Video-Sharing Site Vimeo Bankrolls First Original Productions

Vimeo, the IAC-owned video platform, is now investing in its first original programs. Since its launch, Vimeo has served as a platform for creatives to sell or rent content directly to fans. Vimeo is now funding three projects: the second season of “The Outs,” which debuted online in 2013; a stand-up comedy special featuring Bianca Del Rio, and a short film, “Darby Forever,” from “Saturday Night Live” cast member Aidy Bryant. Vimeo says the new model is also intended to encourage other creators to post content on the site. Continue reading Video-Sharing Site Vimeo Bankrolls First Original Productions

Target Aims to Enhance Shopping Experience with Beacon Tech

Target will start using Bluetooth beacon technology to send recommendations about product deals directly to the smartphones of customers who opt-in for alerts. Users with the latest version of the Target iPhone app on their phones will receive in-app updates and two push notifications per shopping trip. Target is testing beacon tech in 50 of its stores around the country, and plans to use consumer feedback to adapt the service, and release it nationwide by the holiday shopping season. Continue reading Target Aims to Enhance Shopping Experience with Beacon Tech

Microsoft Aims to Upgrade Your World with Windows 10 Launch

Microsoft plans to release Windows 10 as a free upgrade and with new PCs and tablets starting July 29. To celebrate the launch, the company will host fan celebration parties in 13 cities around the world that will feature hands-on demonstrations, live entertainment and interaction with developers from the Windows team. A related global ad campaign will launch next week. The Windows 10 release is also part of Microsoft’s year-long Upgrade Your World initiative “to celebrate those who inspire and empower others.” Continue reading Microsoft Aims to Upgrade Your World with Windows 10 Launch

Reddit Expands Online Offerings with New Original Video Site

Reddit has officially launched its own video site called Reddit Original Video, pushing the company closer to becoming a full-fledged media entity. The new property will join Reddit’s popular news site, Upvoted podcast and Upvoted Weekly newsletter. Reddit founder Alexis Ohanian announced the site at this week’s TechCrunch Disrupt conference. Reddit, a company known for aggregating news and information, plans to use the site to significantly expand the type of content it shares with its growing online community. Continue reading Reddit Expands Online Offerings with New Original Video Site

GoEnjoy.com: Startup Brings a Personal Touch to Online Retail

Ron Johnson, a former retail exec with Apple and J.C. Penney, has launched a Web-only startup to offer a new twist on online retail. Menlo Park-based Enjoy Technology will begin offering high-end consumer electronics in select locations today via its website, GoEnjoy.com. The site will sell smartphones, laptops, tablets, drones, and more — in addition to offering free delivery and in-home setup service. Johnson expects that the in-home service will give Enjoy an advantage over established rivals such as Amazon and eBay. Continue reading GoEnjoy.com: Startup Brings a Personal Touch to Online Retail

AOL and NBCUniversal Plan to Share Content Across Platforms

AOL and NBCUniversal have reached a licensing and distribution agreement that will allow the two companies to share and develop content. Shows from NBC, CNBC and Telemundo could start streaming via online video platform AOL On. NBCUniversal and AOL may also start developing original content together to be distributed on the platforms of both companies. The agreement means that advertisers will be able to reach consumers watching this shared content on television as well as mobile and desktop devices. Continue reading AOL and NBCUniversal Plan to Share Content Across Platforms

Yahoo Announces Digital Content Slate at NewFronts This Week

Yahoo was among the first companies earlier this week to reveal its new slate of digital programming at the Digital Content NewFronts in New York City. The company unveiled 18 new series including shows with celebrities such as Michelle Rodriguez and Naomi Campbell attached. Yahoo’s slate includes a competition show called “Ultimate DJ,” produced by former “American Idol” judge Simon Cowell and a daily news show called “Yahoo News Live,” with Katie Couric set to host. Continue reading Yahoo Announces Digital Content Slate at NewFronts This Week

