TIME Companies

Microsoft’s Profits Dip Despite Strong Phone Sales

Microsoft Holds Annual Shareholder Meeting
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella addresses shareholders during Microsoft Shareholders Meeting December 3, 2014 in Bellevue, Washington. Stephen Brashear—Getty Images

Sales of Surface tablets are gaining steam, even if they still trail far behind Apple’s iPad

Microsoft said Monday its profits fell more than 10% during its latest quarter despite an uptick in sales. Here are the key points from the tech giant’s latest earnings.

What you need to know: Microsoft’s sales jumped nearly 8% in the quarter ending Dec. 31, improving to $26.5 billion. That is in line with the $26.3 billion in revenue that analysts expected, according to Thomson Reuters. But the company’s profits fell by 10.6% to $5.9 billion, or 71 cents per share.

Contributing to the decline in earnings was a $243 million charge the company took from “integration and restructuring expenses” related to the massive layoffs Microsoft announced last summer as well as ongoing costs from integrating the mobile phone business it acquired from Nokia in early 2014.

Microsoft shares dropped by 2.5% in after-hours trading following the release of the company’s financials.

The big number: CEO Satya Nadella has put a lot of focus on cloud computing since taking control of the company last year. Now, the company has said that commercial cloud sales more than doubled again in the latest quarter, the third under Nadella’s watch as CEO. That’s after cloud sales jumped 128% in the previous quarter.

A 30% gain in non-corporate Office 365 subscribers last quarter helped drive the increased cloud revenue, which Microsoft said extrapolates to $5.5 billion annually based on last quarter’s returns. “Microsoft is continuing to transform, executing against our strategic priorities and extending our cloud leadership,” Nadella said in a statement.

Microsoft’s overall revenue also received a major boost from its phone hardware sales, which added $2.3 billion to the quarterly tally by selling a record 10.5 million Lumina smartphones. Still, Windows Phones lost some of their share of the U.S. smartphone market in 2014, dropping to 3.1% from 3.3% the previous year, according to data from eMarketer.

What you might have missed: Sales of the company’s Surface tablets continue to gain steam, even if they still lag far behind iPad sales. Microsoft said its Surface revenue crossed the $1 billion mark for the first time, rising 24% year-over-year to $1.1 billion last quarter. By comparison, Apple reported $5.3 billion in iPad sales in its most recent quarter.

Meanwhile, Microsoft said its search advertising revenue jumped by 23% last quarter, helped by a slight increase in the company’s share of the U.S. search market. Microsoft’s Bing grabbed a 19.7% U.S. market share last year, which was up slightly and outpaced Yahoo’s 10.2%, according to comScore.

Microsoft also received a boost from a strong holiday retail season for its Xbox One gaming console, which sold 6.6 million units in the quarter. The company said last week that the Xbox One was the bestselling console in the U.S.in November and December after Microsoft slashed the price of the popular console, from $499 when it was first released in 2013, to $349 at the end of October. Still, overall sales for the company’s computing and gaming hardware segment dropped more than 10%, to $3.9 billion, in the second quarter.

This article originally appeared on Fortune.com

TIME Drugs

Report Predicts 18 States Will Legalize Pot by 2020

Whether that pans out depends on Colorado, cash and the federal government

A new report predicts that 18 U.S. states will have legalized recreational marijuana in the next five years, a huge increase from the four states that currently have or are in the process of creating legal markets for pot.

The report, set to be released in February from ArcView Market Research, a firm that pairs investors with marijuana-related businesses, was sponsored by marijuana industry groups and has a pro-legalization tone. But their prediction is not simply self-serving optimism. The map below shows the states where ArcView’s researchers believe recreational pot shops will open their doors:

This chart appears in the executive summary of Arcview Market Research's Marijuana Markets report, 3rd Edition.
This chart appears in the executive summary of Arcview Market Research’s Marijuana Markets report, 3rd Edition.

 

The map has a lot of overlap with the places where the Marijuana Policy Project, the group that helped launch legal weed in Colorado, already has workers on the ground in preparation for legalization votes over the next two years. Yet MPP is a bit more cautious in its outlook: the group believes 12 states could join Colorado, Washington, Oregon and Alaska in allowing recreational pot by 2017. Unlike ArcView (whose executive director sits on MPP’s board), they’re not banking on legalization taking root in Montana, New Jersey or Connecticut over the next few years, according to spokesperson Morgan Fox. He says they’re concentrating current efforts in Arizona, California, Maine, Massachusetts, and Nevada. They see Texas — yes, Texas — as an outside possibility.

