Friday, February 28, 2014

Tim Cook: Apple TV sales topped $1 billion in 2013

CUPERTINO, Calif. - Apple ( AAPL) Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook said the company sold more than $1 billion worth of Apple TV set-top boxes in 2013 and reassured shareholders at the annual meeting that the company is investing heavily in the next generation of products.

"We're working Discount some things that are extensions of things you can see and some that you can't see," Cook said at the annual shareholders' meeting on Friday, referring to a 32 percent increase in research and development costs last year.

Cook said Apple has acquired 23 companies in the last 16 months and remained on the lookout for interesting technology and companies. While Apple is not "in a race" to acquire the most companies or to spend the most money, that "doesn't mean we won't buy a huge company tomorrow afternoon," he said.

Apple will provide an update about how it will use its massive cash pile, which was nearly $160 billion at the end of last quarter, within the next 60 days, Cook said. The time frame is in line with previous comments that the company would announce its latest cash management plans around April.

Apple repurchased $14 billion in stock in a two-week period earlier this year, under pressure from activist investor Carl Icahn, who had been publicly calling for the iPhone-maker to buy back an additional $50 billion of stock above its existing buyback program.

Icahn withdrew a shareholder proposal for the buyback following Apple's announcement of the $14 billion in stock repurchases. Icahn in late January said that he held more than $4 billion in Apple shares.

Shareholders at the annual meeting at Apple's Cupertino headquarters on Friday re-elected all of Apple's board members.

Apple shares were down 0.6 percent at $524.47 in midday trading on Friday. The shares have clawed back substantial ground since falling below $400 in June, though they are well below the record-high $700 level of 2012, weighed by concerns about whether the company has any new hit products in the pipeline.

Some investors have expected Apple to unveil a wearable device, such as a smartwatch, or a new-fangled television that integrates Internet capabilities.

Cook did not provide any details on new products during his presentation to shareholders, but said the company's existing $99 AppleTV set-top box -- long referred to as a "hobby" by Apple executives -- had racked up $1 billion in sales in the past year.

"It's a little more difficult to call it a hobby these days," Cook said.

In response to a shareholder question about innovation, Cook said that Apple preferred not to tip its hand about new products under development so as not to tip off the competition. "You can see we're getting ripped off left, right and sideways," he said.

Cook also used the event to take pot shots at Google Inc., saying that the majority of users of Google's rival Android mobile operating system are using older versions of the software, presenting a security threat. In contrast, he said that 89 percent of people using devices based on Apple's iOS operating system are using the most recent version of the software.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Amazon And The BBC Make Ripper Of A Deal

Coupon Codes have struck a deal with the BBC to revive the cancelled crime drama Ripper Street. Thanks to Amazon's financial input, the new season will be streamed on Amazon Instant before it airs on the BBC.

The deal shows the power that online streaming companies now have. Being able to create original content and having the financial clout to revive shows that still have a loyal following.

Ripper Street was cancelled last year after two seasons by the BBC who said it "didn't bring the audience we hoped", and stars Matthew Macfadyen and Jerome Flynn as police detectives in the 19th Century at the time the ripper stalked the streets of Whitechapel, East London.

The new season will begin shooting in May and will premiere first on the Amazon Prime Instant on-demand service which will also have the first two seasons available to stream.

The BBC were Cock-a-Hoop with the news, drama boss Ben Stephenson said it was an, "an exceptional opportunity" to bring back the show. He said: "This deal gives fans another series of the show they love at excellent value to the licence fee-payer, ensuring that the BBC can also commission an entirely new, yet-to-be-announced drama series."

Speaking for Amazon, head of Amazon instant video international content acquisition, Jason Ropell said, "We're delighted to have secured not only the highly popular first two seasons of Ripper Street for our Prime Instant Video customers, but we can also confirm today that we will making season three, news that we know will delight the millions of fans of this brilliant British drama."

Sam's Club is testing an online subscription service as the threat from Amazon grows.

