Spotify has teamed up with Klout, the online social influence measuring website, to offer U.S. invites to its unlimited streaming music service that launched Thursday morning. Simply sign up for a Klout account to get started and, if you have enough influence across various social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, you could qualify for immediate free access to Spotify. Spotify’s free ad-supported service is currently available by invite only in the U.S., though the paid services are open to all. Klout is also offering one month of Spotify Premium service if you get five of your friends to sign up. We’re loving Spotify so far and if you want to skip the wait without paying, Klout is definitely your best bet. More →
We just received an invite from Barnes & Noble for a press event that’s being held in New York City on Tuesday, May 24th. We suspect this will be the bookstore’s third major eReader announcement, which is in line with a recent SEC filing that suggested such a launch was imminent. It’s unclear what features the new eReader will offer, although we suspect it could be powered by the Android Honeycomb operating system, which was specifically designed for use in tablets. We’ll be reporting live from the event on Tuesday morning.
It looks like Apple has begun sending out press invites to a March 2nd media event to be held in California. The event, scheduled for 10:00AM PT, should be the official outing of the company’s oft rumored iPad 2. The invitation simply taunts its recipients to “come see what 2011 will be the year of.” Analysts are calling for a new, buttonless iPad with front and rear facing cameras along with a larger screen. Will the rumors hold water? We’ll soon find out. More →
Thanks to public comments made by Samsung’s CEO, we know the company will be announcing its heir apparent to the Samsung Galaxy S handset in February at Mobile World Congress (MWC)… but now we have a more specific date. An invite is being sent out to media outlets the world over, taunting the reader with phrases like: “evolution is fate” and “something big is coming.” The summons also notes that before the February 13th reveal, there will be a “preview teaser” available on February 1st. We’re hoping this evolution has Android 2.3 as part of its fate. More on this as it develops. More →
What’s this? An invite to a January 11th press event from Verizon Wireless? We’ve confirmed that the above invitation has been sent to multiple new and traditional media outlets. While we have no way of knowing exactly what Verizon has in store, you know what we think it is *cough, Verizon iPhone, cough*. We reported that the Verizon iPhone announcement was imminent earlier this morning, and, if industry pundits and analysts are correct, we were spot on. What do you think? Is Tuesday, January 11th the day when all the speculation can end? Or is this just an oddly — and cruelly — timed press event on 1/11/11 at 11:00AM ET?
Hulu Plus, a premium Web-based video streaming service, is now available to the public. Rob Wong, product director for Hulu Plus, made the announcement Thursday on the company’s blog, saying the service is now available without need for an invitation. Hulu provides a service that allows users to stream movies and TV episodes for free to computers. Hulu Plus, which costs $9.99 each month (for the time being, at least), offers enhancements such as additional content and the ability to stream to more devices like Apple’s iPhone and the Sony PlayStation 3. Rumors suggest interest in Hulu Plus has been minimal though, thanks to widely available free content as well as subscription competition like Netflix’s Watch Instantly. Hulu claims to have had a successful closed beta period, however, and it will continue to expand the service to more devices during the current open preview period.
Uh oh… Apple just sent out invitations for press to get a sneak peak at their next generation iPhone OS, 4.0. We can’t wait for April 8th.
It seems as if those lovely now almost yearly launch parties are going to start happening pretty soon. T-Mobile has started sending out various invites to corporate customers (we’ve been sent two completely different-looking invites from two different connects) all describing a mythical new BlackBerry with Wi-Fi-enabled calling. Whatever could it be? The events we’re hearing about are on November 5th in NYC and we’ve been told that people attending will be taking home brand new BlackBerry 9700s. And they get breakfast, but no one cares about that.
UPDATE: We’ve been told the Los Angeles market launch event is on November 3rd.