Apple is bringing a billion dollar checkbook to Hollywood and wants to buy 10 TV shows

Apple is officially open for business in Hollywood.

The company is telling content makers it wants to spend $1 billion on its own stuff over the next year. That’s music to studios’ ears, and a tune they have been expecting for some time — especially after Apple hired two top Sony TV executives in June.

We still don’t know what Apple wants to do with that content: The Wall Street Journal says Apple wants to make up to 10 “Game of Thrones”- or “House of Cards”-scale shows, but that’s not enough to launch a full-scale subscription service.

For context: HBO spent about $2 billion on content last year, and Netflix is spending $6 billion. While Apple is now formally competing with those guys for content, it certainly doesn’t want to beat them. It wants them streaming their shows on Apple devices, and selling their services via Apple’s iTunes store, where Apple can take a cut of the monthly fee.

But Apple’s all-but-official announcement is a sign that it’s done with its first, halting effort to make its own programming, which it used to augment its Apple Music service. You don’t hire those guys, and spend that kind of money, as a marketing exercise.

Reminder: The list of guys writing checks in Hollywood now includes Apple, Amazon, Netflix, Facebook and Google; Verizon and AT&T are coming, too. You should stop reading this and start writing your spec script.

 [Source”indianexpress”]

Aurobindo Pharma, Intas in race to buy Mallinckrodt’s US generic business

Aurobindo Pharma and Intas are in the race to buy UK-based Mallinckrodt’s generic drugs business in the US valued at USD 2 billion, this will be the biggest ever overseas acquisition for any Indian drug maker.

Aurobindo Pharma and Intas are in the race to buy UK-based Mallinckrodt’s generic drugs business in the US, sources said. The deal valued at USD 2 billion, will be the biggest ever overseas acquisition for any Indian drug maker.

Sources said the deal is currently in its preliminary stages. The companies have submitted an initial bid for the Mallinckrodt’s generic business, which has been up for sale for last couple of months.

Mallinckrodt’s generics business has sales of around USD 1 billion.

Mallinckrodt has world’s most diverse line of bulk medicinal controlled substances, which has generated interest from these companies. The margins in the segment are quite high with less competition in comparison to the plain generic drugs.

In reply to query sent by CNBC-TV18, Mallinckrodt said it does not comment on market speculation.

Mallinckrodt generic business fits well with the Aurobindo Pharma’s, which is a leading manufacturer of API (Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient).

Privately held Intas Pharma is backed by Temasek and ChrysCapital. Some strategic and global private equity players are also in the race to acquire Mallinckrodt’s generics business.

Mallinckrodt’s business Includes Fentanyl, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Hydromorphone, Oxycodone, Morphine, Codeine-based drugs.

Aurobindo Pharma and Intas did not respond to queries sent by CNBC-TV18.

[Source”indianexpress”]

8 Apple iPhone 8 Alternatives To Buy That Are Also Apple

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For a moment between the leaks and rumors, when I was actually able to consider it all — I thought about saving up and buying an Apple AAPL +0.37% iPhone 8. The Apple iPhone 8 could finally be the iPhone that looks less like an iPhone and more like a Samsung. The Samsung Galaxy Note 8 screen leaks are pretty close in size and OLED greatness as the iPhone 8 screen leaks. My point is, that even with a insanely high price point and an inter-dimensional quandary, the iPhone 8 could be worth it.

Then again, it might not. $1200 for a cell phone? That’s a little wild. I literally just bought a 1998 Subaru Legacy for $1200. Of course, the price point is not only what the market will bear, but come the September keynote, something that tech journalists and fans will be cheering. Even with production delays, the iPhone 8 is still expected to be released at the same time as the iPhone 7S and iPhone 7S Plus.

