When Ek sits for a fireside chat at the South By Southwest (SXSW) Interactive Festival here later today, the Swedish-born, aspiring music industry mogul will be able to share some fresh bragging rights: Spotify has signed another 1 million subscribers since December, bringing the total to 6 million and cementing its position as the fastest-growing digital music company ever -- second in reach only to Internet radio company Pandora. A company … Read more
Uber's UberX service, which uses hybrid cars and charges customers less for trips than in traditional cars, is getting a boost, the company has announced.
Uber will be partnering with more drivers in San Francisco through its UberX service, according to a company blog post yesterday. The hybrid cars meet California's requirements for driving, as well as Uber's screening tests to ensure they're fit to handle service, the company said.
UberX was unveiled in July as an invite-only service for San Francisco. At that time, the company said that it couldn't offer it to everyone … Read more
Gurley, who spoke on a panel of venture capitalists at Goldman Sachs' annual Technology and Internet Conference in San Francisco, was asked why he'd invest in a startup with no revenue model. Benchmark led a $13.5 million investment in the app, valuing Snapchat at $60 million to $70 million, which was first reported by The New York Times.
"If you look at … Read more
"We are excited but overwhelmed by the demand," Raj Singh, the founder and CEO of Tempo, wrote in a blog post today.
Shortly after the app went live, Tempo was forced to close down new signups, incensing would-be users and leading to a bevy of negative reviews in the App Store.
Singh now says the company is opening up the service to users in batches, and changing how it lets users access certain features. That includes once again … Read more
The long-awaited update for a Snapchat video-messaging app for Android was available briefly last night.
Snapchat announced last night that it would allow people to download its private beta Android application. However, the application was only made available for a few hours and can no longer be downloaded from the company's site. Those who were able to access the program needed to force their Android handsets to install non-market apps.
Snapchat currently offers an Android and iOS application. However, the program only allows for the sharing of photos. The Snapchat update for Android lets people send video clips to … Read more
Samsung yesterday announced the launch of a new Open Innovation Center in Silicon Valley with an aim of connecting the conglomerate with the latest and greatest software ideas.
David Eun, Samsung Electronics executive vice president and leader of the Open Innovation Center, announced its opening yesterday at the D: Dive Into Media event. He told All Things Digital's Kara Swisher that while the company's hardware efforts are going well, the Open Innovation Center is designed to deliver a "thoughtful integration" of hardware with software.
According to Eun, the Open Innovation Center is based on four ideas:… Read more
Uber, the on-demand driving service, has temporarily resolved an issue it's been facing with California, the company announced yesterday.
The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), which regulates some driving services in the state, last year issued citations and fines against Internet-based Uber for allegedly operating a "charter-party carrier" service that failed to include insurance coverage and enrollment of its hired drivers in a substance abuse program. CPUC also argued that Uber failed to provide evidence of workers' compensation insurance.
Two other driving services, Lyft and SideCar, were also included in the citation, which fined all three companies $… Read more
OpenTable, a company that provides online restaurant reservations, has acquired Foodspotting, a site and apps that let users post photos of the food dishes they encounter at eateries.
The companies announced the deal today, saying that OpenTable will pay approximately $10 million in cash to acquire Foodspotting. The acquisition comes after Foodspotting inked a deal with the restaurant-reservations company to share user photos of food dishes in OpenTable listings. OpenTable didn't say what its plans are for Foodspotting, but it did say the photos are a "taste" of what to expect.
Still, Foodspotting users won't lose … Read more
LAS VEGAS--If you want to make money off of apps, you must develop for mobile, right? Wrong, says SweetLabs' Chester Ng, who points to his company's success with its OpenCandy project to help developers earn a living.
The problem is both cultural as well as logistical, Ng said in an interview outside the Las Vegas Convention Center. Desktop software, especially on Windows, has a long history of being developed as freeware. But pitching a secondary software purchase to the user during the installation process had been poisoned, he said.
"The problem is that developers don't like the … Read more
Square has just extended its partnership with Starbucks a bit further.
The companies announced today that Starbucks customers can now buy Square's Mobile Card Readers in-store at 7,000 locations nationwide. Starbucks is selling the Reader for $10 but will give customers back $10 if they're new merchants or individuals who sign up for Square's service.
Starbucks is a major investor in Square, dropping $25 million into the mobile-payment startup last year. Since then, the companies have been working closely to expand Square's footprint across the U.S. In November, in fact, Starbucks announced that it … Read more