• Google Debuts New Navigation System

    Changing the face of the Web for millions of users, Google plans to retire its classic navigation bar in exchange for a flashy new menu. “Google announced that it’s ‘ready for the next stage’ of its redesign, part of which is a new service navigation system nested under the Google logo,” PCWorld writes.

    In the broadest terms, ABCNews.com called the move “an effort to streamline the user experience.” 

    “It's no longer satisfactory enough for Google to let visitors to its search engine simply pull up results based on queries those individuals type into the site,”

  • Facebook's IPO Could Top $100 Billion

    Web watchers could barely contains themselves on Tuesday amid reports that a future Facebook IPO could be valued at over $100 billion.

    “The social networking firm is now targeting a time frame of April to June 2012 for an initial public offering,” reports The Wall Street Journal, citing sources. “The company is exploring raising $10 billion in its IPO -- what would be one of the largest offerings ever -- in a deal that might assign Facebook a $100 billion valuation.”

    A Bloomberg source seems to believe that "Facebook may file for an IPO before the ...

  • Cyber Monday Is Bonanza For Retailers

    As more data trickles in, this holiday season is shaping up to be a marquee year for online retailers.

    “Cyber Monday might have started as a made-up holiday to give underdog e-commerce sites jealous of Black Friday a day of their own, but it has become an undeniably real thing -- surprising even the people who invented it,” writes The New York Times.

    Last year, for the first time, the Monday after Thanksgiving was the biggest online shopping day of the year by sales, and the first day ever that online spending passed $1 billion, according to comScore.

  • Google Cuts Underperforming Services

    The housecleaning continued at Google, this week, as the search giant put imminent expiration dates on another group of underperforming products and services. The newly fated projects include Google’s wannabe Wikipedia, Google Knol, Google Friend Connect -- which clearly lost out to Google+ -- and Google Wave.

    “These products did not take off for Google as originally anticipated, so they are letting them die out, leaving room for more important projects such as Google+, which is starting to see deeper integrations with successful Google products such as YouTube,” VentureBeat writes.

    “Since Google CEO Larry Page took the helm ...

  • Facebook Expected To Release Phone

    Fueling the industry’s favorite pet rumor, reports have surfaced that Facebook is finally getting its own smartphone.   

    “After years of considering how to best get into the phone business, Facebook has tapped Taiwanese cellphone maker HTC to build a smartphone that has the social network integrated at the core of its being,” writes AllThingsD.

    Code-named “Buffy” after the television vampire slayer, the phone is expected to run on a modified version of Android, which Facebook has reportedly tweaked heavily to deeply integrate its services, as well as to support HTML5 as a platform for applications. 

    After asking for ...

  • EBay Drops $80M On Hunch

    Out to read consumers’ minds, eBay just acquired recommendation engine Hunch for a reported $80 million.

    Per the deal -- first reported by Michael Arrington on his Uncrunched blog -- Hunch’s recommendation technology is expected to be used by eBay to revamp its own ecommerce recommendations. One of Hunch’s co-founders, Chris Dixon has even been pegged tp take over eBay’s existing 50-person recommendations team, and start a new office in New York.

    “That New York office will eventually grow to some 200 employees, I’m told, who’ll focus on recommendations,” Arrington reports. “But the team will also analyze lots ...

  • Yelp Files Billion $ IPO

    On the heels of Groupon’s successful IPO, local business review site Yelp just followed suit with a $100 million public offering of its own. “Reports have been that Yelp will seek a valuation of between $1 billion and $2 billion, although [the] filing does not reflect any specific valuation hopes,” reports Fortune.

    What are the odds on Yelp’s long-term success?

    As The Wall Street Journal notes, “Yelp has been a big critic of Google, which Yelp contends tweaks its search results to advantage Google products that compete with Yelp.” The problem? “Yelp said in its IPO document that it gets ...

  • Google Music Hits Sour Hote

    Google Music is officially open for business, but -- despite an impressive playlist, and some interesting social features -- critics are hardly calling it a hit.  

    “The Web is less than enthused by Google Music,” reports TechCrunch. “The criticism is withering in its somewhat entitled way: ‘Where’s the Spotify killer?’ ‘Radio already does this!’ ‘So it’s basically iTunes match?’”

    Under the headline, “Google Music Is a Complete Letdown,” Gizmodo writes: “Google Music is out of beta, and it pretty much does everything we thought it would. It will let you buy, store, stream and share tracks you already ...

  • Microsoft Debuts Social Network Socl

    Following an initial glimpse this summer, new details emerged this week around what some are calling Microsoft’s official social strategy.

    Socl -- previously named "Tulalip" -- actually mixes search, discovery, and a social network, The Verge has learned.

    “Ignoring for the moment that the interface looks a lot like that other social network, Socl offers a bare bones, three-column layout, with basic navigation in the left rail, a social feed down the middle, and invites and video party options … on the right,” The Verge reports.

    This summer, a teaser page appeared at Socl.com revealing Tulalip, along with ...

  • Facebook Faces Massive Spam Attack

    Just when it looked as if brands were finally embracing Facebook, the social network is experiencing its most serious case of vandalism ever. 

    For the past few days, what ZDNet calls “an exploit” has been turning users’ newsfeeds into “unstoppable torrents of hardcore pornography and gory, violent pictures.”

    According to The Washington Post, the unwelcomed posts have prompted Facebook to launch an investigation “into what appears to be a widespread spam or hacking attack.”

    In a statement, Facebook spokesman Andrew Noyes said: “Protecting the people who use Facebook from spam and malicious content is a top priority for ...

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