Internet & Media
Google launches +1 a way to share high quality search results and ads. The first social initiative, +1 provides a social signal for use in search quality.
Amazon launches a cloud music service that allows users to upload their own music and stream it from Amazon’s servers, similar to Lala. Free for up to 5GB of storage, each additional GB costs $1. Rumor indicates music labels are dismayed with the offering.
The Fed plans to implement maximum fees for debit cards starting July 21 capping the fees at 0.12 per transaction which could decrease merchant processing costs significantly at the expense of processors. Debit cards accounted for 29% of consumer online spending in 2010 and credit cards 40%, estimates Javelin Strategy & Research.
Warner Bros., Sony, Universal and 20th Century Fox will unveil a premium VOD service called Home Premiere which will stream new feature films for $30. DirecTv is the first launch partner with cable companies to launch the service shortly thereafter.
Android is providing early access to software updates to OEMs who do not modify Android base code in attempt to mitigate UI fragmentation. LG, Toshiba, Samsung and Motorola have all modified the core Android OS with interface changes.
Android gained 7% market share in 1 quarter at the expense of the rest of the market.
Facebook released a new richer mobile application after revealing the site services 250M mobile users.
Western Union announced M-PESA integration. M-PESA is a mobile wallet in use by 25% of Kenyans with an average monthly transaction volume of $37. Kenyans’ monthly per capita GDP is $133.
Financings and M&A
Bessemer Venture Partners has raised a $1.6 billion fund, with $1.2B for early stage investment and the remaining $400M for India.
Accel raises two China funds, one for early and one for growth investments, totaling $1.3B.
TidalTV, a video ad optimization company, raises $30M from NEA.
Wix, a web site builder for SMBs, raises $40M from Insight and DAG.Limos.com raises $10M from Austin Ventures.
Salesforce acquires Radian6, a social media presence SaaS solution, for $326M.
BubbleMotion, a mobile voice Twitter with presence in South East Asia, raises $10M from Singtel Capital.
Appia, an alternative mobile app store, raises $10M from Venrock.
GameStop acquires P2P video game streaming company Spawn Labs.
Qihoo, a maker of free antivirus tools, and a Redpoint company, doubles share price on IPO and reaches $3.5B market cap.
Q1 2011 venture backed IPOs increased 55% from Q1 in 2010 in number, though the average amount raised fell. M&A fell about 10% in volume but M&A value increased 3.6%.