The Comunicano Communique for Friday April 8th 2016

 
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Good Morning. It's Friday and it's been a busy week. Our big client news was YipTV joining T-Mobile's BingeOn. For the New Jersey based company this is a major milestone and likely a harbinger of things to come......The news cycle this week has also been fast and furious as next week tax day looms on April 15th, so it "usually" slows down. We'll see.

What company is hot? Facebook. Why? Start with pal Stephan Rust's blog post from last Thursday and then read the following few stories about the social network giant and I think you'll agree that we all can begin to drop "social" from the description of Facebook. They are really cresting into an all everything company.

Then there's the "let's buy Yahoo" news. I bet shareholders are wishing they took Steve Ballmer's offer a few years ago now.....What is it about Pigs and Hogs? Of courseencrypted communications remains in the news. What'sApp did it this week (read what the EFF has to say). Signal is available to more now via the desktop (as announced on their blog). The Amazon Echo remains the hottest product on the market ,and as I have all three, I can say that first hand, having been a user and raving fan since the Beta over a year ago. Talk about a daily experience changer, the Echo is just that, all of which rolls nicely into the talk about Bots...yes Bots. Not Bats..

There's all that and more in today's Comunicano Communique, so grab your coffee mug, tea or chai and get on with the news.

By the way, don't miss the API event of the summer in Las Vegas. "All About The API"......

 
 
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Facebook leading the way in Mobile disruption

After digesting some of the insights from Barcelona during Mobile World Congress, it's becoming more and more apparent that Facebook, not Apple or Google, nor Ericsson or Cisco, and especially not Vodafone or China Mobile, is leading change in mobile.
 
 

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Facebook Messenger now lets you start a chat by scanning profile codes

Becoming friends with someone on Facebook Messenger just became a lot easier. In a new update that started to roll out Thursday, Facebook's chat app now has Messenger Codes - circular patterns around a user's profile photo, which can be scanned to start a chat with that person.
 
 

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Facebook Messenger may soon have more bots

Facebook Messenger will soon have more bots. According to a leaked slide deck, the company will announce a bot platform for its chat service at next week's F8 conference. According to TechCrunch, Facebook is seeding APIs to developers that allow them to build bots for Messenger and Web plugins for Live Chat.
 
 

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When do bots beat apps? When context and convenience matter most

 
  There's a question I've been asking founders when they pitch me their bots: "Why is this a bot and not an app or a website?" I've been fascinated by the explosion of developer interest and startup activity around chatbots and am pretty bullish on their potential as both a user and an investor, but it's important to take a step back and think about why we're all so focused on conversational interfaces.  
 

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Video game Olympics announced for Rio

A new eGames international gaming tournament will make its debut in Rio during this summer's Olympic Games. The event, launched as part of this week's London Games Festival, offers medals and national pride rather than cash prizes for the winners. The competition, backed by the UK government, will be run by the new International eGames Committee (IEGC).

 
 

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Verizon to Proceed With Yahoo Bid, Google Weighs Offer

Verizon Communications Inc. plans to make a first-round bid for Yahoo Inc.'s Web business next week, and is willing to acquire the company's Yahoo Japan Corp. stake to help sweeten the offer, according to people familiar with the matter. Google, the main division of Alphabet Inc., is also considering bidding for Yahoo's core business, a separate person said.
 
 

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Is That Email Really From Your CEO?

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) this week warned about a "dramatic" increase in so-called "CEO fraud," e-mail scams in which the attacker spoofs a message from the boss and tricks someone at the organization into wiring funds to the fraudsters.

 
 

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Taking Alexa for a ride

Alexa, the ever-present voice control assistant living inside Amazon's Echo, Echo Dot and Tap products, has been a useful addition to the CNET Smart Home -- our spot in the Kentucky countryside for testing out all sorts of connected gadgets and gizmos (the Echo, Echo Dot and Tap included).
 
 

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Amazon expands free same-day delivery to 11 mid-sized cities, increases coverage in existing metro markets - GeekWire

Amazon continues to increase the value of its Prime membership, this time expanding its network of free same-day delivery options for members. The retail giant announced today that same-day delivery options are available to Prime members in 11 new cities, bringing the service's footprint up to nearly 30 metro areas across the U.S.
 
 

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Reddit launches official iOS and Android apps

Remember when, in October 2014, Reddit bought the unofficial Reddit mobile app Alien Blue? Even though the app was quickly relaunched, that was the first step towards Reddit launching its own official apps. That moment has finally arrived. On Thursday, the official Reddit apps landed on Android and iOS (iPhone only).
 
 

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Now's your chance to try Signal's desktop Chrome app

The desktop version of Edward Snowden's favored end-to-end messaging system, Signal, is now available to anyone who wants to check it out. Open Whisper Systems announced the desktop version back in December, but until today it was invite-only.
 
 

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Tesla Proclaims Early Model 3 Demand A Victory For EVs

A week after the Model 3 unveiling, and Tesla is in the endzone doing a touchdown dance. A blog entry on the official Tesla blog boldly states that this past week was "The Week that Electric Vehicles Went Mainstream." Elon also couldn't contain himself and let the good news from the summary of reservations for the week overflow onto Twitter.
 
 

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Most Airbnb hosts flout SF laws, city report says

More than a quarter of San Francisco homes listed as vacation getaways on Airbnb violate the city's 90-day annual limit on such rentals, while the vast majority of Airbnb hosts have yet to register their properties, flouting a law enacted last year, according to a report released late Thursday by the San Francisco Budget and Legislative Analyst's Office.
 
 

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YipTV Joins 'Binge On' Mix

YipTV said it has joined Binge On, T-Mobile's controversial optional service that delivers mobile video in 480p resolution and zero-rates the streams of its growing list of OTT partners. YipTV is a no-contract OTT-TV offering launched last May that's focused on Spanish-language video and features plans from more than 100 international and domestic live TV channels.

 
 

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YipTV, Dailymotion, others bulk up T-Mobile's Binge On streaming ...

International-focused streaming service YipTV and OTT provider Dailymotion are among a block of over-the-top providers and TV networks that have signed on to T-Mobile's ( NYSE:TMUS) streaming service, Binge On, setting a challenge to its primary mobile-first video streaming challenger, Verizon's ( NYSE: VZ) Go90 service.
 
 

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StubHub Will Use Virtual Reality to Let You Preview Your Seat

Like many companies, eBay is convinced virtual reality is the next big thing. But also like a lot of companies, eBay is trying to figure out just what that means for its business. On Thursday, the company is announcing its first small foray into the VR arena, as subsidiary StubHub offers Final Four ticket buyers the option to get an immersive, 3-D view of available seats.
 
 

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Regis McKenna's 1976 Notebook And The Invention Of Apple Computer, Inc.

