Friday, November 30, 2012

Do you know this guy? | Internet Explorer

NetMarketshare reports that IE8 and IE9 alone account for around 25 percent of the market as of October, a nearly 10 percent lead over Google Chrome 22, which holds 15 percent of the market. This makes sense considering that Chrome automatically updates, whereas users have to opt-in to update Microsoft’s browser.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Ahoy, mateys!

Thar we blow again! Does anyone enjoy the music of Ireland? Well, here you go: an awesome RTE radios compilation right from Dublin, Ireland! - RTÉ Pulse - dance music - RTÉ Radio 1 - news/features - RTE Choice - music/features - RTÉ Gold - the greatest hits of all time

Enjoy, Like and Share with friends! Have a nice Friday! And... Arghhh!!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

‎Veveo Pioneers "Siri on Steroids" Voice-Based Video Search

Veveo, a provider of search solutions for connected devices, has debuted a new voice and natural language-based, "conversational interface" technology for video search which is available for trial currently and for release in Q1 '13 in its Reveal 3.0 product.

The new voice capability is targeted to pay-TV operators, connected device manufacturers and set-top box providers eager to give users more flexibility in how they navigate the ever-increasing array of video choices.

 Sam Vasisht, Veveo's CMO, discussed three key ingredients to making conversational interfaces effective: disambiguation, statefulness and personalization. Disambiguation means being able to identify a user's intent (e.g. distinguishing "Cruise" from "Cruz") or to ascribe the correct meaning to a word (e.g. "Eagles" as football team vs. as a rock band). Statefulness means either maintaining the context of the user's search or adapting quickly to a new one (e.g. from movies to sports). Personalization means retaining knowledge of a user's prior searches in order to inform subsequent ones.

Looks like Siri just got yet another strong competitor and Apple has a lot to think about. Agree?


‎Viggle Acquires GetGlue For $25M Plus 48.3M In Shares To Expand Social TV Presence


All 34 GetGlue employees, including founder and CEO Alex Iskold, will migrate over to Viggle, with Iskold taking a senior executive position and a spot on the board of directors.

In case you’re unfamiliar with these companies, they’re quite the match made in heaven. GetGlue has an app that lets users check-in and socialize while watching TV, and their 3 million users prove just how much demand there is for a well-executed product in this space.

On the other hand, Viggle (which launched just a year ago) uses audio verification technology to reward users for loyally returning to their favorite TV shows, whether they’re live or on DVR. Users can then redeem points for real-world prizes from Hulu PlusFandangoBest BuyAmazon and iTunes.


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

‎ Confirms It’s Ended $7.99 Monthly Prime Trial


In the beginning of November we wrote about Amazon Prime which offered unlimited TV and movie streaming for $7.99 per month.

Amazon provided TechCrunch with the following statement confirming it has suspended the service:

"We regularly test new options for our customers. At this time, we are no longer signing up new customers for monthly memberships of Amazon Prime."

Amazon would not comment on why the test has been terminated after such a short period.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Apple TV Is 'Imminent'


Apple's entry into the TV market is "imminent," says Jefferies analyst James Kisner. Kisner talks about Apple TV in a note about ARRIS, a cable tech company.
"... at least one major N. American MSO is working to estimate how much additional capacity may be needed for a new Apple device on their broadband data network..." says Kisner.

What's interesting about this wording is that it suggests Apple is going to be doing something over broadband, as opposed to normal cable. We've been hearing about an Apple television for a long time now. The big problem for Apple seems to be figuring out how to get cable companies and content companies on board. This isn't like launching the iPad, where Apple just makes a tablet and then developers build apps.

Content makers have restrictions in their deals with cable companies on their content, which could limit what Apple would like to do. Apple has to negotiate with both groups simultaneously to crack the TV market.

And, even when Apple figures that out, the TV market is not like the smartphone market. People aren't going to buy a new TV every year, or every other year. So, anyone looking at Apple attacking a huge new market, should temper expectations.

Like this if you think Apple will 'crack' the TV market, and let us know in the comments the why of your decision.




Among the key findings of the March-April 2012 report were that 62% of respondents see online video ads as a complement to TV, up from 56% last year, while just 10% see it as a replacement. In addition, 48% of respondents from brands and agencies said that TV and online video ads are planned together, with another 25% saying they will be planned together within the next 12 months.

Elsewhere in the report, industry professionals remain bullish on online video advertising, with 96% of brand, agency and ad network respondents saying their budgets will increase by 23% this year, with CPMs reportedly up 11% over last year.

In addition, 50% of ad networks and DSPs are using real time bidding (RTB), but only 36% of advertisers and agencies, and just 17% of publishers. Reflecting the early state of the digital video upfront marketplace, only 20% of advertisers expect to buy their ads at an upfront, with 70% saying it will account for less than 10% of their total buy.

Do you use RTB while online advertising? 'Yes' - Like this post, 'No' - let us know in the comments the why of your decision.

