Voltage Pictures, the production studio behind the Oscar-winning film The Hurt Locker, has filed a new lawsuit in a federal court in Florida, according to TorrentFreak. The studio’s latest complaint targets at least 2,514 alleged BitTorrent users, whom Voltage Pictures claims pirated the film and cost the studio millions. The company last year filed a joint lawsuit against more than 30,000 alleged BitTorrent users who illegally downloaded the film. The case closed this past December, with Voltage Pictures collecting an undisclosed number of settlements. The studio’s latest suit looks to obtain a subpoena that will order ISPs to reveal the identities of the defendants. The alleged pirates will then be offered a settlement of about $3,000, the report claims. All of the defendants allegedly downloaded the film in 2010 and are Charter Communications subscribers. More →
Spotify now has more than 250,000 subscribers in the United States, Reuters reported recently. The service also now has more than 2 million paid subscribers around the globe. The figures have not yet been confirmed by Spotify, but Reuters said CEO Daniel Ek disclosed the numbers in September. Spotify, which made its U.S. debut in July, offers users free ad-supported access to a library with millions of songs. It also offers a $4.99 monthly option with unlimited streaming and no ads, or a $9.99 subscription that supports offline mode, access from mobile devices, ad-free music playback and unlimited streaming. Its recent partnership with Facebook has been seen as a driving force for its success in the United States. The company also announced on Friday that its service is now available on Boxee. More →
Twitter now delivers an astonishing 350 billion tweets each day, the company said on Friday. “Delivering 350 billion Tweets a day is a terribly fun engineering challenge. But, it doesn’t capture how passionate our users are,” the company said from its official Twitter Engineering account. Coincidentally we’re sure, the news comes just one day after Google bragged that it had amassed 10 million Google+ users in just two weeks, and that these users collectively share 1 billion items each day. Google+ has quite a way to go before it is anywhere near as popular as Twitter, of course, but it’s certainly doing well for a 2-week-old product. More →
Facebook now has 750 million monthly active users worldwide, TechCrunch reported on Friday. That’s incredible growth since our June 1st story, which suggested that the social network was closing in on 700,000,000 users worldwide. In that report, emerging markets showed the most growth — Brazil’s user base jumped 11.4% in May alone — and the United States was the top country; U.S. users were responsible for 149.4 million Facebook accounts. Last July, Facebook announced that it had hit the 500 million user mark, but it hasn’t publicly revealed any figures since then. Facebook only measures active users and only counts those who have logged into the social network during the past 30 days. More →
Acer on Friday drastically lowered its 2011 shipment forecast for tablet PCs, Taiwan Economic News reported. The company now anticipates shipping approximately 2.5 million consumer tablets in 2011, down 50% or more from earlier projections of between 5 and 7 million units. Acer chairman J. T. Wang said at a shareholder meeting that Acer would likely meet its second-quarter shipment goals, which are down 10% sequentially, and that third-quarter shipments could be marginally better. Wang said performance will likely not improve until the company’s planned restructuring is completed in the fourth quarter, however. Company president Jim Wong said the company lowered its tablet shipment forecast due mainly to excessive inventory that has built up at distributor locations. Wong believes end user sales have been lower than expected because of strong competition from competing tablet models. More →
Facebook continues to be an overwhelmingly dominant force in the social space and according to Facebook stat tracker Socialbreaker, the massive social network is rapidly approaching 700,000,000 users worldwide. Emerging markets are showing the most growth by far, lead by Brazil, which grew by 11.4% in May of this year alone as it added nearly 2 million users. Indonesia added 1.5 million users, the Philippines added 1.3 million and Mexico and Argentina closed out the top-5, adding 1.1 million users each. The U.S. is still the top country in terms of volume of Facebook users with a staggering 149.4 million users, and Indonesia sits at a distant second with 37.9 million according to Socialbreaker. Turkey, the U.K. and India round out the top-5 with 28.9 million, 28.6 million and 26.6 million users, respectively. More →
The production studio behind the movie Hurt Locker, Voltage Pictures, is attempting to go after a record 24,583 illegal BitTorrent users. The studio has already filed lawsuits against 5,000 BitTorrent users who illegally downloaded Hurt Locker and, in an effort to make up losses due to piracy, it’s now going after more with the help of law firm Dunlap, Grubb and Weaver. According to TorrentFreak, the lion’s share of subscribers — provided on a list to the U.S. District Court of Columbia — are Comcast customers (10,532). 5,239 are Verizon subscribers, 2,699 are Charter customers, and 1,750 are Time Warner users. The lawsuits will likely be tried over the next several years, however, as Verizon and Charter only offer up 100 and 150 customer IP-addresses per month. TorrentFreak suggested that Voltage Pictures would prefer to reach cash settlements with customers as opposed to taking each case to court individually. More →
Twitter’s vice president of international strategy, Katie Stanton, recently confirmed that the social network now has more than 200 million users. With 70% of those users are tweeting from outside of the United States. Japan is home to the Emperors’ share of tweets with more than 25% of posts originating from there. Twitter, which launched in July of 2006, adds a whopping 500,000 new users per day.
