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BillGuard touts itself as the world’s first people-powered antivirus system for bills, with predictive algorithms that alert you when there’s unexpected charges made on your bank cards such as hidden fees, billing errors, scams and fraud. Four months after it finally launched out of North America, landing in the UK, Australia and New Zealand, BillGuard has announced an interesting new feature is coming to its Android and iOS apps. BillGuard will now tap your phone’s location to help protect against fraud, sending alerts when your card is swiped in a location it doesn’t recognize. When you opt-in to share your... This story continues at The Next Web

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Microsoft has announced new APIs at its TechEd Europe conference today in Barcelona, Spain, as it looks to encourage developers to build features around Office 365. The new REST-based APIs allow developers to tap into mail, files, calendar and contacts to create services with extended functionality for users of Microsoft’s cloud-connected suite of productivity tools, such as travel reservation and sales automation apps. Microsoft said it will also open up APIs for tasks, Yammer and Office Graph in the future too. The beloved app connection service IFTTT is already playing with the new APIs, and will soon offer Office 365... This story continues at The Next Web

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Aspiro Group, the company behind the WiMP Music streaming service in Europe, has launched a new service, Tidal, in the US and UK with a focus on high-fidelity audio, editorial curation and video content. Tidal costs $19.99 a month and uses the ALAC and FLAC lossless format at 1,411 kbps, 44.1kHz/16-bit. That amounts to roughly four times the 320 kbps bitrate of most music streaming services, although Deezer launched its own high-quality service in the US last month. You can listen to Tidal on the Web via Chrome and through its iOS and Android apps. The company boasts that this... This story continues at The Next Web

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Yelp has announced it’s acquiring French online review portal Cityvox, as it looks to gain a bigger foothold in France. Today’s news comes just a few days after Yelp snapped up Germany’s Restaurant-Kritik, and further confirms its ambitions in the European market. Cityvox specializes in restaurants and nightlife reviews specifically, covering clubs and cinemas to local brasseries. Yelp says it’s integrating Cityvox’s reviews and photos into its own platform, though it hasn’t indicated what will become of Cityvox as a standalone entity. ➤  Cityvox, Welcome to Yelp [Yelp Blog]

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There are alarm clock apps that wake you with phone calls from strangers, ones that force you to spin around, and others that require you to move closer to your router. But what about ones that won’t shut up unless you smile? Yup. While smiling may be the last thing on your mind first-thing in the morning, Smile Clock for Android requires that you do just that if you want some peace. The camera detects your facial expression and will turn off when it catches a glimpse of your upturned-mouth and pearly whites – though you can still snooze this... This story continues at The Next Web

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If those preroll ads before YouTube videos annoy you, there’s some good news – the Google-owned service could one day let you pay to switch them off. At Recode’s Code Mobile event in California yesterday, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki said that a subscription model was “an interesting model. … We’re thinking about how to give users options.” It sounds like this isn’t a firm plan yet, but it would no doubt find favor with at least some heavy users of the service in search of instant, preroll-free, gratification. Wojcicki also said that the much-mooted YouTube subscription music service is still in the... This story continues at The Next Web

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Ruckus Wireless is calling 2014 the “watershed year” for Wi-Fi, with the company predicting the number of hotspots across the world will increase to 5.8 million by next year, an increase of 350 per cent from the number in 2011. In Africa, the trend is towards providing citizens with free Wi-Fi in order to boost economic activity and education, in line with McKinsey’s projection that if internet penetration grows in the same way as that of mobile phones on the continent, it could contribute as much as 10 per cent – $300 billion – of the continent’s total GDP by... This story continues at The Next Web

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Slowly but surely, many parts of the world are going cashless, and the effects go beyond quicker checkouts at supermarkets. A new app developed in the UK lets users donate to charities whenever they feel inspired to do so, by simply pointing their phones at a charity’s logo — on a poster, flyer, billboard or anywhere else. Powered by global donation platform JustGiving, SnapDonate enables payments via PayPal or credit card, and allows users to donate as much as they like, with a minimum of £2 ($3.2) per transaction. The app currently recognizes the logos of over 130 charities involved... This story continues at The Next Web

