Business Briefly 1.3 million to lose jobless benefits by year’s end

Unemployment benefits are expected to run out by the end of the year for more than 1.3 million Americans unless Congress or individual states authorize another extension. The National Employment Law Project says more than 402,000 Americans will exhaust their unemployment benefits by the end of this month. That figure will more than triple by the end of December.

FAA orders Airbus to replace sensors

The Federal Aviation Administration has ordered the replacement of Airbus airspeed sensors of the type suspected of playing a role in the loss of Air France Flight 447 and all 228 people aboard in June. The FAA said in a notice that U.S. airlines operating Airbus A330s and A340s must within 120 days replace on each plane at least two of three sensors made by European electronics giant Thales Corp. The approved replacements are made by North Carolina-based Goodrich Corp. The order affects 43 U.S. registered planes.

AT&T says iPhone to get photo messaging

AT&T says the latest iPhone models will finally get the ability to send picture and video messages to other phones on Sept. 25. Apple Inc.’s popular phone has lacked the ability to send messages using MMS, or Multimedia Messaging Service, since the first model launched in 2007. The original model still won’t be able to send MMS. Its users will have to keep sending pictures in e-mail. The new feature applies to the 3G model, launched last year, and the 3GS, launched this year.

BMW to build 2 new Mini models

German carmaker BMW AG said Thursday that it will add two new models to its line of Mini cars. One of the models will be a coupe, while the second model will be unveiled at the Frankfurt Auto Show Sept. 15. The coupe will be a two-seater and likely feature a 1.6-liter turbocharged Mini John Cooper Works engine. BMW said both models would be produced at the Mini plant in Oxford, England.

Microsoft OK to sell Word during appeal

The U.S. Appeals Court for the Federal Circuit says Microsoft Corp. can keep selling its Word desktop software as it appeals an unfavorable patent ruling. In May, a Texas district court said some versions of Microsoft’s word processing software infringe on a Canadian technology company’s patent. The dispute is over the way Word 2003 and Word 2007 let users customize document encoding. The Texas judge had ordered Microsoft to pay Toronto-based i4i LLP $290 million and stop selling infringing versions of Word by the middle of October. Redmond-based Microsoft has appealed the ruling and is set to present arguments on Sept. 23.

From Herald news services

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