At first blush, it appears to be an utterly unexceptional spiral-bound notebook. Manufactured in the U.S. by the National Blank Book Company of Holyoke, Massachusetts, it's got a light green cover and 80 sheets of narrow-ruled 8-by-10-inch paper. The first sign that its contents might matter is a request haphazardly rubber-stamped on the front: "RETURN TO REGIS McKENNA HIMSELF."
 
 

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The Hidden Economics of Porn

A gender-studies professor explains how the industry works.
 
 

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Andy's App of the Week - SENDERS

Back in the day, Rapportive was a great go to app to discover more about the person you were engaged in an email conversation. Then it was acquired by LinkedIn and its usefulness waned. Fortunately a new service has come out and it's awesome. I'm referring to Senders, which I talked about on Thursday's BusinessRockstars. Senders does for social and contact information what USA Today's bite size round-up stories did to the news. Makes it easy to know all you need to about someone in one place with their LinkedIn, Twitter, About, Angels List data and a quick search on Google all baked in.

Senders is still in beta, so expect a bug here or there, but after a day of using it, I can't live without it.

 


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The Comunicano Communique for Thursday March 31st 2016

 
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Good Morning. It's Thursday and as I wrote earlier in the week, the NEWS is happening. Today there is more than double the usual number of news stories you'll receive, with 18, and also far less feature content.....so grab the coffee and get ready to read.

In technology we'll go well beyond the FBI iPhone Hack and all the news surrounding that, much of which is more speculation than fact.

The tech news is from the usual and some unusual suspects. Microsoft with their Build 2016 Conference is dominating the tech press with stories surrounding their Hololens, API's, Bots, Cortana, their new Edge browser and how it deals with Ad blocking, Skype and more. To parry Microsoft's news a bit, Google is coming out with news about their efforts in Virtual Reality, with an update on their cardboard viewer with 360 degree viewing. Then there's news on Tesla's new car debut and how the tax credits for buying one may not last...

Of course Apple has well timed news around their Major League Baseball sponsorship all based upon the iPad going in the dugout and getting mentioned on air.  There's more news about their "New" iPhone, the SE with a strong review leading the way for that and the better way to charge iPad Pro 12 inchers...

Oh, and Uber announces how they are improving customer service by moving it into the app which makes things easier and also lets the world know how they have expanded what they are doing with Hilton. In the world of "what's old is new again", we have AOL's Tim Armstrong, who is now working for Verizon, with access to their war chest, going on record on wanting to buy Yahoo which some may remember used to power the telcos DSL, now he wants to power their ad network with their platform. 

There's all that and more in today's Comunicano Communique.

By the way, don't miss the API event of the summer in Las Vegas. "All About The API"......

 
 
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BUILD 2016: Microsoft talks Cortana, Skype, bots, and intelligence APIs

On March 30th, during the BUILD 2016 keynote presentation, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella talked about "Conversations as a platform." That means conversations between two or more people, between people and digital assistants, and between people and bots, which are intelligent applications that humans can converse with.
 
 

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Microsoft launches HoloLens emulator so developers can test holographic apps, no headset required

As promised, Microsoft today started shipping its $3,000 HoloLens development kits. In addition to sharing that bots are coming to the new platform, the company also released a HoloLens emulator, which lets developers test holographic apps on their PC without the need for a physical HoloLens.
 
 

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HoloLens, A Year Later: A New Demo At Build 2016

A year ago at Build 2015, we got our first demo of Microsoft's HoloLens. At this year's event, we got a second crack at seeing the augmented reality device in action, and it was a completely different experience. Or, we should say, Microsoft took a completely different approach.
 
 

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Microsoft plans to build ad blocker into its Microsoft Edge browser | ZDNet

One of Microsoft's biggest gambles in Windows 10 is its decision to turn Internet Explorer into a legacy product, primarily for enterprise customers. Its replacement, Microsoft Edge, has been developing slowly since its version 1.0 release with the first release of Windows 10.
 
 

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Skype is getting Cortana and crazy bot messaging

You'll soon be able to use Skype to books trips, shop, and plan your schedule, just by chatting with Cortana. During its Build conference, Microsoft demoed how Skype users will soon be able to start a chat with Cortana and get things done just by having a conversation.
 
 

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Google makes it really easy to embed 360-degree VR experiences

You've tried out Google Cardboard or Samsung Gear VR, you've seen those nifty virtual reality experiences, and now you want to create your own and put it on your website. Well, Google just made that a pretty simple task.
 
 

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Google tackles simple 360 content embeds with VR View, introduces Cardboard SDK for iOS

Virtual reality is great for gaming and movies, but when it comes to real-world use cases there's still quite a bit of room for VR to prove itself. Google is hoping to kickstart this process by making 360 VR content a bit more simple to implement and, in the process, way more spontaneous for users to discover and view.
 
 

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AT&T moving away from Social Security numbers for customer security, will use pass codes instead

AT&T ( NYSE:T) is asking its customers to use pass codes rather than Social Security numbers when dealing with the carrier in an apparent effort to better protect users' sensitive information. "Previously, we required the last four digits of your Social Security Number as part of the process to access your account when calling Customer Service or visiting some Retailers," the carrier recently wrote in an e-mail to subscribers.

 
 

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Meet The iPhone Dream Team Hackers: FBI, Japanese Pinball Machine Maker, Israeli Cyber Firm

FBI Director James Comey leads a dream team which pulled off the iPhone hack.
 
 

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Apple strikes deal with MLB to provide every team with iPad Pros

Apple and Major League Baseball have signed a multi-year deal that will see every team receive iPad Pro tablets for use in the dugout, reports The Wall Street Journal .
 
 

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iPhone SE review: It's a pocket-size powerhouse

The SE is the little iPhone that could. With a 4-inch screen and the body of an iPhone 5s, it fits in my pockets better than my iPhone 6s, and it's easier to use one-handed. But it doesn't compromise much over its bigger, more expensive siblings.
 
 

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Testing Apple's 29W USB-C Power Adapter and iPad Pro Fast Charging

When Apple refreshed its online store with a new USB-C to Lightning cable with support for fast charging through a 29W power adapter on the 12.9-inch iPad Pro last week, the addition immediately caught my interest. You can also use the cable with an Apple 29W USB-C Power Adapter to take advantage of the fast [...]
 
 

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With Model 3, it's make or break for Tesla

On Thursday night, at an invitation-only, Hollywood-style premiere on his SpaceX campus in Hawthorne, Elon Musk and his Tesla team will unveil their latest creation: the Model 3, Musk's long-awaited electric car for the masses. Few details have been revealed so far, but the car is essentially a...
 
 

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Report: AOL's Tim Armstrong wants Verizon to acquire Yahoo to build an ad powerhouse

AOL, Inc. Chief Executive Officer Tim Armstrong has grand plans to turn parent company Verizon, Inc. into an ad powerhouse, and acquiring Yahoo, Inc. may be a part of that plan, according to a new report Wednesday.
 