In the report, Arcview claims that “2014 will be remembered as a year when … a sense of inevitability about national legalization became conventional wisdom among elected officials and the general public.” But the issue and the mood of the electorate are far from settled. In November, Gallup released a poll showing that a majority of Americans favor legalization. But it’s a slim majority of 51%, down from 58% in 2013, with many conservatives still balking at the idea.

As with so many other political issues, the speed at which states legalize marijuana is going to be affected by the rate at which donors are willing to pour money into elections and lobbying. In 2014, casino magnate Sheldon Adelson proved that there is a Republican with deep pockets willing to spend big to fight against legalization. In Florida’s midterm election, voters considered an amendment to legalize medical marijuana, and Adelson shelled out at least $5.5 million to defeat the measure. It failed by a 2% margin, just shy of the 60% required to pass.

Meanwhile, legalization advocates have lost stalwart funders like Peter Lewis, the chairman of Progressive Insurance who died in 2013. By one estimate, he had spent $40 on legalization efforts since the 1980s. His allies have been scrambling to fill the funding hole left by Lewis. In Florida, the effort to legalize medical marijuana was largely bankrolled by one man, personal injury lawyer John Morgan, who was behind about $4 million in funds. He has vowed to try again in 2016, but legalization advocates fighting for reform in other states can’t necessarily count on his support. MPP’s Mason Tvert says that while money is obviously important for their cause, “there’s no one individual who is going to be responsible for passing these measures.”

Two other factors will be key to determining if the above map proves accurate: whether the federal government continues to keep its distance from state experiments with legalization (which remain illegal under federal law), and whether states with existing legal markets encounter any major problems.

In Colorado, for example, parties are gearing up for a political fight over edibles, which have led to children who accidentally ingested them being hospitalized. One of those groups is Smart Colorado, which includes parents concerned about the pace at which marijuana laws have been liberalized. “We’re looking out for public safety and our kids,” founder Gina Carbone told TIME in an earlier interview about edibles regulations, “not just expanding this huge market.” According to the new report, legal weed yielded $2.7 billion in retail and wholesale sales in 2014.

Tvert says there’s also the possibility of an “unexpected event” that could thwart or boost their cause, such as an endorsement from a major, mainstream celebrity or a high-profile incident that could set the movement back. “A big part of this is really optics,” he says.

TIME Food & Drink

Here’s Why Americans Who Love British Chocolate Are Freaking Out

Chocolate Production Continues At Cadbury During Hostile Takeover Bids
Cadbury's Creme Eggs move down the production line at the Cadbury's Bournville production plant Christopher Furlong—Getty Images

A lawsuit brought by Hershey's is keeping British-made Rolos and Cadbury Eggs out of the U.S.

Thousands of Rolo, Cadbury and Toffee Crisp lovers in the U.S. have signed a petition protesting a lawsuit that threatens the importation of British chocolates into the United States.

As the result of a lawsuit brought by Hershey in August, Let’s Buy British Imports (LBB) has agreed to stop importing popular British chocolates into the United States.

While Cadbury won’t disappear completely from American shelves, it’ll be the chocolate manufactured by Hershey, which has a licensing agreement to market products made in the U.S. under the Cadbury name. The Hershey recipe has a lower fat content, a less creamy texture and, British chocolate fans insist, an inferior taste.

The news isn’t likely to affect American consumers who buy their Cadbury Creme Eggs from supermarket chains (which have sold the American recipe for years), but lovers of the British variety are incensed.

“Due to legal action by the so-called chocolate maker Hershey’s, we can no longer import the real Cadbury chocolate from England,” Tea & Sympathy, a New York shop specializing in British goods, wrote on its Facebook. “They want us to sell their dreadful Cadbury approximation but we can’t in good conscience sell you such awful chocolate when we have made our reputation on selling you the yummy real English stuff.”

The New York Times reports that various British treats will disappear altogether from American shelves because consumers may confuse them with competing American chocolates. The Toffee Crisp bar has orange packaging similar to Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, and Yorkie chocolate bars allegedly infringe on York peppermint patties.

