Broadband Adoption and How it Relates to Smartphone Usage

According to a new report from the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, 70 percent of Americans 18 and older have high-speed broadband connections in their homes. Results of the survey, released yesterday, indicate that 20 percent of adults in the U.S. are still without broadband or smartphones for Internet access, while 3 percent are still using dial-up connections. Broadband adoption — still influenced by age, education, income, location and race — may also now be impacted by mobile substitution. Continue reading Broadband Adoption and How it Relates to Smartphone Usage

Galaxy Gear: New Samsung Smartwatch to Debut Next Week

Sources indicate that Samsung plans to unveil its long-awaited smartwatch device on September 4th at events in Berlin and New York. The Galaxy Gear is expected to feature an OLED with a 320×320 resolution, measuring about 2.5 inches, in addition to a dual-core processor, speakers, camera and support for NFC and Bluetooth. The Android device is expected to compete with similar upcoming products from companies including Apple, Microsoft and Sony. Continue reading Galaxy Gear: New Samsung Smartwatch to Debut Next Week

Share 4K Video Through Your Phone or Tablet with MHL 3.0

The Mobile High-Definition Link (MHL) standard for connecting smartphones and tablets to HDTVs and other home entertainment products will receive an upgrade allowing support for 4K video. MHL currently supports up to 1080p, but the need for 4K resolution will increase as more 4K TVs are sold. The backward compatible MHL 3.0 will also support simultaneous data and video feeds and provide power to charge the mobile device. Continue reading Share 4K Video Through Your Phone or Tablet with MHL 3.0

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

Companies Using Sound for Mobile Payments and Data Sharing

Several companies are developing systems and apps that use sound waves to transfer small pieces of data over short distances, and could simplify transferring funds electronically. This is an alternative to using near-field communication (NFC) to transfer data wirelessly. Many devices are ready to use sound technology, including simple and feature phones. There are problems in using sound especially in loud areas, but it has significant potential. Continue reading Companies Using Sound for Mobile Payments and Data Sharing

Sony to Carry Viacom Channels on its Internet Pay TV Service

Sony may have just moved ahead in the race to create an online version of pay television, thanks to a preliminary deal with Viacom to carry channels including MTV, Comedy Central and Nickelodeon via its planned pay TV service. Competitors in this space, such as Google and Intel, have yet to land such a major content deal. Sony hopes to launch an Internet service next year — streamed to its Bravia TVs and PlayStation gaming consoles — that will compete with companies that sell subscription TV services. Continue reading Sony to Carry Viacom Channels on its Internet Pay TV Service

Gates and Myhrvold File Patent: Generating Video From Text

Bill Gates and Nathan Myhrvold have unveiled another compelling idea — a device or app that can automatically create custom video clips from any selection of text. For Gates and Myhrvold, creating videos from text or images would be a major feat. But the pair have also patented other technologies with major potential, such as a Hurricane Suppression System for the Gulf of Mexico. If the video technology is made, it can have an impact on how students view reading. Continue reading Gates and Myhrvold File Patent: Generating Video From Text

Facebook Testing New VIP App in Attempt to Take On Twitter

Twitter currently dominates the world of “public” sharing, with numerous celebrities and public figures utilizing the service to interact with fans. Facebook hopes to compete with Twitter in this arena, and is creating an app that would allow celebrities to more readily engage in conversation with their fans from a mobile device. The VIP app, currently being tested by a small group of partners, could help make the relationship between celebrities and their fans more intimate and immediate. Continue reading Facebook Testing New VIP App in Attempt to Take On Twitter

Lively Provides Music Fans with Recordings of Live Concerts

When attending a live concert, it is not unusual to witness a sea of smartphones, but some find it challenging to enjoy the show while attempting to record it at the same time. And audio quality recorded via the phone is usually disappointing. Tech entrepreneur Dean Graziano may have the solution with a new app called Lively, which allows musicians to sell fans better quality footage from live concerts for a reasonable price: $4.99 for just the audio, or $9.99 for audio and video. Continue reading Lively Provides Music Fans with Recordings of Live Concerts

Losing Ground to Apple and Google, BlackBerry Is Up For Sale

BlackBerry announced on Monday that its board of directors has formed a special committee and has hired JPMorgan Chase & Co. to explore strategic alternatives that could include joint ventures, strategic partnerships or an outright sale of the Waterloo, Ontario-based company. The news follows declining stock value in the wake of disappointing sales of new devices running BlackBerry 10 and a shrinking customer base for the company that helped pioneer the smartphone market. Continue reading Losing Ground to Apple and Google, BlackBerry Is Up For Sale

Facebook to Acquire Developer of Speech Translation Tools

Facebook has agreed to acquire Pittsburgh-based Mobile Technologies, a developer of voice-recognition and speech translation tools. Founded in 2001, Mobile Technologies offers an automatic interpretation service for lectures and developed Jibbigo, a speech-to-speech translator app for iPhone and Android. The company’s goal has been to break “through language barriers to open up communication between the people of the world.” Continue reading Facebook to Acquire Developer of Speech Translation Tools

Augmented Reality App Offers Custom Views of IKEA Catalog

IKEA is launching an augmented reality app that works in conjunction with its AR-capable catalog. Consumers can visualize virtual furniture layouts by essentially superimposing furniture on top of the live view of a smartphone or tablet camera. Consumers select a piece of furniture from the catalog, and point their mobile device toward the physical catalog as a reference point for angle, light, position and size. A virtual version of the furniture will then appear on the device. Continue reading Augmented Reality App Offers Custom Views of IKEA Catalog

MixBit Takes On Vine and Instagram with Video Sharing App

Chad Hurley and Steven Chen, the founders of YouTube, have released a new video creation and sharing app called MixBit. It is similar to other video apps such as Twitter’s Vine and Facebook’s Instagram. The app will allow users to capture 16 seconds of video, while Vine’s maximum is six seconds and Instagram’s limit is 15 seconds. MixBit is different from its competitors in that it allows video editing, but others may soon introduce this feature as well. Continue reading MixBit Takes On Vine and Instagram with Video Sharing App

NBC News to Purchase Stringwire for Streaming Phone Video

NBC News is looking to leverage on-the-scene user generated content for its news coverage, envisioning a day when live video could be streamed directly to its New York control rooms from the camera phones of witnesses to newsworthy events. This approach could replace or complement footage by professional crews and ease the pressure of producers frantically searching Twitter and Facebook to locate eyewitness accounts. The network is acquiring Web service Stringwire as its first step toward this goal. Continue reading NBC News to Purchase Stringwire for Streaming Phone Video

Viggle Audience Network Offers New Advertising Opportunities

Viggle, creator of the mobile second screen app and loyalty program that rewards viewers for engaging with TV shows, has launched the Viggle Audience Network, providing advertisers with access to an audience of nearly 10 million users. While Viggle has nearly three million registered users, it also leverages users from initial launch partners including discovery platform Boxfish, independent fan site BuddyTV and Dijit Media’s NextGuide. Viggle will be able to sell ads across the entire group. Continue reading Viggle Audience Network Offers New Advertising Opportunities

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