 

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Drone Startup Airware Raises $30 Million, Adds Former Cisco CEO To Board

A drone powered by Airware technology inspects the roof of a home. (Photo courtesy of Airware) Last week, the Federal Aviation Administration projected in a report that 7 million drones will be sold annually in the U.S. within four years. Some 4.3 million, the FAA forecasted, will be bought and operated [...]
 
 

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Checking Your Uber Rating Or Getting Your Purse Back Just Got Much Easier

After years of forcing customers to use email to complain about anything, Uber is now committing to more updated technology. On Wednesday, the ride-hailing giant announced it plans to roll out globally its in-app customer service support features, which it has been quietly implementing in the U.S. since late 2015.
 
 

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Hilton Deepens Its Uber Relationship in New Loyalty Push

Hilton may not have been the first hospitality company to partner with Uber - that distinct honor goes to Starwood - but it is the first hotel company that's allowing its loyalty members to view their hotel stay information and be able to check-in from the Uber app, all while they travel to their hotel in the very Uber they were reminded to book from their Hilton HHonors app.
 
 

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Why Do the Feds Usually Try to Unlock Phones? It's Drugs, Not Terrorism

Until the FBI backed down from its battle with Apple over accessing the iPhone 5c of San Bernardino shooter Syed Rizwan Farook, it seemed the agency had chosen a near-perfect case on which to make its stand against encryption.
 
 

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The Comunicano Communique for Wednesday March 30th 2016

 
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Good Morning. It's Tuesday and it's the kind of NEWS day I love. That's when there is actually NEWS to read. What's happening? Lots of new features in apps and from services. It's the storm before the Tax Time lull so expect lots of "we have something new" to be coming out the next week or so. Take a look. See which companies are actually doing something NEW....All that and more in today's Comunicano Communique.

By the way, don't miss the API event of the summer in Las Vegas. "All About The API"......

 
 
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Digital Asset Holdings signs deal Depository Trust & Clearing Corp for Blockchain repos trial

Blockchain startup Digital Asset Holdings, LLC has signed a new deal with the Depository Trust & Clearing Corp. to trial the company's Blockchain technology at the firm.
 
 

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AT&T to Add an Unlimited Data Option for Home Internet and Will Better Enforce Overages on Other Plans

On May 23, the company will introduce a new unlimited data option for its U-verse home Internet subscribers. AT&T customers who have only the U-verse home Internet service can add unlimited data for $30 more a month.
 
 

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Introducing Fiber Phone

Whether it's calling mom or ordering take-out, we rely on our phones to help reach the people and things that matter. And while mobile phones have pushed us toward the future, home phone service is still important to many families. Landlines can be familiar, reliable and provide high-quality service, but the technology hasn't always kept up.
 
 

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'Burner' phones might be made illegal

Burner phones might be about to be banned in the US. A Congresswoman has proposed that everyone buying a phone in the country would have to register with personal ID, to stop criminal activities being planned with handsets that can be bought anonymously and then thrown away. Forcing shops to require customers to give over identification when buying cheap phones or pre-paid SIMs could be one of the most important ways that terrorists are able to communicate, according to Ca...
 
 

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Facebook's Messenger lands first airline as chat app pushes into commerce

SAN FRANCISCO - KLM Royal Dutch Airlines passengers will soon be able to check in, get flight updates, make travel changes and talk to customer service reps straight from Facebook's Messenger chat app. KLM is the first airline and the first major European partner for Messenger, which is used by 800 million people around the globe.
 
 

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Snapchat Wants You to Video Call Your Friends and View all their Stories

Snapchat has taken to the official blog to announce new features that allow users to place audio and video calls. Over 200 stickers have been added to the mix, allowing you to send stickers of things such as aliens, Snapchat's ghost, and walruses to your added contacts.
 
 

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Instagram Increases Video Length From 15 Seconds To 60

Users will soon be able to record and post Instagram videos that are as long as 60 seconds. Instagram has increased the video limit on posts because users have been watching more videos on the service. "In the last six months, the time people spent watching video increased by more than 40 percent," the company said on its official blog.
 
 

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SoundCloud Starts Subscription Plan, Taking On Spotify and Apple

Two weeks after signing its final licensing deal with a major record company, the online music service SoundCloud has introduced its long-awaited subscription plan. The new program gives customers access to a much wider range of music than is available on competing services like Spotify and Apple, and it offers artists and their labels the promise of royalties.
 
 

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Spotify raises $1 billion in debt with devilish terms to fight Apple Music

On-demand streaming music is inevitable, so Spotify is taking whatever fuel it can get to win the race against Apple. Whoever can sign up customers faster to consume their data and network effect could earn money off them for a long, long time.
 
 

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Waze rolls out speed alerts to tell you when you're driving too fast

Google-owned GPS driving app Waze is making it easier to avoid speeding tickets today, with the launch of a new speed alerts feature. Now when you're driving on unfamiliar roads, or perhaps find yourself somewhere where the speed limit isn't clearly signposted, you can set up alerts for when you're moving too fast.
 
 

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Lyft wants to make 'casual carpooling' a thing again

Ride-hailing service Lyft is launching a new carpooling service in the Bay Area today that it insists is entirely different from all the other carpooling services out there, including its own Lyft Line.
 
 

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Plot twist: I'm working for Google

So that's a headline I never thought I'd be writing. But it's true. I recently flew out to Mountain View for orientation, meetings and my first visit ever to Google HQ. To clarify though, I haven't earned one of the Noogler hats that my son has coveted for so long.
 
 

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The Comunicano Communique for Monday March 28th 2016

 
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Good Morning. It's a Monday and the stories today are going to help you do better business.  Take the changes going on in Social Media. Instagram. Snapchat. Facebook. News about each of them leads things off. Then there's growth. Netflix and Spotify both are changing the ways we consume entertainment. All that and more in today's Comunicano Communique.

By the way, don't miss the API event of the summer in Las Vegas. "All About The API"......

 
 
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Snapchat users now spend 25 to 30 minutes every day on the app, and it's trying to attract the TV money because of it

Snapchat's photos and videos are famous for disappearing after a few seconds, but its users are spending as much as a half-hour every day playing with its app. The company is touting the time users spend on the app in its efforts to lure big brand advertising dollars away from television.
 
 

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Instagram is changing - here's how to make sure your posts still get seen

Rumour has it that Instagram 's new algorithm will be dropping tomorrow, resulting in a big change to the way posts are displayed. Rather than presenting users with a chronological list of posts, the algorithm will sort posts based on "the likelihood you'll be interested in the content, your relationship with the person posting, and the timeliness of the post".
 