TIME Brands

There’s Still Time to Get Your Free Burrito from Chipotle Today

Restaurant Chain Chipotle Warns Climate Change Could Force Guacamole Off The Menu
A Chipotle restaurant is seen on March 5, 2014 in Miami, Florida. Joe Raedle—Getty Images

But you have to order their "sofritas" first

Chipotle really, really wants you to try its new tofu.

On Monday, Jan. 26th, the Mexican chain is offering free food for customers who order their new organic tofu Sofritas. Here’s the deal: All you have to do is buy one of their entrees made with the vegan-friendly protein today, bring your receipt back to any Chipotle location from Jan. 27 through Feb. 15 and you’ll get a free burrito, burrito bowl, salad or tacos.

It’s basically a buy-one, get-one-free kind of thing — but, hey, a free burrito is a free burrito no matter when you redeem it.

So what exactly are you buying in order to get that free size-of-a-small-baby burrito? In Chipotle’s own words, Sofritas are made “organic tofu from Hodo Soy that we shred and then braise with chipotle chilis, roasted poblanos, and a blend of aromatic spices. The result is a delicious, spicy tofu that will give vegans and carnivores something they both will love.”

Keep in mind that should you dislike Sofritas, you can use your next-time “freebie” for anything on the menu — if supplies are still in store. (Those deliciously spicy carnitas are still off the menu at about a third of Chipotle’s locations.)

This article originally appeared on People.com.

MONEY Sports

Super Bowl Ticket Prices Are Not Deflated Anymore

Football hot air balloon
Shutterstock

During the week that Deflategate dominated Super Bowl media coverage, ticket prices for the game took off like a perfectly thrown deep-route touchdown pass.

For the first couple of days after football fans found out the Super Bowl would feature a matchup of the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks, ticket prices for the game remained cheap (relatively speaking). As of Tuesday of last week, the “cheap seats” were selling for a little under $2,000. That’s less than the price of tickets before we knew who was playing in the big game this year, and it’s also fairly inexpensive by Super Bowl standards.

What’s more, because of patterns established in previous Super Bowls—asking prices tend to drop as game day nears—many experts recommended at the time that fans wait for ticket prices to fall further before buying. Because the Seahawks just won the Super Bowl a year ago, and because the Patriots have been in five Super Bowls during the Brady-Belichick era, the theory was that fan “fatigue” would cause an especially large dip in the ticket market this year.

Right about now, however, those theories appear to be dead wrong. Instead of dropping or remaining flat, Super Bowl tickets have skyrocketed during the week or so when legions of sports fans were distracted by Deflategate, the scandal in which the Patriots are being accused of using underinflated footballs during the AFC Championship game against the Indianapolis Colts.

On Saturday, the Seattle Times estimated it would cost a minimum of $9,000 for a pair of fans to attend the Super Bowl, with the lion’s share needed for admission (over $3,000 apiece for tickets). As of Sunday, data from secondary market ticket sale sites such as TiqIQ showed that the cheapest tickets available were starting at roughly $4,200, and that the average list price for seats was running a whopping $6,459—a 114% increase compared to the same time period before last year’s Super Bowl. Another ticket resale site, SeatGeek, reports that the average Super Bowl seat sale price on Sunday was $4,573, up 63% in one week.

TiqIQ’s Chris Matcovich, who was one of many insiders who went on record a week ago telling fans that they should wait for ticket prices to drop, has circulated to the media an explanation for why prices have hit the roof, and apparently it has nothing to do with the Deflategate controversy. “The main reason for the rise was brokers were short selling early on, on the bet that based on previous years prices tend to decline after the championship Sunday,” he explained. “Demand ended up being higher than expected and that led to prices rising.”

As of Monday, Super Bowl ticket prices at resale sites like StubHub, TiqIQ, and VividSeats were all listing seats starting under $4,000—and a few were just a smidge over $3,000.

That’s pricey compared to a week ago, but perhaps better than the options fans encountered over the weekend. So what’s the strategy now? Is it better to buy or wait a few days? Or wait until the very last minute? The consensus about the trajectory of ticket prices has already been wrong once for this year’s Super Bowl, so we’re not going to pretend to know where prices will go from here.