Also see: Apple Finally Invents Instagram, Revolutionizing Your iPhone Photos

Gordon Kelly, who writes most of the iPhone leak articleshere at Forbes, suggests auctioning the iPhone 8 if you are able to get one before Christmas. He says this is the sensible option. While I’ve done that type of thing before (with a pair of Yeezy Boosts), perhaps you are just better off spending your $1200 on something else. Though, you’d still want something Apple related right? Well, here are eight Apple products well under $1200 you might want to buy instead of an iPhone 8:

  • Apple Newton MessagePad 2000. You can get one on eBay for under $200 in working order. Stylus pens are making a comeback, so why not be a total tech hipster and attend your morning stand-up meetings with this retro device in hand?
  • Apple Bandai Pippin. One of the worst video game systems of all time was limited to under 42,000 units actually released before it royally failed. Still cheaper than many modern cell phones. Plus you know you have a hankering to play Gus Goes to the Kooky Carnival in search of Rant.
  • Apple MacBook Air. Sure, we like our computing power in our pockets, but you can get two refurbished MacBook Air laptops for the price of one iPhone 8. Totally worth it and perfect for back to school.
  • A bag full of iPod Shuffles. Recently discontinued, now is the time to stock up on used iPod Shuffles. You can probably get about 40 4th generation iPod Shuffles for the cost of one iPhone 8. This was a great little device, I still have two. One of my favorite Apple products ever.
  • Macintosh Portable. I figure if typewriters are making a comeback, it’s only a matter of time before people start lugging around 16 pounds of 1 MB SRAM.
  • An Apple Watch. Just kidding. Apple Watches are terrible devices. Buy a Swatch instead.
  • Apple iPod Touch. Oddly enough, even with phones on the market with more storage than a base model iPod Touch, Apple still makes this. It’s not like you use your phone for actual phone calls anymore. If you hate your data plan and use WiFi like a boss, save some coin and get an iPod Touch for a fraction of the cost.
  • Around 3600 actual apples. It’s August, which means apple season is starting. Let’s say at 99 cents a pound, about three apples to a pound, you can get more than 3600 hundred apples for the price of an iPhone 8. That is some quality fiber and vitamin C right there.

Before you start taking out my knee-caps in the comments, I agree, this is total fluff. I just told myself at the start of the week that I needed to write some sort of silly tech listicle. I understand that I am no better today than the junk advertorial articles you see grouped together at the bottom of a Huffpo article.

Disclaimer aside, we are an always connected culture, consuming content in pace with our breathing. The Apple iPhone 8 will be another consumption device, programmed to be beautiful and wallet draining. It’s luxurious and smooth. So consider this instead — you can buy some nostalgia, or fruit.

Or you could just buy an iPhone 7S or iPhone 7S Plus. These will most likely be cheaper phones with a more traditional Apple iPhone design. There is a bit of wariness when considering the total sea change in design elements of the iPhone 8. I think I’ll stick to drawing on my MessagePad 2000.

[Source”timesofindia”]

Frantic traders rush to buy new accounting and tax filing software

Keeping up with change Cloth traders at work in a shop in Allahabad

Ramesh Khandelwal (name changed), a steel trader in Delhi’s Chandni Chawk market, was frantic on July 1, the day the GST came into effect. On a busy working day, his business was stalled as he could not generate invoices on his existing accounting software.

Khandelwal made a panic call to Chennai-based Zoho Corp’s office to buy its latest GST-compliant accounting software

“Just get me the software and I’ll pay you in cash. No matter what the amount is,” he told a Zoho executive on a call. The company explained to him that he could download the software and start using it immediately without paying for the first four days. Yet Khandelwal persisted that the software be installed immediately by Zoho.

Zoho’s office was flooded with such calls throughout the weekend where hundreds of engineers and support staff have not gone home and are tirelessly responding to customer queries, making their office their temporary humble abode.

“Our call centers are flooded with calls. We’ve seen more than 50 times increase in daily installations of our Zoho Books software over the weekend,” Sivaramakrishnan Iswaran, Director, product management and business development at Zoho, told BusinessLine. The new customers are in lakhs.