 

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Facebook's Safety Check malfunctions after Pakistan bombing

Facebook activated its Safety Check tool to help people stay in touch after a deadly terrorist attack Sunday in Pakistan, but the feature strayed far afield from the carnage. Safety Check automatically sends Facebook users in an affected area a note asking if they're safe.
 
 

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Spotify hits 30 million subscribers

Spotify has 30 million paid subscribers, CEO Daniel Ek announced today in a tweet. This is the first subscriber update Spotify has given out since it announced it had 20 million subscribers days before Apple Music hit the market last June, and shows the increased competition has had little to no effect on Spotify's growth.
 
 

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Netflix's Grand, Daring, Maybe Crazy Plan to Conquer the World

Late into the night on St. Patrick's Day, Netflix hosted a makeshift "war room" at the company's Silicon Valley headquarters. Engineers and product wranglers sat loosely around a long, U-shaped formation of desks, monitoring diagnostics and Hipchat conversations. Linguists and translators patrolled a ring of television sets to check subtitles and dubs in a dozen languages.
 
 

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Google To Open A Dozen New Data Centers To Take On AWS

Google is planning to open 12 new data centers over the next 12-18 months. This has come just weeks after Google nabbed Spotify and Apple as its cloud customers. The huge cloud push by Google could see Google Cloud become its biggest growth engine a few years down the line.

 
 

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Forget the Small iPhone. Is Apple Going Charger-Free?

Apple might be ready to ditch some of its charger cords by 2017 with a plan to charge next-generation smartphones through the air. Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who has a track record of solid Apple hardware predictions, told 9to5Mac over the weekend that he thinks next year's iPhones will charge wirelessly.
 
 

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Enterprise IoT rollouts still need outside assistance, but new software can help

The industrial Internet of Things doesn't just show up in a box at the door ready to use. It takes integration to deploy IoT systems and get the maximum benefit. That's because IoT isn't one thing, but many linked together in pursuit of a business objective.
 
 

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Japan's NTT to Buy Dell Systems for $3.055 Billion

 
  NTT Data Corp., a unit of Japan's former telephone monopoly, agreed to buy technology services businesses from Dell for $3.055 billion. The acquisition was announced by the unit of Nippon Telegraph & Telephone Corp. in a statement to the Tokyo Stock Exchange Monday. The company didn't give a date for when it will acquire the Dell units.  
 

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The Inside Story of How Oculus Cracked the Impossible Design of VR

Palmer Luckey has never used an Oculus Rift. That's what the founder of Oculus keeps telling himself as he unboxes the commercial version of the virtual reality system he invented. Opens the package. Takes out the few elements-the headset, the single cable that connects it to a computer, the small cylindrical infrared camera that tracks it in space.
 
 

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Searching For Google CEO Sundar Pichai, The Most Powerful Tech Giant You've Never Heard Of

The Consumer Electronics Show, universally known as CES, is a riot of technology. Held annually in the bleak Nevada desert town of Las Vegas, it is a great blinking din, jammed with screens, speakers, automobiles, whirling drones, blooping robots, e-cigs and e-cigs and ever more e-cigs, plus some 170,000 people bumping around inside a disease-ridden convention center.
 
 

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Why the Most Talented People Copy - ReadThink (by HubSpot)

We have an insatiable thirst for the new. In business, we want new products, new campaigns, and new ways of reaching consumers. The shiny object syndrome isn't just about being easily distracted. It's also the result of thinking that what is new - and seemingly unique - is better.
 
 

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The Comunicano Communique for Friday March 4th 2016

 
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It's no surprise that this week the Amazon Echo is the darling of the news this week or that my pals at Telzio announced their start of integration with the Echo. Now we're seeing more and more reasons coming out about how voice is the next UI, of new line extensions to Echo. As someone who has been using the Echo since its beta stage, I've seen first hand how it makes my life easier. I'm turning lights on and off with the sound of my voice, ordering items from Amazon, scheduling an Uber. Over the summer while in Portugal, "Alexa" was keeping me abreast of the weather, the time and I was even able to stream Pandora due to the way Amazon has structured their network. The new additions to the line up are interesting, but what is really neat about the Echo platform is the voice control. If Amazon really opens up the Echo API, developers to include it in their apps, all of a sudden we may finally be free of the keys....Speaking of which, don't miss the API event of the summer in Las Vegas. "All About The API"......

 
 
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Voice: The Next UI Layer

Lately, I've been obsessed with the power of voice. Not voice as in self-expression (though important!), and not voice as in voice calls or - worse! - voicemail, but rather voice as the next major UI layer for software in the living room and beyond.
 
 

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Amazon's Echo Dot, Tap, Alexa equate to Amazon Everywhere strategy

Amazon is putting Alexa, the brains of Amazon Echo, in more places via the Tap and Echo Dot and now has formed a comprehensive smart home strategy that links up with e-commerce. The Echo was Amazon's surprise hit last year. Simply put, Echo has become the platform Amazon will use to jump further into the Internet of things.

 
 

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Amazon's Ingenious Plot to Take Over Your Living Room

When Amazon released the Echo in late 2014, people didn't quite know what to make of it. It looks like a speaker, but it listens to your voice, talks back, and can play songs, radio broadcasts, or podcasts on demand. It can also do some other, seemingly unrelated tasks, like telling jokes, checking your calendar, and buying stuff on Amazon.com.
 
 

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Meet tech's new odd couple: the CIO and CMO

When Akamai was laying the foundation for its digital business back in 2010, CMO Brad Rinklin had a relationship with IT, but it wasn't exclusive. Because the content delivery network provider had no CIO, Rinklin might call on IT for help tweaking a website or deploying a sales-enablement tool, but the marketing group often turned to cloud tools or outside service providers for the heavy lifting.
 
 

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Instagram starts blocking 'add me' deeplinking for Snapchat, Telegram

Facebook-owned photo-sharing platform Instagram is flexing its platform muscle by shutting down 'add me' deeplinking for some other social media services within its apps. Previously Instagram users were able to include 'add me'/'follow me' links in a website section on their profile page, directly linking out to any other profiles they had on third party social services' apps.
 
 

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Facebook Plans To Open Messenger To Publishers At F8 In April

Mobile messaging apps are usurping social networks as the shiny new platform through which publishers can distribute their content. Now Facebook is looking to join the fray with its own uber-popular messaging app. Facebook Messenger will soon let publishers distribute their content automatically through the social network's messaging service, according to three people familiar with the company's plans.
 
 

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Spotify becomes first music platform to integrate with Facebook Messenger

Music has arrived on Messenger. Facebook announced today that its mobile messaging platform now integrates with Spotify. The new feature, which is rolling out to iOS and Android users, is the first music integration for Facebook Messenger and allows people to share their Spotify songs or playlists directly within a chat box.