In a statement released at 12:00AM ET this morning, T-Mobile announced that Microsoft’s Danger Services — the service that powers T-Mobile’s Sidekick — will be shutdown on May 31, 2011. The announcement was brief, and noted that T-Mo will be providing offers to Sidekick customers, incentivizing them to transition to a new device before the end of May. A web tool has been created that will allow users to export their personal data from the Danger service — including contacts, photos, calendar, notes, to-do lists, and bookmarks — for importation onto a new device. The full statement from T-Mobile is waiting for you after the break. More →
A study published by U.K. based paper The Telegraph tries to shed some light on the mobile data disparity. The report, which was commissioned by Bytemobile, indicates that 10% of mobile broadband users account for 90% of data traffic across wireless networks. The news, while not all that surprising, comes as mobile carriers the world over warn that the data demand may exceed their ability to build-out networks capable of handling the increased traffic. Over the past year, wireless providers have been adjusting the prices and data allowances associated with monthly plans trying to strike a profitable balance. Hopefully, here in the U.S., the arrival of all these “4G” networks will alleviate some of the stress carriers — and our wallets — are beginning to feel. More →
Ah yes, the “day after” predictions. Typically, one day after a company — especially Apple — announces a new product or service, analysts from around the globe chime in with their prognostications and insight. In the wake of the Verizon iPhone announcement, Barclay’s analyst Ben Reitzes has stepped up with some FaceTime predictions. He surmises that Apple will have roughly 85 million FaceTime-enable devices in market by the end of fiscal year 2011 and 200 million by the end of FY 2012.
“While Android and competitive devices either have or are working toward incorporating a similar feature, we believe this particular feature benefits from Apple’s vertically integrated model,” said Reitzes. “We believe the ‘FaceTime networking effect’ could enhance a halo effect on Macs and iPads as the feature becomes available.”
The analyst notes that the iPad 2 — which he says will be announced within the next month — will help Apple reach these lofty goals as it will most certainly have a front-facing camera. More →
We are moving towards a more wireless world and Ericsson, the world’s largest manufacturer of mobile network equipment, has reaffirmed that fact with some cold, hard statistics.
“During the course of 2010, a significant milestone in terms of mobile broadband subscriptions was reached as their number surpassed the half-a-billion mark globally,” said Ericsson.
The company goes on to note that this number will double before the close of 2011, pushing the total number of mobile broadband users over 1 billion. Asia is expected to spearhead the spike in users, followed closely by North America and Europe. By 2015, Ericsson estimates that 3.8 billion broadband subscriptions will be up for grabs. It’s no wonder carriers are jostling for mobile broadband market share. 3,800,000,000 users all paying, on average, $30 a month is a lot of loot. More →
After last month’s little service snafu, internet communications giant Skype is back up, fully operational, and setting company records. Just yesterday, Skype saw a record 27 million users simultaneously logged on to its network. Typically, during peak hours, the company sees close to 25 million Skypers logged on to its network. The surge in users coincides with the conclusion of the holiday season, where, presumably, more users were gifted computers and mobile devices that can run Skype’s popular chat software. The numbers should continue to rise in the coming months, especially with the company’s push to be on more smartphones and internet connected TVs — thanks to its SkypeKit APIs. Anyone recently discover, or rediscover, a use for Skype? More →