Damian Radcliffe

Posts Tagged ‘Piracy’

Top Internet, Technology and Social Media Stories, Facts and Links: mid-May 2011 to mid-June 2011

In Monthly round up: Top Internet, Technology and Social Media Stories, Facts and Links on June 19, 2011 at 11:16 pm

Stats

Cisco forecast the global online population will reach almost 3bn over the next four years, with the number of connected devices growing to 15bn, or double the world’s population, by 2015.

ComScore figures for newspaper websites beyond home and work computers revealed Mail Online had 10.9m unique visitors in April, ahead of guardian.co.uk (8.98m) and Mirror Online (4.4m). The figures cover outlets including apps, mobile and tablet browsers, and PCs in shared locations.
 

Owners of ‘social magazine’ app Flipboard, which renders feeds from social networking sites alongside traditional news content in a magazine format, said downloads of its iPad app have passed the 2.5m milestone.

Homes with 3D TV sets will pass the 300m mark in 2015, according to new research.

Analysis by Kantar Media indicated the first episode of BBC One’s new series of Doctor Who was the most recorded programme on UK TV to date, with the Barb overnight viewing figure of 4.11m growing to 8.9m when time-shifted viewing was taken into account.
 

Stock Market Developments

An IPO by LinkedIn has valued the networking website at $4.25bn as demand from investors saw shares priced at $45 – raising $351m. The FT reports that 7.8m LinkedIn shares were sold, with Goldman Sachs making $39m after selling its entire stake, and that the new pricing has increased the value of the business by nearly a third in just a week.

Online coupon seller Groupon began its process of going public by filing for an IPO it  aims to raise at least $750m from the IPO. In 2010 Groupon, which claims to have 83m subscribers in 43 countries, made a $413m loss on revenues of $713m.

Russian internet group Yandex, which controls 65% of its domestic search market, raised $1.3bn in an IPO in New York, almost a fifth more than forecast.

US internet radio company Pandora raised $235m in an IPO which valued the group at $2.6bn.
 

Mobile

Virgin has announced plans to launch a Virgin Mobile-branded mobiles service across Latin America in a tie-up with wireless communications group Tribe Mobile, acting as mobile virtual network operators in markets which currently have few providers.

Facebook’s EMEA head of mobile partnerships Fergal Walker told a London conference that 70% of UK users access the site from mobiles as well as online, with the social network accounting for 50% of mobile internet minutes in this country.

Google unveiled its Google Wallet app for Android devices. The service will be offered in a tie-up with partners including Citi, MasterCard, First Data and telco Sprint Nextel, and will be preconfigured with the Google Offers daily coupon service.  Forrester analyst Charles Govlin said: “(We) expect NFC is going to increasingly become a default feature of every smartphone that is sold over the next couple of years.”

Vodafone, O2 and Everything Everywhere announced plans to establish a mobile payments joint venture which will seek to kick-start the mobile commerce sector by establishing a cross-platform solution for banks, retailers and advertisers.

Vodafone CEO Vittorio Colao said it is his mission to see 70% of the world owning a smartphone as he predicted devices which only offer call and text services will disappear within three to four years.

Virgin Media screened its first live 3D event, in a deal with Eurosport to offer subscribers 3D coverage of the French Open tennis tournament.
 

Nomura analysts said they expect Samsung to overhaul Nokia to become the world’s largest smartphone manufacturer during the current quarter, with Apple pushing the Finnish group into third place during Q3.
 

A US study by IPG Media Lab and YuMe found 94% of TV viewers polled use ‘companion media’ such as smartphones and laptops while watching programmes, saying distraction poses a greater threat to ad engagement than fast-forwarding via DVRs.

EU officials said the Article 29 Working Party, an alliance of domestic regulators, has argued location data should be considered as private, along with other customer information such as names and birth dates.

Apple

Apple’s iCloud digital entertainment service, which is due to go live in the US in September, is unlikely to launch in the UK before Q1 2012 due to rights issues. The free service, which will go live in the autumn, will allow users to store music, photos and documents across all of the group’s devices, while users will be able to pay a supplementary annual fee of $25 to access Apple’s 18m-track music catalogue, with record labels taking a cut of revenues. Jobs said: “We’re going to move the digital hub, the centre of your digital life, into the cloud.”
 

Apple has become a top-five UK PC vendor for the first time, according to Gartner, growing sales 15.9% year-on-year to leapfrog Samsung. The top four sellers remained Hewlett-Packard, Acer, Dell and Toshiba.