Hard rock for all die-hard fans out there!


Freshly compiled music recommendations from Balakam - to all of you Hard rock and Melodic rock die-hard fans out there! Like this and listen to awesome music only with Balakam! - Munich's Hardest Hits - Webradio - Netrock 101 - Hard Rock Radio Live - Pure Rock Radio Inc. - Fuel Radio

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

‎Google Releases Search App For Microsoft Surface & Windows RT


Google announced this on their Google+ page saying:
"If you just got a new Windows RT tablet and want to use Google Search, you’re in luck—you can now download the Google Search app optimized for Windows RT. It’s got all the good stuff: voice search, instant results and doodles. Just go to our “Get Your Google Back” site at to learn more, and here’s a shot of the Google Search app homepage in Windows 8"


Would you prefer the new Windows Surface over the new Apple iPad?
'Yes' - Like this post, 'No' - let us know on the comments the why of your decision.

Startups Are Running Out Of Cash

Brooklyn's Loosecubes — which raised more than $7 million a few months ago — shut down today. Campbell McKeller (photo) is the founder of Loosecubes.


The thing is that many of the startups that were able to raise seed rounds or their first venture-capital financing — a Series A — have run out of cash. The number of expansion-stage deals — generally Series B or later — collapsed from 305 a quarter to 207 earlier this year, according to a National Venture Capital Association study.


The fiscal cliff for startups funded in the recent explosion of seed-stage deals has arrived: LA-based BetterWorks, for example, shut down its service over the summer just one year after raising a $10 million Series A. Earlier this fall, Bravo reality star Dwight Crow put his startup up for sale and landed at Facebook. San Francisco's DailyBooth and New York'sFondu both found homes at Airbnb.


What do you think: is this much tech startups and their failures good for the economy? If "Yes" - Like this post, "No" - let us know the why of your decision in the comments.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Spotify will only lose $40 million this year. (Yes, that's considered a success.)


Spotify, the streaming music startup, was having serious trouble paying its bills, if you believed reports from earlier this year. Its 2011 financials showed a loss of nearly $60 million on revenues of $244 million. But it made $200 million in total revenue over the first six months of 2012, and is on an annual run-rate that could put it around $500 million by January.

 Its deal structure with the labels requires either a $200 million annual payment, like what it had to do last year, or around 75% of total revenue (whichever is higher). 2012 will be the first year that revenue is high enough for the percentage structure to kick in.

The company is projecting profit after cost-of-sales to be around $60 million. It still has another $100 million in engineering, marketing, sales and other operating costs, on top of the licensing burden, so it’ll likely post an annual lo

ss of roughly $40 million.

The situation still sounds painful, but it’s not bad at all. The record labels are happy with Spotify’s progress so far because internal data has shown that it is growing the digital music market; the company is working on a large new round of funding — more than $100 million at a $3.25 billion valuation, according to a Wall Street Journal article; and it's building a browser-based version of its desktop software.

Monday, November 12, 2012

YouTube prepares its second YouTube Channels push, 60% of content partners to lose funding.


YouTube introduced professional channels — an initiative to add original content to the Web’s top video site — back in December 2011, after an investment of $100 million; but the fresh money will only be seen by 30 to 40 percent of its 100 plus channel partners, which were recruited to make the service more TV-like and competitive against video-on-demand (VoD) services.

The money is, as it was last year, not a free lunch since it is essentially an upfront payment of one year of advertising revenues. Each producer must earn the money back via ads attached to their content before they can make additional revenue from the service. For example, $1 million comes it at 50 million views on a $20 CPM (cost per mil/thousand) – fairly high stakes.

Netflix recently announced Q3 revenues of $905 million and the US firm expects to make $400 million of operating income this year after covering its global operating expenses. Amazon, which owns UK Netflix competitor LoveFilm, is also in the game and is trialing an $8 per month subscription for its Prime service.

Image via

Friday, November 9, 2012

Web radio growing faster than on-demand services.


Webcasters, such as Pandora, saw following increase by 27 percent while on-demand players, such as Spotify andRhapsody grew by 18 percent.

NPD Online Research said that contributing to part of those declines was Pandora's successful move into automobiles. The research company said that 34 percent of Pandora's users are now listening to the service in their cars.


Pandora is supporting legislation that would lower the royalty rates that Web radio services pay labels and artists to play music, and it's not hard to figure out why the music sector and Pandora Media are preparing to go to war with each other.

Also, there's one more juicy revelation from NPD's survey: listening to digital music files on portable music players dropped 21 points. Are you seeing this Apple?

What is your favourite way of listening to music? Answer in the comments.


Thursday, November 8, 2012

Netflix Has Plenty of Competitors, and None of Them Are Close.

Sandvine says that during the Web’s primetime hours, Netflix accounts for 33 percent of “downstream” traffic in North America, and it’s higher than it was in the spring of 2011, before Netflix raised its prices and lost some of its best-known movies.