 
 

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Yahoo exploring sale of $1 billion-$3 billion in 'non-core assets': CFO

Yahoo Inc (YHOO.O) is exploring the sale of $1 billion to $3 billion in patents, property and other "non-core assets," its chief financial officer said on Thursday. Yahoo CFO Ken Goldman told the crowd at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media and Telecom Conference that a committee created to explore alternatives to the company's plan to spin off its core business is looking at quick sales of assets.

 
 

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B&N is Shutting Down One of Its Top Three Digital Blunders on 15 March

Barnes & Noble announced a slew of of closures on Thursday, including Nook Video, the UK Nook Store, and what had to have been one of B&N's greatest digital mistakes. B&N sent out an email on Thursday which informed users that the Nook's own branded app store was going away: Effective March 15, 2016, NOOK will no longer offer third party applications (Apps) for sale from the NOOK Store™.

 
 

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Life and death in the App Store

As last year began, the app developer Pixite held its company retreat at a converted Old West movie set outside of Palm Springs. They spent a few days dreaming about the future while eating barbecue and sipping whisky in the sun. But 2015 was not a good year, and by last month the company's dreams had narrowed to survival.
 
 

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The Comunicano Communique for Thursday March 3rd 2016

 
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Another Slice of Life Time....Yesterday local L.A. startup, Telzio announced details of their efforts that integrate their telephone service with the red the red-hot Amazon Echo. Seems their timing was spot-on as today Amazon has two new devices that are Echo focused. Check out pal Rich Tehrani's account on just how exciting what Telzio is doing is....On other fronts, Los Angeles folks will appreciate the flat rate Uber Eats delivery for $5.00 that starts today. As someone who has used Uber Eats the last few months, no service delivers better, faster or cheaper...Also, news about Virtual Reality, some business tips, and more...so read away..

 
 
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Telzio Customers Can Now Talk To Their Amazon Echo From Anywhere and Alexa, the Voice of The Echo, Talks Back

Telzio has announced the successful integration between its cloud­based, business grade Voice­Over­IP telephone service and the Amazon Echo. The Echo is Amazon's Internet of Things (IoT) speaker device that reacts to voice commands like answering questions, playing music and controlling other smart devices, and Telzio customers can now talk to their Echo from anywhere.

 
 

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Amazon's Echo Dot lets you put Alexa inside any speaker

Alexa, meet my friends Bang and Olufsen Amazon's newest hardware product might look like a compressed version of the tall Echo speaker, but its place in your home will likely be very different. Today the company unveiled Echo Dot, which is basically an Echo without the big speaker housing.
 
 

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Slack begins rolling out voice calls on Chrome and desktop

Voice calls are coming to Slack, and they begin rolling out in beta today. Testing will start in Slack's desktop apps and in Chrome. Someone with administrative privileges has to enable them, but once they're turned on, a phone icon should appear throughout the app, allowing anyone to start a call with a specific person or with a group.
 
 

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Now even your streaming TV and music will come in bundles like cable TV

"There's only two ways I know of to make money: Bundling and unbundling." That quote was uttered by Jim Barksdale, then CEO of Netscape just before the company launched one of the most successful IPOs of all time and ushered in the first dot com boom.
 
 

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Uber's GrubHub killer is finally in the US: The inside story on Uber's big bet on food

Ordering food from UberEATS used to be a limited experience. You had seven choices during the lunch hour, not the full restaurant menus you'd see on competitors like Seamless or Postmates. Uber offered just one salad, one sandwich, a juice, a pasta dish, or other entrees depending on the day.
 
 

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Uber now lets you avoid expense reports on business trips

Uber is making it easier for you to use its service for business. The company has launched an auto-expense feature that's part of your business profile. With this feature, you don't need to worry about paperwork - Uber will automate the process and send a ride receipt to your expense provider.
 
 

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Intel Eyes Augmented Reality Headset

Intel is reportedly developing an augmented reality headset based on the company's RealSense 3D technology. Citing anonymous sources, the Wall Street Journal suggested the California tech titan will compete with products like Google Glass and Microsoft HoloLens. Unlike virtual reality, which places the user into a computer-generated scene, augmented reality (or mixed reality) superimposes data onto the real world via a headset display.

 
 

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How to Stay Sane on a Business Trip

A specific condition afflicts business travelers: Call it hotel gloom, an amorphous melancholy that seems to thrive in the perfectly serviceable hotel rooms of the $200-a-night-and-under variety. Al Jackson has experienced it many times. Mr. Jackson, 38, a stand-up comedian who has been touring for more than a decade, has stayed in Red Roof Inns and Wyndham hotels across this land.
 
 

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2016 phishing trends report reveals new tricks, targets

Business Email Compromise (BEC) is the type of spear phishing attack that saw the biggest increase in 2015. Here are 3 ways that the report says companies make it easy for scammers to pose as executives: Posting full names, titles and email addresses for executive team members on company websites Posting personal names, email addresses, and direct numbers in accounting/billing contact information Using consistent schemes for email addressing How many of these does your company do?
 
 

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What Startup Accelerators Really Do

The well-advertised boom in startups and venture capital in recent years has coincided with the emergence of new players in startup ecosystems. One of these, startup accelerators, has received a great deal of attention but also little scrutiny. Moreover, they are commonly misunderstood or mistakenly lumped in with other institutions supporting early-stage startups, such as incubators, angel investors, and early-stage venture capitalists.
 
 

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Make Your Inbox Suck Less With These Tools

Make Your Inbox Suck Less With These Tools When was the last time you heard someone say, "I love cleaning out my inbox"? Exactly. But, since we can't live without email, we might as well make the process as optimized and painless as possible.
 
 

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The Comunicano Communique for Tuesday March 1st 2016

 
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Slice of Life Time....I penned a piece over on Medium.com all about home delivery services. It's a six minute read. As for news, we have some Google news. Some travel news. Some other news. Oh, and it turns out I'm on Business Rockstars today-prerecorded-so give a listen or watch it...as for the rest, well just read on..!!

 
 
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Home Delivery, Take 2

Living in Los Angeles means home delivery is a staple for me. I use or have used a combination of Amazon Fresh, Amazon Prime Now, Google Express, FedEx, UPS, the USPS, UberEats, DoorDash, Caviar, GrubHub, Postmates, and of course, direct from the pizzeria, pasta shop, and other restaurants.
 
 

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Google adds Virtual Reality section to Google Store; starts selling Cardboard compatible viewers in the US - Ausdroid

Google has been moving into the Virtual Reality space for a few years now, ever since Cardboard was announced as a throwaway at the end of Google I/O back in 2014. They've previously left the sales of devices, including the DIY Cardboard headsets to other manufacturers but now it seems you can buy them from Google themselves, at least in[Read More...]
 
