Google Glass Adds Facebook, Tumblr and 5 Other New Apps
This week's need-to-know social-media news.
Google Glass is going social. At its annual I/O developers conference on Thursday, Google announced seven new apps, which it's calling Glassware, for its internet-enabled eyewear. Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr will each have a dedicated app allowing access to the social network.
Other new apps include ones from CNN and Elle magazine. The CNN app will provide news updates and video clips, while Elle's will allow users to view images and articles from sections of its magazine, among other functions. According to the New York Times, Google has instructed Glassware developers to "keep it short and sweet for the small screen, make sure alerts are relevant, send timely information people need on the go and make tasks easier and more seamless than they are on other devices." -- The New York Times
Rumors: Yahoo may buy or invest in Tumblr.
Marissa Mayer has been shaking things up plenty at Yahoo since taking the internet giant's top job last year, but she has yet to make an acquisition of a major company. That may change as Yahoo seeks to gain users in the crucial 18-to-24 age bracket. According to AllThingsD, sources close to the situation have said Yahoo is in serious talks with Tumblr's 26-year-old founder and chief executive, David Karp, about a possible purchase or strategic investment. There is no telling yet what the purchase price could be. Tumblr has raised $125 million to date, valuing the New York City-based company at a reported $800 million. -- AllThingsD
Mysterious startup Jelly has landed major investors.
Twitter co-founder Biz Stone's new mobile startup, Jelly, has just finished its Series A funding round and has also gotten cash from several prominent individuals, including Bono, Al Gore and Square co-founder Jack Dorsey. Jelly's concept is still under wraps as far as the general public is concerned, but it's a good bet that the new startup will operate in the social space. Stone has tapped Ben Finkel, formerly Twitter's engineering manager, as chief technology officer and has also hired Kevin Thau, who spearheaded Twitter Music. Plus, as Stone explains, Jelly is named for the jellyfish, a creature whose brain "is more 'we' than 'me.' " -- VentureBeat
Twitter buys its second big data company in two weeks.
This week, Twitter bought Lucky Sort, a Portland, Ore.-based data-mining and visualization company. Lucky Sort will shut down over the next few months, and most of its staff, including CEO Noah Pepper, will join Twitter at its San Francisco headquarters. Last week, Twitter bought Ubalo, another data company, which launched in 2011 with the goal of making "large-scale computing easier and more accessible to a technical audience." Twitter will acquire Ubalo's technology and talent. -- SocialTimes
Two Arizona business owners melt down on Facebook.
When Samy and Amy Bouzaglo signed up to be featured on celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay's reality TV show Kitchen Nightmares, in which Ramsay fixes up ailing restaurants, they couldn't have anticipated the social-media firestorm they were in for. On the show, Ramsay walked out on the Bouzaglos, saying he couldn't help their Scottsdale, Ariz.-based business, Amy's Baking Co. Bakery and Boutique Bistro. The Bouzaglos' behavior on the show -- taking a waiter's tip, firing an employee on the spot for talking back and continually butting heads with Ramsay -- inspired a condemnatory Reddit thread, which led to a barrage of negative comments on their Facebook page. The Bouzaglos appeared to fire back at their critics on Facebook, but then claimed their social media accounts had been hacked and said they weren't the ones posting. The opening of a new Facebook page did nothing to stem the tide of criticism. On Wednesday the owners snapped and posted an outraged, expletive-laden status, saying they were done responding to the criticism. -- Phoenix Business Journal
Brian Patrick Eha is a freelance journalist and former assistant editor at Entrepreneur.com. He is writing a book about the global phenomenon of Bitcoin for Portfolio, an imprint of Penguin Random House. It will be published in 2015.