Some fans love to follow around their favorite bands and will do so across the country. If you happen to be into bands such as Shwayze, Chromeo, 3oh!3, The Submarines, The Secret Handshake, A Cursive Memory, Meiko, Valencia, The Medic Droid or Bayside, you’re in luck. Now you can pinpoint their exact location when they’re on tour this summer using the location-based mobile social network Loopt.
Lijit, a startup whose widget allows blog readers to search across multiple sites and accounts, is planning to launch an ad network on top of its search tool, and has raised $7.1 million to make it happen.
In a world of quick blog posts, camera phone videos and micro-messaging services like Twitter, 1cast says there is still a place for traditional broadcast news on the web. It’s confident it has the distribution platform to prove it.
Tipping the see-saw battle yet again in the battle for the hearts of hardcore PC gamers, Advanced Micro Devices is announcing a PC graphics solution which will take the single-card graphics speed crown away from Nvidia.
It was inevitable.
Online game companies are coming out of the woodworks. One strategy is to take the newly popular “free to play” model from Asia and to launch it in the U.S.
Plenty of companies are making the shift from video games to virtual worlds. Knowledge Adventure is the latest as it announced today it has raised $5 million in a second round of funding to shift its focus from educational software to 3-D virtual worlds for kids.
It looks like a huge swath of Gmail users are having trouble accessing their accounts right now, and have been since around 2pm Pacific. As far as I can tell, this outage affects all of our staff VentureBeat email accounts, as well as our personal Gmail accounts. There are plenty of reports from others on Twitter and FriendFeed, too, including one from Digg founder Kevin Rose. (See the screenshot from writer MG Siegler’s FriendFeed account at the end of this post.)
Talk of Apple’s iPhone forcing competitors in the mobile industry to adapt has largely been focused on its large multi-touch display and more recently, the App Store. But there’s another, small feature that never ceases to wow new iPhone owners: Visual Voice Mail.
It’s well known that the President of the United States travels around with a metal briefcase that contains everything needed to launch a nuclear strike remotely if necessary. This case is nicknamed the “nuclear football.” It appears that Apple chief executive Steve Jobs has something along those lines, presumably at Apple’s headquarters, to kill iPhone applications if a problem arises with one.
Apple’s App Store for the iPhone and iPod Touch launched exactly one month ago. In that time over 60 million applications have been downloaded, Apple chief executive Steve Jobs told The Wall Street Journal in an interview. Any way you slice it, that number is simply impressive.
Reports indicating a delay in HTC’s first phone utilizing Google’s Android platform are “inaccurate,” a representative from Waggener Edstrom Worldwide, the public relations firm that handles HTC, has informed us.
The video embedded below looks to be the first live glimpse of the HTC Dream, which is likely to be one of the first phones to utilize Google’s Android mobile platform. The video hasn’t been verified, but it certainly looks real enough, as The Boy Genius Report notes.
LAS VEGAS — At the Defcon security conference today, the Electronic Frontier Foundation held a press conference saying it is representing the MIT hackers who figured out how to get free rides on Boston’s subways. That raises the stakes in a dispute about whether the three undergraduates have the right to describe their work hacking electronic payment cards without violating the federal computer fraud and abuse statute.
Thanks to the iPhone 3G, Apple is quickly expanding its product reach around the world. The device is already in 21 countries and will launch in another 20 on August 22. But it’s not all just about the phones itself, it’s about Apple’s digital stores as well — iTunes and now the App Store. Italian blog SetteB.IT has put together a graphic of 90 countries around the world, showcasing who has access to what so far.
High oil prices have resonated through the economy at every level, and business travel is no exception. Realizing as much, I recently checked in with Cisco to see how well their telepresence product is selling.
A stealthy content accelerator called Nokeena Networks has raised $8.7 million in a first round of funding, with an aim to sell a hardware appliance that will better process and transmit video across networks.
Here’s the latest action: ComScore: Facebook users triple in Japan during the last year – But Mixi.jp is still number one, with 12.7 million visitors compared to Facebook’s 538,000.
When Google invested $1 billion in AOL back in 2005, the move was met with mixed reaction. On one hand, the fast growing Internet giant was basically blocking Microsoft from taking away one of its larger online ad and search deals. On the other hand, it was AOL; an empire built on dial-up Internet in a world quickly completing the transition to broadband.
Looks like LaunchBox Digital is off to a good start — I just got home from the impressive Palo Alto, Calif. demo day for the first “class” of companies that LaunchBox incubated. The lineup was announced earlier this week, but this was my chance to talk to the founders and try out the products.
It seems like once a month there is some talk of either delays or dismay surrounding Google’s mobile Android platform. Today brings a new report that the first phones built for Android, so called “Gphones,” could be delayed from the end of this year until the beginning of next year, according to Barron’s.
