Redsquid Picks’ Monthly Mobile Round-Up: August

Redsquid covers the biggest mobile and small business news stories of the last month.

Samsung Galaxy Note 7 Revealed, Released and Recalled

Earlier this month, Samsung unveiled the newest addition to their Smartphone Galaxy Note series; the Galaxy Note 7. Successor to the Galaxy Note 5, the Note 7 appears to be in-line Samsung’s other available flagships; the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge. Taking quite a few cues from its siblings, the Note 7’s 5.7 in display curves around the mobile’s edges, complementing its sleek appearance. It’s a much thicker phone compared to Samsung’s other models, but saves on weight by cutting out more body on the sides. Reviews for the handset have been overwhelmingly positive; praising the mobile’s incredibly high quality HD display, impressive water and dust resistance and improved ‘smart stylus’. However, recent reports from Samsung have revealed some serious problems involving the phone’s battery unit, causing some units to apparently explode. The Galaxy note is currently undergoing recall in the states, with sales being suspended in the UK. Having now disappointed customers who’ve paid upwards of £750 for the device, here’s hoping that Samsung fixes the issue soon.

 

Britain Sees a Record Number of Foreign Investment Schemes

BBC News has reported that business in the UK has seen a record number of foreign investment projects over the last year. Since April 2015, the department for international trade in Britain, recorded 2,213 inward investment projects. This number is evidence that foreign investment in the UK has gone up by 11% over the last year. Since these results have come out, Britain has been labelled the most popular destination in the EU for international firms. In response to the recent data, international trade secretary; Liam Fox commented that: “These impressive results show that the UK continues to be a place to do business”. The US continues to be the largest source of foreign investments, with China being second and India trailing behind in third.

 

EU Orders Apple to Pay £11 Billion in Back Taxes, After Deals with Ireland Ruled ‘Illegal’

After over two years of investigations, the EU Commission have concluded that mobile, computer and electronics giant Apple must pay the Irish government £11 billion in back taxes. Following years of deliberation, the EU Commission came to the verdict after discovering that Apple had been using loose Irish tax laws, in order to avoid paying taxes on their EU profits. Between the years of 2003 to 2014, Apple had been recording all of its EU sales at a ‘head office’ in Ireland, that had only existed on paper. This meant that all money made within Europe, between these years, had been taxed on a rate of 1-0.05%. Spokesperson for the EU Commission commented that:“Ireland must now recover the unpaid taxes in Ireland from Apple for the years 2003 to 2014 of up to €13 billion (£11 bn), plus interest”. However, representatives from Ireland were disappointed in the ruling, claiming that they did not want to damage the country’s reputation as an attractive low tax location for international businesses. Irish finance minister; Michael Noonan, labelled the decision as being “bizarre”, and stated that the Irish government would be appealing against the ruling.

 

Vodafone UK Cuts Home Broadband Line Rental Charges in Industry First

August became a landmark month for telecoms and broadband, with an industry first. Vodafone became the very first UK broadband provider to axe separate line rental charges for home buyers. By scrapping line rental charges, Vodafone have made their broadband package far more clear and concise, removing what are commonly confusing additional charges for home broadband buyers. With this change, Vodafone’s fastest broadband service (clocking at 76 MPs) has become £332 cheaper than BT’s equivalent over a 12-month period. The decision has not only been welcomed by Vodafone’s customers, but by former UK broadband minister Ed Vaizey, who commented that he’d “been calling on the industry to do this for ages”.

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