Tech 2.0 for Tuesday, May 14, 2013
BlackBerry maker Research In Motion says it will offer its once-popular BlackBerry Messenger service on competing devices. CEO Thorsten Heins said Tuesday that the time is right to offer BBM on rival devices. He says iPhone and Android versions will be available for free. RIM also unveiled a lower-cost BlackBerry aimed at consumers in emerging markets, stepping up its efforts to regain market share lost to Apple's iPhone and Android devices powered by Google's software. Heins says the Q5 device will be available worldwide this summer. It is Research In Motion Ltd.'s third smartphone to run the new BlackBerry 10 system. The Q5 will have a physical keyboard, something that sets RIM's devices apart from Apple's iPhone and most Android phones. He spoke at RIM's annual conference in Orlando, Florida.
Microsoft says a planned update to its Windows 8 operating system will be made available for free later this year. The update is meant to address complaints and confusion that have been blamed for deepening a slump in personal computer sales. Microsoft isn't saying what kind of changes will be introduced with the release of the new system, though Microsoft plans to make a preview version available next month. The release of the final version is expected in time for the holiday season. Microsoft Corp. announced the update last week, but wouldn't say at the time whether consumers would have to pay for it. Codenamed Blue, the update now has an official moniker: Windows 8.1. Microsoft made the announcement at an investors conference in Boston on Tuesday.
Aereo, the startup that offers television stations over the Internet starting at $8 a month, says it will start service in Atlanta on June 17. That follows Aereo's expansion to Boston on Wednesday. Until this week, the service had been available only in the New York City area. Aereo will offer 27 Atlanta-area broadcast channels, plus the cable channel Bloomberg TV. Service will be limited to 55 counties in Georgia, Alabama and North Carolina. Other markets expected in the coming months include Chicago, Philadelphia and Washington. Aereo converts television signals into computer data and sends them over the Internet to subscribers' computers and mobile devices. Subscribers can watch channels live or record them with an Internet-based digital video recorder. They can pause and rewind live television, just like a DVR.
Video games are big business. Now some of those in that business are trying to find the next batch of leaders in that industry. The University of Texas and video game titans are going to be opening a gaming academy starting next fall. The Denius-Sams Gaming Academy will focus on training students to become game development team leaders. The curriculum will be run by Warren Spector, a 30-year industry veteran known for work on "Ultima" and "System Shock." He and Paul Sams, chief operating officer of Blizzard Entertainment, will serve as part-time instructors. There are only 20 spots available next year for the academy. Students who get in receive a tuition waiver and a $10,000 stipend to assist with fees and housing expenses.
BIG NEWS: BBM slated to be available on iOS and Android as free download this summer. MORE: http://t.co/f6sJEBWrVn
BlackBerry CEO says BBM is now available on all mobile devices, including iPhone and Android. (via @SeemaCNBC) $BBRY
Free Windows 8.1 update will be unveiled June 26 http://t.co/D5DIKlGvLh
#Windows8 "Blue" Update Pricing, Name and Preview Date Revealed (Free, Windows 8.1 and June 26th!) http://t.co/YCL1M2VcNW
Aereo Is Coming To Atlanta: June 17 For Pre-Registered Users, June 24 For Everyone Else http://t.co/2ixWyElKmP
Aereo Expands Cord-Cutting Online TV Service to Atlanta http://t.co/rIkda3UT9y
Aereo prepares to launch its antenna and Internet-based TV service in Atlanta starting June 17 http://t.co/Wt3RsDPsHn
Warren Spector and Paul Sams heading up University of Texas game dev leadership program. Awesome! http://t.co/XVRsAZcpsU
Warren Spector: Use the storytelling tools that work for games http://t.co/eczaAB1MyN