My iPhone is quickly becoming a repository for applications that are being removed from Apple’s App Store. Today’s latest victim is PhoneSaber, the simple yet compelling app that uses the iPhone’s accelerometer to turn the device into a lightsaber.
The Black Hat security conference session this morning, “Satan is on Your Friend’s List,” about attacking social networks was hilarious, even though the implications of it are very serious for social network users and the companies that are building giant companies based upon them.
A number of companies offer ways for Facebook application developers to measure user traffic, advertising effectiveness, and other aspects necessary for building a successful application on Facebook, including Kontagent, Sometrics, Developer Analytics and others. And their offerings are becoming increasingly advanced. These tools matter because, as we’ve written, better metrics can lead to a larger and more successful ecosystem of applications on Facebook and other social networks.
Vudu was sitting pretty 16 months ago. The set top box that streams premium content over the Internet to your television had over 5,000 movies from all the major studios except Sony and a bunch of smaller ones. This was impressive compared to its rivals, which at the time included traditional cable boxes and the first version of the Apple TV.
Eldr Media offers a print publication, Eldr Magazine, and a web property aimed at those over 60. The San Francisco company has raised $1.25 million in seed funding from the Keiretsu Forum and is working on a $4 million Series A round, according to VentureWire.
Here’s the latest action:
[Editor's Note: Numerous local entrepreneurs and investors were quick to point out the problems with measuring internet traffic in China, we discovered during a VentureBeat trip to the country in May. To help explain the issues, we asked Victor Koo (pictured), the founder of leading online vide-sharing site Youku, to contribute his thoughts in the column below. See this recent guest column by the folks at Web2Asia for more details on the Chinese internet market.]
LaunchBox Digital, an incubator/investment firm based in Washington, D.C., just announced the lineup of its first “class” of startups. After working with LaunchBox for three months, the companies are giving their East Coast demos today, and will be at the Palo Alto, Calif. offices of Cooley Goodard Kronish tomorrow.
At least nine Facebook employees are selling company stock — that private-company stock broker Laurence Albukerk personally knows of. In a recent BusinessWeek article, he estimates there are “dozens” of employees already going through various brokers. Facebook has previously confirmed that it’s letting employees sell some of their company stock. Buyers include “two investment firms,” the article says, although it’s not clear if this includes venture firms, private equity firms or other investors.
Virtual world creator Six Degrees Games has taken $7 million to develop a world for six to 14 year old children with a sports theme. The funding is the company’s first.
On July 11, the iPhone 3G successfully launched in 21 countries around the world. After some initial launch blunders, like the massive activation system outage here in the United States, it’s now selling like crazy, but Apple is finally starting to catch up with demand. And it will launch in seven new countries later this month. [Update: It will actually be 20 new countries, see the bottom.]
Over the past year, it has become difficult to read business news without finding a mention of how one company or another has launched a recycling initiative or installed solar panels. Motivations vary, but marketing departments long ago realized that going green generates good press.
Search and advertising giant Google is taking aim at marketers with a new tool called Insights for Search. Of course, Google Trends already allows you see how different search terms rise and fall over time, but Insights for Search takes things a step farther, allowing marketers (and anyone else) to slice up the data by region, industry or time period.
Uploading photos to web sharing sites — as fast as you can take pictures — is kind of a new obssession for the digerati. Eye-Fi is riding that wave with memory cards that have built-in Wi-Fi antennae that can upload photos to photo-sharing sites.
I can remember the first interview I did with Jen-Hsun Huang, chief executive of Nvidia, back when the company was coming out of stealth in 1995. Since 3-D games didn’t exist back then, Huang described his graphics chip as the ideal “Windows accelerator.” And if you remember those days, Windows needed a lot of help. Then came no less than 50 3-D graphics startups. They all came and went. Nvidia remains.
Cable giant Comcast has purchased the female-oriented email newsletter DailyCandy for $125 million, Silicon Alley Insider reported earlier today. What isn’t being reported though is that the sale price is actually less than the valuation DailyCandy received following its last round of funding, a source close to the sale tells us.
Hulu, the online streaming video site backed by NBC and Fox, has been nothing short of successful. The usage numbers are very good and the amount of free, ad-supported content is arguably better. If there is a knock that can be made against it though (besides its lack of availability outside the United States), it’s in the department of high definition content.
The App Store for the iPhone and iPod Touch is not even a month old and already we’ve seen a number of applications sent out with security issues and one, NetShare, that appears to violate AT&T’s own terms of service. But today an app was released that trumps all of those: I Am Rich, a $999.99 app that does, get this: Nothing.
Koolanoo Group, which owns and operates web sites in China, based has raised $25 million in a third round of funding. The financing comes from Israel-based Giza Venture Capital.