Apple's Ping, the music-based social network that has struggled to find any sort of dedicated fanbase, is set to be killed off with the next iTunes update and the public release of iOS 6, according to The Wall Street Journal. According to the publication:
Ping, which still exists today in iTunes 10.6.3 and the iOS 6 beta - where it doesn't work, will be gone with the software's next major release, likely scheduled for this fall. And at that point Apple's social networking offerings will shift to Twitter and new partner Facebook entirely.
We don't know too many people who'll miss it. Ping has been a far too barren wasteland for far too long. If its something you enjoy, though, then start saying your goodbyes.
Read More | WSJ
Amazon has just announced a new partnership with MGM Studios that's set to bring hundreds of additional TV and movie classics to Amazon Prime Instant Video. This includes such hits as The Silence of the Lambs, Species, Rain Man, Stargate, and The Terminator. This brings the total of Amazon's offerings to over 18,000 movies and television episodes that you can stream to your Xbox 360 and other devices, all included in the price of your Amazon Prime membership.
Read More | Amazon
It's pretty much a sure thing that Apple will be replacing Google Maps with its own solution in iOS 6, highlighting a new 3D mapping feature in the process, and that this will be revealed on June 11 during the WWDC 2012 keynote. What we didn't expect, however, was that Google would be planning its own Maps even five days prior to Apple's announcement in order to show off what we assume will be its own 3D mapping feature. Yep, Google will be holding an event to show off "The Next Dimension of Google Maps" the morning of Wednesday, June 6 at 9:30am PDT. We'll have all the details as they happen.
Read More | 9to5Mac
Last week we reported that Verizon FiOS Internet users were about to receive a significant speed boost, and today it's been made official. Most impressive is that the download speed of the fastest tier has doubled to 300 Mbps, with a 65 Mbps upload speed alongside it. Here's a look at all the new speed tiers:
- 300/65 Mbps (previously 150/35)
- 150/65 Mbps (previously 50/20)
- 75/35 Mbps (previously 35/35)
- 50/25 Mbps (previously 25/25)
- 15/5 Mbps
On the fastest tier, you can download a 2-hour 1080p movie in less than 22 minutes. The new speeds take effect in June.
Read More | Verizon FiOS
Earlier today, Facebook launched its new photo-sharing app, Facebook Camera. Since then, we've seen tons of comments on Facebook and Twitter from people who are making fun of the company for releasing a new app that competes with Instagram, the photo sharing app and company that Facebook just acquired for $1 billion. Really? I thought it was time that we took a closer look at why Facebook Camera makes perfect sense, and how it really doesn't compete against Instagram at all.
Amazon continues to make its Amazon Prime service more enticing today with the announcement that it's added hundreds more movies to its Instant Video streaming video catalog thanks to an agreement with Paramount. Starting today, you can watch movies like Mission Impossible III, Nacho Libre, Star Trek, The Italian Job, and more if you're a Prime member.
While troubleshooting a home network issue today, I stumbled upon a new feature that Apple is introducing in OS X Mountain Lion. Many have referred to the Safari Reading List feature that debuted in Lion and iOS 5 as a glorified list of bookmarks. That's kind of true, although Reading List can also let you know which items you've read and which you haven't, and also gives you a text preview of each item as well. However in Mountain Lion you are able to read your Reading List items even when you're offline.
When you aren't connected to a network and pull up Safari, you get a message that tells you that you aren't connected to the Internet, but that your "Reading List articles are available for viewing while you are offline." Definitely a nice bonus when you wanna read some stuff but have no way of browsing the web.
Nike+ is finally going to get the overhail it needs. Emails from Nike+ Active are hitting inboxes of users, letting them know that the site will be down starting on June 5 while it moves to the new Nike+ (the version that Nike FuelBand users are accustomed to.) As of now, Nike+ users have had to log in to, and use, two different interfaces depending on which Nike+ products they own. The migration and unification should be complete this fall.
Comcast is finally ready to abandon the 250 GB data cap that it introduced in 2008. While this is certainly a welcome change, don't go firing up that myriad of torrents just yet. The company will be testing what it calls a more "flexible" approach--tiered pricing. Comcast will be doing trials of two different tiered approaches over the next few months. One sees base plans that start at 300 GB per month, and when exceeded, Comcast is considering charging customers an additional $10 for each extra 50 GB of usage in a given month. The other is similar, but gives a larger cap to homes subscribes to the 30 MBps Blast package and 105 Mbps Extreme package. Based on those trials, Comcast will decide how to move forward with pricing its network for the future.
Read More | Comcast Voices
Just a quick PSA for all you music lovers out there--that new Rdio design we recently talked about? Well, it's now live for everyone. Our favorite streaming music service has rolled out the new clean look for all, and it's pretty fantastic. Check out a video walkthrough below.
Read More | Rdio