TIME LGBT

Saks Backtracks in Transgender Discrimination Case

2014 Holiday Shopping Windows - Chicago, Illinois
Chris McKay—Getty Images

The company will no longer argue that transgender people lack legal protections

Luxury retailer Saks & Co. has dropped a controversial legal argument they put forward in December: that there’s no federal law prohibiting the company from discriminating against someone for being transgender.

Leyth Jamal, a former employee who identifies as a transgender woman, is suing Saks for discrimination in Texas. She alleges that she was mistreated by the company and ultimately fired because she is transgender. In response, Saks claimed that Title VII, the portion of the Civil Rights Act that prohibits discrimination based on sex, doesn’t cover transgender people.

On Jan. 26, after public criticism and a legal rebuke from the Department of Justice, Saks withdrew the motion. The change was first reported by Buzzfeed. Saks will continue to contest Jamal’s suit, but will now focus on the merits of her specific claims.

MORE Does Saks Have the Right to Fire a Transgender Employee?

Saks’ original position was contrary to recent federal court rulings and the views of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Department of Justice. In December 2014, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that all lawyers in the department would be taking the position that transgender discrimination is covered as a form of sex discrimination under Title VII.

In the Justice Department’s motion, officials assert a “strong interest” in the outcome of the case. And their response to Saks’ initial argument is summed up concisely: “Not so.”

TIME Wireless

Can Wi-Fi Replace Your Cell Phone Plan?

TIME.com stock photos Social Apps iPhone Facebook
Elizabeth Renstrom for TIME

Cablevision is building a cell phone service that relies entirely on Wi-Fi

The wireless industry has seen its fair share of changes over the last two years, many sparked by T-Mobile’s disruptive “uncarrier” policies that have been since co-opted by its rivals. But there could be even bigger shakeups coming in the year ahead.

New York-based cable and Internet operator Cablevision is preparing to launch a new cell phone service that relies exclusively on Wi-Fi, the New York Times reports. That would differentiate it from traditional mobile carriers, which use networks of cell towers to let users make calls, send text messages and surf the web. Google is also reportedly prepping a wireless service that may make extensive use of Wi-Fi.

A switch from cellular to Wi-Fi networks could have a huge impact on both the cost and quality of wireless service in the future. Here’s a quick look at what Wi-Fi-based carriers could mean for your cell phone plan:

How is a Wi-Fi plan different from a regular cellular plan?

Historically, cell phones have delivered phone calls, text messages and Internet data using cell towers owned and operated by wireless carriers like Verizon or AT&T. This system has created extremely widespread networks that let people make calls and access the web from almost anywhere in the U.S. But it also means the networks are extremely expensive to operate, so carriers charge customers high monthly fees to maintain them.

An increasing amount of activity on mobile phones is now being done using Wi-Fi networks instead of cellular networks. People can easily set up Wi-Fi in their own homes, while many businesses and municipalities are starting to offer Wi-Fi access for free. Cablevision has also been building its own network of Wi-Fi hotspots for use by its home Internet subscribers when they’re on the go.

Cablevision is now betting that its Wi-Fi hotspots are so widespread that it can build an entire mobile network around them. That means you’d use Wi-Fi not only to surf the Web at home, but also to send texts and make phone calls while out and about.

What are the advantages of a Wi-Fi cell phone plan?

The biggest differentiator would be price. Cablevision’s new Wi-Fi service, dubbed Freewheel, will cost $29.95 per month for new individual customers or $9.95 per month for customers who already subscribe to the company’s Optimum Online Internet service. A recent survey by research firm Cowen and Company found the average monthly cell phone bill on Sprint, Verizon or AT&T is about $140, though that factors in both individual and family plans.

Cablevision’s service also won’t require an annual contract, and it will provide unlimited data. Traditional cell phone carriers often require two-year contracts and punish customers with expensive overage fees if they exceed their data caps.

What are the disadvantages?

At launch, the only phone compatible with Cablevision’s new network is Motorola’s Moto G, which will cost $99.99. The service also won’t be able to match the wide coverage of mobile networks like Verizon’s or AT&T’s — Cablevision’s 1.1 million Wi-Fi hotspots are found only in the New York metro area.

For now, Optimum’s service doesn’t seem to be geared toward typical mainstream consumers. Cablevision Chief Operating Officer Kristin Dolan told the Wall Street Journal that Freewheel could be appropriate for college students, children or people with a fixed income.

