How will Sprint's Framily fare against T-Mobile's ETF buyout?

In Framily we trust.

At least, that's the takeaway from Sprint after the wireless carrier reported fourth-quarter results, which revealed the company continues to bleed money but is returning to customer growth.

Sprint is hoping to keep that growth going with Framily, a friends and family plan that allows people to sign up together for increased savings. CEO Dan Hesse said he believes the plan will give it an edge against the competition.

The introduction of Framily is just one of a string of incentives and plans offered by the national carriers -- all designed to entice customers to … Read more

NASA plans moon turnips by 2015

NASA wants to grow plants on the moon.

More specifically, it's planning to plant a vegetable garden there to demonstrate that a moon garden is a feasible way of supplementing astronauts' meals. The space agency has announced that by 2015, it will be sending up various plants -- including turnips, Arabidopsis (a type of cress), and basil -- in what it is calling "the first life sciences experiment on another world."

The agency's not just planning to dig some holes, bury the seeds, and hope for the best, though. The plants will be grown in a … Read more

T-Mobile adds 1M customers as Uncarrier push pays off

The T-Mobile customer growth engine is picking up steam.

The carrier added more than a net 1 million new customers in the third quarter, including a net new 648,000 so-called postpaid customers, who tend to have stronger credit history and are willing to pay more each month. It ended the period with more than 45 million customers.

"Our momentum is great and we have confidence that we can continue to deliver sustainable and profitable growth," CEO John Legere said in a statement.

The No. 4 wireless carrier posted a loss of $36 million, compared with a loss … Read more

Mobile revenue growth slowing, seen declining by 2018

The heady days of wireless growth are near an end.

That's according to research firm Ovum, who warned that global wireless revenue was slowing as more and more people have signed up for cell phones. The industry will likely see its first revenue decline by 2018.

The number of global connections will grow at a compounded annual growth rate of less than 4 percent between 2012 and 2018, while global revenues will grow at less than half that rate, Ovum said. That means the number of global connections will grow from 6.5 billion in 2012 to 8.1 … Read more

Forget Rogaine: Grow your hair with this laser-light helmet

Though its name may indicate otherwise, iGrow ain't your momma's Chia Pet. In fact, it's a high-tech hair growth system in the form of a laser-light helmet. And while it's been in the works for a few years, it's now the proud recipient of approval by the Food and Drug Administration.

More than 35 million men in the U.S. are afflicted with androgenetic alopecia, a condition commonly referred to as male pattern baldness, though it does occur in women as well. In men it can begin as early as the late teens, and it eventually affects more than half of men over the age of 50, while in women it doesn't usually kick in until after menopause.… Read more

Saverin: Facebook's rapid growth is its 'biggest risk'

Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin isn't convinced that the social network's fast-growth strategy is a good one.

Speaking at a conference in Singapore today, Saverin said that while growth is a "huge asset," it can lead to a very real problem that shouldn't be overlooked.

"The biggest risk is growing too fast," he said, according to Bloomberg, who had a reporter at the event. "When you grow too fast, it's hard to iterate, educate."

Facebook is making no secret that it wants to grow as quickly as possible. Last month, CEO … Read more

Skype breaks records, traffic grows by 44 percent

Microsoft's Skype is making some serious headway into the international phone traffic scene. New data (PDF) from telecom market research firm TeleGeography shows that Skype broke records in 2012 by hosting the same amount of calls as one third of the world's phone traffic.

International phone traffic typically grows slowly, for example in 2012 it increased by 5 percent to 490 billion minutes. However, voice and messaging call apps are growing at a breakneck pace. Skype voice and video traffic grew 44 percent to 167 billion minutes in 2012. This increase is more than twice that of all … Read more

Judge tosses some shareholder suits over Facebook's IPO flop

Things may be looking up for Facebook in the dozens of lawsuits it's facing from peeved shareholders over its botched initial public offering.

U.S. District Judge Robert Sweet ruled in favor of Facebook today and dismissed a group of these cases, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The social network became embroiled in this extensive legal battle shortly after its $16 billion IPO last May. The company's stock opened on the Nasdaq priced at $38 a share and, aside from a slight uptick right at the start, proceeded to plummet in the days and weeks following. Defendants … Read more

Nokia injects $250 million into venture funding

Nokia has committed another $250 million to its venture funding arm, Nokia Growth Partners, the company announced today.

With that sum, Nokia Growth Partners members will be able to invest in "high potential businesses within the mobile ecosystem." The venture capitalists will focus their efforts in the U.S., Europe, and Asia.

China could be an important opportunity for Nokia, so the company has expanded its presence there by appointing former AMD China president David Tang as managing director. Lu Guo, former Keystone Ventures vice president, will act as principal in China.

Nokia's latest fund is its … Read more

Cyber Monday crowned biggest Web shopping day in U.S. history

Cyber Monday this year took the trophy for the biggest online shopping day ever in the U.S.

ComScore reported that U.S. online spending on Cyber Monday 2012 reached $1.465 billion, up 17 percent from a year ago, "representing the heaviest online spending day in [U.S.] history and the second day this season (in addition to Black Friday) to surpass $1 billion in sales."

Breaking the total down, ComScore said that the top category for sales was digital content and subscriptions (up 28 percent), followed by consumer electronics (up 24 percent and "buoyed by … Read more