 

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Google Self-Driving Car Hits A Bus In Los Angeles And It's At Fault: Here's What Happened

For Google, Feb. 14 is more than just Valentine's Day, as it also marks the first accident that one of the autonomous vehicles (AV) of the company caused. The accident involves a public transit bus and a self-driving Lexus RX450h SUV, and it occurred on El Camino Real near Google's hometown of Mountain View, California.
 
 

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Cord-Cutting Continues: Don't Believe the Early Q4 Hype

Early in this quarter's earnings season, some industry watchers questioned the cord-cutting narrative. But despite signs of a turnaround due to better-than-expected numbers from Comcast and Time Warner Cable, it's clear that the trend continues unabated now that the last of the big pay-TV providers reported their subscriber numbers this week.
 
 

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MLB star Mike Trout is using a smart bat at spring training

Major League Baseball players are once again shaking off the winter and hitting the field in warmer climates for spring training. But this year Los Angeles Angels centerfielder Mike Trout is using a high-tech bat to learn more about his swing.
 
 

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Wynn Las Vegas launches new mobile sports betting app

Wynn Las Vegas will officially launch a new mobile sports betting app today. The app was designed in partnership with technology company Miomni, and will be active for March Madness, the NCAA men's basketball tournament. The app will feature various types of wagers including straight bets, parlays and future books.
 
 

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Think leisure players aren't touching business travel, think again

The business travel community swings between denying any impact from Airbnb, Uber and the like, to worrying what to do about them. Yet there they were, at last week's Business Travel Show in London with Uber exhibiting for the first time alongside other newcomers to corporate travel such as Booking.com For Business.

 
 

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Facebook and Instagram Among Top Choices for Travel Marketing

Winter is almost over and with gas prices at their lowest levels in nearly a decade, retailers should be expecting to see a lot of travellers this spring and summer. This is great news for local retailers and travel brands, and now is the time to use internet marketing to get the most of the upcoming travel seasons.
 
 

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The complete guide to faking your own business-class upgrade

Flying business class on long flights has never been nicer, often featuring lie-flat seat-beds, large TVs, champagne, fancy meals, Japanese bidet toilets, and walk-up snack bars. Meanwhile, passengers in economy class are getting squeezed-literally, often 10 per row, in narrow seats with knee-crunching legroom and lousy food.
 
 

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The Messaging Landscape in 2016

The Messaging Landscape in 2016 There's a surge of excitement around messaging as a new platform and the idea of 'Conversational Commerce'. There are a number of great pieces and podcasts that have been published documenting and forecasting the new ways we will see messaging used in 2016.
 
 

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3 Red Flags to Avoid When Pitching Investors | Startups.co

Active investors sift through dozens of deals a week, and some hundreds a month. In order to find the gold, they need to quickly weed out the junk. The junk usually involves startups with any one of three red flags that deems the deal a "pass."
 
 

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Confessions Of A VC: Crap - Why I Passed On Uber's Seed Round

A version of this article previously appeared on Entrepreneur.com. Did I passed on Uber's seed round? No. It's worse than that. I never even bothered to listen to Travis' pitch, even though I was repeatedly offered the opportunity. I then passed on Uber's A Round as well, which I thought was valued too high, in light of the company's progress.
 
 

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The Comunicano Communique for Monday February 22nd 2016

 
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Mobile World Congress started today in Barcelona. Usually I attend that event but the past two years I've skipped in as it's not a "startup" event really. Those take part around the fringes of it. The big stories coming out of it and from around it are really focused on two key forward looking areas. 5G which is as much a land grab as the mobile world has ever seen with patent holding giants like Qualcomm, Ericsson, Nokia and InterDigital all engaged in massive chess games while companies like FaceBook, Apple and Google look at things very differently. And the other story is the Apple vs. The FBI encryptionwar that has to have every despot led country leader just chomping at the bit for the skeleton key to emerge. Hardware and devices, which normally get the noise are less visible but wait a day, for news at Mobile World Congress is like San Francisco weather. Ask me in a minute. All that and more in today's Communique...read on..!!

 
 
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5G Is a New Frontier for Mobile Carriers and Tech Companies

On the outskirts of this sleepy commuter town just south of London, plans are underway to build the fastest cellphone network in the world. The work is being done at the University of Surrey, where a leafy campus is dotted with rundown brutalist-style buildings.

 
 

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Facebook wants to do to 5G what it has already done to the datacenter

Facebook wants telecoms operators and manufacturers to work with it on open designs for the next generation of wireless networks. Facebook's users are increasingly sharing their cat photos, videos, and other updates over wireless rather than wired networks.

 
 

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Ericsson, Nokia offer contrasting timelines for 5G network upgrades

BARCELONA Ericsson (ERICb.ST), the world's top supplier of wireless equipment, said on Monday it expects 150 million users to be on next-generation 5G networks five years from now, steering clear of an industry debate over whether network upgrades could start far earlier.
 
 

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Dean Bubley's Disruptive Wireless: Google + GSMA announcement on RCS is no gamechanger

As widely hinted in recent months, GSMA has tried to re-animate the RCS corpse once more, this time with Google playing the role of Dr Frankenstein. My initial take: Its announcement this morning ( link) is a bit of a damp squib.
 
 

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Wireless's Future Belongs to VR and Cloud, Some Say

The "Extreme Submarine" is a colorful installation at the booth of South Korean telecom operator SK Telecom here at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
 
 

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How the U.S. Fights Encryption-and Also Helps Develop It

Agencies are developing encryption tools for secure communications, even as the FBI battles for access to an encrypted iPhone Researchers in London last year discovered an online jihadi handbook with instructions on sending encrypted instant messages that would be indecipherable to law enforcement.

 
 

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Amazon Echo As A Medical Device?

My initial impression of the Amazon Echo was that this is simply a Bluetooth speaker that looks like a portable humidifier with a little bit of artificial intelligence. The next thing I discovered is that the Echo always needs to be plugged in for it to work.
 
 

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96% of Australian hotels offering 'free' Wi-Fi

An industry wide survey of 3, 4 and 5 star hotels and serviced apartments by Tourism Accommodation Australia (TAA) has revealed that 96% of Australian hotels surveyed* offer some level of free Wi-Fi to guests.Tourism Accommodation Australia represents the interests of hotels, motels and serviced apartment
 
 

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Rogers customers reporting WiFi calling is now enabled on the iPhone

With the release of iOS 9 on September 16th, Rogers promised to launch WiFi calling, which was a long-awaited feature for iPhone users. However, upon updating the new OS customers were faced with errors when attempting to connect.
 
 

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Cable could be losing its grip on your set-top box

The Federal Communications Commission wants to liberate you from your cable company's set-top box. You probably didn't even realize you needed to be freed from this tyranny. But that's the message from FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, who is on a mission to make sure that consumers have choices when it comes to their set-top box.

