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MetroPCS’s discounted 4G LTE mobile broadband plans, announced yesterday, weren’t just the beginning of a possible price war. It represented a long-talked about tactic of ISPs charging for content at different rates and potentially favoring their own services while charging more for access to rivals. Read more »

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SCVNGR, a location-based gaming start-up, has announced it has raised $15 million based on a $100 million valuation. The funding from European venture capital firm Balderton Capital includes support from previous investors Google Ventures and Highland Capital Partners and brings SCVNGR’s total to $20 million. Read more »

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2010 was a year when our obsession with mobile went into overdrive. With Android facing off against iOS, the iPad emerging as a tablet leader and the app economy growing, we at GigaOM had a lot to write about. Here’s are our top 10 posts of 2010. Read more »

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Xpert Financial just announced today that it has gotten approval to open an electronic trading platform that will give companies capital and liquidity but without the requirements of going public. This could allow companies to stay private longer and further erode the IPO market. Read more »

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The number of Wi-Fi hotspot connections is expected to explode to 11 billion sessions by 2014, up from 2 billion this year as mobile devices proliferate. The growth will outpace the increase of hotspot venues, which has largely contributed to the rise of public Wi-Fi sessions. Read more »

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China has reportedly moved to block private VoIP services such as Skype and will only allow China Telecom and China Unicom to offer such services. It’s unclear when this will take effect or if it means the outright ban of services such as Skype. Read more »

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Mobile security firm Lookout is sounding the alarm about a Trojan targeting Android devices that, while confined to China so far, represents one of the most sophisticated pieces of malware its seen to date. The malware, named “Geinimi” is the first Trojan to display botnet-like capabilities. Read more »

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Skype appears poised to finally launch a new mobile video chat service that should help propel mobile video conferencing into the mainstream. The communications platform is expected to unveil its mobile video offering at CES and has been recently teasing what the service could look like. Read more »

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Companies will increasingly use location data to find when a consumer is at a rival’s location, giving the company important insight about consumer habits, the effectiveness of the company’s marketing efforts and options to reach out to a consumer when shopping with a competitor. Read more »

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As Skype sputters back to life today after its first major outage in three years, it’s helpful to look at how critical the communications tool has become for users and companies, who increasingly rely on it for phone, IM and video chat service. Read more »

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Paying for Android apps is getting a lot easier for AT&T users now that the operator is adding carrier billing for its Android users. The update brings a much needed payment alternative to Android Market and hopefully points toward carrier billing support from all carriers soon. Read more »

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Skype went down this morning, plunging millions of users into VoIP and IM darkness. Then Twitter was out briefly before coming back online. The incidents may be unrelated, but they highlight our growing reliance on web communications tools to keep in touch. Read more »

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Data warehousing firm Teradata said it will buy cloud-based integrated marketing software provider Aprimo for $525 million. The deal will help Teradata bolster its analytics and business intelligence services by adding Aprimo’s suite of integrated marketing applications to help enterprises wrangle their stored data for profits. Read more »

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Net Neutrality, a drama that has dragged on for years, lurched forward today with new rules from the FCC that will impose some basic protections for an open Internet but will leave wireless with less safeguards than wired broadband. Here’s what the Web is saying: Read more »

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Cloud Engines, the company behind “personal cloud” Pogoplug, announced it has raised $15 million from new investors Softbank Capital and Morgan Stanley Investment Partners along with existing investor Foundry Group. Cloud Engines said the capital will go toward global distribution of the Pogoplug service and devices. Read more »

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Foursquare has updated its iPhone app with photos and comments, making the location-based service more social. New features will allow users to attach photos to tips and venues, to share more information with people. Comments will also help users weigh-in on a friend’s check-in. Read more »

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Nokia’s new leadership under ex-Microsoft executive Stephen Elop has reportedly met with Microsoft to plan a line of Nokia phones that would run the Windows Phone 7 software. The prospect is intriguing; suggesting that Nokia needs serious help getting its smartphone business in order. Read more »

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Micro-blogging service Tumblr has raised $30 million in new funding with backing from Sequoia Capital, Union Square Ventures and Spark Capital. The latest funding, which follows up on Mathew’s report last month that the company had raised another round, brings Tumblr’s total to about $45 million. Read more »

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After two years, Dropbox, one of our favorite file sharing tools, has reached a new level of maturity with version 1.0, a major update that includes a host of fixes and improvements and allows Drobox to come out of beta. Read more »

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Bing Mobile is getting a serious update on the iPhone and to a lesser extent on Android, with a handful of mobile specific features that draw from other existing apps and services. The update is designed to make Bing Mobile a go-to resource for mobile users. Read more »

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Bit.ly, the URL link-shortener, took a turn last month into content curation with Bundles, its tool for packaging and preserving multiple links. Today the company is opening up the tool for collaboration among users, allowing people to share and create collections of relevant information. Read more »

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JiWire is leveraging its network of 4,000 Wi-Fi hotspots to serve up a new kind of highly-interactive location-aware ad that operates more like an app than an ad. JiWire is hoping by packing in app-like features, consumers will be more likely to make a purchase nearby. Read more »

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