiba will push out its doors include the Toshiba Chromebook 2, a second-generation laptop computer running on Google’s Chrome operating system designed mainly to surf the web. The laptop will retail for US$250.

http://www.chinatopix.com/articles/8804/20140904/toshiba-flaunts-new-thinner-chromebooks-windows-tablet.htm

Taizo Son: “We are at the start of a new paradigm shift in technology, to the Internet of Things”

Taizo Son, the founder of startup accelerator Movida, was one of the most anticipated guests at Startup Asia Tokyo. His keynote talk addressed changing trends in technology development as well as the relationship that Japan and Southeast Asia’s respective ecosystems have. For Son, the Internet of Things will is the next big inflection point in technological development, following the advent of smartphones.

http://www.techinasia.com/taizo-son-startup-asia-tokyo-2014/