An Imano Digital Agency survey found almost 70% of UK iPad owners said they use the tablet to read newspapers and magazines, with 98% using it for web browsing and 94% for email. The study also found the Apple device is regarded as domestic rather than mobile technology, with 95% of respondents using it in their living rooms and 89% in bed.
 

US publisher Bonnier said analysis indicates that about 95% of iPad subscribers to its Popular Science magazine are new customers, with spokesman Gregg Hano saying the device has given them access to a “totally new audience”.
Google

Google unveiled its ‘Music Beta by Google’ service. When fully rolled-out the ‘online music locker service’ will allow users to upload up to 20,000 songs which will be stored and accessible via an online library and not on their hard drive. The service will be free for a limited time to US applicants.

Google said its AdMob network doubled the number of video ads it placed on partner sites over the past year.

YouTube said global video views are up 50% in the last six months, at more than 3bn per day, attributing the spike to its decision to secure long-form content from broadcasters including Channel 4 and Channel 5.

Facebook

Privacy regulators in a number of European countries are probing Facebook after it rolled out facial recognition software to the site without first seeking user permission.
 

Facebook accounts for almost a third of all online display advertising in the US.
 

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the educational benefits of using the social network were so great that young children should be able to join, adding it would challenge the current 13-and-over age limit “at some point”. The limit is enforced by US law, while in the UK it forms part of Facebook’s terms and conditions.

Facebook is recruiting a cadre of ‘ambassadors’ to represent the group’s interests outside the US, focusing on countries where attitudes and regulations covering privacy and personal communications contrast to its home market.
 

The number of people using Facebook in the US and UK reportedly fell in May for the second month running, a move the Guardian said could suggest the social networking site has ‘hit the limits of expansion in the countries where it was first successful’. User numbers in Canada, Norway and Russia were also down, according to figures from monitoring site Inside Facebook. But globally the site is still climbing towards 700m users. In the US Inside Facebook said the site lost 6m users, to 149.4m by the end of the month. In the UK, more than 100,000 Facebook users were lost. Inside Facebook’s Eric Eldon said the key to further expansion lay in China.

Facebook moved quickly to dismiss Inside Facebook’s findings, throwing doubt on the monitoring site’s metrics tool. “From time to time, we see stories about Facebook losing users in some regions… Some of these reports use data extracted from our advertising tool, which provides broad estimates on the reach of Facebook ads and isn’t designed to be a source for tracking the overall growth of Facebook. We are very pleased with our growth and with the way people are engaged with Facebook. More than 50% of our active users log on to Facebook in any given day.”
 

Attorney General Dominic Grieve has begun contempt proceedings against a juror who allegedly contacted a defendant on Facebook, prompting the collapse of a multimillion-pound drugs trial. Criminal Bar Association chairman Christopher Kinch QC said: “The situation is a potential timebomb for the jury system. Left unchecked, we could move towards trial by X-factor-type online polling; or jurors might find themselves put under pressure by correspondents online.”
 

Twitter

Groups including the Telegraph, CNN and MTV have partnered with Twitter to add a ‘follow’ button to their websites, allowing users to monitor accounts on the micro-blogging site without having to return to Twitter’s home page.
 

Twitter has acquired UK third-party software provider TweetDeck in a deal believed to be worth about $40m.

Gaming

Nintendo president Satoru Iwata told the FT he believes the group’s Wii U console, which it showed off at last week’s E3 trade show, can “fundamentally change the structure of entertainment” by blurring the distinction between TV and gaming.
 

Entertainment Software Association research showed that the average age of UK video game players is 37, with the average game buyer aged 41.
 

UK child-facing social network Moshi Monsters announced it has passed the 50m user milestone three years after launch.

Piracy

WPP-owned agency GroupM has ‘blacklisted’ more than 2,000 US websites to prevent its clients’ advertisements appearing on those carrying pirated content.  GroupM’s US arm spends $3.5bn annually buying up ad space on sites on behalf of clients such as AT&T, IBM, Ford and Unilever.
 

Google’s Eric Schmidt has spoken out against anti-online piracy laws, warning that government legislation to block access to illegal filesharing sites would set a “disastrous precedent” for free speech.
 

Culture minister Jeremy Hunt used the same platform to say government plans to ban access to illicit filesharing websites remained on schedule. But he did concede that deciding which specific sites would be blocked remained a “challenge”.
 

Other stuff

AOL is moving into what Reuters called a ‘crowded space’ with its launch of AOL Industry, a division designed for business professionals.

Microsoft acquired Skype for $8.5bn cash from the consortium of investors who bought the VoIP provider from eBay in 2007.

BBC Global iPlayer is to begin its international roll-out, launching as an iPad app in a number of western European territories charging users about £6 per month for an “editorially curated” service.

