Apple’s battery-life issues continue despite fix

Apple has released a software update to fix a problem that is shortening the battery life of some iPhones, iPads and iPods. Apple has said that a small number of customers have reported lower-than-expected battery life on devices running on the company’s iOS 5 operating system. That’s the software that comes with the iPhone 4S and was available as a free upgrade for some older devices — both iPads, the iPhone 3GS and 4 and the two most recent models of the iPod Touch. Some users who upgraded the software said they still had issues with battery life. Apple said Friday that while the update addressed many of the problems, “we continue to investigate a few remaining issues.”

Italy’s Senate OKs Euro reforms

Italy’s Senate approved economic reforms demanded by the European Union on Friday, the first step in paving the way for Premier Silvio Berlusconi to resign as early as this weekend and a transitional government to be formed. The 156-12 vote took place after respected economist Mario Monti — widely expected to become the interim prime minister — was welcomed with sustained applause in the Senate chamber, where he was officially designated senator for life. Italy’s eagerly awaited political transition is expected to happen Saturday, when the lower chamber of parliament also votes on the reforms. It will follow a similar power shift in Greece, where a technocratic government this week took over under the leadership of former banker Lucas Papademos.

Fed plans more bank stress tests

The second-ranking member of the Federal Reserve said the central bank will conduct a fourth round of stress tests in the coming weeks to determine if U.S. banks can withstand a recession. Vice Chairman Janet Yellen said Friday that the tests are necessary because of the increased downside risks that Europe’s debt crisis poses to the U.S. economy and financial markets. She made the comments during a speech at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. The Fed oversees Wall Street’s biggest banks, including Citigroup, Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase &Co., and Wells Fargo. The central banks has said the tests are a key part in its ongoing efforts to make sure that banks — and the entire financial system — are stable.

EMI split, sales brings in $4 billion

EMI Group Ltd., home of The Beatles, Coldplay and Katy Perry, is being sold in two parts for $4.1 billion. Universal Music Group said Friday that it has agreed to buy the recording division of EMI for 1.2 billion pounds ($1.9 billion). Sony/ATV has reached a deal to buy the second part, the publishing division in charge of songwriting copyrights, for $2.2 billion, according to a person familiar with the matter. The deal leaves Citigroup, EMI’s owner, with liability for a pension plan worth about $600 million, a second person said.

From Herald news services