Today in Tech News Digest, Amazon Prime Music, Tesla patents promise, seized Bitcoin auction, Angry Birds Epic, Windows Phone Pinterest, Skype 5.0 remastered, and The Onion opens ClickHole.
Amazon Adds Music Streaming To Prime
Amazon has officially launched Prime Music, which adds music streaming to the Amazon Prime service. Amazon Prime members, who currently pay $99 a year for their premium accounts, get immediate and unlimited access to around 1 million tracks, all without commercials.
Amazon Prime Music comes after months of negotiations with the major record labels. Prime members shouldn’t expect to find new bands on Prime Music, as every track is currently at least six months old. Still, curated playlists are a feature, and Prime Music is available through “Kindle Fire HD/HDX, iOS, Android, PC, Mac and any Web browser.”
Amazon Prime Music isn’t yet a Spotify killer, but then it isn’t intended to be. Instead, this is just the latest sweetener added to Amazon Prime, which already means free two-day shipping, Instant Video for streaming movies and television shows, and free eBooks courtesy of the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library.
Will the addition of music streaming make you more likely to consider Amazon Prime?
Tesla Opens Its Patents To The World
“Tesla will not initiate patent lawsuits against anyone who, in good faith, wants to use our technology.” That is not “public domain.”
— Glenn Fleishman (@GlennF) June 12, 2014
Tesla Motors has declared, “All Our Patent Are Belong To You,” using a silly meme to announce a rather serious development in the motor industry. Tesla CEO Elon Musk wrote in a blog post, “Tesla will not initiate patent lawsuits against anyone who, in good faith, wants to use our technology.”
This isn’t quite an open sourcing of Tesla’s technology, but rather a softening of the company’s approach to rivals infringing on its patents. Musk explains, “our true competition is not the small trickle of non-Tesla electric cars being produced, but rather the enormous flood of gasoline cars pouring out of the world’s factories every day.”
Tesla is clearly thinking about bigger things than mere competition, realizing the increasingly desperate need for us to start moving away from burning fossil fuels. It’s a positive message from a company already admired around the world.
U.S. Government Auctioning Seized Bitcoins
HAH! The FBI to dump all the Bitcoin seized from the Silk Road dealers into an auction at a massive value-depressing discount. Epic troll.
— Bob Chipman (@the_moviebob) June 12, 2014
The U.S. Government is auctioning off around 30,000 Bitcoins it seized from Dread Pirate Roberts, the alleged former owner of the Silk Road. The Silk Road was an online marketplace for illegal products and services which lived on the deep web.
The auction, run by the U.S. Marshals Service, will take place over 12 hours on June 27. Bidders are required to register by June 23, with a “refundable $200,000 wire transfer to a government bank” a prerequisite. These Bitcoin could raise around $20 million at current prices.
Rovio Releases Angry Birds Epic RPG
Having previously been available only on iOS in Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, Angry Birds Epic is now available to download globally on iOS, Android, and Windows Phone. Angry Birds Epic is a turn-based RPG starring the same motley crew of feathered freaks from the previous ultra-addictive Angry Birds games. Which means you’ll either love it or hate it.
Pinterest Finally Lands On Windows Phone
WELCOME TO #WP, PINTEREST! Get it now! http://t.co/C7qsZP145J
— joebelfiore (@joebelfiore) June 11, 2014
Pinterest is finally available on Windows Phone, with Microsoft’s Joe Belfiore announcing a free Pinterest app for Windows Phone 8 and Windows Phone 8.1. Unfortunately, Pinterest for Windows Phone is currently in beta, with no word on if and when that status will change.
Early reviews on the Windows Store have not been positive, with many complaining this is just a Web wrapper for the mobile site. Oh, Microsoft, how you love to disappoint. Still, this is surely better than nothing, amirite?!
Skype 5.0 Gets Remastered For iPhone
With the release of Skype 5.0, Microsoft has remastered Skype for iPhone. The new Skype for iPhone looks more like the current Android and Windows Phone apps, and the company is claiming it’s “faster,” “smoother,” “smarter,” and “more integrated.” Buzzword overload!
ClickHole Opens For Business
Oh my god, The Onion made an entire website just to make fun of clickbait. http://t.co/iZBGoULZ7q
— Josh Helfferich (@JoshHelfferich) June 13, 2014
And finally, The Onion is such a fan of clickbait it has launched an entire website parodying the increasingly annoying trend. We have already explored ClickHole in depth, and found it to be a pure parody of sites such as Buzzfeed and Upworthy. If you hate clickbait then you’ll love ClickHole. Even though it’s full of the stuff.
Image Credit: Danny Bruce via Flickr