• App Platform Kony Cops $15M
    Mobile app development platform Kony Solutions has closed a $15 million series C round of financing, led by Insight Venture Partners. With cash in hand, “The startup is looking [to] fund the deployment of new sales and marketing programs, regional expansion, and to ramp up hiring,” TechCrunch reports.  Kony’s master plan is to develop technologies and apps that both facilitate and accelerate customer engagement on any mobile operating system, device or channel. Through its flagship product, KonyOne, the startup offers a development environment and mobile middleware that allows big businesses to build and launch both enterprise and consumer apps. “As ...
  • Mobile Threatens Browser Diversity
    As it stands, consumers can freely choose between four or five browsers to surf the Web. Yet, some suggest that the rise of mobile devices threatens such freedom. “On personal computers running Windows, Macs, and Linux, you can pick from a variety of browsers, finding the best combination of user interface, performance, expansion, customization, and other attributes,” CNet explains. “But on a host of devices ranging from today's iPhones to tomorrow's Windows RT tablets, though, things are very different.” The notion that the browser is a feature of the operating system -- “an idea Microsoft floated to defend against an ...
  • Facebook Gives Developers More Data
    Despite a few distractions, Facebook this week said developers would now be able to track all of the activity going on within the social net with far more granularity. Apps that publish Open Graph stories, for example, will now be able to track the unique numbers of publishes, views, and clicks said app attracts. “This type of analytics will help companies hone in on exactly what’s working for them, and exactly what’s going on when they see spikes in usage,” The Next Web writes. What’s more, developers will now see how many unique users have seen and accepted their Facebook ...
  • Bing's "Visual Search" Fades Without Notice
    What about Bing’s highly touted visual search feature? Microsoft’s search engine scrapped that a while ago -- and without anyone realizing it. “The fact that almost no one noticed might be one reason why Bing has dropped its Visual Search feature … something that apparently happened months ago,” Search Engine Land write. “To be clear, this isn’t traditional image search that we’re talking about; that’s still available at bing.com/images.” Rather, Bing’s “Visual Search” tool-cum-interface debuted in 2009, and used Silverlight technology to let searchers view a large set of images and data. A Microsoft spokesperson confirmed that company ...
  • Apple Master Of Mobile PCs
    Apple maintained its position as the leader in mobile PC sales -- with 17.2 million units shipped during the first quarter of the year, according to research firm NPD. (That’s including iPad sales, which amounted to 13.6 million units moved during the quarter.) The company beat out its nearest competitor HP by a solid 8.3 million units, making it the leader by far, 9To5Mac notes. “As for the area of key growth, NDP backs up Tim Cook’s recent claims that China is a key emerging market.” In fact, according to NPD, China accounted overall for 13% of mobile PCs shipped during the quarter. ...
  • Oracle Drops $300M On Social Platform Vitrue
    Oracle announced the acquisition of social marketing platform Vitrue. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but sources tell TechCrunch that it cost the software giant $300 million. “As if Oracle didn’t offer enough products and services already, the acquisition will give it a strong Facebook marketing platform to offer its enterprise clients.” A bona fide business, Vitrue was on course for revenues of nearly $100 million this year, sources tell TechCrunch. Vitrue is reportedly “nearly profitable” and was projected to reach profitability in this fiscal year. Along with Facebook, Vitrue helps marketers manage their brands on Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, ...
  • Will Consumers Wear Computers?
    There’s no telling whether consumers will take to face computers, but that can’t stop gadget makers from pushing such devices. “The rise of Internet-connected smartphones and advances in ‘heads-up’ displays are accelerating the development of all sorts of wearable augmented-reality devices,” reports The Wall Street Journal. “Such gadgets have long faced skepticism because they were uncomfortable to wear, ugly, and expensive, reserved only for corporations and military agencies.” Indeed, the best example the WSJ can find of face-computer adoption is Austrian eyeglasses designer Michael Pachleitner Group, which is giving its warehouse workers the new technology. Sure, each device costs $13,000, ...
  • Start-up Pushes CAPTCHA Killer
    CAPTCHAs, it seems, were specifically designed to discourage Web users from doing whatever they were trying to do -- post a comment, buy something, etc. -- before a CAPTCHA got in their way. Yes, “the CAPTCHA test … where you have to type in the word that you see in a blurry distorted font image -- is extremely annoying and often leads to multiple failures,” VentureBeat notes. Enter Detroit-based startup Are You a Human, which uses simple games rather than CAPTCHAs to verify that Web users are real person, and not an automated bot. Its human authentication tool, PlayThru, seeks to ...
  • How Motorola Will Make Over Google
    On word that Google has finalized its acquisition of Motorola Mobility, Web watchers are taking a fresh look at the deal, what it means for Google, and the future of mobile. Confirming many a suspicion, Dennis Woodside, the newly appointed head of Motorola Mobility, says Google plans to use the division to produce smartphones and tablet computers that can help Google set the pace of innovation in the mobile business. “This is a huge opportunity to really show what Android can do in a well-designed, well-packaged, and well-marketed product,” Woodside tells Bloomberg Businessweek. It’s “a huge gamble,” according to the ...
  • Cable Co.'s Expand Free Wi-Fi
    Supporting the spread of the mobile Web, top cable operators are coming together to offer free Wi-Fi access to their broadband customers in more than 50,000 hotspots around the country. This week, Bright House Networks, Cablevision, Comcast, Cox Communications, and Time Warner Cable agreed to enable each other's broadband customers to access their metro Wi-Fi hot spots. “The companies are calling the new network ‘CableWiFi,’ so that subscribers will be able to find the hot spots when they're roaming outside their own cable territory,” CNet reports. Cablevision, Comcast, and Time Warner Cable have been working together on the project since ...
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