A new mobile service operator called ItsOn aims to shake up the US smartphone business by offering users the ability to tailor their voice, text and data plans precisely, and – perhaps most interestingly – buy data by the app.
The company’s Zact service – a play on the word ‘exact’ – operates as a cloud-based mobile virtual network operator, buying capacity on Sprint Nextel’s 4G/LTE network and reselling it to its own customers via a smartphone app or web page.
Splashpath founder Dan Morgan (left) with Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps
London startup Active in Time has taken the path less traveled to financing by licensing its Splashpath swim tracking app to Speedo. Read more
By Richard Waters and Andrew Edgecliffe-Johnson
By showing that it is prepared to play by the music industry’s rules with its new All Access subscription service, Google has won itself new friends among the music labels.
The main questions now: Can it overcome a patchy past track record in the music business, take advantage of its early lead in subscriptions over Apple and show that it can carve an audience of paying punters out of its massive user base? Read more
Google shares rose past the $900 mark on Wednesday as it announced 900m Android activations at its annual developer conference, Google I/O, in San Francisco. Google also launched a new subscription music streaming service, Google Play All Access, and a bunch of new services for developers, including improved gaming capabilities, mapping services and voice-controlled search tools.
Here’s a transcript of the liveblog by Chris Nuttall and Tim Bradshaw, who were reporting from the Moscone Center.
Yes, says image analyst Neal Krawetz, who believes the photo of grieving in the Gaza Strip may be three images melded together. No, say independent analysts contracted by World Press Photo, including a nifty tech outfit called Fourandsix.
But another start-up argues that there can be no definite answer once the process of image manipulation has started. Instead Scoopshot’s app transfers photos taken by users immediately to its platform, allowing it to guarantee that the photos that editors received are actually what the camera took.
The US may be moving only slowly towards opening up its airspace to commercial drones, but a market for unmanned aerial vehicles is already emerging rapidly elsewhere. Andreessen Horowitz and Google Ventures are the latest to jump in, with a $10.7m investment in drone technology company Airware. Read more
Things are looking up for Nokia in the US, a territory where it was unloved and unrepresented by operators not so long ago.
Now it has not one but two carriers touting its latest Windows smartphones, with Verizon launching the Lumia 928 this week and T-Mobile having its own exclusive with the 925, unveiled in London on Tuesday and available at a date to be announced in the US. Both represent advances on its signature Lumia 920 launched last year. Read more
Nokia trained its sights on iPhone users with the launch of a new metal Lumia handset on Tuesday, as latest figures showed its share of the smartphone market had fallen by almost five percentage points.
According to the latest data from Gartner, a steep decline in sales of cheaper feature phone – still popular in emerging markets – led to a loss of mobile market share in the first quarter of this year, from 19.7 per cent in the first quarter of 2012 to 14.8 per cent this year. Read more
This week seems to be maker week in Silicon Valley. In the run-up to Saturday’s Maker Faire in San Mateo are a string of events and conferences for hardware startups and the folk building them.
Kickstarting the week, Haxlr8r – a hardware-hacker accelerator programme that takes ten startups to Shenzhen for three months – held its demo day at the Autodesk Gallery in downtown San Francisco on Monday afternoon. Ten startups pitched their ideas, fresh from the factory floor in China, to a group of early stage investors. Read more
Ouya, the open-source games console, has become the first Kickstarter tech project to graduate to a more traditional funding scheme – venture capital.
After getting $8m from 63,000 crowdfunders last August, Ouya on Thursday announced it has raised $15m from investors including Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers, Mayfield Fund and Nvidia, to accelerate its plan to attack the mass market. Read more