 
 

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The Top 10 Equity Crowdfunding Campaigns of 2015 - Crowdfund Insider

Regulation A+ crowdfunding rules were released by the SEC in June of 2015, three years after these rules were initially introduced in the 2012 JOBS Act. The debut of the long-awaited regulations led to a flood of companies rushing to capitalize on this new method of funding.
 
 

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The Untold Casualties of the Drone War

Early one evening in November, Brandon Bryant, a former Air Force officer and perhaps the world's most famous drone program whistleblower, sits on the sofa in a Manhattan hotel suite, writing a letter to President Obama. A grey hoodie is pulled over his baseball cap, the sleeves half-covering a red dragon and Nordic tribal tattoos on his arms and hands.
 
 

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Journalists under threat, from within

Journalism is under threat from all sides. The last few years have been some of the most dangerous in history for journalists around the world; they have been killed, injured and detained in record numbers. But journalists are under threat from within as well, as some media companies seem content to eat their own.
 
 

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Blogging Ain't Sexy But It's A Marketing Workhorse

Blogging ain't sexy but it a rock-solid marketing workhorse. I recently got a pretty good lead from a company that I highlighted in a late-2014 blog post. In many ways, it was a much-needed shot in the arm about my commitment to blogging.
 
 

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Homer Simpson: Disruptive Innovator

On the May 15th broadcast of The Simpsons, Homer Simpson will be broadcast live for three minutes. It's not clear exactly what he'll say or do, but it will take place in real-time. More precisely, the actor who plays Homer, Dan Castellaneta, will be connected to motion-capture technology.
 
 

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8 Startups Changing How Payments Work

Join us in a city near you at Entrepreneur's Accelerate Your Business event series kicking off Feb 23. View cities and dates " Back in the day, making a payment as a business or a consumer was pretty straight-forward. You could pay by cash or check. Then came credit cards followed by debit cards.
 
 

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The Full Dataset on What VCs are Thinking About Funding in 2016 | Bothsides of the Table

Every year at Upfront we try to analyze the venture markets. We try to look at the sources of capital, the valuations, exits and trends. We use this try to draw some context that informs our funding decisions. Of course we fund companies in good markets and bad.
 
 

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The Sunday Paper Edition- The Comunicano Communique for January 31st 2016

 
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Happy Sunday.....Facebook is going to disrupt sports and entertainment as we know it.  Forget TMZ. Entertainment Tonight, Access Hollywood. ESPNs SportsCenter.

Facebook with live, streaming video is now a live new outlet for real time news, sports and entertainment. How are they a news outlet? First, with their move to Stadium, they have set themselves up as a news outlet in sports. By becoming a news outlet that affords them protection in the USA by the First Amendment.

Next with photos and now live video, and their ability to aggregate and share content, they are going to be able to use their massive audience delivery platform to be a NETWORK, just like FOX, ABC, the BBC, etc.

Third, their source material, at least in the USA can't be blocked, jammed or otherwise intercepted, thanks to the Communications Act of 1934 and 1996 with regard to unlawful intercept and blocking. That means all the money which stadium and arena operators have put into networking their venues so the "fan experience" is able to be one that's both "connected" and "socialized" also means they can't stop the content from leaving the building.

As someone who grew up in pro sports and entertainment, Facebook is going to really toss a monkey-wrench/spanner into the whole rights issues game as today, anyone with an iPhone with those sharp and clear add on lenses, a good seat at a game and a steady hand, a cool voice, and knowledge of the sport will be a net caster......

Next is Instagram, another Facebook property. It's become the engine of endorsement. Think commercials, but with the power in the hands of those with followers. Given the whole "never corders" as YipTV founder Mike Tribolet calls them, and their growing up digital without cable tv or landlines, Instagram + Facebook video will be how the sub 20 year old generation of today and tomorrow gets their news, shapes trends and defines "cool."

So if today's Communique has a "times are changing" or is all about "Changes", it's only fitting to bring some videos to the forefront about David Bowie, who was so much a driving force of change, not only in music, but as an icon for change in society.

David Bowie's passing touched many. As someone who grew up in the many phases and faces of David Bowie era from the 60's to today, to see and hear the comments and performances by so many stars is touching and endearing. I've been collecting these the past few weeks, and have been moved by the performances of Madonna, Elton John, Bruce Springsteen, Rick Wakeman and the comments of Jimmy Fallon. Having also seen all of the musical stars perform in their own right, it's always fun to watch and hear artists do cover versions of other artists material. Madonna's may not be safe for the children, or for some workplaces, but between hers and Elton's  and the Boss' comments about going down to Philly on "Greyhound bus" the historical impact of Bowie can't be better expressed....so kick back, and enjoy some good old fashioned "rock and roll" this Sunday morning.

Have a view on the news today? Please let me know what you think....Andy Abramson

 
 
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Expanding Live Video to More People-News From Facebook

In December, we started testing the ability for people to share live video on Facebook, and it has been inspiring to see all the ways that people have used Live to connect with their friends and family. Today, we're excited to expand the ability to share live video to everyone in the U.S.

 
 

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How Instagram Changed the Celeb Crush

My back is turned, and I'm probably 12 years old, so the only thing I can imagine them doing is some sort of tight-lipped smooching. Maybe his hands are resting heavily on her shoulders. I'm resigned to my empty little corner of what must be a bed or a couch when I feel Joey's hand reach over and pinch my butt.
 
 

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Techiest Super Bowl ever: Silicon Valley's stadium girds for the big game

Levi's Stadium is one of the most high-powered venues in sports. On Super Bowl Sunday, we'll see if its network can handle the data-storm caused by throngs of smartphone-wielding fanatics.
 
 

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Media Trends in 2016: Why I'll Be Watching the Underdog

Forecasting the future is usually a fool's errand - especially in a fast-changing industry like media. But I recently recruited two brave colleagues to make their 2016 predictions for a new internal GE podcast, Marketing Decoded, and I loved our conversation so much, I wanted to share it.
 
 

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The Best TV is Korean TV: A Guide to Awesome K-dramas

Game of Thrones isn't on, you've finished Orange Is The New Black, and fall TV hasn't kicked in yet. You need something to get obsessed with. Allow me to suggest a Korean drama, or K-drama, as they're called.
 
 

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Jimmy Fallon Pays Tribute to David Bowie

Jimmy takes a moment to remember legendary entertainer David Bowie.
 
 

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Madonna's Tribute To David Bowie

Houston, Texas, January 12, 2016.
 
 

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Elton John Tribute to David Bowie

Private concert at the Wiltern Theater in Los Angeles Jan 13, 2016 to promote his new LP Wonderful Crazy Night. Elton describing hearing Bowie's 'Space Oddity' for the first time and his desire to have the same producers work with him in the early days.
 
