Aereo isn’t ready to give up, and just revealed its plan B in a court filing: The company wants to get access to broadcast networks through compulsory licenses, arguing that now that the Supreme Court found it to be like a cable system, it wants to be treated as such (hat tip to the Hollywood Reporter.) That’s a stark contrast from Aereo’s previous stance, but it’s also a maneuver unlikely to succeed, as my colleague Jeff John Roberts recently explained.
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Two news stories from Wednesday — one about a startup trying to play data broker between user and website and another about a study into what people would charge for their personal data — offer more evidence that there’s an appetite for a market where consumers sell their data to advertisers and website. The idea isn’t new (we wrote about its traction back in 2012) and actually has merit because it puts money in consumers’ pockets and higher-quality data in advertisers’ databases. But monetizing the idea might be easier said than done: Enliken, one of the startups we covered in that 2012 piece, appears to have closed its doors.
The Nieman Journalism Lab published a thoughtful critique of data journalism on Wednesday, but there are additional things the emerging space could do live up to its hype, including getting more creative about where writers source their data. Read more »
About the Android screen fragmentation issue that’s been bandied around for years: It’s a myth says one developer because Google has long ago introduced tools to let apps adjust icons and layouts based on screen size and pixel density. Read more »
The new wrist-worn fitness tracker from Adidas eschews typical smartwatch features, like a screen, for a fitness-focused experience. Read more »
Ten months after announcing acquisition, PayPal has merged it and Braintree’s payments platform and developer operations. Startups and big companies alike now can offer PayPal services and Braintree’s card processing through as single API. Read more »
The Obama Administration has backed away from an unpopular plan to name a Johnson & Johnson executive and patent reform opponent as head of the US Patent Office. Read more »
You may think the U.S. fell short on telecom competition, but in Mexico a single company has long dominated the communications landscape: América Móvil. It services 70 percent of all mobile connections and 80 percent of all landline phone links in the country. But billionaire Carlos Slim, the carrier’s controlling owner, is bowing to regulator pressure and is divesting substantial portions of Slim’s empire, according to Bloomberg. The sales and spin offs will reduce América Móvil’s market share in mobile and wireline to below 50 percent, as well as remove it from the communications tower and satellite TV businesses. It doesn’t look as if América Móvil’s substantial operations in Latin America or the U.S. (where it owns prepaid giant TracFone) will be affected.
Dell launched two new Android tablets Wednesday, built around Intel’s new 64-bit Merrifield SoCs and dual-core Atom processor. Although the current version of Android is 32-bit, these tablets should be able to take advantage when Android L, with 64-bit support, is released to the public. The 7-inch Venue model, with a 1280 x 800 resolution screen, costs $150. The Venue 8,which sports a full 1920 x 1200 display, can be had for as little as $180. At those prices, you’re getting a pretty good value — just don’t confuse them with Dell’s impressive Venue 8 Pro, which runs Windows.
Verizon has scored the exclusive LTE model of Sony’s Xperia Z2 tablet in the U.S. You can get special promotional pricing for this dust-resistant, waterproof full HD tablet, provided you agree to a new two-year contract with Verizon. Read more »