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Top Internet, Technology and Social Media Stories, Facts and Links: mid-Dec 2010 to mid-Jan 2011

In Monthly round up: Top Internet, Technology and Social Media Stories, Facts and Links on February 11, 2011 at 12:22 am

Summary of the key stuff I bookmarked in the last month and that I thought worth sharing.

Social Media

Best of 2010: Social Media Stats & Year in Review | Social Media Today

Piracy

A new study has found a “staggering” amount of people are accessing piracy websites. Anti-fraud firm MarkMonitor said there were more than 53bn visits a year to the 43 file-sharing sites it studied.

Audio

The BBC is launching a higher quality audio stream for online radio, initially for live events but ultimately to be incorporated into iPlayer and Radioplayer. BBC Audio & Music director Tim Davie said: “HD Sound is an exciting development and a signal of our commitment to innovate in digital radio for the benefit of our listeners.”

UK Radioplayer, will be made available on joint venture YouView and other internet-connected TV platforms.

Facebook

Facebook tops Google as most visited site in U.S. – Facebook surpassed Google for the first time as the most visited website in the United States for most of 2010.

In a speech to the British Venture Capital Association, Facebook’s Europe VP and managing director Joanna Shields said she believes “the most important word on the internet today isn’t ‘search’, but ‘share’”, insisting the rise of social features represents a massive commercial opportunity for most businesses.

Facebook is temporarily disabling a newly launched feature which would have granted app developers access to some users’ home addresses and telephone numbers, saying it was making amendments following customer feedback.

The Wall Street Journal reported Facebook is breaching privacy rules as many applications are sharing personally identifiable information about their users with advertising and internet tracking companies. The report said the problem is allowing at least 25 ad and data firms to access users’ names and, in some cases, names of their friends, and the top 10 applications, including Zynga’s Farmville game, are transmitting user IDs to third parties. Facebook said it was taking steps to “dramatically limit” the exposure of personal information, adding the company would introduce new technology to eliminate this issue.

Google

Google announced a reshuffle of its top management that will see Eric Schmidt hand over the title of chief executive to co-founder Larry Page in April. The leaders said the changes were prompted by challenges brought by Google’s continuing growth. Brin said: “Every time we double in headcount the whole company changes a lot.”

Google posted a fourth-quarter net profit of $2.54bn, up 29% on a year earlier, on revenue 26% higher at $8.44bn.

Only 1% of Google searches get past page one of results.  Ref: Dumbest Generation by Mark Bauerlein

Google has increased its dominance of the US search engine market, growing its share to 66.6%, according to data from ComScore. The figures for December also show that Microsoft increased its share to 12%, though Yahoo! saw its share fall slightly to 16%.

The number of apps available at Google’s Android Market has increased six-fold in a year to almost 130,000. The research by Distimo also showed that the Apple App Store for iPhone doubled its total number of applications during 2010 to almost 300,000.

Apple

The New York Post reported Apple expected to ship about 12m iPad tablets by the end of 2010, and another 20m in 2011

Apple posted first-quarter net profits up 78% on a year ago to $6bn, on sales up 71% to a record $26.7bn.

Other Companies

Swiss-based Paper.li has raised $2.1m in a funding round which will allow it to set up operations in the US and Asia. Paper.li lets users transform social media news streams from Twitter and Facebook into personalised online newspapers.

Amazon is to take full control of movie streaming service Lovefilm, in which it already has a 42% stake. Terms were not disclosed, but the FT said the price was close to £200m.

Groupon has completed a $950m financing deal with investments from a number of firms, including Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Greylock Partners and Andreessen Horowitz. The company now has 50m subscribers.

Mobile

Android Market growth rate outstrips Apple App Store

Pandora CEO Tim Westergren credited the rise of smartphones with transforming the US radio streaming group, which was close to bankruptcy four years ago, into an “anytime, anywhere service without us doing anything”. Registered users at the site have grown from 40m to 75m over the past 12 months.

50% of UK children aged 5-9 and 75% of 7-15 year olds now  own a mobile phone.   Ref: Manchester University Social Attitudes Study (UK)

Only 3 out of 220 US students were able to turn off their cell phones for 72 hours.  Ref: Fox News (US)

Both from: http://brainmail.nowandnext.com/brainmail_issue68.txt

Research by video traffic management firm Bytemobile revealed just 10% of mobile users account for 90% of all networks’ data traffic, and suggested that by 2011 60% of all traffic will be video.

Twitter CEO Dick Costolo has revealed the number of posts made via mobile phones has risen 25% in a year, with two out of every five Tweets now made through handsets.

