Apple Apps Earn $4 Billion; Yahoo! Looks At Layoffs

Dice News RoundupDICE NEWS ROUNDUP:

Apple App Developers Have Made $4 Billion: Apple has paid out more than $4 billion to developers, including $700 million in the fourth quarter of 2011. On Christmas Day alone, Apple said more than $140 million worth of apps and content were downloaded through iTunes. That was just one stunning statistic from Apple’s latest quarterly report. There are now 170,000 iPad apps and 550,000 apps in total available for iOS, and Apple has sold more than 315 million iOS devices. The company produced a record quarter with $46.3 billion in revenue through sales of 37.04 million iPhones and 15.43 million iPads. Inside Mobile Apps

Yahoo! Looking to Cut Staff: Yahoo! has reportedly frozen hiring and may cut its work force as new CEO Scott Thompson begins to try to get the company to rebound. A report that said layoffs are expected to be small and selective for now, but hundreds of unfilled positions will remain vacant. The company has a workforce of 13,700 and is the 15th biggest employer in Silicon Valley, with about 4,900 workers in the region. San Jose Business Journal

RIM Scrambles for New Leadership: Research in Motion’s co-CEOs, Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie, stepped down and named Thorsten Heins, a former Siemens AG executive who joined the company four years ago, as the new CEO. Lazaridis will now become vice chairman and Balsillie will remain as a director. RIM’s share of the U.S. smartphone market fell to 16.6 percent at the end of November, according to research firm ComScore. In comparison, Android phones hold nearly 50 percent and iPhones 28.7 percent. Dice

Google’s New Overarching Privacy Policy Causes Concern: Google is prepping a massive overhaul of its privacy policies, condensing more than 70 separate documents into a single policy by March 1. Regulators globally have been calling for shorter, simpler privacy policies, Google says, and having one policy covering many different products is now fairly standard across the Web. However, critics have immediately pounced, contending that Google is now giving itself the freedom to become even more monolithic by taking all of a user’s activities at different Google services and blending them into one much more complete and focused view of the user’s online life. There is no opting out. Google Blog

Midsize Firms Choose Technology Over Hiring: Technology spending is currently more important than hiring for most executives at midsize companies as they seek to control labor costs while boosting productivity. A Deloitte report found that 70 percent of executives surveyed said productivity has increased since the recession began, but the two most-cited reasons for the increase in productivity were improved business processes and technology. Just 38 percent said “strategic hiring in critical areas” offers a path to higher productivity.  And 45 percent said the need for their companies to become more productive is restraining new hiring. IndustryWeek

Symantec Hack Attack Results in Unprecedented Move: Security vendor Symantec has made the unprecedented move of asking users of its pcAnywhere remote control software to disable it. The company says hackers with access to the product’s source code could exploit security holes identified in the software. The request comes after earlier confirmation that hackers had stolen source code for several Symantec products. Among them, pcAnywhere is the one most likely to be negatively impacted by hack attacks. “It is possible that successful man-in-the-middle attacks may occur depending on the configuration and use of the product,” the company said. CIO.com

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