Iswaran, who can barely speak in Hindi, was forced to take 60 calls in the language since 5.30 in morning on Monday after he got a brief break to go home and catch some sleep on Sunday night. The company has started taking 3-4 online seminars or webinar each day in English, Hindi and Tamil to cater to the rush and explain to consumers how to use the new software.

Adding more customers

Tally, the largest accounting software company in the country, went through a similar craze over the weekend. Tally’s GST-compliant software Tally.ERP 9 Release 6 was launched about a month ago and by Friday about 4 lakh customers had upgraded to it. However, as many as 3 lakh additional customers upgraded the software over the weekend. Overall the company has 11 lakh customers in India, leaving 4 lakh customers still on the non-GST compliant addition. But the change has started on a frantic pace.

“Traders needing to go digital haven’t yet started the process in mass numbers. There is still time for them to make the transition and they aren’t taking rushed decisions. However, confusion still prevails on what they need to exactly do,” Tejas Goenka, Executive Director – Tally Solutions, said.

“We have met close to 3 lakh of them (customers) and are going to meet several thousand more in the “Upgrade your Tally” camps we are running across the country. The sense we are getting is that everyone wants to get ready real fast and that there is a huge rush of businesses wanting to move smoothly into the new tax era,” Goenka said.

There are only seven software companies licensed to sell GST filing software, approved by the GSTN. Tally, Zoho’s Go Frugal and Spice Digital are among the 34 software companies who were granted the licence as GST Suvidha Providers. Others include TCS, Ernst & Young and Deloitte.

“There is still a lot of confusion among traders as many of them are actually paying taxes for the first time. We’ve seen cases where traders are charging 18 per cent GST wherein they are supposed to charge only 12 per cent on the particular products. This is due to confusion and in some cases traders deliberately trying to take advantage of the prevailing confusion,” said Saket Agarwal, Globa CEO, Spice Digital. Spice Digital was ready with the GST filing software in February but could launch it in the market only in June due to constant changes made by the GST council.

“We’ve just integrated the new APIs in the software after changes were made by the GST Council. The updates however, will be regular for at least some time as we expect more changes to be made by the GST Council in the coming weeks,” Agarwal said.

Many traders who were holding off their purchase of such accounting and tax filing software to look for loopholes in hopes of avoiding tax are now finding themselves in a fix as they are unable to conduct business unless it is done in a tax-compliant manner.

[Source”indianexpress”]

Microsoft Plans to Buy Security Firm Adallom

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Microsoft is set to be paying 320 million dollars in cash for Adallom, a startup with software for monitoring the use of cloud-based services. A source has claimed all 90 employees, including the 30 in the US, will function an independent unit of Microsoft and will manage material related to cybersecurity for Microsoft.

While Microsoft has refused to comment on the supposed deal, the Wall Street Journal claims, “According to the people familiar with the matter, Adallom, which employs 90 people world-wide, will continue to operate from Israel, building up Microsoft’s cybersecurity-focused operations in the country.” The first to report the deal were Israeli media outlets Calcalist and Globes, with reports later coming from the Wall Street Journal.

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Microsoft has continued making the cloud a priority throughout the whole company, and building an intelligent cloud platform is one of three areas of investment for the company. Cloud security is vital to the company as they switch to more internet based occupations, hence the move to purchase Adallom. Usage and revenue from application Office 365 has increased during the first quarter of 2015, and Microsoft want to protect this trend.

This is just one of Microsoft’s myriad of partnerships and acquisitions this year. Microsoft has previously attained a provider of machine learning technologies for e-discovery and information governance. The company’s software uses advanced text analytics to perform multidimensional analyses of data collections, intelligently sorting documents into themes, grouping near-duplicates, and isolating unique data. In addition,  Microsoft has purchased N-trig and Aorato.

 

[Source:- Cloudnewsdaily]