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iFive: Facebook Beats Google, 3-D TV Goes Mobile, AT&T's Wi-Fi Expansion, Apple's Privacy Suit, CityVille's Massive Userbase

It wouldn't be the end of the year without some trumpet-blowing, and Amazon's trying to ace this with a press release to bolster the Kindle in the face of exploding tablet competition—the third-gen Kindle's now the "best selling product of all time" for Amazon, beating the final Harry Potter book. Is this a success? It's all relative...

1. Proving that Facebook's one (potential) future of the Net, for the first time ever—in the U.K.—it's beaten Google as the most visited website. It garnered 10.5% of all Net visits on Christmas Day. Since Facebook's now the world's largest website, topping Yahoo, Mark Zuckerberg's little experiment is only going to get more important.

2. 3-D TV may be more fad than future, but LG's still banking on the tech: Now there's news it's likely to reveal a mobile 3-D TV handset at the upcoming CES show. It's unclear if it'll be glasses-free or require specs, but it may be a show-stealer.

3. AT&T is spending like crazy to expand its Wi-Fi presence in New York City and San Francisco. That's partly to aid with the expected throng of New Year's revelers carrying iPhones. But, with mounting evidence Verizon's got an iPhone en-route, it's also to mitigate against losing too many subscribers to its bigger rival. Will the trick work?

4. Apple's facing a class action suit over violation of user privacy in the U.S. The allegations are that Apple sends and/or sells personal iPhone user information to advertisers without warning cell phone owners what's going on. It's potentially a huge suit if it's won, but it's hard to see how—Apple's management of the App Store is pretty stern and its EULA is extensive, and will include explanations on data sharing.

5. Zynga's got a record-breaking hit on its hands with CityVille: It's growing so fast it's already 25% bigger than FarmVille. That concretes its position as the biggest game on Facebook, and thus one of the most important games in the world. Kinda.

To read more news on this, and similar stuff, keep up with my updates by following me, Kit Eaton, on Twitter.

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  • Sheila Burpee Duncan

    Hi Kit:
    Re. "3. AT&T is spending like crazy to expand its Wi-Fi presence..."
    ABI Research reported that data traffic can be handled over "Carrier Wi-Fi" at about 5% of the cost of licensed cellular. Granted, Carrier Wi-Fi gear is not free (though the service generally is) and it has to be meet higher standards of performance and reliablity than traditional residential or enterprise Wi-Fi, but it has proven to be a really cost-effective way to offload 3G data in high traffic areas, while delivering a great user experience. BelAir Networks builds Carrier Wi-Fi gear and AT&T, along with Comcast, Cablevision and other Tier 1 service providers are among our customers, so I obviously speak with a certain bias, but I did want to offer some perspective relative to the "spending like crazy" statement.

    Thanks for the opportunity and Happy New Year.

    Sheila Burpee Duncan
    BelAir Networks