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Prince reportedly pulls music from all streaming services except Tidal

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Prince has reportedly asked that all streaming services except Tidal remove his catalog from circulation. There’s been no reason given for the sudden change of heart.

Prince’s Spotify page has a note for some that suggests the widespread takedown. The text (seen below) seems to have been removed, but Spotify users still can’t stream his tracks.

Tidal and Prince have been cozy of late, with the streaming service broadcasting his “Rally 4 Peace” concert. Prince’s Tidal page still has what looks to be his full catalog.

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Prince has frowned on digital music in the past. After his record deal with Warner Brothers went sideways, leading him to use a symbol rather than his stage name and write “slave” on his cheek when in public, Prince launched his own website to distribute music.

He also reportedly said “The Internet’s completely over. I don’t see why I should give my new music to iTunes or anyone else. They won’t pay me an advance for it and then they get angry when they can’t get it.”

In addition to Spotify, Apple Music is lacking Prince’s catalog. Google Play Music All Access currently has Prince’s music available, so it seems not everyone got the memo.

Prince Removes Music From All Streaming Services Except TIDAL [Radio]

Read next: Tidal’s second CEO pushed out the door after just two months

New Google Docs panel lets users access thousands of fonts

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Extensis, a developer specializing in font management software, has released Extensis Fonts, a new font panel for Google Docs that lets users access thousands of fonts from the Google Fonts collection.

Available as a free add-on via Google Docs, Extensis Fonts provides a panel where you can browse, preview and apply fonts directly from within Google documents.

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The panel facilitates immediate access to the entire Google Fonts collection of more than 1200 fonts and lets you select text to apply a font to in one click. In addition, the panel lets you preview font options, search for fonts by popularity and trending status and browse by style.

extensis2The Extensis site has the following directions for Fonts Add-on use:

  1. Open any Google Document, or create a new one.

  2. From the Add-ons menu, click Get Add-ons

  3. In the Search Add-ons box, enter “Extensis Fonts”

  4. Select the Extensis Fonts add-on from the list.

  5. Click the Free button in the upper right hand corner.

  6. Click Accept to install the add-on to your Google Docs account.

With that, Fonts Add-on will be available for use in any of your Google Documents.

You have to launch the Fonts Add-on in each document you use it with. From the Add-ons menu, find Extensis Fonts and choose Start. If you use multiple add-ons, you may need to re-launch when needed.

The Fonts panel shows you the newest faces currently trending: To sort the list, click the Sort menu at the top of the panel for more options. The Show menu also displays specific font styles if you choose New Style from the list.

Adjust the preview size with the slider at the bottom of the panel.

➤ Extensis Fonts

Read next: Google now lets you create and share custom maps from Drive

Facebook and Internet.org want to connect the world using lasers

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To help connect people around the world, Facebook’s Internet.org initiative is testing a method for delivering the Internet via lasers.

The thinking in Facebook’s Connectivity Lab is that affixing lasers to drones and satellites will beam a signal to just about anywhere. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg says it will “dramatically increase the speed of sending data over long distances.”

While the beams in the picture above are visible, Zuckerberg says that’s all for show; the beams typically can’t be seen. Zuckerberg didn’t explain how the program would work in his post, but Facebook outlined the method previously.

Connectivity Lab is hard at work on building drones; in announcing its drone program, Facebook also released a whitepaper outlining a plan to use Free Space Optics to distribute a concentrated laser beam to aid in connectivity.

Facebook wrote “the lasers used in FSO systems provide extremely high bandwidths and capacity, on par with terrestrial fiber optic networks,” but also noted the lasers need to be precisely calibrated and “require line of sight between both ends of the laser link, meaning that they don’t work through clouds and are very vulnerable to bad weather conditions.”

Mark Zuckerberg [Facebook]

Read next: Facebook expands its drone team to bring the internet to everyone

ProCamera 8 for iOS leaps into summer with new editing tools and photo compass

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The folks at CocoLogics are at it again. The company has just released a huge update to ProCamera 8 for iOS, its DSLR-style photo app.

Featured as one of TNW’s Apps of the Year for 2014, ProCamera 8 is now further improved with a host of new features.