What does this mean for the future of wireless?

People aren’t going to abandon reliable wireless carriers and their cellular networks anytime soon. But there will be growing pressure on carriers to make more effective use of Wi-Fi connectivity in urban areas. Google’s rumored wireless service may end up mixing Wi-Fi and traditional cellular networks, helping users automatically find and connect to the fastest or cheapest network while on the go, according to the Journal.

In the future, cellular networks could be viewed as a back-up connectivity option when Wi-Fi isn’t available. Such a model would lower cell phone bills as customers opted for cheaper data plans.

Should I subscribe to Cablevision’s Wi-Fi Network?

If you already subscribe to Optimum Internet (so you qualify for the cheaper subscription rate) and you live near New York and you don’t travel much, then maybe. Otherwise, it’s best to wait and see how the arrival of Freewheel impacts the offerings of the major carriers — and keep an eye out for Google’s upcoming service, which the Journal speculates could arrive in the first half of the year.

MONEY consumer psychology

Panic Shopping! How a Blizzard Turns Us into Irrational Hoarders at the Grocery Store

A long line of shoppers wait beside mostly-empty shelves in the bread aisle of a grocery store, as people stocked up on items ahead of an approaching snowstorm, in Alexandria, Virginia, USA, 12 February 2014.
A long line of shoppers wait beside mostly-empty shelves in the bread aisle of a grocery store, as people stocked up on items ahead of an approaching snowstorm, in Alexandria, Virginia, USA, 12 February 2014. Michael Reynolds—epa/Corbis

Weather forecasts aren't nearly as reliable as the reaction by shoppers when a bad storm has been predicted. And by reaction we mean overreaction.

Almost exactly a year ago, supermarkets cashed in as shoppers rushed in and ransacked store shelves in anticipation of snowy weather and the polar vortex’s subzero temperatures hitting a broad swath of the country. This week, it’s largely the same story in the Northeast, what with a historic blizzard said to be threatening New England and much of the Mid-Atlantic region.

Over the weekend, the panic hoarding began, with shoppers emptying grocery store shelves and grabbing every last loaf of bread, carton of eggs, and bottle of milk in sight. On Sunday, shoppers at one New Jersey supermarket reported it being nearly impossible to find a parking spot outside the store, while inside the scene was one of empty coolers where milk used to be, employees fighting through crowds to restock shelves, and endless lines snaking away from cash registers. Likewise, shoppers have been sharing photos of the crazy mob scenes over the weekend inside grocery stores in Boston, New York City, and elsewhere with #Snowmaggedon2015, #Blizzardof2015, or whatever your preferred nickname is for the storm.

By now, this kind of pre-storm mad rush at the supermarket is to be expected. Heck, it’s far more reliable than the actual weather forecasts ever are. And to some extent, this behavior is reasonable. We’re relentlessly instructed to take precautions, prepare for the worst, go the route of better safe than sorry, and … you get the gist. You don’t want to be stuck in a blizzard without a shovel or enough food to last for a few days, after all.

Yet, as with so many other things involving human beings, there’s a tendency to go completely overboard. What starts out as a prudent and sensible shopping excursion can quickly devolve into a frenzied, agitated exercise in hoarding at an overcrowded supermarket or hardware store, as the ugly, primal side of humanity rises to the surface.

During the polar vortex of early 2014, for instance, some supermarket customers reported that meat and bread were swiped from their shopping carts while their backs were turned. Ever since Superstorm Sandy left gas stations without gas and led to some instances of price gouging where gas was available, drivers have been known to flock to the pumps to fill up when a big storm is in the forecast. Far more often than not, of course, it’s wholly unnecessary to wait in line for 30 minutes or longer just to top off your gas tank.

What is it, then, that pushes us over the edge? Why do shoppers head out to the store in preparation of some snow and perhaps a couple days without power, and then they (OK—we) wind up hoarding all manner of goods as if preparing for the apocalypse?

Part of the explanation is mob mentality. When we see others streaming into stores and snatching up perishable goods by the cartload, we feel pressure to do the same. Perhaps, we think, these crazed shoppers all around us know something we don’t? It’s easy to see how this mentality snowballs—excuse the pun—when an epic blizzard is expected. This kind of thinking also pushes consumers into the realm of irrationality on days like Black Friday, when the bustle of crowds and competition causes people to overreact and buy things they wouldn’t have had there not been dozens of shoppers fighting to get their hands on some supposedly hot, must-have holiday purchase.

