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Time Warner, Snap sign $100 mn content partnership

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San Francisco, June 20: In what could revive the future of Snap Inc, parent company of popular photo-sharing app Snapchat, cable television company Time Warner has announced to produce shows for the social media platform as part of a two-year deal valued at $100 million.

Snap will take 50 per cent of the ad revenue generated by these shows and the content partners will keep the other half, USA Today reported late on Monday.

Snap’s stock rose 2 per cent soon after the announcement, pushing it about a dollar above its IPO price of $17.

Time Warner will also invest in ads from its properties like HBO, Turner and Warner Bros on Snapchat.

“Partnering with Snap will help drive this compelling new format, exposing its user base to innovative and engaging video from brands and characters they trust and enjoy,” the report quoted Gary Ginsberg, an executive from Time Warner, as saying.

The newly created shows will include different genres, including scripted drama, daily news shows, documentaries and comedy.

The shows will run three-five minutes in a vertical format and will be similar to those already released by other networks on Snapchat.

As part of the deal, three new shows of different genres will be aired per day on Snapchat.

“While these new shows will definitely tempt users to spend more time watching content in the Snapchat app, they likely won’t create the buzz that the social network needs to convince users that Snapchat is the best place to watch new content,” TechCrunch reported.

Started in 2011, Snapchat became a public-listed company earlier this year. The platform has currently more than 150 million daily users.

Facebook, Snapchat’s arch rival, is also making a debut in premium television and developing around 24 shows.

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M-tech launches 4G smartphone at Rs 4,499

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New Delhi, Feb 19: Domestic mobile manufacturer M-tech on Monday launched a new 4G VoLTE smartphone “Foto 3” at Rs 4,499.

The device comes with 5-inch FVWGA LCD display and is powered by 1.3 GHz quad core processor paired with 1GB RAM and 8GB internal storage, which is expandable upto 32 GB.

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“With ‘Foto 3’, Internet-savvy users can now avail super-fast data connectivity and superior voice call quality. We are positive that the ‘Foto 3’ will certainly appeal to our customers,” Goutam Kumar Jain, Co-Founder, M-tech Informatics Ltd, said in a statement.

The device runs Android 7.0 Nougat operating system (OS) and houses 2400 mAh Li-Ion battery. It also sports 2+ VGA dual rear camera and a VGA front camera.

The product is available on both online and offline platforms.

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Pay utility bills now with Google ‘Tez’

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New Delhi, Feb 19: Google India on Monday announced that people can now pay water, electricity, DTH and mobile bills with its “Tez” digital payment app without any transaction charges.

Built on the Unified Payments Interface (UPI), the “Tez” app will bring bill payments for over 80 billers for private and public utility service providers across the country.

“We are adding a specially-designed bill pay experience in ‘Tez’ which will enable users to make a wide range of bill payments, including electricity, water, gas, DTH and insurance from the app,” said Diana Layfield, Vice President, Payments and Commerce, Next Billion Users at Google.

The new bill pay feature would include major utilities like Reliance Energy, BSES and Dish TV and would cover all states and major metros.

Built to support “Bharat BillPay” system, “Tez” would send users a notification when their bill arrives and users would be able to check whether they have paid a bill by simply tapping the biller’s name on their “Tez” home screen.

Users would also be able to view all past payments grouped by bill, as well as manage bills from multiple accounts.

Once users have located their biller, they need to enter the number associated with their account to link it to Tez and give it an easy name to remember.

After users have linked their account, for most utility bills Tez would automatically fetch any available bills. Users need to just tap on “New Payment” and then “Pay your bills”.

IANS

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Microsoft’s Bing to gain as Google kills ‘view image’ button

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San Francisco, Feb 19: Following Google’s removal of the “view image” button from its image search results last week, several users will move to other browsers like Microsoft’s Bing and Startpage that allow download of high-resolution images with a right click, media reported.

Google, after signing a multi-year global licensing deal with Getty Images, removed the “view image” button — a move set to curb the lifting of copyrighted images from its platform.

According to a BBC report, critics said the changes were “awful”, “user-unfriendly” and “degraded the product”.

“This is a terrible idea… you find an image on Google Images only for the image to be nowhere in sight. Talk about destroying your own successful service,” one user tweeted.

Several users suggested people should try rival image search engines such as Bing which still has a “view image” button.

“Others pointed out that right-clicking an image in Google’s Chrome browser, and clicking ‘open image in new tab’ replicated the missing function,” the report added.

According to lifehacker.com, if you were a frequent user of the feature, you can still get a similar experience through another search engine called Startpage.

“The browser is focused on privacy and provides Google’s search results but with no targeted ads and more privacy,” the report said on Monday.

According to media reports, Google will make copyright attribution and disclaimers more prominent in image search results.

“The change is essentially meant to frustrate users. Google has long been under fire from photographers and publishers who felt that image search allowed people to steal their pictures, and the removal of the view image button is one of many changes being made in response,” said The Verge.

Websites sometimes disable the ability to right click, too, which would make it even harder for someone to grab a photo they’re looking for.

In addition to removing the ‘view image’ button, Google has also removed the ‘search by image’ button that appeared when people opened up an image.

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