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Apples live event, FDA-oversight of app store, EA launches Facebook Madden, IVP raises $750M
Its Wednesday morning. The middle of the work week, a perfect time to get better informed and make great decisions. Now, lets take a look at what happened in the last 24 hours.
Apple's live press event will be aired live Wednesday morning. Apple announced that its event, being held at 10am today, will also be streamed live at apple.com. It will be accomplished using Apples HTTP Live Streaming technology. Viewing requires either a Mac® running Safari® on Mac OS® X version 10.6 Snow Leopard®, an iPhone® or iPod touch® running iOS 3.0 or higher, or an iPad™. The broadcast will, of course, be copyrighted by Apple.
At Apple's event, expect to hear the unveiling of a new Apple TV with support for Netflix, a popular video rental service that also allows users to rent films digitally, according to Apple Insider. The new Apple TV device is also expected to be priced at $99. Netflix is already available as an add on download for iTunes.
Medical apps under surveillance by the FDA. The FDA is looking at medically-based applications in order to see how valid these applications are. If they determine that these applications are posing a problem with medical information then they may make the determination that these applications need to meet the same standards that other medical devices must meet. According to an interview with Gigaom, "The FDA is actively engaged in surveillance of various app stores to see if apps should trigger their involvement. Applications where a smartphone is connected in any way to imaging are under scrutiny, in particular."
A Facebook patent targeted toward search behaviors. A new Facebook patent, awarded on Tuesday night, will help them to create searches based on friends data. The patent numbered, 7,788,260, is entitled Ranking search results based on the frequency of clicks on the search results by members of a social network who are within a predetermined degree of separation and is described as "Search results, including sponsored links and algorithmic search results, are generated in response to a query, and are marked based on frequency of clicks on the search results by members of social network who are within a predetermined degree of separation from the member who submitted the query. The markers are visual tags and comprise either a text string or an image."
Institutional Venture Partners, (IVP) a Menlo Park, California announced Tuesday that it has raised a new $750 million fund, which will be used for investing in the communications and wireless, enterprise IT, and digital media sectors. This fund brings the firm's cumulative committed capital to $3 billion. IVP currently funds companies like HomeAway, Twitter and Zynga. IVP currently has five general partners including Todd Chaffee, Norm Fogelsong, Steve Harrick, Sandy Miller and Dennis Phelps. The partnership team has more than 100 years of combined venture capital and operating experience.
Electronic Arts launched its Madden NFL Superstars game on Facebook Tuesday. The game is a product of a collaboration between EA Sports and EA’s Playfish social game division. This adds to EA's Facebook gaming titles so far, and will no doubt add to the number of users that they have, which is currently estimated to be about 54.9 million monthly active users. Its nowhere near the 227 million that Zynga claims. But it is a start.
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Zynga is the largest social gaming company with 8.5 million daily users and 45 million monthly users. Zynga’s games are available on Facebook, MySpace, Bebo, Hi5, Friendster, Yahoo! and the iPhone, and include Texas Hold’Em Poker, Mafia Wars, YoVille, Vampires, Street Racing, Scramble and Word Twist. The company is funded by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, IVP, Union Square Ventures, Foundry Group, Avalon Ventures, Pilot Group, Reid Hoffman and Peter Thiel. Zynga is headquartered at the Chip Factory in San Francisco. For more information, please visit www.zynga.com.