New research suggested a growing trend among consumers to use their mobiles to shop, with almost a third having used their phone to access a retailer’s website.

Games and Gaming

Microsoft Ships 8 Million Kinect Devices, to Add Hulu

Nintendo said it expects to ship around 1.5m units of its 3DS console in Japan after its launch at the end of January. Hailing the new 3D-capable handheld game player, president Satoru Iwata told the Nikkei business daily: “It’s important that we ensure a continuous supply.” The 3DS is scheduled for a European and US launch in March, with the Japanese company targeting 4m worldwide sales before the beginning of April.
Predictions for 2011

Just some of the many of the navel crystal ball gazing articles produced around Christmas time…

10 Predictions for the News Media in 2011 – in 2011, the focus on mobile will continue to grow with the launch of mobile- and iPad-only news products, but the greater focus for news media in 2011 will be on re-imagining its approach to the open social web. The focus will shift from searchable news to social and share-able news, as social media referrals close the gap on search traffic for more news organizations. In the coming year, news media’s focus will be affected by the personalization of news consumption and social media’s influence on journalism.

Social Business Predictions 2011 – Being Peter Kim

2011 Social Media Prediction Roundup: Common Themes for the New Year – Shoutlet

Eleven Digital Trends to Watch in 2011 – Edelman presentation

Edelman Technology–our predictions for 2011 « The Naked Pheasant

5 Predictions for 2011 From IDC

Charlie’s Angles: How did I do with my tech predictions for 2010? | Technology | guardian.co.uk

The Cool Commentator 2011 Trend Predictions! | THE COOL COMMENTATOR

Tomorrow’s world – 2011 predictions | The Filter: Team Blog

95+ Predictions for the Web in 2011 – from Mashable

Top 5 technology predictions for 2011 – Telegraph

Analyst technology predictions 2011 « The IIAR Blog

BBC – dot.Rory: Tech in 2011: Who knows what’s next?

30 Social Media Predictions From 30 Social Media Pros … – Social Media Examiner

10 Ways Social Media Will Change in 2011 – ReadWriteWeb

Top Ten Trends for 2011 from Moxie – with excellent downloadable PDF

2011 Staff Predictions – more from ReadWriteWeb

Gartner Predicts 2011 – business angle

11 Digital Predictions for 2011, Contagious Magazine

Seven Technologies That Will Rock 2011 – TechCrunch

10 Websites to Watch in 2011 – Mashable

Summary of Trends for 2011+ – Futurist, Richard Watson

Deloitte predicts that in 2011 social networks are likely to surpass the breathtaking milestone of one billion unique members. Also, they may deliver over 2 trillion advertisements.

Giving its top predictions for 2011 in its annual ‘Year in Review Briefing’, search marketing specialist and technology firm Greenlight said it expects Google and Bing to offer app search before the end of the year

Top Internet, Technology and Social Media Stories, Facts and Links: mid-November to mid-December 2010

In Monthly round up: Top Internet, Technology and Social Media Stories, Facts and Links on December 31, 2010 at 11:15 am

Stuff I bookmarked in the last month, and wanted to share lest it be useful. Comments, feedback and suggestions welcome. Like the Murphy’s, I’m not bitter.

 

General

The 101 most useful websites of the year 2010. –  a list which primarily highlights the lesser-known or undiscovered websites, so doesn’t include IMDB, Wikipedia or others you probably already know.

10 Predictions for the News Media in 2011 – the focus on mobile will continue, whilst the shift from searchable news to social and share-able news, as social media referrals close the gap on search traffic for more news organizations, will continue.

The 10 Hottest Private Companies in Tech

Internet Hijackings Prove Hard to Stop – “For 18 minutes in April, one-seventh of the Internet was routed through China— a major problem with no ready solution.”

The French government is to introduce a 1% tax on online ads from the beginning of next year.

Home Internet with Anonymity Built InA router that runs the Tor software prevents Web tracking.

Research from the US indicated the proportion of TV ads which are fast-forwarded is likely to plateau at 13% as the rate of DVR penetration slows. Meanwhile, fast-forwarded commercials still make a brand impact, as DVR users pay close attention to the screen to spot the end of ad breaks. 

Virgin Media’s new TiVo set-top box remote features ‘thumbs up/thumbs down’ ratings buttons, allowing the device to build up a picture of viewer preferences and automatically record content. 

 

Social Networking

17 Things You Didn’t Know About Twitter

http://yearinreview.Twitter.com/trends/  – great list of Twitter trends from 2010

Sources claim Twitter has raised $200m in a funding round that valued the micro-blogging site at $3.7bn, up sharply from the estimated $1bn last year.

