Amazon Unveils New Web Services to Stream From the Cloud

In its effort to get apps, games and entire desktops running on the cloud, Amazon is launching two new Web services. The first, AppStream, enables developers to run and render an application in Amazon’s cloud. It can then be distributed to users on a variety of platforms. The second, WorkSpaces, will allow virtual desktops to be managed through Amazon’s cloud, a solution that Amazon claims would run for less than half the cost of a company maintaining its own virtualization servers. Continue reading Amazon Unveils New Web Services to Stream From the Cloud

Samsung Edges Out the Competition for Android Development

Samsung made some significant announcements at its Developers Conference earlier this week that indicate it is making a play for greater control over Android. Among the announcements, the company plans to release five new SDKs for phones, tablets, TVs and more. The developer kits include support for apps and features involving pen and gesture controls in addition to media playback from mobile devices. Samsung now sells more Android devices than any of its competitors. Continue reading Samsung Edges Out the Competition for Android Development

Pew Research: Tablets and E-Readers See Significant Increase

According to new figures released by the Pew Internet & American Life Project, the number of Americans 16 and older who now own a tablet or e-book reader currently stands at 43 percent. The number of tablet owners has grown to 35 percent, while the share of e-reader devices has grown to 24 percent. Pew Research notes that device owners tend to live in upper-income households and have relatively high levels of education. The numbers also indicate that women are more likely to own e-readers. Continue reading Pew Research: Tablets and E-Readers See Significant Increase

Twitter Releases New Mobile App Designed for Android Tablets

Twitter has finally developed a more robust full-screen experience with its new app designed specifically for Android tablets. The app, introduced last Thursday, will initially work only with Samsung tablets, but will be made available for other Android tablets by the end of the year. Twitter has added some Samsung-specific innovations, including simultaneous multi-app views; a Twitter widget that delivers breaking news, sports, and photos; and the ability to annotate images in tweets. Continue reading Twitter Releases New Mobile App Designed for Android Tablets

Tablet Review: Amazon Launches Kindle Fire HDX this Week

Amazon’s newest tablet, the Kindle Fire HDX, is a good color tablet with a few improvements, but isn’t as versatile as its current rivals, suggests Walt Mossberg. Its best feature could be the video chat-based tech support, activated by its Mayday button. The latest 7-inch screen version starts at $229. Mossberg describes the tablet as a “hardware gateway to buying digital content from Amazon.” The basic model includes ads, but a version without ads can be purchased for an additional $15. Continue reading Tablet Review: Amazon Launches Kindle Fire HDX this Week

Amazon Plans to Release New Set-Top Box for Holiday Season

Amazon plans to release a video streaming device in time for the holiday shopping season. The set-top box, which will reportedly look similar to a Roku player, will feature a platform that runs apps and content from a variety of sources. Amazon has approached multiple app developers and cable TV providers with the hopes of attaining partnerships. The device will be a vehicle for Amazon’s expanding video streaming service that puts the company in competition with Netflix. Continue reading Amazon Plans to Release New Set-Top Box for Holiday Season

Scribd Unveils New Subscription Service for Digital Books

Scribd will now be offering a subscription service, similar to Netflix and Spotify, through which users can access the entire Scribd e-book inventory. The service will offer unlimited access for a monthly fee, and may be a challenge to larger technology companies such as Amazon, Google and Apple. The company offers its service on most platforms and devices, and hopes to offer a new model for the revenue, distribution and discovery of books. Continue reading Scribd Unveils New Subscription Service for Digital Books

Amazon Launches Offline Viewing of Videos on New Kindles

Amazon is launching an offline viewing feature for its Prime Instant Video service on the new line of Kindle devices. The move is an attempt to catch up to Netflix and make the Amazon offering distinct from other subscription video services. Google is planning its own offline video feature for YouTube mobile apps as well. It remains to be seen if offline viewing will be a desired feature in the long term, but Amazon is the first to offer such an option. Continue reading Amazon Launches Offline Viewing of Videos on New Kindles

Amazon Pushes its Digital Services with New Kindle Fire HDX

Kindle plans to unveil two new versions of its Kindle Fire tablet today, featuring a faster processor and graphics, improved screen quality and a lighter, slimmer design. The Kindle Fire HDX, available with 7-inch or 8.9-inch screens, will undercut the price of competitors including Apple’s popular iPad and, not surprisingly, focus on sales of services such as digital music and e-books. “We want to make money when people use our devices, not when they buy our devices,” said Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. Continue reading Amazon Pushes its Digital Services with New Kindle Fire HDX

Build Print and Digital Book Libraries with Kindle MatchBook

We recently reported that Amazon has announced a new program called Kindle Matchbook that allows book enthusiasts to buy electronic versions of books that they have already purchased in print. In many cases, the program will allow customers to pay less than what they typically would for a standalone Kindle book. Customers will pay $2.99, $1.99, $0.99 — or nothing — for an electronic book they have already purchased in print. Continue reading Build Print and Digital Book Libraries with Kindle MatchBook

Amazon Updates Kindle E-Reader Line with New Paperwhite

Amazon unveiled its latest Kindle e-reader this week, an updated Paperwhite with improved front-screen lighting, greater contrast, more responsive touch panel and faster processor. Software updates will include integration of book recommendation site Goodreads, which the company purchased earlier this year. The new device is available for preorder for $119 — or $139 without ads — and will ship later this month. The $189 3G version will be released on November 5th. The online retailer also announced a program for buying discounted e-books. Continue reading Amazon Updates Kindle E-Reader Line with New Paperwhite

Conde Nast and Amazon Join in Print and Digital Magazines

Condé Nast recently announced a collaboration with Amazon where the online retailer will manage the publisher’s print and digital subscriptions. The “All Access” service will be available for Vogue, Glamour, Vanity Fair, WIRED and others. Additional titles will be added later in the year. The partnership will introduce Condé Nast to new Amazon customers, where they can manage their print and digital subscriptions with their Amazon accounts. Continue reading Conde Nast and Amazon Join in Print and Digital Magazines

Nook Video Apps Now Available for iPad and Android Tablets

Now that Barnes & Noble is getting out of the tablet business, the company announced it is launching free Nook Video Apps for Android, iOS and Roku devices. The new apps enable users to purchase or rent movies for streaming and includes integration with individuals’ UltraViolet collections. No longer keeping content exclusive to Nook devices, the retailer has also updated its Android and iOS e-reader apps with the ability to read Nook Comics titles, previously not available outside of the Nook ecosystem. Continue reading Nook Video Apps Now Available for iPad and Android Tablets

Web Apps Join Android Offerings on the Amazon Appstore

Amazon announced that developers now have the option of creating Web apps that will be offered alongside native Android-based programs on its Appstore. The move could encourage developers to distribute HTML5-based apps without converting them to Android versions. It could also potentially lead the charge for change with other stores. Developers currently have to convert their apps to native iOS and Android versions for availability via the Apple App Store and Google Play. Continue reading Web Apps Join Android Offerings on the Amazon Appstore

Jeff Bezos, Founder of Amazon, Buys The Washington Post

Jeff Bezos, the founder and chief executive of Amazon, will pay $250 million for The Washington Post and its affiliated publications. Amazon will not have a part in the purchase. Bezos alone will buy The Post and be its sole owner, while keeping the existing management and operations. The sale saves the financially troubled newspaper, and Bezos brings a new technology focus that it desperately needs as print continues to be affected by digital news competition. Continue reading Jeff Bezos, Founder of Amazon, Buys The Washington Post

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