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Vector 14: Chris Umiastowski on sell-side analysis

Chris Umiastowski, former sell-side analyst, talks to Rene about the state of the mobile market, including what led BlackBerry to the brink of sale.

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Anyone interested in trading in their iPhone for a Windows Phone? Anybody?

While Apple reports record first weekend sales after launching the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c, Microsoft it seems is running around trying convince folks to ditch their iPhone and jump to a Windows Phone. No, really. After a similar promotion where Microsoft stores would accept an iPad in trade in against a Windows 8 tablet, Forbes reports the folks from Redmond are to begin accepting iPhones as well:

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Microsoft pulls awful iPhone mocking ads, admits they were 'off the mark'

Apple seems to be a constant target in Microsoft's advertising campaign of late, but the latest effort out of Redmond has actually been pulled. The 'parody' ads poking fun at the new iPhones depicted fictitious meetings taking place within the walls of Apple's Cupertino HQ, and even had a character that looked a lot like Steve Jobs – albeit from behind.

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iWork for iOS going free gives Microsoft something to think about

Slipped into the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c keynote earlier this week, was the announcement that the iWork suite of apps for iOS would be going free with new iOS device purchases. This includes mobile productivity apps Pages, Numbers and Keynote, Apple's answer to Microsoft Office. There's been much said about how this might affect Microsoft's product, and Paul Thurrott of the Supersite for Windows has weighed in:

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Xbox Music now available for iPhone and iPod touch

Microsoft has finally released their Xbox Music service in iOS form, with the new app now available to download for iPhone and iPod touch. Microsoft had promised Xbox Music would be coming to iOS some time ago, and it's been a bit of a wait – we've seen a web client release in the meantime – but fans of the service can now rock out using their iOS devices. It comes alongside a simultaneous launch on Android, too.

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Vector 9: Ben Thompson on Microsoft's mobile dilemma

Ben Thompson of stratēchery joins Rene to talk about Microsoft in a post-Ballmer mobile market, the IBM analogy, whether they need to be more like Apple, and why Google and Samsung were so damn smart. Also: Nokia sale!

Note: This was originally supposed to be next week's episode of Vector, but due to Microsoft buying Nokia, we decided to fast-track. (It's especially interesting given Thompson, until recently, worked at Microsoft on the Windows 8 apps team, and previously interned at Apple on the Apple University project.)

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What Microsoft buying Nokia means for Apple

Last night Microsoft announced they intended to buy or license all the parts of Nokia's mobile business that matter. That will either make them a vertically integrated player in the smartphone business like Apple or BlackBerry, or the stewards of some janky Franken-licensed business like Google and Motorola, or more likely, something in between. So what does that mean for Apple, and for the iPhone and iPod business?

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Microsoft buys and licenses the parts of Nokia mobile that matter, but will it make any difference?

Microsoft has just announced that they'll be buying Nokia's devices and services business, as well as licensing their patents and maps. Microsoft will pay close to $5 billion for the business, and almost $2.2 billion in licensing for the deal. It'll be paid out of their overseas cash reserve, which spares them the cost of repatriation. Stephen Elop, Jo Harlow, Juha Putkiranta, Timo Toikkanen, and Chris Weber will likely transfer to Microsoft. In Elop's case, he'll be returning to Microsoft. Here are the comments from Microsoft's release:

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Xbox One will also let you buy games from your iPhone and download them remotely

A few days back we picked up on a story where a Sony PlayStation executive confirmed you'd be able to buy games from your smartphone through the companion mobile app, and have them remotely download for you at home. Xbox One will also have a companion app, and Marc Whitten from Xbox has weighed in and confirmed a similar feature for Microsoft's next console via his Twitter account:

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What if Steve Ballmer was CEO of Apple?

I love the classic "What If?" series of Marvel Comics that altered one bit of a story and then showed how everything else would play out around it. So, of course, I love the idea of "What if Steve Ballmer ran Apple?". What if the Apple-is-doomed contingent forced Tim Cook out, and brought in the freshly-departed-from Microsoft Steve Ballmer? What various positives and negatives - everything is always a blend of both - would happen in just such an else-world? Clearly Ben Thomson does as well, as he's written it up brilliantly for Stratechery:

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