This app has always been about replacing the need to use your DSLR for complex shots. While it can’t literally do that, it can provide way more functionality that the native app that comes with the phone. Its intuitive interface keeps it from being intimidating, unlike many other pro-level apps.

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The new Photo Compass gives users the ability to discover where any picture from an iPhone was taken, so if a friend sends you a shot from anywhere in the world, the app can pinpoint that location. Photo Compass is integrated with iPhone photo geolocation data, which allows users to track exact positioning for where an image was captured.

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In addition, there are a host of new editing tools, from manipulating tonal range and UV filter functionality to fashioning an authentic analog look. The Curves tool gives you control over tonal range to fine-tune contrast, color and brightness. Magic Tools lets you experiment with Solar Wind and Magnetic Storm for vivid colors and unique artistic effects.

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A new Vapor tool can be used as either as a digital UV filter to improve contrast or add haze to your photo.
The Fade tool is designed to give your images an authentic film-like look.

The company has also improved HDR capture for quicker processing, with a new auto-save option. There are also improvements to the iPad version, ProCamera HD.

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And let’s not forget the Apple Watch, virtual catnip to photo app developers. ProCamera 8 now functions with the Apple Watch to serve as a remote trigger letting users access the camera on their iPhone, even if they can’t physically reach the display.

In addition to functioning as a capture button — the company likens it to wearing a shutter on your wrist — watch integration also lets users sweep through camera modes such as Photo, Night Camera, HDR, in addition to using it as a timer.

The iPhone app is now available for $4.99; the iPad app is $2.99.

➤ ProCamera 8 [iOS]

PayPal buys Xoom for $890 million to strengthen hold in the money transfer business

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With Facebook and Square reigning in on the money transferring business, PayPal isn’t resting on its laurels.

The company today dropped $890 million on Xoom, a payment transfer service similar to the already PayPal-owned Venmo.

PayPal says the acquisition will allow it broaden its services by cross-selling to Xoom’s 68 million active users, and expand its presence in Xoom’s 37 countries – Mexico, India, the Philippines, China and Brazil in particular.

Meanwhile, Xoom also gets access to PayPal’s customers. There’s no word on PayPal’s future plans for the company, but in the meantime it will continue to operate independently, much like Venmo.

PayPal to Acquire Xoom [Business Wire via Business Insider]

Read next: PayPal’s head of design on the value of good form: ‘If it’s not functional, it’s not worthwhile’

iTunes Match via Apple Music isn’t an improvement, and may ruin your existing library

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Apple Music was designed to give us a central place for all of our music. A big part of that missive is iCloud, and the fiddly iTunes Match, which now resides in Apple Music. Did iTunes Match improve, though? The jury is still out.

Though Apple never outright said as much, slipping iTunes Match into the juggernaut that is Apple Music seemed to be the plan all along. It was one part rebranding a conceptually popular service that worked poorly, and one part helping us forget it ever even existed because — well, it works so poorly.

Problems with iTunes Match never seemed to receive a fix, and there was no way to have them addressed when the software screwed up. Clean versions replacing explicit tracks, tracks that only play halfway through or are “matched” with a track that is not the same even when the original track was fine continued to dog the program well after it launched.

Did iTunes Match improve when ensconced in Apple Music? In my own testing, it’s fine. I also didn’t transfer my library until just before Apple Music launched, and I had no playlists (I was/am a Play Music All Access subscriber).

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I also wasn’t an iTunes Match user ahead of Apple Music, so as a new subscriber — no problems. I did give iTunes Match a go some time back, but didn’t see much use for it at the time.

Others aren’t having the luck I’ve had (so far), though. Many reports of Apple Music altering libraries in iCloud are popping up. Album artwork being changed and tracks being moved to albums where they don’t belong seem to be common issues in the early days of Apple Music.

Some users are even reporting tracks they had saved on their phones went missing when they switched to Apple Music. One user reports his Beatles anthology was stripped from his device, which seems to be the iTunes Match software living inside of Apple Music proactively removing tracks it found a match for but hasn’t replaced.