Sam's Club is quietly testing a new subscription service that allows customers to order items like diapers and printer cartridges online, a sign the Internet is beginnng to threaten areas of retail that were once considered relatively safe.

Called "My Subscriptions," the service mirrors Inc.'s Subscribe & Save program, which was launched in 2007 and has given the Internet retailer a foothold in sales of basic...

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Red Sox Journal: Capuano passes physical; deal now official

FORT MYERS, Fla. - The only time Chris Capuano ever pitched in Fenway Park, he was a high school senior out of Springfield, Mass., playing in an All-Star game against kids from Connecticut. That should change soon.

Capuano's one-year Price Compare with the Red Sox was made official on Saturday, with the left-hander passing a physical and participating in the team's workout. For the veteran right-hander, the chance to pitch for his hometown team overcame the lack of a set role on the staff.

"It really is going to be like coming home," he said. "It's a storied organization. Who wouldn't want to be a part of that as a player?"

Capuano almost became a member of the Red Sox three years ago. Late in the 2011 season, as Boston sputtered to the finish, rumors swirled that the Sox would deal for a pitcher simply to start a tiebreaker game if needed. Kansas City's Bruce Chen and Capuano, then with the Mets, were the two names discussed the most.

"It was an exciting possibility," recalled Capuano, who grew up cheering for Roger Clemens and said he was "devastated" by the 1986 World Series as a kid. "I didn't have a whole lot of time to think about it."

Despite signing during spring training, Capuano doesn't think he's behind the other pitchers. He spent the last several weeks maintaining his typical throwing program even while waiting to sign with a team.

"You do get antsy," he said. "You're at home and you're still throwing your bullpens and getting your work in, but there's a sense you don't want to miss out too much. Fortunately it didn't go longer than it did."

To make room for Capuano on the 40-man roster, the Red Sox officially placed Ryan Dempster on the restricted list.

Seeing is believing

Full-squad workouts have only been going on for three days at JetBlue Park, and already manager John Farrell finds himself having to keep calm about the form on display from Grady Sizemore.

"Two days ago, he had a phenomenal day - running the bases at full speed, his defensive work was at full speed, he's handling live pitching well," Farrell said of the outfielder. "Everything has been very encouraging. We're going to have to temper our enthusiasm or really how much we push him just to gradually get him back into game shape."

That's going to be a process all spring long, as Sizemore hasn't played in the majors since 2011. Farrell and the Red Sox have been encouraged by the fact that Sizemore has yet to require additional treatment at this point in spring. Still, his status will be better determined when the games start next week.

Sizemore's showing so far isn't a surprise to Steve Peck, the special assignment scout who looked at Sizemore right before the Red Sox signed him.

"Everybody was aware of Grady. I don't think he fell off the map," Peck said. "The big thing was just making sure the health was there. I've done this long enough to know when a guy's going through his rehab process and just be able to see athletically where he's at and what he's able to do on the field. Over that process, we had a really strong feel of the condition he was in. He looked fantastic."

The real McCoy

Mike McCoy is one of the most versatile players in all of baseball - a man worthy of the "super-utility" designation. A second baseman out of college, McCoy has played three infield spots and all three outfield spots during his 170 games in the major leagues. And on a June day in 2011, he took the hill against the Red Sox.

He did more than just acquit himself. In a series in which the Blue Jays allowed 35 runs in three days, McCoy tossed a 1-2-3 inning against Carl Crawford, Marco Scutaro and J.D. Drew. McCoy has actually thrown 72/3 innings as a pitcher in pro ball, and he's allowed only one earned run.

"That was one of the most thrilling moments of my career," McCoy said. "Even though we were getting beat pretty bad, you're on the mound and you're by yourself. All eyes are on you. It was an interesting experience."

McCoy isn't the kind of player who attracts a ton of attention otherwise. He's known more for his glove - and maybe that should be plural - than his bat, with his ability to play all over the field making him a valuable part of organizational depth.

He's been honing that versatility since first asking for a shot in the outfield while in the Cardinals system.

