Apple’s widened ban on templated apps is wiping small businesses from the App Store

 Following its Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple released updated App Store guidelines that included a new rule allowing it to ban apps created by a “commercialized template or app generation service.” The understanding at the time was this was part of Apple’s larger App Store cleanup, and the focus was on helping rid the marketplace of low-quality clone and spam apps.… Read More

Facebook Sound Collection lets you add effects and no-name music to videos

 The right soundtrack can make a boring video interesting. So after years of reported discussions with the record labels, Facebook is launching video editing Sound Collection for inserting “songs, vocals, noises, and instrumental tracks spanning genres like hip hop, pop, jazz, country, and more” into Facebook and Instagram clips. What you can’t add is any music you’ve… Read More

Meet “Genies”, the lifelike personalized avatars that reenact news

 “We plan on making Bitmoji obsolete” says Akash Nigam, CEO of Genies. Bragging about beating one of the world’s top apps before his has even launched is emblematic of Nigam’s and Genies‘ brash style. But with $15 million in funding at a valuation over $100 million, top investors like NEA and Hollywood royalty like CAA are buying into the avatar startup. It already… Read More

Samir Arora unveils Sage Digital, a startup that’s all about accurate location data

Samir Arora Samir Arora says it’s time for a new wave of applications that use reliable location data. Arora previously founded Mode Media (which he departed before its shutdown last year, though he remains involved in Mode Media Japan) and NetObjects before that. Today he’s unveiling Sage Digital, the startup that he’s hoping will provide the data for that new wave. Arora said Sage has… Read More

Facebook adds support for live streaming and video chats to Messenger games

 Last November, Facebook launched Instant Games, a new platform for gaming with friends inside the Messenger chat app. Today, the company is announcing a couple of notable new features for this gaming platform, including support for live streaming via Facebook Live and video chatting with fellow gamers. The idea with Instant Games is to boost people’s time spent in Messenger by giving… Read More

Pinterest brings on a new head of corporate and business development

 Pinterest today said it is hiring a new head of corporate and business development, bringing on former Facebooker Gary Johnson as it looks to continue to expand. The hiring comes at a time when Pinterest recently saw its president, Tim Kendall, depart to start his own company. Read More

Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 845 focuses on AI, VR and battery life

 Qualcomm teased its new flagship smartphone chip at day one its Summit in Maui, and as expected, the company’s got a lot more to offer us on day two. The Snapdragon 845 is the latest premium processor, due out next year. And like its predecessor, the 835, you can expect the thing to be nearly ubiquitous on 2018’s flagship handsets — not to mention a few Windows PCs.
As… Read More

Lyft’s self-driving pilot with nuTonomy begins rolling out in Boston

 Lyft is beginning its self-driving car pilot with self-driving car company nuTonomy in Boston as it looks to ramp up its self-driving efforts, and is now matching its riders with self-driving vehicles in parts of Boston, nuTonomy said today. Lyft announced its partnership with nuTonomy in June this year, indicating that the pilots would begin in the coming months. Read More