Roundup: Facebook growing around the world, inventor tests jetpack and more

Here’s the latest action:

Facebook growing quickly all around the world — The social networking site is seeing rapid growth in Latin America (it’s growing fastest in Chile, with 2,197 percent growth in 2008) as well as continued expansion in Europe. Inside Facebook has more numbers.

New Zealand inventor tests “world’s first practical jetpack”Glenn Martin has spent 27 years developing the device, and hopes to starting selling it next year for $100,000 per jetpack. Apparently, he has venture backing, too.

Electronic Arts posts $95 million lossThe loss is wider than expected, but not as bad as $132 million a year ago. The big video game maker says that it is investing heavily in R&D in hopes of scoring bigger hits in the future.

Sony has sold 14.4 million PlayStation 3s to dateSales of the PS3 and the PlayStation Portable are driving growth for Sony Computer Entertainment, which struggled to reach profitability in the year after the PS3 launched in 2006.

Google’s Sergey Brin says iPhone is pushing trend toward mobile search – During Google’s recent Q2 earnings conference call, Brin estimated that “on a rough order of magnitude” iPhone users do 30 times as many mobile web searches as users of other devices.

MySpace layoffs coming, but less than rumoredThe layoffs are part of the company’s annual performance reviews, MySpace Chief Operating Officer Amit Kapur told TechCrunch. All laid off workers will be replaced, and they’ll add up to less than the 5 percent that TechCrunch previously said was rumored.

Amazon launches new payment services — The online retailer has released two new e-commerce payment services that online merchants can use on their sites, Checkout by Amazon and Amazon Simple Pay.

Google Maps gets a new look — The layout is now more blue and less cluttered.

Palm hits 2 million in Centro sales — The news comes four months after the company announced that it sold the first 1 million of its Centro smartphones. That’s not bad, but it casts Apple’s extraordinary iPhone 3G sales — 1 million phones in three days — into even greater relief.


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