YouTube accounts for 15 percent of Web use, but that site is almost entirely free. Netflix’s paid competitors generate much smaller numbers: Amazon is at 1.8 percent, Hulu is at 1.1 percent and HBO Go comes in at 0.5 percent. Bear in mind that Sandvine is tracking the flow of data via broadband pipes, which means it is tracking usage — and file size – instead of reach. Netflix, for instance, has about 25 million subscribers worldwide, while YouTube boasts some 800 million monthly visitors.

Source: Sandvine

Val Kilmer got onto the stage during The Black Lips performance.

Val Kilmer got onto the stage during The Black Lips performance at the Fun Fun Fun Fest.

The actor began screaming in the mic, breaking equipment and at some point cut off a piece of his hair with a penknife.

Wanna get as crazy as Kilmer? Listen to The Black Lips with Balakam - - and don’t forget to share with friends! 

Syndication Wins: AOL's Video Revenue Jumps From $10M to $100M in 2 Years.


CEO Tim Armstrong said AOL's video ad revenue jumped from $10 million 2 years ago to a projected $100 million in 2012, with more growth ahead in 2013. The results are mainly due to video syndication, powered by AOL's acquisition of 5Min in 2010. AOL is capitalizing on the concept of the "syndicated video economy" - AOL's large video syndication library (which has grown from 30K videos to 450K today) feeds both its owned and operated properties and its network of 30K publishers. All of these sites are hungry for video for 2 important reasons: they meet users' increasingly video-oriented expectations and their adjacent ad inventory is monetized at far better rates than traditional display.

Do you use online video syndication for your business?

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Google decline in China continues.

It’s been more than two and a half years since Google left the Chinese search market, and now it's at fourth place with 4.72 percent of page views, down from 5.1 percent the month before.

Part of the reason for that is the arrival of search newcomer Qihoo 360, which is believed to have captured 9.64 percent of the market last month. CEO Zhou Yongyi has set his sights on a 15 to 20 percent share of the market, enough to “destroy” Baidu’s monopoly.

Amazon takes on Netflix and Hulu Plus.

Amazon Prime offers unlimited TV and movie streaming for $7.99 per month. Amazon is clearly hoping that price-matching its competitors will help drive more subscriptions.


Balakam, live stream search developer, starring at IPOboard.

Balakam, the developer of a solution to search for online broadcasting content, participated on October 29 in a presentation of IPOboard companies for potential investors and was identified as one of the best companies on this online exchange platform in Russia, the official Russian Venture Company (RVC) website reports.


Information and trading platform IPOboard, also known in Russia as RII-board, has been established by the Moscow Stock Exchange and Russia’s Rusnano to facilitate the raising of investments by privately owned Russian hi-tech companies. Balakam joined the platform in May 2012. 
A portfolio company of the RVC Seed Fund, Balakam focuses on the development of an Internet service to optimize search of audio and video streams that run live on the Web. 

The Balakam search system is said to be based on a unique patented technology that speeds up the process and boosts efficiency. The new solution reportedly pinpoints special identifiers that help it locate, recognize and save links to the sources of audio and video content being broadcasted on a real-time basis.

A system prototype is currently available at their project website. The commercial launch of the product is slated for the end of this year. 

Balakam received seed capital from the RVC Seed Fund in 2011. Also last year it joined the IT cluster of Skolkovo, the state-sponsored innovation hub currently under construction outside Moscow.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Bloomberg TV goes behind the scenes at Zynga.

Bloomberg TV goes behind the scenes at Zynga to find out how the things are going on with FarmVille 2; the game is supposed to make Zynga "stay dominant on the desktop".


Watch Bloomberg TV with Balakam here and share it with your friends! :-D

Friday, November 2, 2012

Yet another awesome Balakamous music compilation.

Mark Cuban: An Apple Set-Top Box "Would Be A Huge Success." And he's right.

Though experts say that's exactly why such a product won't see the light of day. The reasons are:

1. They would be turning over their user experience to Apple, allowing the company to drive the UI and therefore reshape the video experience as it determined, just as it has done in music with iTunes.

2. The pay-TV industry finds itself in no quandary, and in no need of Apple's rescue. F.ex., Apple TV still remains just a "hobby." It's a niche product that for most people is not going to supplant a pay-TV subscription any time soon.

What do you think, will Apple conquer the world of pay-TV subscription? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

New Google Search app approved for iOS.

New Google Search App With Siri-Like Voice Responses Finally Approved For iOS.

Announced in August, Google’s new Google Search app for iOS has been apparently stuck in Apple’s app approval process for over two months. No longer. Google’s just announced that the new app is out.
It was never clear exactly why it took the app so long to emerge after it was submitted. Neither Google nor Apple said. But it’s available now through iTunes for those with iOS devices like the iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch.

For those wanting a Google Maps app for iOS, keep waiting.