About 7,000 US Starbucks locations are beginning to accept payments using Square's mobile payment application for smartphones.

By TheStreet Staff Nov 8, 2012 3:56PM

thesteet LoGoMan using a smartphone © Geber86/E+/Getty ImagesBy Chris Ciaccia, TheStreet.com  


The partnership that promises to bring the mobile-payments revolution to the forefront launched Nov. 8, as Square, the start-up that has developed a software-based mobile wallet, rolls out its mobile-payments app at approximately 7,000 Starbucks (SBUX) outlets.


As Square Wallet goes into effect for Starbucks customers, the two companies hope their relationship transforms the mobile-payments experience.


Sales were strong following the late-September launch of Apple's smartphone. But consumers and carriers are getting antsy about ongoing production delays.

By TheStreet Staff Nov 7, 2012 4:45PM

TheStreet LoGoApple iPhone user © Image Source, Image Source, Getty ImagesBy Chris Ciaccia


Despite early criticism from pundits who asserted that Apple's (AAPL) iPhone 5 was a step back from previous handsets, consumers are still having an extremely difficult time getting their hands on one.

Demand is enormous, and Apple's supplier, Foxconn Technology, is reportedly having problems keeping up with the demand.


"It's not easy to make the iPhones. We are falling short of meeting the huge demand," Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou recently told reporters.


Our digital communications rest uneasily on a platform that wobbled and in some cases broke down altogether in the storm that ravaged New York City and its surroundings.

By TheStreet Staff Nov 6, 2012 3:52PM

Thestreet logoPhones and laptops charge off a genertor in New York's West Village on Nov. 1, 2012 © TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP/Getty ImagesBy  Jonathan Blum


Although I am ridiculously fortunate to have escaped Hurricane Sandy with only a few downed trees and a week without electricity, the storm left me with the unsettling realization that what passes for Internet infrastructure -- the mishmash of wired, wireless, power and computer technologies that virtual things run on -- is essentially a techno bucket of bolts.


And considering the cost, complexity and uncertainty in doing business on the Web, it is no wonder that information technology giants such as Google (GOOG), Facebook (FB) and Amazon.com (AMZN) see their profit margins under threat.

The World Wide Web will need a worldwide rebuild before anybody ever makes any real money with the thing.


Patient investors might benefit from the chip-maker's heavy investment in touch-panel controllers. A beaten-down stock adds to the allure.

By TheStreet Staff Nov 5, 2012 3:59PM

thestreet logoDigital book displayed on an iPad © Scott Eells/Bloomberg via Getty Images

By Richard Saintvilus


Anyone who doubts that touch capabilities are here to stay is not paying enough attention to the smartphone and tablet markets. Consumers every day demonstrate through their spending habits that they want more of it.


For this reason, I have been an unabashed cheerleader of semiconductor giant Atmel (ATML). Its portfolio of touch technologies -- in particular, its controllers with touch-focused properties -- have become vital to the rising popularity of mobile devices.


The Silicon Valley company's stock has lost 38% of its value this year, suggesting that investors don't much care about its touch technology.

But a fresh look at the company's third-quarter financial results suggests it just might be time for investors to reconsider Atmel's market position


But no one cares about inefficient equipment because most people who install panels do so for publicity and marketing rather than for energy.

By TheStreet Staff Nov 2, 2012 4:06PM

TheStreet.com LogOSolar panels © Yuji Kotani/Getty ImagesBy Bill Gunderson


As one solar company after another goes out of business, here is what investors do not know and promoters will not tell you: Solar panels do not work that well.


Sometimes not at all. But for several years, most solar systems, big and small, were so heavily subsidized, they were practically free. So lots of people did not really care.


Not enough to check the output of their systems. The few who did often had a big surprise.



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