It’s worth pointing out that iTunes Match can still be used independently of Apple Music; not everyone will sign up for the new service, after all. Apple isn’t forcing a merger of the two, but the back-end service is the same.

There’s also an eyebrow-raising report that Apple is applying Digital Rights Management (DRM) to iCloud music files, even when the tracks were yours to begin with; iTunes Match doesn’t do that. It’s a fork in the road between all-in streaming and ownership of music, and neither lane is deal.

Sadly, iTunes Match is still fussy, even if Apple wants to call it a “feature” of Apple Music. New users may not have a problem, but existing iTunes users may encounter potentially annoying issues. It’s probably best to make sure you’ve backed your library up if you haven’t yet — just in case iTunes Match Apple Music wreaks havoc.

Read next: Hands on with Apple Music: One music library to rule them all

Twitter is testing an ad campaign manager for Android and iOS

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Twitter’s mobile apps could be getting a notable upgrade for social media guru’s: Some users are spotting new way to access ad campaigns on Android and iOS right from their profile page.

If you update to the most recent version of the app on either platform, you might spot a new graph icon sitting atop your profile that lets you directly access a mobile version of the Twitter Ads manager.

From there, you can check your campaign performances, optimize your budgets and bids, and control you campaign timings. You won’t be able to create new campaigns, however; for that you’ll have to use the good ol’ Web interface at ads.twitter.com.

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You were able to access the Twitter Ads from mobile previously, but that was only through an option buried in the settings menu.

It’s a notable move by Twitter showing a renewed focus on monetizing its platform. It’s unlikely most users care about ad campaigns – or even know what one is, for that matter – so placing the button front and center shows the company focusing more heavily on its advertisers.

Twitter frequently tests new features so it’s possible not everyone will see the new button, but if you manage social media campaigns it’s worth updating your apps to potentially give the feature a go.

Read next: Twitter’s Project Lightning will showcase human-curated trending tweets

 

SES Atlanta – The Southern Sweet Spot of Search Events

Join us at SES Atlanta, where we'll feature SEO and PPC talks by Newell Rubbermaid, Aflac, The Home Depot, The Atlanta Hawks, CNN, and more!

Google now lets you create and share custom maps from Drive

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Google Drive is getting a little more powerful today by integrating custom Maps.

Now Drive users can create, share and manage Google’s custom My Maps right from Drive. You can even import data from your Drive documents, such as addresses from a spreadsheet or form, to pinpoint them on the map.

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The change should make it a little easier to mange all your custom mapping, as these will now be accessible from the same place you find your documents and spreadsheets.

It also makes it easier to share custom maps with coworkers and team members, as you can simply drop the map into a shared Drive folder.

The new My Maps integration is rolling out to everyone today.

Create, share, and manage custom maps from Drive [Google for Work Blog]

 

 

Facebook set to offer video creators revenue split with new Suggested Videos feed

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Facebook is set to offer video creators a cut of revenue from ads that display before or during their videos. It’s the first time Facebook has shared video revenue, and may challenge YouTube for the attention of creators.

Speaking to Re/Code, Dan Rose, Facebook’s VP of partnerships says “A lot of [our partners] have said this will be a big motivation to start publishing a lot more video content to Facebook. That’s exactly what we’re hoping for.”

Revenue sharing only comes via a new Facebook feature called Suggested Videos, a sub-section of NewsFeed. If you were to click on a sports highlight in NewsFeed, that video may open in Suggested Videos, which would also display other sports highlight videos.

The revenue split is reportedly the same as YouTube: 55 percent goes to the creator, and Facebook keeps 45 percent. The tricky part is that ads won’t play as they do on YouTube.

In the Suggested Video feed, an ad may be interspersed between three or more videos. The 55 percent will be split between those three creators based on how much of their respective videos you watched.

Suggested Videos is currently in testing, and is expected to stay there for a few months. Facebook is still working out some finer details, including how it plans to charge advertisers.

YouTube Beware: Facebook Will Start Sharing Ad Revenue With Video Creators [Re/Code]

Read next: Facebook’s concept for mobile ads uses rich imagery and 360-degree views