Covering the tech sector in San Francisco these days is a lot like what it was like being a reporter for Rolling Stone here in the 70s – you get your mind blown, a lot.
Within the first ten days of launching one year ago, the mobile video phone service Tango had one million users. As it celebrated its first anniversary last Friday, the Palo Alto-based startup counted 23 million registered subscribers to its free service, all of them using the company’s mobile apps.
Now Tango has added a PC product as well, and Microsoft is promoting Tango on its W-7 Mango platform. People can call each other from PCs, iPhones, the iPod touch, the iPad, and hundreds of Android phones and tablets.
The move to embrace the PC market would seem to be a direct swipe at Skype, the giant Internet phone service. Recently purchased by Microsoft, Skype has had trouble adapting to the mobile market, an opportunity that has been the central focus of Tango’s efforts.
“We are a communication services company and we are mobile first,” says co-founder and CTO Eric Setton. “But we initially underestimated the demand for video calls over the PC.”
When a federal judge threw out the class-action settlement in the Google Books case last week, he brought an end, at least for now, to one of the boldest initiatives the search giant has ever undertaken.
Back when he was still a grad student at Stanford in the late '90s, co-founder Larry Page began planning a "library to last forever," filled with digital versions of virtually every book ever published.
By 2005, when he and Sergey Brin had built Google up into the most successful company on the planet, Page began to put his plan into motion. Google made deals with leading academic libraries to begin scanning books, including many rare and out of print books, at a rapid pace -- to the point that today they have scanned a total of some 15 million books.