Third Party Site May Have Stored 200,000 Snapchat Images

Members of anonymous online messaging forum 4chan claim to have access to as many as 200,000 Snapchat photos through a third-party app called Snapsaved. The smartphone tool allows creators to store photos from their Snapchat accounts. Anonymous members have said that a link will be posted, allowing users to download the photos. It is not clear who created Snapsaved, and the app’s site is no longer working. Meanwhile, Snapchat claims that its servers have not been compromised.

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Facebook Debuts Hyper-Local Ads, Snapchat Ads Coming Soon

Facebook unveiled its hyper-local advertising feature this week. “Local Awareness” ads are designed to be more targeted and cost effective by allowing businesses to select a specific area for advertising and the age and gender of the desired audience. Meanwhile, Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel says, “People are going to see the first ads on Snapchat soon.” The LA-based startup, which makes a mobile app for sharing brief photo messages, attracted investors this year at a $10 billion valuation without any revenue. Continue reading Facebook Debuts Hyper-Local Ads, Snapchat Ads Coming Soon

GoPro’s Hero4 Black Features 4K Video Recording at 30 FPS

GoPro will launch its Hero4 line on October 5th with some notable new features. The $499 Hero4 Black, which the company claims doubles the performance power of its predecessor, supports cinema 4K video recording at 30 fps, 2.7K at 50 fps, and 1080p at 120 fps. Meanwhile, the $399 Hero4 Silver features a touchscreen display, 2.7K recording at 30 fps, 1080 recording at 60 fps, and 720p at 120 fps. Both models include 12-megapixel photo resolution, improved audio capture, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and more. Continue reading GoPro’s Hero4 Black Features 4K Video Recording at 30 FPS

Twilio Aims to Help Businesses Send Photo, Video Messages

The company behind Uber’s driver calls and Airbnb’s text messages is now offering multimedia messages for businesses that want to reach their customers with photos and videos. Twilio’s API enables businesses to run call centers and send voice and text messages through Amazon Web Services for mere pennies. The new multimedia offering will work via MMS, or multimedia messaging service, through contracts with phone carriers in the U.S. and Canada. Continue reading Twilio Aims to Help Businesses Send Photo, Video Messages

Reddit Earns Significant Revenue During Celeb Photo Scandal

Social news and entertainment site Reddit was one of the most shared channels linking to controversial celebrity photographs reportedly hacked from iCloud accounts. In the six days prior to Reddit’s removal of the photos, the site earned enough revenue to run its servers for a month. This is based solely on Reddit Gold, and does not include ad revenue from the quarter billion page views. As Reddit seeks a new round of investments, the site’s belated removal of the page is not considered a coincidence. Continue reading Reddit Earns Significant Revenue During Celeb Photo Scandal

Samsung Unveils New Galaxy Note 4 Phone and VR Headset

Samsung’s updated Galaxy Note 4 can serve as a screen in a new virtual reality headset accessory. The phone has a higher resolution 5.7-inch display and camera, and can snap into the Gear VR headset to provide users with an immersive video game or concert experience. Samsung has partnered with Facebook’s Oculus VR to develop a new headset, the Gear VR Innovator Edition. This wireless headset contains speakers and electronics to display the Note 4’s screen in a 360-degree experience. Continue reading Samsung Unveils New Galaxy Note 4 Phone and VR Headset

Dropbox Hires Computer Vision Experts to Mine Photographs

Dropbox wants to add image recognition software to its cloud storage service so that photos would automatically be tagged with the objects, people, and places found in the images. The company has hired the co-founders of Kriegman-Belhumeur Vision Technology, Peter Belhumeur and David Kriegman, to engineer the new technology. The two men are university professors with extensive experience in computer vision, facial recognition, and machine learning. Continue reading Dropbox Hires Computer Vision Experts to Mine Photographs

Apple to Add Security Alerts Following Celebrity Photo Leaks

Apple CEO Tim Cook confirmed that the hackers responsible for recently leaking nude photos of celebrities were able to break into the celebrities’ iCloud accounts. The company plans to add additional security alerts to help prevent future security breaches. In the next two weeks, Apple users will start receiving notifications when someone tries to change an account password, restore iCloud data to a new device, or when a new device logs onto the account for the first time. Continue reading Apple to Add Security Alerts Following Celebrity Photo Leaks

BuzzFeed is Using Investment to Test a Host of New Features

BuzzFeed, which currently draws more than 150 million average monthly viewers, wants to become known for more than its numbered lists popular with Web surfers. To achieve this goal, the startup just closed a $50 million investment from Silicon Valley VC firm Andreessen Horowitz. The investment will be used to develop new content sections for the site, create an in-house incubator for new technologies, and put more resources toward its LA-based video arm, BuzzFeed Motion Pictures. Continue reading BuzzFeed is Using Investment to Test a Host of New Features

Twitter Acquires AI Startup Madbits, Explores Image Search

Twitter announced that it has acquired an artificial intelligence startup known as Madbits. The social network is buying into Madbits’ technology that can search an image and understand its content. This new image search engine is based on deep learning, a type of AI that relies on convolutional neural nets, much like a human’s network of neurons in the brain. Twitter is just the latest in a line of tech companies to invest in this type of technology. Continue reading Twitter Acquires AI Startup Madbits, Explores Image Search

Startup Offers Customized Mobile Apps for YouTube Celebrities

High-profile YouTubers — whether they be vloggers, athletes, musicians or beauticians — can now reach their audience through personalized mobile apps. Victorious, a startup led by three former Google executives, launched last week. The company has recruited several YouTube celebrities to use its app to post photos and videos, and communicate with fans. Victorious will allow the creators to make money from in-app purchases, advertisements and merchandise sales. Continue reading Startup Offers Customized Mobile Apps for YouTube Celebrities

Apple’s Plans for Photos App Will End Aperture Development

Apple unveiled a new Photos app during its Worldwide Developers Conference earlier this month in San Francisco. Now it seems that the app will serve as a new platform for the upcoming OS X Yosemite. As a result, Apple will no longer develop its Aperture pro photography application, and iPhoto will be replaced by the new Photos app. The transition is designed to provide a more seamless experience, since users will be able to edit and search their Photo Library in the cloud on any Apple devices. Continue reading Apple’s Plans for Photos App Will End Aperture Development

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

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