Right now, most Pandora users are listening to music for free and turning the volume down during ads, with a handful of people paying for an ad-free version of the same service. Now comes a report that Pandora is looking to offer new options that would put the company in more direct competition with Apple, Google, Amazon, and Spotify. [More]
pay to play
As of today, Apple’s free iTunes Radio is dead. Long live Apple Music — or at least that’s apparently the company’s plan as it officially shut down the ad-supported service today. [More]
When Apple moved into the e-book market several years ago, the company colluded with the country’s largest book publishers to fix prices and gain a foothold in the market. Now as Apple jumps into the subscription streaming music business, at least two states are asking whether the company may be repeating itself. [More]
We want what we want, when we want it — but that doesn’t always mean we’re willing to pay for it if we can get it for free later on down the line. One company is betting that some fans of certain popular YouTube stars won’t be so patient, and will be willing to shell out the cash to gain access to some content before everyone else.
For years, Verizon has bragged about the fast data speeds available to subscribers of its FiOS broadband service. Meanwhile, the company was allowing Netflix streams to bottleneck, resulting in real downstream speeds that were slower than some DSL providers. And even months after Netflix agreed to pay Verizon for better access to its network, the speeds didn’t improve — until now. [More]
The months-long game of chicken between Netflix and Verizon has come to an end, with the streaming video company agreeing to pay off the ISP for a more direct connection to its network. For Netflix users with FiOS accounts, it means you will finally be able to watch streamed reruns of Mad Men without having to guess which character you’re looking at, but it continues to demonstrate that ISPs can passive-aggressively compel data-heavy content companies to ante up in order to reach their users. [More]
After months of slowed-down data speeds for Netflix users on Comcast and Time Warner Cable’s network, speeds rebounded the very same month that Netflix agreed to pay Comcast money for more direct access to its network. [More]
For the last several months, Comcast Internet customers have complained about a drop in quality of the Netflix streams being delivered to their homes, and Netflix’s own data showed a massive decline in connection speeds starting in October. But today, the two companies announced they have reached a “mutually beneficial” agreement that will hopefully turn that trend around. [More]
One of the biggest knocks against Hulu Plus is that, in spite of the $7.99 monthly subscription, users are still subjected to ads on most of the premium content. Meanwhile, Netflix and Amazon Prime offer competing streaming services for about the same amount of money but without the annoying ad interruptions. The solution? Charge more for an ad-free tier! [More]
Imagine if, instead of just getting annoyed when the phone rings and it’s a telemarketer or robocaller, you were delighted. Not because you were eager to speak with them, but because you gave out a toll number instead of your real phone number, and telemarketers had to pay to call you. One man in Leeds, England is living that dream. [More]
It’s been almost two years since a former student from Boston was re-ordered to pay $675,000 for illegally sharing 30 songs. That judgment had been downgraded to $67,500 by one court and deemed unconstitutional, and then ticked right back up again. Another federal appeals court has just ruled he’s still on the hook. [More]
There are already enough posts we don’t need to see on Facebook “Going to the bank and then the gym and wow isn’t this day great oh by the way I’m breathing and I have 23 pairs of chromosomes lol,” and now the social network is going to go ahead and let people pay to promote or highlight what they’re yakking about. Get ready for an onslaught of too much information and an army of baby updates, everyone.
As wireless carriers try to balance the growing demand from smartphone customers with the constant demand from investors to make a profit, some say the future of wireless data plans might stray away from the current tiered structure and toward a model that has customers paying for the services they use the most.
Out to swipe some profits from the used video game machine, some publishers have moved toward packing new games with codes that unlock online features and selling the codes to those who buy the games used. Sony is going all-in on the tactic, announcing all games it publishes, starting with next month’s Uncharted 3, will be stuck with online passes.