After years of everyone wondering whether maybe Steve Ballmer had cut some sort of deal with a Voodoo priestess to remain in charge of Microsoft, the company announced today that its longtime leader will retire within 12 months, once they’ve settled on a successor.
Microsoft shares promptly jumped.
Facebook is planning to roll out 15-second video ads that could fetch as much as $2.5 million a day. The invention of the TV-style adverts is part of the social network’s plan to capture some of the billions in advertising that are typically funneled to TV networks. [Bloomberg]
Microsoft has only generated $850 million in revenue from the Surface tablet. [GeekWire]
You could book reservations on OpenTable and if all goes well, you might soon be able to pay for it using the app. [New York Times]
If you’re a lucky Google Glass Explorer winner, then some of you are getting the chance to invite a friend to the program to drum up interest. [ZDNet]
More VCs prefer to use LinkedIn than Twitter: 95 percent of them have profiles on the business-centric site compared to 64 percent who are on Twitter. [PEHub]
Instagram is looking to hire a Washington, D.C.-based Political Outreach Manager to “manage and execute relationships” with politicos and to presumably teach Hillary Clinton how to take a proper selfie. [AdAge]
For Q2 earnings, Google reported $14.1 billion in revenue, but earnings per share checked in lower than expected at $9.56. [GigaOM]
It’s believed that a generic iPhone charger played a role in a electrocuting and killing that 23-year-old Chinese stewardess earlier this week. [ZDNet]
Since Microsoft had to take a $900 million write-down on Surface, surely the thing that doomed the tablet was advertising. Right? [CNET]
Tumblr is making it much more difficult for users to find NSFW content and everyone is so mad about it. [Daily Dot]
It's the Cops!
Mark Pincus is stepping down from his role as CEO and being replaced with the former head of Microsoft’s entertainment division, Don Mattrick, according to Bloomberg. Several sources familiar with the situation told Bloomberg that the deal could be announced as early as today, with Mr. Mattrick officially beginning the appointment on July 8th.
With smartphone-related crime on the rise, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has a few questions for the companies who make our oh-so-stealable pocket computers. I.e.: How come they haven’t fixed it?
The Future Will See You Now
If you think the products on Kickstarter were terrible, just wait until you see how Microsoft completely ruined (disrupted?) the crowdsourcing paradigm.
Introducing Chip In, a program from the computer giant that lets college students amass donations from people that go toward the purchase of a shiny, new PC. Microsoft said it will ~chip in~ 10 percent of the price on “select” (read: Acer) PCs.
Your dream might finally come true: Microsoft is possibly developing an achievement program through its Kinect device to reward viewers who sit through hours of watching television. The Verge has dug up a patent application filed in 2011 by the company looking to, dare we say, disrupt your couch potato time.
Microsoft suggests that the traditional television viewing model should be upended to create more engagement by adding rewards and prizes. By increasing engagement, its plan could be fruitful for advertisers looking to grab eyeballs in the increasingly difficult arena.
Paul Allen may be the undersung Microsoft cofounder, but dude apparently knows how to shred on guitar. The philanthropist and Seattle Seahawks owner announced on Twitter today that he and his band the Underthinkers will be releasing a debut album, Everywhere At Once, on August 6th. According to Amazon, the album is an “all-star, 13-song program of blues-based guitar rock nuggets” and will feature guests from Heart and Los Lobos. Guess you know what you’re getting your dad for Father’s Day!
In the Valley, employees of major tech companies like Google and Facebook wear their building badges like a literal badge of honor. You don’t need to keep it attached to your belt while out on a Friday night, but it also doesn’t hurt your chances of landing a date. You should probably debadge when you bang though (just a thought).
Microsoft recently updated its YouTube app for Windows Phones, but Google isn’t too pleased with the results–going so far as to send a cease and desist. That’s because Microsoft built in features allowing users to block ads. [The Verge]
A spokesman said they’d be “more than happy to include advertising but need Google to provide us access to the necessary APIs.” [The Verge]
“Reading is an activity more likely to be on screen than on the printed page.” So there’s that. [BBC]
Car-sharing service Relay Rides has gotten the ax (locally at least) from the New York State’s Department of Financial Services, who said their insurance is “illegal and inadequate.” [PandoDaily]
Looks like, after technical problems, NASA’s other-Earth-seeking Kepler Telescope is powering down. [Popular Science]
“Throw in with Apple and see if we can all make a go of this to create a real mainstream e-books market at $12.99 and $14.99.” That’s the kind of email that, even if you are Steve Jobs, lands you in hot water with antitrust enforcers. [AllThingsD]