Webwire: India tax officials raid Nokia; Apple may plan cheaper iPhone

Vodafone isn't the only company facing a tax battle with Indian authorities. Income tax officials yesterday raided Nokia's facilities in Chennai, on suspicions that the vendor has avoided 30 billion rupees ($546 million) in tax.
 
Sources say Apple is working on a lower-cost iPhone - which could launch later this year – in response to growing competition from Android-based devices.
 
Samsung beat analysts' estimates with an 89% increase in Q4 operating profit to 8.8 trillion won ($8.27 billion), on 18% higher sales of 56 trillion won.
 
India has drafted its proposed rules mandating that a significant proportion of electronic equipment sold in India – including phones, tablets and networking gear – be manufactured locally. The laws, if passed, could cost foreign vendors huge sums in factory investments and/or lost sales.
 
Nokia has not ruled out the possibility of developing Android-based phones in the future, but has no such plans short-term, according to CEO Stephen Elop.
 
India's telecom department has petitioned the Supreme Court seeking an extension on the January 18 deadline for operators to shut down mobile networks in areas where they have lost licenses. The ministry has asked that CSPs be allowed to operate until after the March spectrum auction. 
 
Google has launched a free Wi-Fi network in parts of New York's Chelsea district, the largest public outdoor Wi-Fi network in the city. The $115,000 network will be operated under a two-year pilot program.
 
A mysterious Japanese hacker has led police to a message left on a memory stick attached to a cat's collar, after taunting them with a series of cryptic clues and making threats against public buildings including schools.

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