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DITO Telecom shares surge as Globe, PLDT earns PH President’s ire

Shares surge by up to 11%

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Photo by GadgetMatch

Last July 27, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte delivered the penultimate State of the Nation address which contains the usual threats and tirades against companies and individuals. Two of those that received the president’s ire are Globe and PLDT — the Philippines’ biggest telco players. One of the unintended effects of the call-out, it seems, is a surge in interest for DITO Telecom — an up-and-coming telco that has a controversial background.

DITO Telecom had its shares surge last July 28. This comes a day after President Duterte threatened to close down its biggest rivals, PLDT and Globe. The company surged to 11% while its rivals fell 3%.

The surge is a clear indication that companies are wary of the chilling effects that a single threat from the government can do. This month, ABS-CBN — one of the biggest broadcasting networks in the country — shut down operations as Congress refused to renew its license to broadcast. Before its shutdown, President Duterte made pronouncements that their license won’t be renewed.

With Globe and PLDT earning the ire of the president, it doesn’t seem too far-fetched to think that the government may force its hand against these telcos. After all, it has demonstrated in the past that it has the resolve to make good of the president’s pronouncements. Congress may repeat its actions and investigate, or pass laws to the detriment of these two telcos.

Globe Telecom CEO Ernest Cu earlier responded to the Philippine President saying they understand the demand for better service and they are doing their part to deliver.

A telco with a controversial background

DITO Telecom getting a boost from the president’s threat is not surprising.  Last 2018, the Philippine government chose the company as the third provisional player. Back then, the company was known as Mislatel Communications. Many critics pointed out that there was a conflict of interest with the selection of the telco. After all, the current owner of the telecom — Dennis Uy — is the biggest contributor to the president’s campaign trail last 2016.

Critics also pointed out the telco’s link to state-run China Telecom. Allegations of a possible security risk popped up since state-run Chinese companies are known for colluding with the Chinese government.

Still, DITO Telecom is setting its sights for a nationwide launch this 2021. With or without the president’s threat, it is up to PLDT and Globe to improve their services. After all, the telecom promises a more affordable price for high-speed Internet.

Source: Reuters

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Newer OnePlus phones come with Facebook preinstalled

Users can’t uninstall some of the Facebook apps, too

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One of the features OnePlus likes to tout with its smartphones is OxygenOS. After all, fans swear by its simplicity, usability, and bloatware-free experience. However, newer OnePlus phones actually come with Facebook preinstalled. Worse, wary users can’t uninstall Facebook on these phones.

OnePlus devices with Facebook preinstalled include the recently-launched OnePlus Nord and the OnePlus 8 series. As Android Police reported, these devices don’t only have one Facebook app installed, but also includes other apps from the Palo Alto company.

Instagram and Messenger also come preinstalled on newer OnePlus devices, along with other utilities. These utilities include Facebook App Installer and Manager, as well as Facebook Services. Wary users who may want to keep Facebook out of their phones will find that they can’t uninstall these apps. OnePlus effectively gives two options only: disable these apps or force stop them.

The preinstalled Facebook apps are a culmination of an idea campaign that OnePlus “gathered” from its fans. According to them, bundling these apps will result in better battery efficiency. However, Facebook’s apps are also notorious for draining battery life much faster. It is possible, however, that OnePlus struck a deal with Facebook given the monetary incentive with bundling apps.

This isn’t the first time OnePlus bundled a third-party app into their phones. Actually, this practice started way back with the bundling of Netflix for the OnePlus 7 series. At that time, the company defended its practice by saying that bundling Netflix is necessary to enhance HDR playback.

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Apple is suing a small startup for using a pear logo

Five-person startup vs. trillion-dollar company

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As the saying goes, “apples and oranges.” Apparently, the well-known idiom doesn’t apply for the iPhone makers of the same name. If your company uses any fruit-themed logo (even if it’s not an apple), Apple will see their own logo and go at you with the full force of their legal team. In a strange turn of events, Apple is suing a small startup for using a pear logo.

Reported by Canadian outlet iPhone in Canada, Prepear, a meal-planning startup with only five people, is facing legal action from the trillion-dollar Apple because of their logo. Super Healthy Kids, another startup from the founders of Prepear, shared their woes on Instagram. As the name suggests, Prepear uses a pear-shaped logo in lime green. According to the post, Apple thinks that the Prepear logo looks too similar to the globally known Apple logo.

Now, if you squint enough, you might find a few similarities. Both have a leaf hanging near the stem, for example. However, both logos are quite arguably far enough from each other. In fact, their brand identities are very distinct from each other.

Along with the Instagram post, Prepear has also started a Change.org petition, in hopes of stopping Apple’s legal action against them. In the petition, the startup is calling out Apple for bullying other smaller startups with fruit-themed logos. “Most small businesses cannot afford the tens of thousands of dollars it would cost to fight Apple,” the petition said.

In the same vein, big tech companies in the US are facing a lot of antitrust issues. Just recently, a court hearing caught Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg lying under oath. The social media company stole, bullied, and acquired rival companies to take them out.

Of course, Apple is no stranger to weird court cases from people in the past. However, this is one of the rare instances when the company itself is pursuing legal action for strange reasons against smaller entities.

SEE ALSO: Apple is not interested in TikTok

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Twitter is also considering a deal with TikTok

According to new reports

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Throughout the past week, everyone threw TikTok around like a hot potato. President Donald Trump announced and signed an expansive ban covering TikTok and WeChat, effective starting September 15. That is, unless both companies can reach an acquisition agreement with an American company. Since then, only Microsoft rose as the main suitor for the video-sharing platform. However, according to a new report, Twitter is also considering a deal with TikTok.

Reported by the Wall Street Journal, both parties have allegedly already engaged in talks for a possible deal. Of note, however, the report talks about a “possible combination,” rather than an outright acquisition. Whether or not the wording is critical remains to be seen.

According to the report, a potential deal will involve significant hurdles for both parties. On the one hand, Twitter is potentially courting the platform’s American operations, which are still facing a ban next month. On the other hand, a merger between the two will unify two globally dominant platforms into one.

Though Microsoft can benefit from a stronger presence in the social media industry, Twitter is already a dominant force. If it acquires TikTok, the company’s position will only grow stronger.

Of course, this is all just speculation at this point. No one knows who will ultimately land the popular video-sharing platform yet. Only Microsoft and Twitter have entered any sort of discussion with the Chinese company — publicly, at least. Though a potential buyer on its own right, Apple has already declined any sort of interest for the Chinese company.

SEE ALSO: TikTok is considering moving to the UK

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