Europe

Apple able to trademark retail store layout across Europe, says EU court

Apple has won the right to register the layout of its iconic retail stores as a trademark in Europe, thanks to the EU court of justice overruling a German verdict saying otherwise. The company has already trademarked its store designs in the U.S. From the signature wooden tables holding up its products to the glass front with the massive branding signage, Apple has made it an experience beyond purchasing physical products.

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EU regulators to make decision on Apple's Beats acquisition by July 30

Regulators for the European Union are taking a look at Apple's deal to buy Beats Electronics, and will decide if the deal can go through by the end of July. The European Commission can accept the deal completely, accept it with concessions from Apple, reject it, or open a deeper investigation. If the deal is approved, Apple will acquire Beats for $3 billion.

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This summer European roaming charges will be cut in half

The European Commission has announced that charges to roam within Europe will fall by as much as 50 percent this summer. The EC is imposing yet another limit on mobile operators, further reducing the caps from July 1 to pave the way for removing roaming charges altogether by 2016. Currently, calls within the EU are capped at 24 euro cents per minute but will fall to 19 cents per minute. More importantly (particularly in 2014 and beyond), the fee for using data abroad is falling too.

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EE in the UK to roll out reduced EU roaming charges from July 1st

Good news for UK smartphone owners that are on the EE network. From July 1st if you travel into Europe your roaming bills are going to be a wee bit cheaper!

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North Eurotunnel now has Vodafone and EE service

Should you be travelling through the Eurotunnel today, you'll be able to enjoy mobile connectivity depending on which mobile operator you're currently subscribed to. Vodafone and EE have infrastructure in place to take loads from today, while O2 UK will be going live soon. Utilizing a fibre optic retransmission system, operators have made it possible for passengers to enjoy stable connectivity.

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European Union vote clears the way to end roaming charges, enforce net neutrality

Free roaming within the European Union is a step closer today, after the European parliament voted in favor of laws that would abolish roaming fees between EU member states, as part of a package of telecom reforms. The package, originally proposed by EU lawmaker Neelie Kroes, moves Europe closer to a single market for mobile communication, especially with the recent arrival of 4G LTE roaming agreements between European carriers.

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Black Friday discounts go live in European Apple Stores

Call this something of a turn up for the books, but Apple's European stores have just come back up with the Black Friday promotion, and it's not like the Australian deal we've already seen. Europe is seeing discounted prices instead of free gift cards. The discounts are modest, but for those of us this side of the Atlantic where Black Friday isn't really a thing, it's a chance to get some money off that Apple product you've been eying up.

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Join in the Eurovision party with the official Eurovision app for iOS

This week sees Europe's annual cheese-fest, otherwise known as the annual Eurovision Song Contest. About this time every year, contenders from across Europe descend upon the nation that won the year before, and prepare to do battle in the Euro-pop arena. I'm not a fan myself, but plenty of folks are -- around 100 million people are expected to tune in to watch the contest live. And, to enhance the experience a little further, is the official Eurovision Song Contest app for iOS.

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Competitors who aren't Apple lodge antitrust complaint against Google in Europe

Google competitors have lodged an antitrust complaint against the company with the European Union. Microsoft, Nokia, Oracle, and others, all under the name Fairsearch Europe, have alleged that Google is using Android’s dominant market position to provide an advantage for Google apps.

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Base European App Store prices rise from €0.79 to €0.89

According to numerous European readers, the lowest App Store price tier has just changed from €0.79 to €0.89 (to put that in rough perspective, imagine the U.S. base price going from $0.99 to $1.12). Whether that reflects updated exchange rates or other factors of doing business in Europe, including taxes and other charges, is unknown at this time.

If you're seeing higher prices in your local App Store, let us know what they are, and what the difference is.

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