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As We Close in on the Alibaba IPO, Here's What You Need to Watch For

It isn’t often that a really “hot” initial public stock offering lives up to the pre-deal hype.

But Thursday’s IPO of China e-commerce heavyweight Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. (NYSE-WI: BABA) is shaping up to be everything the most ardent market mavens have been saying.

Alibaba is on track to become the largest U.S. initial public offering ever.

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    Towerstream Corp. (Nasdaq: TWER): Is It Time to Buy This Mobile Technology Innovator?

    Steve Jobs was legendary for his attention to the smallest details. That included the packaging.

    When the Macintosh was introduced, Jobs insisted the only way to remove it from the package was by its handle since it was the first "portable" computer.

    Of course, the original Mac was far too heavy and bulky to actually carry around. But to Jobs, the handle was essential. It made the $2,500 device (in 1984!) more accessible and less imposing of a technological wonder.

    It also tapped into that human concept of mobility.

    Now you didn't have to go somewhere to use a computer; it came to you. Technology was not the master, but the companion.

    It seems simple, but it helped open up a whole new world.

    And now we see where Mobility 2.0 is taking us. Smartphones, tablets, and ultrabooks are changing the way we interact-not only with the Web, but with one another.

    But it's not just the devices that are changing.

    It's the infrastructure that allows them to receive signals, upload information and communicate across different platforms, etc.

    Let's face it, the iPhone wouldn't be nearly as cool if it couldn't communicate or snap photos for your Facebook page. Or if you lost your connection every time you turned a corner on an augmented reality history tour of Chicago.

    Behind the scenes is a complex infrastructure that makes it all work.

    One company at the heart of Mobility 2.0 is an Innovation Investing newcomer, Towerstream Corp. (Nasdaq: TWER).

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  • mobile phone technology