Verizon raises activation fee; Yahoo to spin off Alibaba stake

Quick news from around the Web.

Auction Watch: After 322 rounds, the last of which included 4 new bids, the FCC's AWS-3 auction has raised a total of $44.893 billion in provisionally winning bids. Page. AWS-3 auction primer.

> Verizon Wireless is raising its activation fee from $35 to $40. Article

> Yahoo plans to spin off its stake in Alibaba. Article

> Kik's CEO said he wants to turn the company's service into a messaging platform, not just an app. Article

> Juniper Research said 400 million phablets will ship in 2019, up from 138 million in 2015. Release

> Foxconn denied a report it will cut jobs due to falling smartphone prices. Article

> VMware missed its sales forecast. Article

> The FTC said it is investigating privacy concerns in the Internet of Things. Article

> Xiaomi's Mi Note and Mi Note Pro sold out in around three minutes. Article

Online Video News

> WWE's online video gamble, WWE Network, has crossed its first big subscriber benchmark, passing 1 million subscribers this week. Article

> Ad-supported online streaming service Popcornflix said its app has been downloaded more than 10 million times, a figure combined from app downloads to a number of devices including Roku players, game consoles, mobile devices and smart TVs. Article

> Imagine Communications is adding a dynamic ad insertion component to its online video infrastructure portfolio, acquiring RGB Networks for an undisclosed amount. Article

Telecom News

> AT&T reported that U-verse was the star performer in the wireline portfolio, rising 21.9 percent year-over-year in the fourth quarter of 2014, driving up residential wireline revenues slightly 0.1 percent to $5.6 billion. Article

> A call made by President Barack Obama to the FCC asking the FCC to overturn a series of existing 20 existing state laws that either prohibit or outright ban cities and towns from building and operating their own broadband network businesses will face a number of legal challenges. Article

Cable News

> AT&T reported the addition of 73,000 U-verse TV subscribers in the fourth quarter, a significant decline from the 194,000 added in the same period of 2013. Article

European Wireless News

> Future consumers will place further requirements on shared data plans in terms of new services and capabilities, according to a new report from Ericsson ConsumerLab. Article

> Mobile TeleSystems (MTS) has launched an LTE network on the 800 MHz frequency band throughout the Moscow region, enabling it to expand coverage to 300 "population centres" and on suburban roads. Article

> Ofcom released details of plans designed to ensure the UK takes a leading role in developing the Internet of Things (IoT), as the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) separately outlined its approach to the emerging technology sector. Article

> Big-name brands are vanishing in Europe. Editor's Corner

And finally… AT&T is launching a superhero show called SnapperHero that will be distributed on Snapchat; the 12 episodes will disappear in 12 hours. Article

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