USA Today Takes Steps to Boost Mobile and Online Readership

USA Today has launched a program called Social Media Tuesdays, in which staff members are expected to act as if social media is the only means of receiving articles. The idea behind the development is to get the employees to think as their readers think. USA Today has increased monthly mobile readership 48 percent since last year, to 25.5 million. Newspapers are hoping online and mobile offerings will make up for the decrease in traditional print readership.  Continue reading USA Today Takes Steps to Boost Mobile and Online Readership

Hearst Launches On-Demand Subscription Channel CosmoBody

The new Hearst Digital Studios unit is starting an online channel of fitness and lifestyle videos inspired by Cosmopolitan magazine. For $9.95 per month, viewers can subscribe to CosmoBody, which will stream video content on-demand to the iOS app, the Android app, and Internet browsers. Hearst plans to launch similar online channels to expand its digital presence as business faces a downturn in traditional print and cable television markets. Continue reading Hearst Launches On-Demand Subscription Channel CosmoBody

Corporate Shift in Social Media Seeks Quality Over Quantity

Last year, Ritz-Carlton Hotel experienced a different kind of disappointment with advertising campaigns. The company wanted to promote its brand page on Facebook but quickly stopped the campaign. Unhappy executives saw too much gain from these ads. Now, rather than trying to grow its fan base, Ritz-Carlton has focused on analyzing its social media conversations to better grasp the likes and dislikes of its guests. The plan highlights a shift in corporate social media strategies. Continue reading Corporate Shift in Social Media Seeks Quality Over Quantity

New Matter’s MOD-t Makes 3D Printing Easy and Affordable

Startup New Matter, led by veteran engineer Steve Schell, has developed a $250 3D printer called the “MOD-t.” New Matter’s digital platform may be as groundbreaking as the low-cost hardware itself. Schell found three obstacles with 3D printers: first, they are too complicated for ordinary people to experiment with; second, it is hard to find high-quality objects to print; and third, the price is prohibitive. New Matter has created a printer that may be simple and affordable enough for most consumers. Continue reading New Matter’s MOD-t Makes 3D Printing Easy and Affordable

Small Theaters Face Challenges in Shift to Digital Distribution

As Hollywood studios are shifting from distributing movies on film to digital distribution via hard drives and satellite, many small theaters cannot afford $60,000 or more to upgrade and support the new technology. Theater owners are faced with the difficult decision between investing in new equipment or closing down their theaters. Meanwhile, most major U.S. cinema chains have already converted to digital cinema, many with the support of Wall Street-financed programs. Continue reading Small Theaters Face Challenges in Shift to Digital Distribution

Online Book Subscriptions Aim to Save the Publishing Industry

As the book industry struggles with plunging prices and a decrease in demand, some publishers are turning to magazines to save their businesses. At SXSW in Austin this week, San Francisco-based literary startup Plympton launched Rooster, a subscription-only online fiction service. The service is an example of the new alternative in packaging books like magazines. A similar service is Plympton’s Daily Lit, which emails customers five-minute installments of classic literature. Continue reading Online Book Subscriptions Aim to Save the Publishing Industry

3D Systems and Hasbro Co-Venture: 3D Printing Play for Kids

3D Systems, provider of 3D printing solutions, and toy and game company Hasbro have announced plans to co-develop creative, immersive play experiences “powered by 3D printing” for children. The partnership aims to commercialize play printers and platforms later this year, combining 3D Systems’ printing products with Hasbro’s portfolio of consumer brands. 3D Systems has been spending more on R&D, and recently announced plans to partner with Hershey to develop 3D printing tech to produce food items. Continue reading 3D Systems and Hasbro Co-Venture: 3D Printing Play for Kids

Matter Labs: New Software Brings 3D Printing to E-Commerce

While large brands often generate business by enabling consumers to customize products online, smaller companies do not always have the resources to do the same, something that will likely change with 3D printing technology and services. Massachusetts-based startup Matter Labs has developed a plug-and-play API called Matter Remix and software called Matter.io to help e-commerce merchants leverage 3D printing and add product customization features to online stores. Continue reading Matter Labs: New Software Brings 3D Printing to E-Commerce

CEA Projects Record Year in Consumer Electronics Spending

The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) announced Tuesday that CE revenues for 2014 are projected to reach a new record of $208 billion in the U.S., an increase of 2.4 percent over 2013. According to the latest “Consumer Electronics Sales and Forecast” report, smartphones are expected to continue leading the charge shipping 152 million units, up from 138 million in 2013. The report, published twice a year, also predicts increased sales of UHD displays and tablet PCs. Continue reading CEA Projects Record Year in Consumer Electronics Spending

CES Panelists Discuss Entertainment Trends and Future of TV

Industry leaders speaking at two CES panels this week addressed new directions in entertainment media. During the panel “What are the Entertainment Trends at CES 2014?”, wearables were discussed, smartwatches in particular, and what it will take to spark consumer adoption. During “The State of the New TV Business: What Comes Next?” panel, speakers examined how networks are tackling distribution and monetization of content in an era of streaming media. Continue reading CES Panelists Discuss Entertainment Trends and Future of TV

NYT Launches HTML5-Based Web App with Print-Like Design

The New York Times has launched a responsive Web app for its daily print edition, designed for tablets and computers. “Today’s Paper,” built with HTML5, offers the content of the daily edition in a layout that is similar to the paper’s iPad app in Newsstand. It is delivered on a regular daily schedule and structured similarly to the print version, for those frustrated by segmented apps and digital offerings. Interaction on a tablet offers swiping and gestures rather than clicking and scrolling. Continue reading NYT Launches HTML5-Based Web App with Print-Like Design

Researchers Print Micro Circuits with Cheap Ink-Jet Printers

Researchers from Georgia Tech, the University of Tokyo, and Microsoft Research have developed a technique in which cheap, functional electric circuits can be printed using only $300 of material and equipment. This technique uses silver nanoparticle ink instead of utilizing sintering. The researchers were able to print a circuit in roughly 60 seconds onto almost any material that can go through a printer, though some materials worked better than others. Continue reading Researchers Print Micro Circuits with Cheap Ink-Jet Printers

Smithsonian X 3D Collection Brings Historical Objects to Life

The Smithsonian has launched an online collection called the Smithsonian X 3D. The site includes a browser-based 3D viewer that allows users to experience objects that have been scanned, such as artifacts and fossils, up close. In addition, users can download related files in order to print models using their own 3D printer. The project supports 19 museums, 9 research centers and the National Zoo in its goal to expand Smithsonian digital assets. Continue reading Smithsonian X 3D Collection Brings Historical Objects to Life

New Sense Scanner Brings Mainstream 3D Printing Potential

3D Systems’ Sense scanner is one step closer to bringing 3D printing to the consumer’s desktop. The $400 scanner is a small, handheld device that users wave around the desired object for printing. The printing process itself is still time-consuming and costly, making the mainstream possibilities for the technology limited for now. But the new product is a significant advance for the industry and captures good detail with greater ease than ever before. Continue reading New Sense Scanner Brings Mainstream 3D Printing Potential

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

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