Betaworks -- which TechCrunch describes as a “hybrid investor / incubator / holding company” -- has acquired story-saving app Instapaper. “With the acquisition of Instapaper, Betaworks is adding even more tools for saving -- and sharing -- news that is important to readers,” TC writes. “And, more importantly, with Instapaper’s purchase model, it makes Betaworks into a company that actually makes money.”
Twitter is reportedly testing a new feature that lets users discover tweets from people in close proximity to them. “The idea is to surface relevant activity based on where you are in the world, serving up tweets from others around you -- whether you follow them or not,” AllThingsD writes.
To make sure that rival search services aren't unfairly listed in its search results in Europe, Google has proposed to separate promoted links from native search results, and display links to three rival services. As The Verge reports, the unorthodox offer comes as the European Commission is asking Google's search rivals to comment on proposals over how it displays its own specialized search services alongside those of competitors.
LinkedIn on Thursday relaunched its Contacts section as what TechCrunch calls “a smart contact management system that will let users link up and integrate connections on LinkedIn with those from Google, Yahoo and Microsoft apps; Evernote; TripIt; your iPhone and more, and then serve as a ‘personal assistant’ to help manage the interactions you make with them.”
Of the 40.6 million tablets shipped in the first quarter of the year, Windows devices made up 7.4% of them, according to Strategy Analytics. That equates to roughly 3 million Windows tablets sold -- or what ZDNet calls, “a notable increase on the same quarter last year, when shipments were so low the OS didn't even figure in Strategy Analytics' rankings.” Total tablet shipments for the quarter were up 117% year-over-year.
Investing it its content strategy, Yahoo has acquired exclusive rights to archived “Saturday Night Live” clips from 1975 through 2012. As such, the clips will be removed from Hulu and NBC.com -- where they can presently be viewed -- by September. “The deal … highlights the jockeying among companies that want to have a library of online videos to call their own,” The New York Times reports.
The Next Web is smitten with the latest version of Twitter client Tweetbot for the iPhone and iPad. “It comes with a great new version of the timeline focused on sharing media, rather than tweets,” TNW gushes. “The new timeline displays images, videos and Vines right in-line, with the tweet acting as a caption.” What’s more, “What makes the media view in Tweetbot unique is that it displays all of the media shared by the people you follow in posted order.”
Google has reportedly acquired natural language processing startup Wavii for roughly $30. “Both Apple and Google were competing for the Seattle-based startup, and Google eventually won,” TechCrunch reports. “Apple wanted the company, which developed its own aggregation technology and natural summarization algorithms, for its Siri division.” The deal comes on the heels of Yahoo’s $30 million acquisition of aggregator Summly.
The New York Times’ digital paywall will no long restrict non-subscribers access to the publisher’s video content. “The move, which comes as the NYT tightens other parts of its paywall, is part of the paper’s plans to expand its brand in the video space,” paidContent reports. “The free videos, which can be viewed on all desktop and mobile devices, are for now being sponsored by Acura and by Microsoft.”
After debuting a mobile ad network late last year, Amazon is continuing to build its ad strategy, which Reuters suggests could become the envy of the industry. “Amazon.com Inc is known in the advertising industry as the ‘sleeping giant’ because the world's largest Internet retailer harbors a trove of consumer-spending data that many marketers have called an unrealized opportunity,” Reuters writes.