* The conflict between Apple Inc. and QUALCOMM Inc. continued to deepen as both companies disputed comments made by their respective CEOs over settlement talks in their ongoing legal battle over patents. In a recent televised interview, Apple CEO Tim Cook denied Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf's comments about the supplier's efforts to resolve the dispute. In response, Qualcomm called Cook's remarks "misleading" and maintained that the company stands by Mollenkopf's earlier comments. Apple then issued a statement to Reuters, accusing Qualcomm of being "desperate to obfuscate the tales it has been telling its investors."
* An adviser at the Court of Justice of the European Union said Alphabet Inc.'s Google LLC and other online search engines should limit the geographical scope of the "right to be forgotten" privacy rule to internet searches made within the European Union. The advice from the court's top legal adviser follows a yearslong battle between the internet giant and France's data privacy regulator, which has led efforts to expand the reach of the privacy order to include searches made outside the EU's 28 member states. The rule calls for Google to amend and delete links to "irrelevant" or "inadequate" search results at the request of European citizens.
* If the partial government shutdown persists for several more weeks, it could delay a number of high profile IPOs, ranging from Uber Technologies Inc. to biotech firms, and exacerbate an already sizable backlog of at least 44 public offers awaiting the green light from the Securities and Exchange Commission. According to market data provider Dealogic, as of Jan. 8, there is a backlog of 44 IPOs that need to be reviewed by the SEC before those companies can begin trading publicly. And because most IPOs are now filed confidentially in the U.S., "The number of IPOs in the pipeline is likely to be much higher," Dealogic Americas Media Manager Ed Jones said in an interview.
* Gaming and PCs will be at the center of new products that chipmaker Advanced Micro Devices Inc. will roll out in 2019. During a keynote at CES 2019, AMD President and CEO Lisa Su provided details on a graphics processor and a central processing unit, both of which will be in computers and other devices worldwide by the middle of the year.
* Viacom Inc. CEO Bob Bakish has overseen the repositioning of Viacom as a cross-platform content company, and he sees the next big catalyst for consumption as the driverless car. Speaking at CES 2019, the executive also pointed to increased fixed broadband speeds, notably with 5G infrastructure being built out in the U.S. as well as the promise from the cable industry to deliver a 10G service.
* Executives from prominent technology and telecom companies called for policy reforms on various issues to help 5G flourish at CES 2019. Melissa Glidden Tye, vice president of public policy at Verizon Communications Inc., for instance, implored Congress to pass a federal privacy standard during a discussion on policy priorities to preserve U.S. leadership in burgeoning technologies like 5G, self-driving vehicles and the internet of things.
Film & TV
* This year's Oscars will forgo a host for the first time in nearly three decades, Variety reports, citing sources with knowledge of the plans. Producers of the awards show, which will air live Feb. 24 on ABC (US), will move forward with a broadcast that will focus on skits by actors and more on music. Actor Kevin Hart, who dropped out within hours of being named the show's host, shut down any possibility of him hosting the awards in a recent interview on ABC's "Good Morning America."
* Margie Cohn was named the new president of NBCUniversal Media LLC's DreamWorks Animation, replacing Chris DeFaria, who will step down from the role in the coming months, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Cohn will oversee both DreamWorks' film and TV operations, while DeFaria will continue to consult with the company.
* With the season winding toward its conclusion, networks tackled large audiences with their coverage of post-season football games. ESPN Inc.'s megacast of the Tigers' rolling of the Crimson Tide by a 44-16 count, drew 25.28 million watchers across ESPN (US), ESPN2 (US), ESPNU (US) and ESPNews (US). The total for the college contest on Monday night includes some streaming viewership, with full digital numbers slated to become available next week. Out-of-home watching will be added to the viewership tally in about three weeks, according to an ESPN spokesman.
* AT&T Inc. CFO John Stephens told investors Jan. 9 at the Citi 2019 Global TMT West Conference in Las Vegas that the company is going to be "more thoughtful" about promotional pricing, as it pivots away from two-year price locks on its DIRECTV satellite offering, as well as its U-verse video platform. As such, the company "expects to have normal pricing increases on the traditional video side," which will yield margin amelioration. Rollbacks in promotional pricing for video packages are expected to play a role in helping AT&T's entertainment group meet its 2019 EBITDA goal.
* Vast Broadband entered into a definitive agreement to acquire broadband fiber company NTS Communications Inc. from private equity firm Tower Three Partners LLC. Under terms of the agreement, Vast Broadband's senior management team will join forces with NTS management.
The day ahead
Early morning futures indicators pointed to a lower opening for the U.S. market.
In Asia, the Hang Seng increased 0.22% to 26,521.43, while the Nikkei 225 fell 1.29% to 20,163.80.
In Europe, around midday, the FTSE 100 fell 0.11% to 6,899.04 and the Euronext 100 was down 0.54% to 930.56.
On the macro front
The EIA natural gas report, Fed balance sheet and Jobless Claims consensus are due out today.
Click here to read about today's financial markets, setting out the factors driving stocks, bonds and currencies around the world ahead of the New York open.
The Daily Dose Europe: Norway mulls Huawei ban; Orange Slovakia names new CEO: The Norwegian government is considering a ban on the use of Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd.-made equipment in future 5G networks in the country, while Federico Colom is stepping in as CEO of Orange SA's Slovak unit.
The Program Guide: Global edition: Netflix wins 5 Golden Globes; BBC cancels 'Film': Netflix Inc. scored five wins at the 76th Golden Globe Awards, while BBC canceled its long-running movie review series "Film."
The Daily Dose Asia-Pacific: Vietnam accuses Facebook of cyber law breach; Philippines bars Go-Jek entry: Vietnam said Facebook Inc. violated its new cybersecurity law, while the Philippines' transport regulator denied Go-Jek's application to launch a ride-hailing service in the country.
Q&A: Kwesé iflix CEO: Localized strategy key to rivaling Netflix, Amazon in Africa: S&P Global Market Intelligence spoke with Mayur Patel, CEO of Kwesé iflix, about the group's original content roadmap and its growth strategy for the coming year.
Economics of Internet: OTT sports services target niches with an eye towards the future: There has been a proliferation of sports-focused over-the-top services in the U.S. in addition to sports programming by multichannel TV operators, online offerings from some leagues and programming deals with social media platforms.
Economics of TV & Film: Pacquiao returns to the PPV arena: We take a look at what is coming to pay-per-view and video on demand in January.
Economics of Advertising: TV Syndication 10-year projections: Historical and projected TV syndication revenue estimates from 1988-2028.
Economics of Advertising: Broadcast network 10-year ad projections: Gross advertising revenue estimates for U.S. broadcast networks from 1992-2028.
Economics of Advertising: Newspaper advertising revenue 10-year projections: Analysis of the newspaper industry with estimated advertising revenue from 1984-2028.
Consumer Insights: How many SVOD services is enough?: Survey data shows that most online households use more than one online subscription video service.
Multichannel Trends: 2019 outlook: turbulence, but cards to play: Our list of areas to watch includes 5G, wireline broadband maturity, virtual platforms, rise of IoT and high debt levels.
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