Google 3D Smartphones Will Run on Mantis Vision Technology

Google’s Project Tango is developing 3D smartphones and tablets that can not only render locations and objects, but can also be used to record 3D images and videos. Mantis Vision’s technology, which will be used in the Google Project Tango devices, creates a depth map of a scene so that users can view an image from different perspectives and add different backgrounds and other 3D visual effects. Other electronics companies are investing in the Mantis technology as well. Continue reading Google 3D Smartphones Will Run on Mantis Vision Technology

China’s Alibaba Group Launches U.S. Shopping Site 11 Main

The largest e-commerce company in China, Alibaba Group Holding, has launched a U.S. shopping website as it plans to go public in what is expected to be one of the largest IPOs in history. The new site, 11 Main hosts over 1,000 merchants in categories such as clothing, jewelry and interior goods. The site is currently available to users who sign up and receive an email invitation. Alibaba has invested in a range of U.S. companies over the past year, including e-commere and mobile messaging. Continue reading China’s Alibaba Group Launches U.S. Shopping Site 11 Main

WWDC: Apple Announces New OS X, iOS 8 and iCloud Drive

Apple kicked off its Worldwide Developer Conference yesterday in San Francisco with a software-focused, two-hour event that highlighted the future of OS X, iOS 8, and a collection of new developer tools intended to encourage the creation of new apps. Apple’s new OS X Yosemite, with a visual overhaul inspired by iOS, will have a public beta this summer and will be available this fall. The company also announced iCloud Drive, a file system for storing documents in the cloud. Continue reading WWDC: Apple Announces New OS X, iOS 8 and iCloud Drive

Getty Images Delivers Winter Olympic Photos in Record Speeds

Getty Images along with AP, AFP, Reuters, and EPA wire agencies have set up state-of-the-art fiber optic networks to deliver Olympic images almost instantaneously. Getty can deliver photographs from the Winter Olympics in Sochi directly to publications within 180 seconds thanks to 20 kilometers of cable and a 100Mbps network. The process of preparing an image for delivery in record speed involves a team of Photoshop experts, captioning specialists, and editors. Continue reading Getty Images Delivers Winter Olympic Photos in Record Speeds

Snapchat Unveils App Updates with Filters and Replay Option

Snapchat rolled out a significant update to its iOS and Android apps on Friday that offers support for new services such as swipeable photo filters. The update supports “smart filters” that can overlay information on pictures including the current time, temperature (using data supplied by the Weather Channel), and how fast a user is moving. Additionally, a new Replay option enables users to view one of their incoming messages one more time. Continue reading Snapchat Unveils App Updates with Filters and Replay Option

Instagram and Twitter Enable Direct Messaging with Photos

Facebook-owned Instagram has launched Instagram Direct, a photo messaging tool that allows users to send videos and photos directly to individual friends, as opposed to its standard function of simply broadcasting images to all users’ friends’ feeds. It is similar to Snapchat in that it is a direct messaging function, but unlike Snapchat, the photos do not quickly disappear. Twitter, meanwhile, has also been updated to allow sharing photos in direct messages. Continue reading Instagram and Twitter Enable Direct Messaging with Photos

New TNT Series “Mob City” Releases Script Via Twitter Cards

“Mob City,” a three-week event about mobsters in 1940s Los Angeles, premieres Wednesday night on TNT. In an effort to generate early social buzz, the script for the first episode is being released in its entirety (minus the surprise ending) as a stream of Twitter messages. The first episode was written by the show’s creator, Frank Darabont (“The Walking Dead,” “The Green Mile,” “The Shawshank Redemption”). The tweets began distribution yesterday using Twitter Cards. Continue reading New TNT Series “Mob City” Releases Script Via Twitter Cards

Rivalry Between Facebook and Newcomer Snapchat Heats Up

Snapchat users are sending approximately 400 million ‘snaps’ per day, whereas Facebook users are uploading about 350 million photos each day and Instagram users are uploading roughly 55 million photos daily. Snapchat’s 400 million snaps account for both video and photo messages, but it is likely that Snapchat surpasses Facebook on photo volume alone. While some question the validity of Snapchat’s numbers, the company reported 350 million snaps daily in September, up from 200 million in June. Continue reading Rivalry Between Facebook and Newcomer Snapchat Heats Up

Social TV: Facebook Partnering with Entertainment Industry

Facebook is working toward greater interactivity between its users and the entertainment industry with television program partnerships. Using popular TV shows, celebrities and related hashtags to encourage even more communication and sharing among users, Faceboook can deliver detailed analytics to its partners about who is watching and what they’re saying on the social media site. TV networks are turning to Facebook to generate social activity and promote their content. Continue reading Social TV: Facebook Partnering with Entertainment Industry

Facebook Under Fire for Decision to Make Teens’ Posts Public

Facebook announced this week that it would allow teenage users between 13 and 17 to make their posts public so that they can be seen by anyone on the social network, underscoring the competition between today’s social platforms to reach the teen audience and attract advertisers. Previously, the posts of teenage users could only be viewed by friends and friends of friends. While drawing criticism from privacy advocate groups, the move will enable Facebook to operate more like its rival Twitter. Continue reading Facebook Under Fire for Decision to Make Teens’ Posts Public

Chat Service Allows 10 People to Share Videos at Same Time

Spin is a new mobile video chat service that allows up to 10 parties per session. The app was created by a San Francisco company called Net Power & Light, known primarily for generating educational apps. Spin allows individuals to share photos and videos, and participants can simply swipe in and out of chats, known as “gatherings.” The app has been released for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, with an Android version coming soon. Continue reading Chat Service Allows 10 People to Share Videos at Same Time

Google Drive Update: Mobile Android App Features Scanning

The Android version of the Google Drive mobile app has been updated to include a number of new features, including the ability to scan receipts, business cards and other documents with your camera phone and save them in the cloud via Drive. In addition to the ability to scan documents, the update uses an optical technology in order to search the stored images. And according to Google, a new grid view makes it easier to find files. Continue reading Google Drive Update: Mobile Android App Features Scanning

Will Flickr Upgrade by Yahoo Help Calm Tumblr Concerns?

While Yahoo’s planned $1.1 billion acquisition of Tumblr drew all the headlines yesterday, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer also unveiled a new Flickr experience for desktop and Android users. During Monday’s press event in New York City, Mayer announced that in addition to a redesign, an impressive terabyte of storage is coming to Flickr users. Yahoo purchased the photo-sharing site in 2005; today it touts more than 8 billion photographs. Continue reading Will Flickr Upgrade by Yahoo Help Calm Tumblr Concerns?

Yahoo Announces $1.1 Billion Acquisition Plan for Tumblr

Yahoo announced early this morning that it has agreed to pay $1.1 billion for Tumblr, the six-year-old blogging site that touts more than 100 million users, but little in the form of revenue. While Tumblr users have already expressed concerns that the site could end up cluttered with ads, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer promises “not to screw it up.” The deal marks the largest social acquisition in years, surpassing last year’s $1 billion purchase of Instagram by Facebook. Continue reading Yahoo Announces $1.1 Billion Acquisition Plan for Tumblr

ESPN and Twitter Expand Collaboration with Video Clips

ESPN plans to post sports-related highlight videos on Twitter in the coming year. Sports fans can expect clips from soccer matches leading up to the World Cup, college football and the X Games. The videos will be made available on Twitter’s site and mobile apps shortly after the live television broadcasts. The collaboration is part of a bigger movement by TV networks and the microblogger to discover new approaches to advertising revenue. Continue reading ESPN and Twitter Expand Collaboration with Video Clips

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