Business Updates

Nexus 5  Launched

After weeks of Internet leaks and rumours, Google finally launched its new phone, the Nexus 5, on Oct. 31.

“It was actually five years ago this month that we launched that adorable first Android brick called the G1,” said Google spokesperson, Wendy Bairos. “People just want things to work and they want it to look good and they want it to work simply and beautifully, and I think in the [last] five years we’re seeing that happen”.

According to Google, “Nexus 5 helps you capture the everyday and the epic in fresh new ways. It’s the slimmest and fastest Nexus phone ever made, powered by Android 4.4, KitKat”.

The new device boasts many upgrades to the previous model, Nexus 4. It has a slimmer design and sleek plastic matte finish on the back. Nexus 5 has a much larger screen (five inches instead of Nexus 4’s 4.7 inch screen), but the phone itself is not any larger.

The screen has high-resolution 1080p Full HD display, which is the same high-end resolution as the Galaxy S4 and HTC. The screen is protected by the Gorilla Glass 3 layer, which is 50 per cent stronger and 40 per cent more scratch-resistant than the Gorilla Glass 2 which was used for Nexus 4. Nexus 5 has a better camera and picture-taking app, increased processing speed and like Nexus 4, is compatible for wireless charging.

Nexus 5 is available in white or black. The 16GB version costs $349US and the 32GB phone costs $399US, which is competitively priced.

Strategy Analytics states that Android phones account for 81.3 per cent of cell phone operating systems, up from last year’s 75 per cent. Apple’s share in the market slipped from 15.6 per cent to 13.4 per cent and Blackberry’s control of the market fell to one per cent from 4.3 per cent.

Nexus 5 will be available in Canada on Nov. 8 and can be purchased from Google Play Store online, at carriers like Sprint and T-Mobile and at retail outlets like Best Buy and Radio Shack.

CoucheTard unionizes

A long legal battle came to a close on Oct. 28 when Couche-Tard signed a collective agreement with a union representing six of the business’ convenience stores.

Alimentation Couche-Tard is Canada’s largest operator of convenience stores. It has 6,200 outlets across North America and 2,287 in Europe.

The three-year collective agreement gives 70 workers a wage increase, recognizes seniority, improves vacation times and implements safety measures to increase workers’ safety from aggressive customers.

Average wages for employees fall between $10.15 and $12.50 per hour. The new agreement will immediately increase these wages by 15 cents and up to two per cent for some employees.

“Today is probably one of the best days for the CSN and for the workers,” said Jacques Letorneau, head of Confederation of National Trade Unions (CSN).

“What we wanted was respect, the best working conditions and I think our goal was achieved for now”, said Luis Donis, president for unionized stores in Montreal and Laval.

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