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In Brief

Chances are that we will see a webOS-powered LG smart TV at CES next week, and a first leak, courtesy of evleaks, already gives us an idea of how the device’s user interface could look like. The leaked image shows off live TV integration and access to a variety of apps through something that resembles the cards interface of webOS mobile devices. Some of the apps included are YouTube, Facebook and Skype, with the latter suggesting that the device will have a camera as well.

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In Brief

Get ready for this: Reddit had 56 billion pageviews and 731 million unique visitors this year, according to a post published on the official Reddit blog.  Possibly even more remarkable: The site had more than 40 million posts in 2013, and the most-read post only had 3.6 million pageviews, meaning that a whole lot of activity came from the long tail. Maybe Reddit should change its tagline to “the 731 million front pages of the internet”?

On The Web

P2P piracy may be less in the spotlight than it used to be, but people are still trading a whole lot of files: Data published by Torrentfreak shows that the Pirate Bay saw file uploads surge by 50 percent in 2012, despite various legal attacks against the site that forced it to change domains multiple times, and resulted in it being blocked in a number of European countries. In November of 2013 alone, 74,195 torrents were uploaded to the site. Two years ago, that number was at just 38,319. Those torrents are shared by around 19 million people at a time, according to Torrentfreak.

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In Brief

Simple.tv released its Android app this past weekend, giving owners of its DVR  a way to stream live and recorded TV to Android phones and tablets. Simple.tv is targeting cord cutters with a DVR that records free over-the-air digital TV and then streams it to mobile and connected devices. The company just started to sell its second-generation hardware, and is set to show off a cloud DVR offering at CES in Las Vegas next month. We first showed off Simple.tv’s Android app in a video a few weeks ago.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-12-18/sony-said-to-explore-sale-of-gracenote-audio-recognition-service.html Sony may be looking to sell media recognition specialist Gracenote, according to a Bloomberg report. There’s no word yet on how much money Sony is looking to make, whether the company intends to keep a stake in the unit, or even who a potential buyer […] Read more »

Viki, the international streaming video service that recently got acquired by Japan’s Rakuten, just took a big step into the Chinese market: Viki is supplying Baidu with movies and TV shows from a variety of countries including South Korea, Japan, the U.K. and the U.S., which […] Read more »

Rounds, the group video chat app we’ve covered a few times before on Gigaom, announced a partnership with Vidyo Tuesday. Rounds will use Vidyo’s technology to power the next generation of its mobile app, which will include features like video overlays while you browse a site […] Read more »

On The Web

Verizon is close to inking a deal with Intel to buy the chip maker’s yet-to-be launched online TV service OnCue, according to a Bloomberg report. Intel originally planned to launch the service by the end of the year, but the company’s new CEO Brian Krzanich decided that Intel shouldn’t be in the TV business, after all. Bloomberg reports that Verizon wants to use the unit to offer TV services outside of its market footprint, but it’s still unclear how exactly such an offering would look like.

In Brief

It’s that time of the year again: YouTube stars like Freddie Wong, Toby Turner, Daily Grace, Mystery Guitar Man, Tyler Ward and a number of others are coming together Thursday night at 6pm P.T. for the site’s second annual Tube-A-Thon, a telethon-style live event that aims to raise money for charity. Just like last year, the event is going to be hosted by What’s Trending’s Shira Lazar, but this time around, it’s live streamed from YouTube’s Los Angeles studio space, which has been home to a growing number of live events this year, including YouTube’s first music awards show.

On The Web

YouTube’s ad revenue is set to hit $5.6 billion this year, according to an eMarketer report relayed by the Financial Times. The same report estimates that the service’s net revenue after paying its partners is close to $2 billion, which would be significantly more than the $1.65 billion that Google paid for YouTube in 2006. YouTube now gets about 20 percent of all U.S. online video ad money.

In Brief

Rdio launched its music subscription service in 20 additional countries late Monday, bringing the total number of countries Rdio is available in now to 51. The new markets include 13 Latin American countries, Israel, South Africa, the Dominican Republic and a few smaller countries in Europe. The expansion could give Rdio a chance to leapfrog Spotify in some of these markets: The bigger competitor is thus far only available in 28 countries.

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