Consumer psychologist Kit Yarrow, an author and frequent TIME and MONEY contributor, explained via email that no matter if it’s Black Friday or the day before a blizzard or hurricane is about to hit, when crowds descend on stores we essentially revert to cavemen. “Clearly we’re responding to emotions and crowds, and our brains are a few steps behind,” said Yarrow. What else could explain the act of rampaging through the supermarket and “greedily grabbing the last can of Spam”?

“It starts with a normal impulse to stock up on things that might not be available for a few days,” Yarrow said. “Panic hits when the stores are jammed with other shoppers and the shelves look a little bare. It’s not so much a thought as it is an impulse that hits, and it’s associated with the caveman parts of our brain that take over when we perceive we might be in physical danger. We are prewired to fight for food when we sense that resources are scarce.”

Afterwards, we’re likely to look back on our behavior with puzzlement, and perhaps embarrassment. “Shoppers are going to find that canned food in the back of their pantries someday and wonder what they were thinking,” said Yarrow. “The fact is, they really weren’t thinking. Primal brain took over.”

Try to keep this in mind when, inevitably, the next “historic” storm is on the horizon and your supermarket seems to have been invaded by hoarding barbarian masses. By then, however, it’ll probably be too late. You’ll be in the store, not thinking, and instead following the primal impulse to race to get the last loaf of bread before it’s gone.

Speaking of which, anyone have any good recipes that involve Spam? Somehow, I have a bunch in the pantry, though I don’t remember even buying them.

TIME technology

Apple Reportedly Selling More iPhones in China Than in U.S.

Apple Inc. Launches iPhone 6 And iPhone 6 Plus In China
Apple store employees welcome the customers to buy iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus at an Apple store on October 17, 2014 in Beijing, China. Feng Li—Getty Images

Analysts expect Apple to announce the historic tipping point in its next quarterly earnings report

Apple may have sold more iPhones in China than the U.S. for the first time on record, according to advanced reports of Apple’s upcoming earnings report.

Analysts expect Apple to announce the historic tipping point on Tuesday, when Apple will unveil its global sales results for the final quarter of last year, the Financial Times reports.

UBS analysts told the Financial Times that China alone accounted for an estimated 36% of global iPhone shipments last quarter, while the U.S. slipped behind with 24% of shipments.

Analysts say a partnership with the country’s largest carrier, China Mobile, combined with the recent release of the iPhone 6, propelled sales growth in the region to a record high.

Read more at the Financial Times.

TIME Aviation

Airlines Cancel Thousands of Flights Due to East Coast Blizzard

APTOPIX Winter Weather Flights
A plane is de-iced at LaGuardia Airport in New York City on Jan. 26, 2015. Seth Wenig—AP

Nearly all of the major U.S. carriers have waived the change fee for customers

Major airlines are preemptively canceling thousands of flights scheduled to come into and out of the East Coast of the United States as a potentially historic blizzard is expected to dump as much as three feet of snow and snarl transportation for tens of millions of people.

Flight-tracking website FlightAware.com noted Monday morning that around 4,000 flights have been cancelled for Monday and Tuesday. The post also said that almost all New York City flights will be cancelled Tuesday.

Delta Air Lines said on Sunday it will cancel 600 flights because of the blizzard warning, while United Airlines said it will cancel all Tuesday flights at airports in New York, Boston and Philadelphia. Beginning on Monday night, the carrier will limit operations at Newark, LaGuardia and John F. Kennedy airports in the New York area, a spokeswoman said.

Southwest Airlines said Sunday evening it would cancel more than 130 of 3,410 flights scheduled for Monday due to the storm, an increase from its earlier plan to cancel about 20 flights.

American Airlines said cancellation plans would not be finalized until Monday morning, but that the airline expected “quite a few” flights to be affected. Flightaware.com showed 637 flights canceled for Monday as of Sunday evening.

Nearly all of the major U.S. carriers have waived the change fee for customers flying from affected cities during the storm, reported USA Today.

Information from Reuters contributed to this report. This article originally appeared on Fortune.com.

Your browser, Internet Explorer 8 or below, is out of date. It has known security flaws and may not display all features of this and other websites.

Learn how to update your browser