Maker Select Enables the Purchasing of Ad Space on YouTube

During its NewFront presentation in New York this week, Disney-owned Maker Studios announced Maker Select, which will allow advertisers to buy ad space on Maker’s 55,000 YouTube channels in addition to all other YouTube channels. Maker Select will incorporate Maker’s audience data with data from YouTube, Nielsen, social networks and additional sources. Advertisers can target ads based on content type, brand compatibility and audience makeup. The new offering comes from a partnership with Web video analytics firm OpenSlate. Continue reading Maker Select Enables the Purchasing of Ad Space on YouTube

Jay Z to Perform Free Concert Only for Tidal Music Subscribers

Rapper and producer Jay Z is promoting his new artist-backed music streaming service Tidal with an exclusive concert. “Tidal X: Jay Z B-Sides” will be held May 13 in New York City. The only way people can get tickets is by submitting a playlist on Tidal. The artist plans to play songs that he has not performed in over 10 years. The concert announcement follows in the wake of Jay Z vehemently defending Tidal on Twitter after other musicians had criticized the service for being too elitist. Continue reading Jay Z to Perform Free Concert Only for Tidal Music Subscribers

Facebook Tests Beacon Tech to Provide Users with Local Info

Facebook wants to use beacons to test a new service called Place Tips that transmits information about shops, restaurants and landmarks to users nearby. Facebook will begin testing the service in New York City at different shops and city landmarks. Place Tips uses location services to identify when a Facebook user is nearby any one of the designated locations and then pushes content such as photos, reviews and tips about the location directly above a user’s Facebook News Feed. Continue reading Facebook Tests Beacon Tech to Provide Users with Local Info

Amazon Tests Delivery Options via Bike Messengers, Drones

Amazon’s latest experiment with its delivery service promises one-hour deliveries. The Amazon Prime Now service is being tested across New York City using a fleet of bike messengers. The program has plans to implement drop-off drones in the future. Amazon’s drone carriers, which could cut the one-hour delivery time in half, has yet to receive approval from the FAA for domestic use. Amazon joins companies such as Postmates, WunWun and Uber in the market for expedited delivery services. Continue reading Amazon Tests Delivery Options via Bike Messengers, Drones

New York City Plans to Transform Pay Phones into Wi-Fi Hubs

The aging pay phones of New York City are getting a digital makeover. Mayor Bill de Blasio’s office announced a five-borough “LinkNYC” plan to give New York City residents access to free and fast Internet service. The “Link” devices, installed as replacements to the city’s 6,400 coin-operated pay phones, will also provide free phone calling and a free charging station. City officials expect the digital advertisements on the Link devices to bring in at least $20 million in annual ad revenue. Continue reading New York City Plans to Transform Pay Phones into Wi-Fi Hubs

Amazon May Open its First Physical Store in New York City

E-commerce giant Amazon reportedly has plans to open its first brick-and-mortar store in the heart of New York City. The company’s new space on 34th Street across from the Empire State Building may likely be used as a mini warehouse that will handle same-day delivery, product returns, and pick-ups of online orders. A physical store is expected to help provide faster service and delivery for New Yorkers in addition to building more brand recognition for the online-based company. Continue reading Amazon May Open its First Physical Store in New York City

FAA Regulations Needed as Aerial Drones Grow in Popularity?

As the price of small drones decreases, the popularity of these tiny unmanned aircraft increases for aerial wedding photographers and gadget enthusiasts alike. In New York City in particular, the proliferation of these devices has state officials and law enforcement officers worried. There is no required training for the amateur pilots operating these drones. In terms of regulations, the Federal Aviation Agency currently permits drones to be flown under 400 feet. Continue reading FAA Regulations Needed as Aerial Drones Grow in Popularity?

Solar-Powered Park Bench Serves as Mobile Charging Station

Changing Environments, a spin-off of MIT Media Lab, has created a $3,000 solar-powered bench called Soofa (a play on “smart urban furniture”). The bench features two USB ports that allow users to charge their smartphones and other mobile devices. On its website, Soofa provides info about weather, noise level and air quality around its benches, which are currently springing up in parks and campuses across Boston, with plans to soon launch in New York and San Jose, California. Continue reading Solar-Powered Park Bench Serves as Mobile Charging Station

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