Daily Archives: February 18, 2011

The spat that broke out today between Twitter and Idealab founder Bill Gross speaks volumes about Twitter’s own long-running failure to cash in on the success of its service. As one third-party developer told us: “Bill Gross has been saying he’s going to monetise better than Twitter and that could have upset them. He is either committing suicide or he is going to be extremely successful.” Read more

Tech news from around the web:

  • Zynga, the company behind online games FarmVille and CityVille, is in talks on an investment that would value it at nearly $10bn and could pave the way for an initial public offering next year, the New York Times’ DealBook reports. The company is in discussion  with T. Rowe Price and Fidelity Investments, among other investors, for a round of financing near $500m.

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Publicity stunts can sometimes serve serious ends. That was the case this week, as IBM submitted a highly advanced computing system – four years and $30m in the making – to the rigours of the popular US television quiz show, Jeopardy!

Shazam, the music recognition app that has been enjoying growing success of late selling songs as its user base has passed the 100m mark, now hopes to demonstrate it can sell clothes and other items with a new application of its fingerprinting technology. An ad campaign just launched with the Old Navy clothing chain in the US urges viewers to Shazam the music they hear on TV spots. The app then takes them to a screen identifying the band and song and inviting them not only to watch the music video and get the music for free, but also to shop for the clothes they see in the ad. Read more

Sony Xperia Play

Martians – at least the popular science-fiction kind – might have felt quite at home at the annual Mobile World Congress event in Barcelona this week. Google’s green Android robot was everywhere and almost all of the new smartphone and tablet devices that I came across were running one of the Android family of operating systems.