Tech News Roundups

What is Spotify Now?

Every Monday we’ll be giving you our take on some of the tech news from last week you may have missed. Whether it was the hottest thing or the least discussed, we’ll break down some of the stories we found most interesting.

We call it: Last Week’s Tech News Roundup Today!

#1 – What is Spotify Now?

Spotify’s new promo vids are pretty hip. And as the news section of their website is quick to highlight, Spotify is now more than just music. What are we getting?

  • More Than Music: Spotify adds video clips and podcasts to the mix and learns what you love.
  • Spotify Originals: Original content curated for you by Spotify, and features heavily in the new Spotify Running Originals.
  • Entertainment, News and Clips: ABC, BBC, Comedy Central. You name it. It’s on Spotify Now.

Way back in a time called the 1980s, MTV used to show videos (kids, ask your parents or grandparents). But as customer tastes and programming changed, Music Television became known for everything except for visual versions of our favorite songs. But now the video may be getting a reboot thanks to Spotify, the streaming music service. Last spring, it began beta testing a music video streaming service in the U.S. and Europe, and plans to unveil a Droid version this winter. An iOS version will follow later. Company officials say this service will help the company offer a unique service, but not necessarily a big moneymaker.

#2 – Walmart Plunges into the Development Game

Walmart oneops logo

Though Walmart, the world’s largest retailer, is often known more for unexpected fashion spectacles and strangely low prices on stuff like toothpaste, it also has cultivating a growing interest in acquiring market share of the data cloud. It recently unveiled OneOps, an open source development platform designed for cloud and app use. Walmart Labs (yes, it’s a thing) developed the project to make it easier and faster for developers to create and launch enterprise-class app products. Walmart Labs has been around since 2011 and has mainly been an internal platform used by about 3,000 of the company’s engineers to create and manage new products. Company officials hope to interest other developers to utilize the platform that works with a big mix of private and public cloud platforms.

#3 – We Really, Really Heart Social Video

attracting social awareness image

At the top of AdWeek’s “Intriguing Marketing Stats from Last Week” is the information that social video is taking off. According to Facebook, 100 million videos were viewed each day on the social network in 4th quarter 2015. The tidbit was one takeaway from very favorable quarterly earnings report. How good was the company’s performance at the end of 2015? How about ad revenue up 57 percent from a year earlier ($17 billion from $11.5 billion) and of this 80 percent, or $4.5 billion, was due to mobile. Of its 1.04 billion daily users, 934 million are using the mobile app.

#4 – Does Super Bowl Mean Super Snooping?

super bowl xlviii

Wired reports that lots of eyes will be on the crowds at next weekend’s Super Bowl, and not all of them will be jealous fans or bookmakers. Wired reports that local, state and national agencies will be putting plenty of resources into keeping the San Francisco area free of any violence. Well, apart from the stuff taking place on the field. Security will be at some of the highest levels, almost presidential visit high, which includes video and audio surveillance of game-goers and stadium staff, phone surveillance plus license plate readers and even social media monitoring. One positive highlight of the spectacle of the largest American sporting event is cooperation between so many agencies.

#5 – Facebook, Instagram Crack Down on Unlicensed Gun Sellers

United Nations Gun Sculpture

Facebook and its sister social media site Instagram are sure to draw cheers and jeers with a new policy tightening rules on firearm sales and advertising. Licensed firearm dealers can still advertise on both sites but can only buy and sell outside of Facebook properties. However, unlicensed gun owners are now not allowed to advertise or sell guns on Facebook at all, which includes person-to-person transactions. Ars Technica reports that Facebook plans to remove posts from sellers which say that no background check is required. Repeat violators will be banned. This is part of the company’s efforts to combat mass shootings, make it more difficult to acquire guns, and also make the social networks more family-friendly. It also recently clarified and tightened the rules for marijuana and pharmaceutical sales.

Check back each week and leave your comments below, please and thank you!

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