"I take pride in my athleticism," said the 32-year-old. "I might think I'm better than I am, but I think that I can just go do it."

Having played for Farrell in Toronto, McCoy is familiar with how camp is being run at JetBlue. It also eases the transition, since he's aware of all the different shifts the Red Sox like to run.

Barring injury, McCoy's chances of making the major-league club out of camp are less than slim. But there's tremendous value in having a reliable, defensive-oriented veteran who can play all over the field at Triple A.

"He knows what we expect out of players," said Farrell. "He stays ready and he understands the utility role, which is not always an easy one."

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

NordStrom Coupons & Hottest NordStrom Promo Codes for 2014

Dallas, TX -- ( SBWIRE) -- 01/27/2014 -- There's much to celebrate and look forward to with the start of 2014. NordStrom, Inc., a leading fashion retailer that has been in operation for over a hundred years now, has continued to bring their keen fashion sense and their line of products and offers well into the 21st century. This year would be no different. Taking their 117 shops in 35 stores to just one online shop, the Nordstrom following can only expect more exciting offers, discounts, time limited sales and promos on nothing less than some of the top fashion brands in the industry.

2014 NordStrom Coupons and Promo Codes
First off on the Nordstrom list for 2014 are their NordStrom Promo Codes. Shoppers can enjoy a hefty $25 off on their first order priced above $50. Shoppers will only need to copy and paste the Buy Cheap code upon online check out of the item at NordStrom and they automatically enjoy a slash in their purchase.

For US shoppers, as much as 50% off discounts can be had on, baby gears, women's dresses, coats, sandals, men's clothing, and winter pieces on brands that include - but are not limited to Decleor, Dr. Martens, Dior, Cashmere, and Military.

To avail of these big discounts and price slashes, shoppers don't even need any codes. These offers are, however, good and valid only to US shoppers.

The list can only get better, and the discounts can only get higher. NordStrom has a lot in store for the active outdoorsmen with a 55% discount on all men's active and outdoor apparel, as well as on men's jeans. And while the men may have a lot of reason to dress up for, come Valentine's Season, NordStrom makes sure the women are not to be left under-dressed for their dates - outdoors or otherwise - with 65% discounts on all women's designer collections including sunnies, shoes, pants, capris, dresses, designer sweats, yoga, sports, and outdoor apparels.

NordStrom Special Offer
NordStrom special offers are regular things that shoppers can keep watch of. These special offers of NordStrom to their US shoppers come mostly in forms of rock-bottom prices for regular items such as the 2014 offers on all junior apparel and accessories starting at only $12, women's new arrival clothing starting at only $18, and women's designer items starting only at $45.

This NordStrom list of 2014 special offers extends beyond the closet. For shoppers who feel like they need to redo their home's 2014 look, home and garden deals are also available starting from $4.9.

Looking Ahead to Valentine's Day 2014 Deals
NordStrom knows that the next most awaited holiday after the New Year is the Valentine's Day. With or without dates, NordStrom understands that shoppers can't wait to prep up for the day. With this in mind, the Special NordStrom US Valentine's Deal can already be enjoyed as early as January with Valentine's Day gifts offered starting at only $6. The gift selection are as wide and as varied as watches, jewelries, dresses for Valentine's, or as safe as a gift card.

Another gift card promotion for the US market lets you buy a gift card between $25 to $1000. Offering a NordStrom gift card as low as $25 enables students, teenagers, and basically their non-earning following to make a good impression on their recipients as one with classy, impeccable tastes in brand selection.

The NordStrom Bi-Annual Sales
NordStrom regularly holds bi-annual sales. For kids' and women's clothing, these regular bi-annual sales are held in May and November. And just when shoppers are beginning to think that the mid-year June and July months are long and boring, NordStrom comes through for them with men's clothing sale at June, and the NordStrom Anniversary sale in July.

NordStrom Retail Credit Card and Debit Card
There's an even bigger, better way of enjoying more savings and rewards throughout the year with the NordStrom Rewards Card. Shoppers have the option of choosing between the NordStrom Retail, the NordStrom Debit Card, and the NordStrom Visa Signature Card.

