Apple's App Store on Wednesday passed another major benchmark, topping 50 billion app downloads.
That's according to the countdown timer on Apple's Web site and in iTunes. Apple also confirmed the benchmark on Twitter:May 15, 2013
The person who downloaded the 50 billionth app will get a $10,000 App Store gift card from Apple, and the 50 people who downloaded apps right after that each will receive a $500 gift card. … Read more
Google TV, the ambitious living room operating system often maligned as slow to update, difficult to use, and less focused than alternatives like Roku or standard Smart TV suites, will finally get a major operating system upgrade later this year.
LG announced today at Google I/O that its Google TVs will get the update to Android version 4.2.2, aka Jelly Bean, in the third quarter. LG is the only manufacturer still selling actual televisions with Google TV built-in, although a few set-top boxes are available, too. LG's models, including the 2013 GA7900 and GA6400 and the … Read more
Whether he's talking about the weight of 300 billion elephants or battling Bill Nye the Science Guy for geek supremacy, famous astrophysicist and Star Talk Radio host Neil deGrasse Tyson is someone I pay attention to. I'm interested in his opinion and give it more weight than a lot of other people's. When he tackled one of the greatest sci-fi rivalries of all time, I perked up. "Star Trek" or "Star Wars"?
It's no secret Tyson is a major Trekkie, but his bountiful space love doesn't stretch to encompass "Star Wars" quite so much. Now we know why. "I never got into 'Star Wars,'" he admits in an interview with Business Insider (see embedded clip). "They made no attempt to portray real physics. At all."… Read more
David Wells, speaking at the J.P. Morgan tech conference, said Netflix expected the process to regain customers' trust would take about three years, and that's likely still the case. The company in 2011 angered users and lost nearly a million subscribers in four months after hiking prices and taking steps to separate Netflix's DVD operations from its streaming video business.
Wells noted at the tech conference, which offered a live feed of the conversation, that Netflix continues … Read more
Ticketfly, a ticketing and marketing service, has launched an initiative aimed at giving venues and event promoters the ability to direct targeted rewards at their most loyal customers.
The impetus behind the Fanbase initiative, announced Wednesday, is that while 7 percent of ticket buyers generate 30 percent of the revenue brought in at the gate of events utilizing Ticketfly tickets, there has previously been no way to adequately identify, reward, and motivate those people.
While it appears Netflix is continuing to grow as the dominant video streaming service in the U.S., its competitors are also growing, according to Internet research firm Sandvine.
Video streaming, or "real-time entertainment," is on the rise overall and those companies involved are seeing their businesses grow. However, their market share has remained static. According to a survey (pdf) released Tuesday by Sandvine, Netflix has 32.3 percent of the market share, while YouTube has 17.1 percent, Hulu has 2.4 percent, and Amazon has 1.31 percent. And, those numbers haven't changed … Read more
In the wake of disappointment and confusion caused by Netflix's "streamaggedon" movie purge, the rental service has made changes to its API that will make it harder for third-party tools to determine when titles will expire.
The revelation late last month that hundreds of classic movies, including Woody Allen's "Stardust Memories" and the James Bond hits "Dr. No" and "Goldfinger," would soon vanish from movie fans' instant streaming queues caused a minor uproar that some in the media dubbed "streamaggedon." A Netflix spokesperson said that both the number … Read more
Forget the Umbrellas of Cherbourg. MIT presents the Umbrellas of Cambridge.
This Sunday evening, participants in a large-scale interactive performance will hoist programmable umbrellas outfitted with LED lights skyward in a shimmering spectacle of red, green, and blue.
The project, called "UP: The Umbrella Project," is part of a collaboration between MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) and the Connecticut-based Pilobolus modern-dance company.
Using hand controllers designed by researchers at CSAIL's Distributed Robotics Lab, hundreds of MIT students, faculty, and staff will be able to independently change the color of their umbrellas, thus spontaneously choreographing a kind of umbrella dance that will then be projected onto a giant screen so everyone can see the aggregate moving image. … Read more
Not since the iPhone or iPad has a gadget generated more buzz than Google Glass. So of course I wanted to take it apart and explore its internal hardware. Unfortunately, as I'll show you, this version of Google Glass wasn't built to be easily dissected or repaired.
According to Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt, Glass is still "probably a yearish away" from hitting store shelves. But true to the company's iterative development style, Google is shipping 10,000 or so Explorer Edition units to developers, beta testers, and winners of Google's "If I Had Glass" contest. And while the company might make a few tweaks to the product before launch, these test units still give us a good idea of what to expect in terms of overall design and hardware.… Read more