Lord Chief Justice Lord Judge has ruled there is no statutory ban on the use of Twitter in courtrooms, but stressed courts “must be satisfied that its use does not pose a danger of interference to the proper administration of justice in the individual case”.

Twitter revealed it signed up 100m new users to the microblogging platform over the past year, doubling its user base.

YouTube users watched more than 700bn videos in 2010, up 50% on a year ago, with 13m hours of content uploaded to the site.

Facebook Soars To $59.4 Billion Valuation

2010 Memology: Top Status Trends of the Year

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was  named person of the year by Time magazine in the US.

South Korean regulators have given Facebook 30 days to submit details of plans to improve its privacy settings after officials said current arrangements are “inadequate”.

 

Convergence

Searching for the Future of Television  – “ Google and the geeks from Silicon Valley aim to revolutionize the 70-year-old TV industry. Conquering the Internet was easy in comparison.”

iPlayer stats for Nov continue to amaze – up 32% over year – 13% watch live – http://bbc.in/gr55U6

The BBC’s iPlayer catch-up service received more than 1.3bn programme requests during 2010,  with Doctor Who attracting the biggest VoD audience. The service also reported a record high of 141m programme streams during November.

STV and 4oD have added their catch-up service to Sony’s PlayStation 3, in the past month.

Apple said it expects sales of its Apple TV platform in the US to pass the 1m mark this week. iTunes users are currently buying or renting more than 400,000 TV shows per day.

The Sun published an iPad-only edition on Christmas Day, with editor Dominic Mohan saying: “Throughout the Sun’s 41-year history we have always respected the agreement amongst newspaper publishers in not publishing a Christmas Day edition of the Sun. However, this year we have seen dramatic innovations in the way that we deliver news to our readers and couldn’t resist the opportunity to break with tradition and produce this dazzling digital edition of the paper – direct to readers’ sofas on Christmas Day.”
 

 

Mobile

Microsoft said more than 1.5m mobiles running Windows Phone 7 have been sold in the six weeks since the operating system’s launch.

Users of Google Android handsets consume more data services than other smartphone subscribers.

 

 
Music

Sony has launched its cloud-based Music Unlimited streaming service in the UK and Ireland, offering access to 6m songs through the company’s internet-linked TVs, Blu-ray players, PS3 consoles and Vaio computers for either £3.99 or £9.99 per month.

A Spotify spokesman told the Telegraph that it “can’t commit to a specific date” for its launch in the US.

BSkyB’s music-streaming service Sky Songs is to close down after little more than a year, with the company admitting it had failed to establish a “large enough customer base”.

Industry body the BPI said three out of every four music tracks downloaded in the UK this year was done illegally, equating to 1.2bn tracks. The BPI estimated the total cost to the industry was £984m in lost retail sales.

Last.fm has dramatically narrowed its pre-tax loss, announcing a £2.8m loss for last year, compared to a £17m loss the previous year. Revenues climbed 74% year-on-year to £7.3m, although net liabilities climbed from £19m to £22.2m. £5.4m was earned in advertising and £1.3m from subscriptions. It makes 55% of its revenue from the UK, and 33% from the US.

 

Companies

Yahoo! CEO Carol Bartz has said the group’s “greatest competitor probably is Facebook, more so than Google”, arguing social features are becoming more important to web users than search.

A Yahoo! spokeswoman said the group is “cutting our investment in underperforming or off-strategy products to put better focus on our core strengths and fund new innovation”, confirming the AltaVista search site has been earmarked for closure.
  
 
Meanwhile, in a blog posting, social bookmarking site Delicious confirmed rumours that it is seeking a new owner, but denied claims that Yahoo!, which acquired it in 2005, plans to close it down.

Japanese regulators have given the green light to Yahoo! Japan’s search tie-up with Google, despite complaints by Microsoft and domestic online retailer Rakuten that the deal would be uncompetitive.

AOL has acquired US start-up About.me, which allows users to create an online profile linking their various social networking sites, for an undisclosed amount.
  
 
 
Emerging Markets 

Youku founder Victor Koo told the Telegraph that the Chinese online video site, which is valued at close to $5bn following its US IPO last week, has been able to achieve rapid growth by exploiting the country’s “hugely fragmented market”. He added: “In the US, search engines are king. That is because everyone already knows what they are looking for. Brands have been around for a long time. But in China that is not the case. This is the first generation of people buying cars and fridges. Video is much more important. You cannot transmit the branding through text banners and pictures. On our site, we show one minute of advertising per hour, compared with the 12 minutes shown on Chinese TV. Imagine how we can scale that up.”