Amazon Goes After Dropbox, Google, Microsoft With Unlimited Cloud Drive Storage

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Originally posted on TechCrunch:

Last year, Amazon gave a boost to its Prime members when it launched a free, unlimited photo storage for them on Cloud Drive. Today, the company is expanding that service as a paid offering to cover other kinds of content, and to users outside of its loyalty program. Unlimited Cloud Storage will let users get either unlimited photo storage or “unlimited everything” — covering all kinds of media from videos and music through to PDF documents — respectively for $11.99 or $59.99 per year.

And those who want to test drive it can do so for free for three months.

The move is a clear attempt by Amazon to compete against the likes of Dropbox, Google, Microsoft and the many more in the crowded market for cloud-based storage services. It’s not the first to offer “unlimited” storage, but it looks like it’s the first to market this as a service to anyone who…

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Whipclip Launches So You Can Legally Share Your Favorite TV Moments

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Originally posted on TechCrunch:

There’s a lot of talk about how social media has become the new watercooler for discussing TV’s funny, crazy, or otherwise memorable moments. What’s been more hit-or-miss, however, is finding the actual footage that everyone’s talking about.

Sure, networks are putting more and more clips online, but it’s still only a fraction of what’s actually broadcast. Even when networks post something, the clips might not go live until hours or days after the broadcast. And yes, people find more, uh, creative ways to share this content, but I don’t actually enjoy watching a YouTube video of someone pointing their iPhone camera at their TV screen.

So a startup called Whipclip is launching an iPhone app of the same name today that makes it easy and legal to find and share some of your favorite TV clips. (There are plans for an Android app, too.)

As COO Dan Brian put it…

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Latest Apple acquisition may have huge impact on App Store and upcoming TV service

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Originally posted on BGR:

TechCrunch is reporting that Apple recently acquired FoundationDB, a company that specializes in fast and cost-effective database software. According to FoundationDB’s website, the company’s software can perform a whopping 14.4 million random writes per second. And all this at just 1 penny per 3.6 million database writes.

While it remains to be seen just what Apple has in mind with its most recent acquisition, many believe it likely is geared towards bolstering and improving the technologies that power Apple’s key services, such as the App Store, iTunes, and iCloud.

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The fall of cable is coming

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Originally posted on BGR:

Cable is amazing. For as much as people justifiably rag on cable providers, the actual content and breadth of channels is absolutely mesmerizing. When you toss DVR and on-demand functionality into the mix, there’s really never been a better time to be a TV and movie fan.

But cable is expensive, and cable providers, like most successful incumbents in any given industry, have failed to keep up with the times. Cable providers, by remaining dead set on preserving current revenue streams, simply haven’t adjusted to a marketplace where paying well over $100 a month for cable is increasingly falling out of favor with consumers, especially when a monthly Netflix subscription can get the job done for less than $10.

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Amazon Updates Fire TV Lineup With Support For USB Storage, Wireless Headphones And More

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Originally posted on TechCrunch:

Amazon announced this morning that its streaming media players Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV stick will be soon receiving a software update that will deliver a series of new features, including support for expandable USB storage and wireless Bluetooth headphones on the Fire TV, the ability to watch via Wi-Fi that requires authentication on both devices, and more. Additionally, the company says that the Fire TV Stick is now available in two new markets, the U.K., Germany and Austria.

The devices will be available in those new countries for pre-order today, and will begin shipping on April 15.

Captive portal support will make the two devices the first streaming media players which offer the ability for users to watch via Wi-Fi that needs you to authenticate, Amazon notes. That includes places like hotels, airports or even college dorms, in some cases.

Meanwhile, the expandable USB storage option for Fire TV…

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Google Hires Morgan Stanley’s Ruth Porat As Its New CFO

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Originally posted on TechCrunch:

Google has a new CFO, to replace Patrick Pichette, who announced his retirement from Google after seven years on the job earlier this month. The incoming CFO is Ruth Porat, who currently occupies that role at Morgan Stanley, where she has worked since 1987.

Porat has a long and storied history, including leading financing rounds on a number of tech companies including Amazon, eBay and Netscape, and she was previously co-head of Technology Investment Banking at Morgan Stanley. She’ll join the search giant on May 26, reporting directly to Google CEO Larry Page.

“I’m delighted to be returning to my California roots and joining Google,” said Ruth Porat in a statement from Google. “Growing up in Silicon Valley, during my time at Morgan Stanley and as a member of Stanford’s Board, I’ve had the opportunity to experience first hand how tech companies can help people in their daily lives…

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