 

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Bruce Springsteen: David Bowie Tribute (Pittsburgh)

Opening night of The River Tour 2016. Bruce performs Rebel Rebel as a tribute to David Bowie. Instagram: dustinjohns Twitter: dustinjohns
 
 

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Rick Wakeman's Tribute To David Bowie - Life On Mars

Rick Wakeman, pianist on the original Life On Mars, performs the song at Radio 2's piano in memory of David Bowie.
 
 

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Obama Pledges $4 Billion to Computer Science in US Schools

President Obama today pledged $4 billion in funding for computer science education in the nation's schools.
 
 

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The worst thing about driving is about to change

If you drive out to visit Disney's Epcot center in Orlando, Florida, you will arrive at one of the biggest parking lots in America. With room for 12,000 cars, it sprawls out over 7 million square feet-about the size of 122 football fields.
 
 

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Amazon's rent-a-Buddhist-monk service causes controversy in Japan

YACHIYO, Japan - In Japan, where communal ties to local Buddhist temples are fading, families have in recent years been able to go online to find a Buddhist monk to perform funerals and other rituals.
 
 

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Five Leadership Tips During Executive Turnover

This week hasn't been short on major corporate changes. On Sunday night, Twitter announced that four senior executives are leaving the company. It's the biggest leadership shakeup since CEO Jack Dorsey took over in order to breathe life back into the social media company.
 
 

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The Comunicano Communique for Thursday January 28th, 2016

 
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Check out today's stories.......lots of good reading that's thought provoking. And not ONE about the Trump-Fox feud. You can read that everywhere else.  Lots of really well written pieces on a variety of subjects that are relevant to many of you in different ways. Start Up? Got a few. Growing a business.. Yup there's some. Tools? Sure got 'em. What's coming up from the big players? They're there...and much, much more...so have a read, over coffee--yes, that's included.

Have a view on the news today? Please let me know what you think....Andy Abramson

 
 
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F.C.C. Proposes Changes in Set-Top Box Market

WASHINGTON - The cable set-top box, long a scourge of consumers and a moneymaker for cable companies, appears set for a makeover. The Federal Communications Commission on Wednesday announced a proposal that would make it much easier for subscribers of cable and satellite television to pick the boxes they use to watch programming.
 
 

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Aussie startup signs US deal worth up to $100 million

Chief executive and co-founder of Unlockd Matt Berriman in New York. Photo: Adam Lerner A Melbourne startup which offers a "freemium​" ad supported phone plan has signed a deal with Boost Mobile in the United States which it expects to be worth over $100 million in revenue.
 
 

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(Un)folding a virtual journey with Google Cardboard

A year and a half ago we introduced Google Cardboard, a simple cardboard viewer that anyone can use to experience mobile virtual reality (VR). With just Cardboard and the smartphone in your pocket, you can travel to faraway places and visit imagined worlds.
 
 

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Google reveals Cardboard virtual reality numbers, and VR films are the surprise winner

Just one day after we highlighted Google's apparent interest in creating virtual reality hardware, the company came out on Wednesday to refocus attention on Google Cardboard by revealing some numbers around its adoption rate.
 
 

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Mexico is having the grown-up conversation about marijuana that every country should have

Mexican lawmakers this week launched a national debate on a topic that officials around the world have been struggling to address: marijuana legalization. Over the next three weeks, the Mexican Congress is holding a series of public hearings (link in Spanish) on whether and how to regulate marijuana.
 
 

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Apple likely to debut iPad Air 3 at March event; new Apple Watch models revealed

Apple is planning to introduce new iPad hardware at an event in mid-March, according to sources, with the most likely device being a new iPad Air. This new iPad with a 9.7-inch screen, presumably to be called the "iPad Air 3," will be launched alongside the a new 4-inch iPhone known as the " iPhone 5se" and a series of new Apple Watch models.
 
 

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Siri, Alexa and Other Virtual Assistants Put to the Test

WHEN I asked Alexa earlier this week who was playing in the Super Bowl, she responded, somewhat monotonously, " Super Bowl 49's winner is New England Patriots." "Come on, that's last year's Super Bowl," I said. "Even I can do better than that." At the time, I was actually alone in my living room.
 
 

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New cloud storage options for Office mobile and Office Online - Office Blogs

Today, we're making Office even easier for customers to use with cloud storage providers by adding real-time co-authoring with Office Online for documents stored in partner cloud services, extending our Office for iOS integration to all partners in the CSPP, and enabling integration between Outlook.com and cloud storage providers Dropbox and Box.
 
 

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Box, Dropbox users can now edit Office documents together in real time

Business users who rely on cloud storage providers like Dropbox and Box now have some improved tools in their collaboration arsenal, thanks to a set of integrations that Microsoft announced Wednesday. Starting Wednesday, Office Online users can work in real time on documents, spreadsheets and presentations shared inside Box, Dropbox, Citrix ShareFile and Egnyte.
 
 

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Why are the elderly ignored by the tech industry?

The tech industry needs to stop being so dunderheaded about technology for the elderly. For the past decade, the industry has been laser-focused on transforming life and work for one rocketing market segment: 25-year-olds with money. It has routinely avoided, underestimated or remained ignorant about the world's other rocketing market segment: old people and the family members who take care of them.
 
 

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The end of app stores as we know them - Inside Intercom

Uber isn't just killing the taxi industry. Its relentless approach to distribution and scale is also putting a nail in the coffin of app stores. Smart companies like Uber are rewriting the app distribution rulebook. Instead of being a bland icon lost amongst millions of others,... Read more
 
 

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The Other Kind of Traction You Need to Get Funded

One of the earliest lessons a new VC learns is about building consensus within a firm. No matter what the voting structure is in your partnership, I think every VC can think of a deal that they got completely excited about, only to have the deal crash and burn when they showed it to the rest of their team.
 
 

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Coffee may not be as bad for your heart as you might think

Drinking coffee regularly does not cause the heart to beat more, a new study has found. The findings go against previous studies which suggested that drinking coffee raises the heart rate, and have prompted the research team to call for clinical recommendations against caffeine to be reconsidered.
 
 

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Food Testing Start-Up Looks to Stand Out With a New Wrinkle

Nothing unnerves consumers more and drives them away from a restaurant, food or beverage faster than a flurry of headlines about people being sickened by dreaded bacteria like E. coli or listeria. Just ask Chipotle Mexican Grill, which has been scrambling to recover from a multistate E.
 
 

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Every Imaginable Damn Startup Podcast Reviewed

As a long-distance commuter, I listen to a LOT of podcasts. And given the explosion in podcasts on tech startups, it's hard to keep track of them all. There really isn't a good discovery source, although Product Hunt and The Podcast Wire come closest. So here's the survey we've been missing.
 
 

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