With no annual fee and with very competitive APRs, the NordStrom Retail Credit and Debit Cards are classy addition to your wallet's shopping power. Every use of the card earns you 2 points for every net dollar spent at NordStrom,, and NordStrom Rack. An accumulated 2,000 points entitles you to a $20 NordStrom Note that can be used to redeem any item of your choice at NordStrom.

What's great about the cards is that shoppers don't even need to wait to earn the 2,000 points to enjoy the cards' benefits and privileges. Simply by purchasing any item at $100 or above with your NordStrom card upon the day of application, shoppers can already enjoy a $20 NordStrom Note.

Contact Info:
Rita Xing

Monday, February 3, 2014

Sharon Randall: Between major awards: daily life

My Aunt Hazel used to say, "I just go a-fightin' all the time."

I know what she meant.

This morning I had several things I planned to do after my husband left for work. Shop for groceries. Pick up dry cleaning. Call my sister. Split a few atoms.

I wanted to get it all done by noon and spend the rest of the day working on a novel I ought to have finished years ago.

Over coffee, my husband said he had to be at work early for a meeting. He thought that would make me offer to pack his lunch for him while he took a shower.

He was right. He padded off to the bathroom singing and I started rummaging in the fridge for leftovers. We'd had gnocchi the night before. I was sure we had extra, but couldn't find it. I was about to go ask him if he'd eaten it when I heard him yell.

It was the kind of yell that says something bad has happened. And usually, it involves blood.

I made it from the kitchen to the bathroom in two seconds flat. And there he stood, the man of my dreams, with water gushing over him, holding the faucet handle he had somehow broken off the wall.

I wish you could've seen him. Well, not all of him. It reminded me of the night we went for a walk and a bulldog jumped over a fence and bit him on the arm.

"I need a screwdriver!" he sputtered, "or a wrench!"

Actually, what we needed was a plumber. But first we needed to shut off the water. I grabbed my laptop to search for a phone number and he got dressed to go out and find the water main.

Somehow, I recalled the name of a plumber we'd used years ago. I dialed his number and prayed he hadn't retired.

Mario answered, God bless him. He was on a job across town, but could be at our place in about an hour.

I kissed him through the phone. Then I ran out to find my husband kneeling prostrate over the water main as if in prayer.

"Spiders," he said, pointing into the hole. "Black widows."

"Oh my," I said, stepping back. He pulled on gloves and reached in to grip the lever. It didn't budge. Not even a little. And it was almost time for his meeting.

"Go," I said, "I'll figure it out."

So he left and I stayed to figure it out - with a little help from my new best friends, Mario and his brother Rico, and the lovely woman at the water district office who took my call and sent someone to shut off our water.

After they left, I hooked up a hose to drain the water heater. (Mario said it should be drained twice a year and the last time we had drained it was never.)

By then it was afternoon and I was starved. So I grabbed lunch, picked up the dry cleaning, got groceries, came home and put it all away. Then I called my sister. She's been under the weather henderson nv. I thought the shower story would cheer her up. It did. We laughed so hard we had coughing fits.

Next thing I knew, it was time for dinner, and I still hadn't spent a minute on the book.

Life is often measured by major accomplishments - awards won, fortunes made, creative works completed.

But it's lived in the smallest of moments - in the everyday, ordinary efforts to take care of our homes and our things and ourselves and those we love.

That's the stuff of life. There is nothing more important.

My mother didn't finish high school. She waited tables and worked in a mill and spent her life caring for her family. I couldn't be prouder of her.

I will finish that book, Lord willing. But if I'm remembered, I hope it's for this: I adored my children and grandchildren; I stood by my husband in his time of need, breaking showers or battling spiders; I was grateful for angels posing as plumbers; and once in a while, I managed to make my sister laugh.

I could do worse.

Every day, we go a-fightin'. The best we can do is take it as it comes and try to figure it out.

Sharon Randall can be contacted at P.O. Box 777394, Henderson NV 89077, or at