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Rumor Has It: Google to send you a couple cold beers?
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Rumor Has It: Google to send you a couple cold beers?

4:11 /

This week we investigate the logic behind the rumor that Google is trying to invade the bike messenger's turf with a new "same-day" delivery service. Wait, what does that have to do with Google? Also, Scott Forstall probably has bad manners, and Nokia might, too.

EMILY: Hey, I?m Emily Dreyfuss KARYNE: And I'm Karyne Levy. EMILY: This is Rumor Has It! The show where we round up the week's biggest tech rumors. KARYNE: And vote on what sounds legit, and what seems like it'll never ever happen. EMILY: And remember: you can vote on all the rumors! Keep your eye out for the poll in the interactive player, if you're watching on CNET. KARYNE: First up, there was a management shakeup at Apple this week. Apple's retail chief, John Browett, who wasn't even with the company a year, was ousted. According to several reports, this wasn't surprising because he never really fit in at Apple. In a much less foreseen move, iOS Software Chief Scott Forstall -- who headed the team that brought us such gems as Siri and Apple Maps -- was also let go. He'd been with the company 15 years. EMILY: According to the Wall Street Journal, this was a crisis of manners. Citing people familiar with the matter, the reports says Forstall was forced out after he refused to sign a letter apologizing for problems with Apple Maps. Forstall apparently said that Apple could forgo an apology, just like it did with the iPhone and its faulty antennas. Remember that? KARYNE: Right, but at least then Apple gave away phone bumpers for free for a limited time. Maybe Forstall wanted to give away paper maps for free because of the Maps fiasco? EMILY: Next up, the updated version of Android Jelly Bean has multiple user accounts, but only on tablets -- not smartphones. TechCrunch speculates that's because Nokia owns the patents for that feature on phones. KARYNE: I think this rumor is just trying to scapegoat Nokia -- I'm trying to think of an instance when a multi-user account would even be beneficial on a phone. At least tablets can be shared among family members or something. Maybe a special account for when you loan the phone to a child. EMILY: Like the Kid feature Microsoft unveiled for Windows Phone 8 this week. KARYNE: So I don?t think Nokia is to blame. I think that the multi-user thing is only available on tablets because that's where people would use it. EMILY: Eh, I?ll say it?s true because I like to think that Nokia at least has SOMETHING, even if it?s just a dumb useless patent that not even Apple wants. KARYNE: Next up, The New York Times reports that Google is testing same-day delivery in San Francisco, which would let you order items online and have them delivered to your home "within a matter of hours." And at least one national apparel chain is supposedly involved. The Times speculates that the move is to hedge against competing services from Amazon and eBay, which are apparently being tested, too. EMILY: The Wall Street Journal reported this a year ago, saying that Google will meld its product-search feature with a new quick-shipping service that Google will oversee. But how it would work, no one is saying. Google wouldn't build warehouses or the infrastructure of a shipping service itself, according to both reports. KARYNE: Now same-day delivery service isn't a new concept -- remember Kozmo? WebVan? Those services were popular but failed spectacularly -- but hopefully Google will bring an actual sustainable business model to the table. I probably wouldn't pay extra for same-day shipping -- I don't even pay extra for 2-day shipping! -- but maybe I'm the only one who feels that way. EMILY: Yeah, but this is the vaguest rumor of all time. It doesn?t mention who would be doing the delivery -- not Google itself, certainly not USPS. With Google just as the middleman, it's unclear what exactly its function would be. Is it just going to ?grease the wheel?? Hire bike messengers? Right now the idea sounds like a whole lot of rhetoric and very little substance. I get why it?s a good idea, but how they?ll pull it off is a mystery. KARYNE: So what do you guys think? Is Google on its way to offering same-day delivery? Would you mind paying more for same-day delivery? What would you order? Don't forget to vote or post your comments on the Rumor Has It blog. EMILY: We asked the CNET council members if they thought google was working on a same-day delivery service. (disclaimer) The CNET verdict is...no, three of our editors said no. KARYNE: That?s our show everyone, share your rumors at rumorhasit@cnet.com or call us at 1-800-750-CNET. And tweet us! EMILY: And to all our viewers on the East Coast, stay warm and safe
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