Business briefs


POSTED: Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Google starts selling mobile phone

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. » Google Inc. began selling its own mobile phone yesterday, a much-anticipated move aimed at protecting its online advertising empire as people increasingly surf the Web on handsets instead of personal computers.

The Nexus One joins about 20 other mobile devices that already run on Android, the mobile operating system that Google introduced in 2007 to make it easier to connect to its services and other Web sites away from home or the office.

Google designed the touch-screen phone in partnership with Taiwan's HTC Corp., which made the first Android-powered phone and will manufacture this one, too. Google will handle all sales online and has no plans to let consumers check out the Nexus One in retail stores.

The Nexus One could be a bit of a letdown because it only takes a few incremental steps beyond what's already possible on hand-held devices, and the Nexus One's standard sales price of $529 might lessen its appeal in a still-shaky economy.


Apple buys mobile advertising firm

NEW YORK » Apple Inc. is buying the mobile advertising company Quattro Wireless, a bet on the future of cell phone ads that steps up competition with rival Silicon Valley powerhouse Google Inc.

Apple Inc. already has a strong edge in the high-end cell phone market with its iPhone. In buying Quattro, it is getting into the business of selling the ads that appear on the device and other smart phones.


Pending home sales decline

WASHINGTON » The number of people preparing to buy a home fell sharply in November, an unsettling new sign that the housing market could be headed for a “;double-dip”; downturn over the winter.

The National Association of Realtors said its seasonally adjusted index of sales contracts fell 16 percent from October to November, ending nine months of gains.




Hawaii Theatre Center has promoted Sara Grove to box office manager from assistant box office manager. She has nine years of theater and box office management experience.

The Sounds of Aloha Chorus, Barbershop Harmony Society, has elected its board of directors for 2010: Rod Schultz, president; Zig Palagyi, immediate past president; Rick Klemm, music vice president; Bill Joor, membership vice president; Dan Tom, secretary; Glenn Crowder, treasurer; Ed Reid, program vice president; Phil Chang, public relations and marketing vice president; Peter Matsumoto, Larry Paterson, Kawika Mitchell and Jack Hashimoto, at-large members; and Rob Hartley, musical director.