Here is your daily Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) stock news and rumors for October 25, 2010. A new hiring push at customer service call centers used by Verizon and Apple is the latest sign pointing toward the Verizon iPhone. Meanwhile, Apple is set to open their new billion dollar data center in North Carolina. Finally, Nintendo acknowledges that Steve Jobs’s company is the biggest threat to the Nintendo 3DS.
Verizon Hires Hundreds to (Presumably) Prepare for iPhone Launch: New job postings linked to Verizon Wireless (NYSE: VZ) are stoking new rumors of a Verizon iPhone from Apple and the telecom giant. According to a report from CNET, staffing companies Ryla and Teleperformances are hiring hundreds of new employees for customer service phone call centers on behalf of a “major wireless phone service retailer. The job postings listed at website Careerbuilder say that applicants will offer technical support for “personal computers and portable devices like MP3 players and smartphones.” While the postings are vague enough to indicate that telecoms are simply bulking up to accommodate the millions of new smartphone users subscribing through a variety of carriers, its Teleperformances history working with Apple and Verizon specifically that lends credence to the conclusion that these new hires signify movement from those companies in concert.
Apple Opening Billion Dollar Data Center in North Carolina: After more than a year of construction and planning, Apple Inc. is set to open their new $1 billion dollar data center in Maiden, North Carolina. Plans for the data center were first revealed in July 2009, when Apple announced that it would be building a new facility to accommodate its fast-growing digital media business. The new data center will act as the hub for the hosting of transactions for products on Apple’s App Store and providing downloads to iPhone, Apple TV, iPad and Mac users alike. Hiring for the center is underway, with Apple bringing in 300 new employees, a number that may grow if new rumors from Digital Daily claiming that the center will double in size in the near future prove true. During the company’s recent third quarter earnings conference call, Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer reiterated that the center would be opening “before the end of the calendar year.”
Nintendo Acknowledges Apple as Threat to Gaming Hardware Business: As the company prepares to launch their most expensive handheld gaming device ever in the next six months, Nintendo (PINK: NTDOY) is starting to come to terms with the fact that they no longer face stiff competition in the portable games space. Apple, thanks to the strength of the iPhone and iPod Touch, has finally started to impact Nintendo in the space they have dominated since 1989. Nintendo of America president Reggis Fils-Aime said to Forbes, “Do I think that in the near term [Apple] can hurt us more than Microsoft? Absolutely.” Microsoft‘s (NASDAQ: MSFT) gaming division is about to release the hands-free game controller and camera combo Kinect for their Xbox 360 console, a machine aiming to capitalize on the success Nintendo has had with the Wii over the past four years. With Wii sales in decline, though, Nintendo is turning its attention toward the development and March release of their new Nintendo 3DS handheld, a successor to the DS that features glasses-free 3D graphics. The 3DS also features both gyroscopic and accelerometer motion control, a multitouch screen and 2GB of memory with SD Card expansion, bringing its functionality closer in line with the iPhone. This means that the 3DS will easily support ports of iOS software.
As of this writing, Anthony Agnello did not own a position in any of the stocks named here.