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Spotify now has 15 million paid subscribers

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Spotify is undoubtedly one of the biggest revolutions to come to the audio industry ever since Napster was stirring up heat online. With the New Year the music master has a lot to be proud of as it recently announced that it now has 15 million paid subscribers and the whopping 60 million plus active users.

Last November these very same numbers were circling around 10 million paid and 40 million total users, so this represents a huge leap forward and foretells a bright future for the streaming service, provided that legal issues don’t get too severe. Read more »

With over 170,000 attendees, CES 2015 becomes the largest show in history

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This year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) that took place in Las Vegas broke all records to become the largest show in history, according to a VentureBeat report. The event witnessed a total of over 170,000 attendees (of which over 45,000 were from outside the US) compared to around 160,000 a year ago.

“This CES vastly exceeded our expectations. The show inspired and likely gave almost every attendee a sense that innovation will provide solutions to a range of global issues from the environment and agriculture to transportation, health and safety,” said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA). Read more »

The Rise and Demise of Nokia, an infographic

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Did you know that Nokia started off as a paper mill in the Grand Duchy of Finland, then part of the Russian Empire? The company got its name from the town Nokia, where the second such mill was build. Also named after the town is Finnish Rubber Works. These two, plus Finnish Cable Works combined in 1922 to make the Nokia Corporation.

The joint company increasingly moved into communication equipment, finally releasing its first mobile phone in 1987. This infographic details Nokia’s rise to the top and eventual downfall. Read more »

Sony puts off PlayStation 4 release in China

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As some of you surely know China was placed under a foreign console ban for the last 14 year, preventing big international companies to sell their products on the market. This is just one of numerous government policies put into place to assure proper content filtration aligned with official policy.

A resolution was finally voted last year and Beijing officially lifted the restriction, but a lot of conditions and limitations still apply. Sony Corp has announced its firm intention to release its latest console – the PlayStation 4 to new market and the event was scheduled for January 11. Read more »

Qualcomm celebrating 2015 CES by giving away Samsung Note 4, HTC Desire Eye, Motorola Droid Turbo, and more

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To celebrate the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) happening this week in Las Vegas, Qualcomm has started a sweepstakes that allows US residents (age 18 older) a chance to win some really cool prizes. Dubbed Qualcomm #InventForBetter, the sweepstakes runs through Friday (4:00:00 pm PT) this week.

To enter, all you have to do is to sign into your Twitter account, follow Qualcomm, and then send a tweet expressing what you would do with a mobile device powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon processor, using the hashtag #InventForBetter. Read more »

India blocks Pastebin, Archive.org, GitHub, Vimeo, Dailymotion, and many other sites

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India’s DoT or Department of Telecom has randomly ordered internet service providers across the country to block a long list of websites. The names include the likes of Pastebin, Archive.org, GitHub, Vimeo, Dailymotion, and many others.

Many of the names in the list are sites meant for pasting and sharing text files. Why exactly these sites are being blocked is not yet know. Depending upon your area and ISP, some sites may or may not be blocked but the DoT order is in effect regardless. Read more »

Game of Thrones is “most-pirated show” three years in a row

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Game of Thrones is known for many things (the short lives of its characters mostly) but for a third year running it earns another distinction from other TV shows – it is the most pirated show of the year. Estimated downloads top the number of HBO viewers who tuned into the series.

Earlier this year the season finale of the show set its own record – 1.5 million BitTorrent downloads in 12 hours, reaching 7.5 million in the days to follow. Read more »

‘The Interview’ controversy makes it a hit on torrent sites

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With all the controversy surrounding ‘The Interview’, there was bound to be a lot of interest among the people to see just what all the fuss is about.

Although Sony Pictures had initially cancelled the screening after the movie received threats from the North Korean government, the movie was eventually slated for release in some of the theaters in the US, along with a simultaneous online release on YouTube, Google Play, and Xbox Live. However, that was again limited to US and Canada, so the rest of the world did what they can: pirate it. Read more »

Google’s self driving car prototype ready for on-road testing

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Google showed us an early prototype of its self driving car back in May. This was different from the self driving cars we had seen from the company before that, which were basically regular vehicles like the Toyota Prius with heavy modifications to make them drive themselves. This was something that was designed from the ground up for this purpose.

Since then Google has been working on refining the prototype and all its components and it’s now ready for road testing. The company will be testing the car on its test track during this holiday season and will begin road testing in Northern California in early next year. Read more »

Sony releases cryptic CES 2015 teaser video

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With CES 2015 only a few days away the hype is on and companies are already gearing up for the marketing avalanche to come. Teasers and early announcement are starting to surface with everybody working hard to outshine competitors in the battle for consumer attention.

Keeping true to this tradition Sony created a really artsy teaser in the wake of this year’s tech show. This clip is only 43 seconds long and pretty vague in its message. It is full of various time-lapses, vivid colors and lights and a lot of fine camera work and the whole thing comes across as very emotionally charged. Read more »

Sony unveils Single-Lens Display Module, its own smart glasses

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While the Google Glass project seems to have run its course Sony is picking up the slack with its Single-Lens Display Module. Unlike Glass, Sony’s device can be attached to conventional corrective glasses, sunglasses and even goggles.

Not much is known about the device itself though the company will make it available next year and will release the SDK to select partners. Read more »

Skype offers India users free mobile and landline calls to US and Canada

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Skype announced a new promotion today for its users in India. For a limited time up until March 1, 2015 (00:01 IST) all new and current Skype users in the fast-growing India market will be able to benefit from the offer. Interestingly enough calls can be both personal and business, but certain limitations do apply to prevent abuse of the service.

You can read the entire terms and services on the promotion page, but unsurprisingly Skype have taken steps to prevent unwanted telemarketing and spam throughout the promotional period. Read more »

Robin Williams, World Cup and Ebola top Google’s 2014 search

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It’s that time of the year when we can take time and look back at what gathered the most attention. There’s no better place to do that than Google’s search – the most popular tool on the internet.

Google has rounded off the most popular searches and stories in its rebranded Year in Search 2014, formerly Google Zeitgeist. The most searched topic on Google for 2014 was Robin Williams’ passing followed by the FIFA World Cup, the Ebola outbreak, Malaysia Airlines’ lost MH370 flight, the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and many more. Read more »

Yatse – the XBMC/Kodi Android remote app gets material treatment in its latest update

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Yatse is one of those awesome apps that you might not even know exists, and yet can’t live without once discovered. The app is a powerhouse and all-in-one tool that can satisfy the needs of even the pickiest XBMC user.

Yesterday, it was finally ushered into the new material trend and how has a fresh new look and is as stylish as ever. It is exciting to see that the app is getting the attention it deserves and is still in active development, which reassured fans it is here to stay and will keep up with the rapid XBMS development of late.

For those unfamiliar with XBMC, recently renamed to Kodi for legal reasons, it is one of the most popular open-source media player software suits. But that description definitely does not do it justice. It actually represent a monumental amount of effort from a multitude of people who have managed to create one of the best, if not the best and most complete multimedia management platforms in existence to date.

Yatse builds upon the already impressive experience that Kodi provides and takes it to a whole new level. Read more »

Apple’s Glass Lantern store in Istanbul wins a design award

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Apple puts design and minimalism on a high pedestal and that even extents to its stores. The Institution of Structural Engineers awarded an Apple store in Istanbul, Turkey the Supreem Award for Structural Engineering Excellence.

The store is dubbed “Glass Lantern” and with good reason – its walls are completely transparent. Read more »