A curated selection of the day’s newsworthy tech stories from all around the Web. Read on, and join the conversation with a comment below.
According to the China Times, the iPhone 5 will supposedly go into production during the third quarter of this year, which if true, means the new handset won’t be immediately available following a June or July unveiling, as has been the case in the past. The publication also indicates the phone will have a 4-inch touchscreen, a metal back, and (again) possibly a Near Field Communications chip for credit payment transactions conducted simply by swiping the device within close range of a compatible credit card machine. (China Times via 9 to 5 Mac)
Sprint, which saw its shares fall 14% earlier this week over the AT&T-T-Mobile news, plans to address Congress with its concerns. The new deal, which should take 12 months to take effect if things go smoothly, would give AT&T a 79% majority market share of the mobile wireless market. (Bloomberg)
A judge struck down a 2008 settlement between Google and various author and publisher groups to make millions of books available online. The $125 million deal would supposedly “give Google a significant advantage over competitors, rewarding it for engaging in wholesale copying of copyrighted works without permission.” (Wall Street Journal)
Groupon President and COO Rob Solomon is stepping down, AllThingsD reports, with no specific reason other than he’s moving back to “God’s Country” in Woodside, California. (AllThingsD)
Textbook publishers Pearson and McGraw-Hill are investing in the e-textbook startup Inkling, which incorporates multimedia elements like audio, video, and interactive quizzes. (Currently, the startup has 14 textbooks available.) (Fortune)
DotCloud, a second-generation platform-as-a-service (PaaS) startup that lets developers mix and match multiple languages and tools, raised $10M in Series A funding from Benchmark Capital and Trinity Venture. It also gained two new board members: Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang and Apple engineering manager of software engineering and developer tools Marc Verstaen. (Inner Circle Labs)
Meanwhile, digital ad company SocialVibe snagged $20 million during its latest funding round, led by Norwest Venture Partners. SocialVibe’s ads target consumers when they’re playing a social game, donating to charity, obtaining virtual currency or accessing premium content. (Spark PR)
YouTube sensation Rebecca Black, whose heavily auto-tuned music video “Friday” set the blogosphere afire with lyrics like “Fun, fun, fun / Looking forward to the weekend,” is now a millionaire thanks to all the free publicity. Some 2 million people have downloaded the song via iTunes. Here’s the original video in case you missed the initial buzz. (Gawker)
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