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Updated: June 14, 2013 12:30 IST

Weekly Window

Compiled by KARTHIK SUBRAMANIAN
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Jony Ive
Special Arrangement Jony Ive

Yahoo! acquires Tumblr

The Marissa Mayer led Yahoo! has been talking strategic takeovers for some months now. Now in one of its biggest acquisitions, Yahoo! has taken over popular blogging website Tumblr in a U.S. dollar 1.1 billion deal. In the official press statement on the acquisition, Yahoo! noted that Tumblr had more than 300 million monthly unique visitors and 1,20,000 signups every day. The blogging site also gets 900 posts per second and 24 billion minutes spent on site each month.

Existing Tumblr users have been promised that Yahoo! would keep the Tumblr spirit of creative expression online true to its moorings. It has retained its CEO David Karp, who in turn has issued a statement: “Our team isn't changing. Our roadmap isn't changing. And our mission — to empower creators to make their best work and get it in front of the audience they deserve — certainly isn't changing.”

Google Maps gets visual upgrade

The revamped Google Maps shown at the Google’s developer meet I/O 2013 has wowed almost everyone who has seen the presentation live and the few who have already received the invites to test it out. In one of the brilliant touches at the inaugural session of the meet, the power of new Google Maps was shown just before CEO Larry Page made an entry on stage. A zoomed out view of Google Earth presented how a portion of the planet looked at night. Page jocularly remarked that even though it was brilliant he was awaiting the more high resolution images. The Google Maps API version 2 has been made available to developers. What it means is that the next generation of Apps — augmented reality, travel, restaurant search and the kind — will have the new Maps integrated. The mobile Maps game has been invigorated in the recent months with competition hotting up between the likes of Google Maps and Nokia Here. Apple’s own mapping solution has not been such a great hit but Apple is surely to up the ante in the months to come.

The buzz surrounding WWDC 2013

Now that Google has concluded its developer meet Google I/O 2013, the buzz surrounding Apple’s developer meet — WWDC 2013, scheduled from June 10 to 14 — has reached a crescendo. Much is expected of Apple, especially with regard to its mobile operating system iOS that seems to have become very jaded. The company has been receiving flak over the past year for not providing users with cutting edge upgrades — among other things multi-tasking and customisation options on iOS are very poor when compared to Android. What’s worse, Apple is also seen to be losing out on design and user-interface front, traditionally its stronghold. Windows 8 mobile seems to have taken the lead on that front.

However, with the legendary British designer Jony Ive in charge of the iOS design revamp, Apple fans have been aching to find out what will be new with iOS 7. Thanks to its policy of being ultra secretive about product plans, it is not known whether a new iPhone 5S would be announced at the WWDC. But, as usual, there are rumours doing the rounds.

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