Peter SayerIDG News Service

Peter Sayer covers open source software, European intellectual property legislation and general technology breaking news.

AMD to spin off chip fabs to raise funds

Advanced Micro Devices plans to split into two companies, one to design chips and one to make them.

eBay buys payment firm, lays off over 1,000

EBay announced two acquisitions Monday, at the same time saying it will lay off more than 1,000 staff worldwide and cut back on recruitment.

Orange to rate environmental impact of mobile phones

Network operator Orange will rate the environmental impact of the fixed-line and mobile phones it sells.

Microsoft rewards search—but only with Internet Explorer

Microsoft is offering frequent flyer miles to attract users to its search engine. But Mac users—and anyone not using Internet Explorer—could be left out.

Best Buy offers $121 million for Napster

Best Buy has agreed to pay around US$121 million in cash for online music retailer Napster

Sony recalls 73,000 Vaio laptops due to burn hazard

Sony is recalling 73,000 Vaio TZ laptops because of a possible manufacturing defect that may cause them to overheat.

Microsoft buys European comparison shopping site for $486M

Microsoft has agreed to buy comparison shopping site Ciao in a deal worth around US$486 million, the companies announced on Friday.

European court won't stop UK hacker's extradition to US

The European Court of Human Rights has refused U.K. hacker Gary McKinnon's appeal against demands for his extradition to the U.S.

Password protected iPhones can be unlocked without a password

Private information stored in Apple's iPhone and protected by a lock code can be accessed by anyone with just a few button...

Motorola clings to third place in mobile market

Motorola clung on to third place in the mobile phone market in the second quarter, far behind Nokia and Samsung.

Viacom allows YouTube to conceal user names in court case

Google will be allowed to conceal the identities of YouTube users in a logging database that a court ordered it to hand over to Viacom.

Google blurs faces to protect privacy in French StreetView

Google has chosen to blur the faces of people caught on camera by the French edition of its StreetView service.

Google keeps code but Viacom gets YouTube user data

YouTube must hand Viacom a database listing who watched the videos it hosts, although it need not reveal the code for its search engine, a court ordered.

India and Brazil file appeals against OOXML standardization

India and Brazil have appealed against the adoption as an international standard of a file format based on Microsoft's OOXML.

Greenpeace: Game consoles contain environmental hazards

Games consoles manufacturers have much to learn from one another if they are to eliminate toxic chemicals from their products, according to a Greenpeace report.