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Speaking at the WSJ.D conference today in Laguna Beach, California, Apple CEO Tim Cook responded to an audience member’s complaint about the discontinuation of the iPod Classic by saying, “We couldn’t get the parts any more, not anywhere on Earth.” Mashable reports that Cook explained, “It wasn’t a matter of me swinging the ax, saying ‘what can I kill today’. The engineering work was massive, and the number of people who wanted it very small. I felt there were reasonable alternatives.” It’s always sad to hear about the death and burial of a beloved product. The iPod Classic was removed... This story continues at The Next Web

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TripAdvisor has been offering personalized recommendations for a while already thanks to a tie-up with Facebook. Today, the online travel search giant is introducing a new feature with customization very much at its heart. With ‘Just for You’, TripAdvisor promises to serve up tailored hotel recommendations based on your preferences and search history on the site. For example, when you search for hotels for a specific location, you’ll see a range of tags to set your general preferences, including location, style, hotel class, price range, amenities and more. TripAdvisor Tags TripAdvisor collects this feedback, along with your prior research and... This story continues at The Next Web

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At the WSJD Live conference Tim Cook addressed merchants disabling the NFC feature in their payment terminals in order to circumvent the use of Apple Pay. Cook called the ongoing issue a “skirmish” and indicated that he believed that it’ll be customers that will decide which payment service retailers will end up supporting. Of course it helps that Apple activated 1 million cards in the first 72 hours according to Cook. “In the long arc of time you’re only relevant as a merchant if your customers love you,” Cook said. Retailers CVS and Rite Aid have already moved to block both Apple Pay and... This story continues at The Next Web

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Syncing with the cloud is nothing new. But it usually involves developers using the available APIs from cloud services like Dropbox. Nextbit thinks it can do it better without developers having to do anything new with their apps. Nextbit’s Baton syncs your Android devices with the cloud at the OS level. You can sync apps from phone to tablet and back without the developer doing anything. Everything is handled by the operating system, no APIs required. The team demoed the technology at Recode’s Code Mobile event on devices with its own tweaked versions of Cyanogen for Android. Cynaogen is an aftermarket... This story continues at The Next Web

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Luis Buenaventura is Head of Product at Satoshi Citadel Industries, a Bitcoin startup operating out of the Philippines. It’s a little known fact that mobile money was effectively invented in the Philippines by Smart Communications. Its Smart Money solution, launched in 2001, predates the successful M-Pesa out of Kenya by a good six years. Even GCash, a similar service operated by the second largest telco in the Philippines, was launched three years before Safaricom’s pride and joy in 2004. But although M-Pesa is clearly the runaway hit of the mobile money platforms (31 percent of Kenya’s GDP is spent on the back of their system), other... This story continues at The Next Web

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Facebook today announced it’s bringing some updated functionality to its Android and iOS apps. Now when you upload photos from either, you can choose arrange the photos to upload in your preferred order. In addition, you’ll also get a preview of how the story will show up on your friends’ feeds, giving you the ability to add an introduction for the entire photo story as well as captions for individual images. You can rearrange the photos in this stage too. When friends open up the photos, they’ll see them displayed in a vertical story format they can scroll through.   These are nice... This story continues at The Next Web

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With The Next Web USA Conference now just over a month away, ticket prices will increase significantly tomorrow night (click here to purchase your discount ticket now). If you’ve ever been to one of our events, you’ll know that TNW Conferences are always an excellent opportunity to network with the industry’s leading influencers, discover the best up-and-coming startups and learn from some of the world’s most inspirational speakers. And this year’s US conference is set to deliver on all three fronts. We’ve announced the first 10 startups that you shouldn’t miss on December 10. Our schedule is almost full, with talks... This story continues at The Next Web

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David Arnoux is Head of Growth and co-founder of Twoodo, helping teams organize using simple #hashtags. This post originally appeared on the Twoodo blog. Customer segmentation means categorizing your visitors/users in a way that achieves a business goal – even your early adopters. There are tons of benefits to correctly segmenting: avoiding useless channels, identifying the most profitable channels, improving your customer service, discovering unexplored niches and more. It all boils down to using your resources wisely to achieve maximum profitability. Before we get into this deeply, I’d like to bring up a fascinating story of how Target (USA) ironically over-targeted its customers. The famous... This story continues at The Next Web

