Highlights: Last week on Philly Tech News (4/16/2012 to 4/22/2012)

I wrote about how Comcast is entering Alteva's Unified Communications market, Alteva's expansion plans in Philadelphia, and its new advertising campaign.

Cherry Hill-based icueTV, which has been focused on building a platform for Interative TV Apps, branched out in a somewhat different direction by launching DropWallet, a mobile app platform for online eCommerce aimed at publishers. Real Simple magazine is its first user.

Uber, the San Francisco-based mobile service for locating and ordering private cars originally backed by First Round Capital, indicated last week it is planning to launch in Philadelphia, though it wasn't ready to offer specifics yet.

A University of the Arts professor's startup filed a lawsuit against Apple, claiming it infringed its patent on touch screen technology.

Philly-based discount retailer Five Below filed for an IPO, saying it planned to raise up to $150 million. In another retailing move, Fanatics, a part of GSI Commerce founder Michael Rubin's Kynetic LLC, announce plans to acquire competitor Dreams Inc. for $183 million including the assumption of debt.

In the aftermath of SAP North America CEO Robert Courteau's departure following a disappointing quarter for sales in the region, someone identified as "an SAP insider" complained to Silicon Alley Insider about the intense pressure at the company to achieve sales targets (like that's never happened before). Meanwhile, SAP's newly launched advertising campaign aims to appeal to a broader base of potential users. And up and coming SAP/Oracle cloud-based competitor Workday hired Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley to lead its IPO. In a stunning move, the General Services Administration nixed Oracle's entire blanket contract with the Federal government; they probably need more funds for their party budget.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings took to Facebook to complain about Comcast exempting its own streaming service (Streampix) from its monthly download limit, and apparently the FCC is paying attention. Comcast CEO Brian Roberts and NBCUniversal CEO Steve Burke both took compensation cuts last year, Burke's reduction being much larger.

Verizon says it plans to stop selling DSL it markets where it has Fiber to the Home (FTTH) service, and will try to transition DSL customers to FiOS. A Verizon executive also said "we're going to have several price-ups in our FiOS packages" over the next two quarter. Meanwhile, Philadelphia City Council voted to hold hearings on alleged Verizon foot dragging in rolling out FiOS in the city.

First Round Capital is raising its fourth fund totaling at least $135 million, slightly larger than reported earlier this year. The firm is sticking to its strategy of keeping its funds fairly small.

King of Prussia-based InterDigtal may move or add up to 74 employees in a new Delaware office, mostly related to its Intellectual Property (legal) practice.

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appRenaissance acquires UXFLIP

Tom Paine

appRenaissance, the Old City Philadelphia-based mobile app development startup, made an important step towards building out its own platform by acquiring West Chester-based UXFLIP, the company will announce this morning.

UXFLIP was founded in 2011 by Michael Raber, a longtime area resident who spent several years with Nokia Navteq/Traffic.com in Malvern. It won best in show at last month's Phorum Cloud Computing Conference at World Cafe Live. appRenaissance said in statement that UXFLIP's UX/UI creation, deployment and management capabilities will be merged with the company’s mobile middleware platform, Unifeed. UXFLIP's strength is on the front end, helping users to dynamically build, deploy and manage user interfaces for native mobile apps from the Cloud.

UXFLIP was a DreamIt Ventures company (Philadelphia 2011), where appRenaissance CEO Bob Moul became familiar with the startup while serving as an advisor.

appRenaissance announced earlier this month it had raised a $1.5 million seed round led by FirstMark Capital. It was founded in 2010 by CTO Scott Wasserman and Moul joined at the beginning of the year after leaving Dell Boomi.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, though it wouldn't be surprising (my guess) if it included a combination of cash and equity. Raber will continue to be responsible for the development and roadmap of UXFLIP at appRenaissance. A beta version is expected to be released this summer.

UXFLIP is the second startup I know of from the Phorum Demo Pit to be acquired. ReadySetWork was acquired by West Chester-based PrimePay in March.