Tuesday Tech Wrap: Apple, Intel, Cisco (Forbes)

Apple CEO Tim Cook smiles during a product launch event on October 27, 2016 in Cupertino, California. (Photo by Stephen Lam/Getty Images)

Apple is expected to report its second-quarter earnings on Tuesday, and also to reveal that it’s holding $250 billion in cash – more than the foreign currency reserves held by Canada and the U.K. combined, according to The Wall Street Journal. Around 90% of that cash is held outside the United States and some have speculated that under the Trump administration Apple may be able to repatriate some of it.

Meanwhile, Apple is reportedly finalizing a device that will go head to head with the Amazon Echo and Google Home smart-home speakers, Forbes contributor Amit Chowdhry writes. Apple’s voice activated speaker is expected to be powered by Siri and able to do range of basic tasks, such as setting timers, streaming songs from Apple Music and reporting the weather. “Rumor has it that Apple will announce it at the Worldwide Developers Conference,” Chowdhry adds, which takes place between June 5th and 9th.

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Cisco has bought another cloud company for $610 million in cash. San Jose, Calif-based Viptela builds systems for software-defined wide area networks (or SD-WANs), which are used by companies that have offices in different geographies linked into the same network. Cisco has been acquisitive lately: earlier this year it bought AppDynamics for $3.7 billion, and last year it picked up Jasper Technologies for $1.4 billion, TechCrunch notes.

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Intel has released a patch to a critical vulnerability in its processors that made it possible for hackers to take full control over insecure networks, the chipmaker said on Monday. Fixing the vulnerability requires getting a firmware update from a machine’s manufacturer, according to The Register. While Intel has developed the updates, the manufacturers must cryptographically sign and distribute them. “Basically, if you’re using a machine with vPro and AMT features enabled, you are at risk,” The Register adds.

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Wearable device maker Fitbit is preparing to release a pair of bluetooth earphones and a fully-fledged smartwatch to compete with the Apple Watch this fall, according to Yahoo Finance, which said it had obtained leaked images of the products. A source described the watch as “retro-looking”  and “definitely not sexy.” The smartwatch, codenamed Higgs, will reportedly sell for $300 while the earphones, which will hang around the neck, will cost around $150, Yahoo Finance adds.

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Twitter has announced it is partnering with live-events giant Live Nation to exclusively livestream videos of concerts. The company announced deals with 15 other live-streaming partners, according to AdWeek, including with the NFL and Bloomberg Media. In total, Twitter says it now has 200 live video partnerships, according to TechCrunch, which adds that “Twitter seems intent on doubling down on its position as the second screen, by trying to become the first screen too.”

Source: SANS ISC SecNewsFeed @ May 2, 2017 at 05:51AM

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