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Adding to its existing studios in LA, Tokyo, New York and London, Google is launching a new YouTube Space in the Brazilian city of São Paulo. YouTube Spaces are all about encouraging and working with video-makers, and they feature courses, workshops and a host of equipment that’s free to use, including cameras, lights and microphones. Google says that more than 30,000 people have attended in excess of 450 workshops at YouTube Spaces globally since its inception back in 2012, with 6,000 videos emanating from the hubs. YouTube partnered with Instituto Criar for the initiative, and today’s news comes just two... This story continues at The Next Web

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GitHub is a wonderful repository of tools and knowledgeable users, but it can be pretty intimidating if you don’t really know anything about coding or development. Step-up ZenHub, a new project management platform integrated with GitHub that promises to streamline workflows for developers and non-coding business users alike. ZenHub claims it’s the only platform to offer advanced GitHub integrations like real-time drag-and-drop Issue Task Boards, support for uploading any file type into GitHub’s interface and peer feedback via a simple +1 button. The idea behind the all-encompassing platform is that by adding native support, ZenHub cuts down on the need... This story continues at The Next Web

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Skipping from Windows 3.X to Windows 95, Microsoft never had an operating system called Windows 93. But someone has developed a browser-based version of an OS going by that name that’s, well, just plain weird. Some of the little apps on it actually work fine, including Paint. Others, such as ‘Zkype’ – featuring a backwards Skype logo – don’t. It’s all a bit bizarre, but it’s an interesting ‘design’ project if nothing else. ➤ Windows93 [via The Verge]

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If you’re an Office 365 subscriber, get ready to put most of your stuff in the cloud just because you can. Today Microsoft announced that Office 365 subscribers will get unlimited cloud storage on the company’s OneDrive service. The service expansion is rolling out now for home, personal and university accounts. Microsoft says it’ll be rolling out the option over the next couple months, but if you’re impatient, you can sign up to be part of the initial wave of customers to get unlimited cloud storage. ➤ OneDrive delivers unlimited cloud storage to Office 365 subscribers [Microsoft]

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Today Skype announced that it has begun work with the W3c (World Wide Web Consortium) and the IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force) to let you call from within a browser more easily. The company believes its ORTC API  for WebRTC could make video and audio calls more prevalent outside of specialized apps by providing a powerful web standard that supports simulcast and variable bandwiths without the typical need for a separate plug-in. The video platform is to be built upon common standards like the ubiquitous H.264 codec, whereas audio includes Opus, G.722, and G.711 support. The team says it’s looking into adapting... This story continues at The Next Web

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Google is suffering from problems today that are preventing some users from accessing services such as Google Docs, Drive, Slides and Sheets. Instead, they’re getting a 500 server error returned. According to the volume of complaints on Twitter, it would seem to be a reasonably widespread issue and some members of the TNW team also couldn’t reach Drive or Docs. Google’s service status dashboard also reflects the problems across these four areas, with the first problems seeming to start at around 15:20 GMT today. However, Twitter users began reporting problems at least 30 minutes before this. Google said it is investigating the error: We’re... This story continues at The Next Web

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Johnathan Leow is the author of “The Crowdfunded Kit.”  If you want your crowdfunding campaign to really succeed, it’s not enough to raise funds from your family and friends – you’ll want to have wider coverage in the media. Almost every campaign that’s raised over $100,000 needed some sort of PR to get to that level of funds. You could go the traditional route of PR by paying an agency to do it for you if that’s not your area of strength (assuming, of course, that you have the finances to afford it.) But, if you’re like most self-starters, you’re fairly cash-strapped and... This story continues at The Next Web

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Fitbit has today lifted the wraps on three new activity and sleep tracking devices, all of which offer slightly different features depending on the intended use. The cheapest of the new trackers – and the only one available in the US from today – is the Fitbit Charge, a $130 device that allows you to track your everyday activity (steps, distance travelled, calories burned etc.) as well as see incoming call alerts. It’ll also allow for the manual logging of other workouts and users can view summaries on their Fitbit dashboard. Claimed battery life is up to seven days, and the company said... This story continues at The Next Web

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It’s never easy for busy professionals to tame their growing email inboxes. Incoming messages demand attention through the day and wreak havoc on recipients’ schedules. Thankfully, there is a way to deal with email while maintaining your sanity, and improving your productivity too — and it’s called ActiveInbox. Built for use with Gmail and based on GTD principles, ActiveInbox lets you add actions to email messages, as well as organize them into a handy to-do list that follows a schedule you set, based on due dates and your own availability. You can even group messages into folders for easy reference,... This story continues at The Next Web

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