The Sizzle

Issue 73 - Wednesday 27th January, 2016 - The Vengabus is Coming


Apple's Q1 2016 results - richer than ever
Apple generated US$18bn in profits from US$75b in revenue between October and December 2015. A record for Apple and a record 3-month profit for any company, ever. In the last 90 days there's 1 billion active Apple devices - 1 billion! Apple reckons they'd have even more money if the US dollar wasn't doing so poorly, as their overseas sales are going gangbusters but converting that into USD at the current exchange rate versus previous rates lost them $5bn. They've got US$216bn in cash, a stat that never ceases to amaze me. The thing most pundits are focussing on seems to be the iPhone's lack of growth.

Apple Australia makes lots of money here, pays some tax here
Apple Australia gave their financials to ASIC earlier this week and we found out that Apple had AU$7.9bn in revenue for the 2015 financial year - an increase of 27.9% versus last year. This brings up how much tax Apple should pay here in Australia - which was $84.9m for 2015, based off a taxable income of $207m (which is off a $638m gross profit).

Sony splits PlayStation out to a separate business based in the USA
Seemingly out of nowhere, Sony has decided to split off the video game side of its business, Sony Computer Entertainment (i.e: PlayStation) and Sony Network Services (the PSN store) into a single entity called Sony Interactive Entertainment. Sony's been a basketcase financially for a while, so maybe this is an attempt to prevent what is one of the more successful parts of Sony getting dragged down by the not so good parts like TVs and smartphones.

Spotify branches out into video streaming for some reason
Spotify is better known for it's excellent music streaming service, but they've just started to offer video streaming in the Android version of Spotify. There's content from NBC, BBC and Comedy Central, as well as some video podcasts. Dunno what the go is here by including video, is it too much to ask that they just concentrate on music? Is dividing their attention to video really necessary?

Google giving away 25,000 Chromebooks to refugees in Germany
I know if I was a refugee, first thing I'd want to make sure was that I could get back in touch with reality by getting some Internet access. I'm not joking - imagine being removed from all information and social networks because you're running for your life. Having some sense of connection to something familiar in an unfamiliar place would be very welcome. Google realises this and is giving away 25,000 Chromebooks to non-profit organisations in Germany that assist refugees.


Nerd tries to manage his money like gold in Civ
Some dork attempts to compare his household budget to how he runs his budget in the Civilisation video games. Dude is totally way over thinking it, but some people just love unnecessary complex systems. I do like the Civ games though, I like them a lot.

Massive Attack release app where you can remix their songs
A band releasing an app to do remixes of their tracks isn't new, but Massive Attack's attempt is a little more special. Their Fantom app will use your iPhone's sensors to detect motion, your heartbeat and even the camera in order to change the sound. Neato.

Old computers mean something more than pure nostalgia
Like most nerds, Paul Ford had a mentor nerd. Someone who gave a shit and supported him enough for Paul to feel comfortable perusing his interest further. That guy died recently and Paul looks back at his relationship with him via the old computer systems they tried out together. I found it really touching.

Here endeth the sizzle (until tomorrow!)

The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon. Like The Sizzle? Tell your friends!