Few Gleanings from my perusing the Internet.
Softcard to Shutter after Google Mobile Payments Deal – Softcard, the carrier-backed mobile payments initiative, is shutting down its app after striking a deal to help expand the reach of Google’s mobile payments system. The joint venture between AT&T, Verizon Wireless and T-Mobile announced Wednesday it would disable its mobile app and close all customer accounts on March 31. As part of the deal announced last month, Google acquired Softcard’s technology, while the U.S. carriers agreed later this year they will load the Google Wallet app onto Android smartphones running KitKat or higher.
HBO Reportedly in Talks with Apple on Video Streaming Service – HBO is in talks with Apple to be its launch partner for its highly anticipated “HBO Now” video streaming service, according to a report in Wednesday’s International Business Times. The online service is expected to launch next month, timed to the season premiere of HBO’s “Game of Thrones,” according to the report, which cited sources familiar with the matter. The service’s retail price is expected to be $15 a month.
Sling TV Bulks up Base Package with AMC and IFC – Dish Network’s newly launched streaming video subscription service Sling TV announced Wednesday the addition of two more channels, AMC and IFC, which will now become available as part of its $20 core package aimed at cord cutters. In addition, Sling TV customers will also be able to subscribe to a new movie-focused add-on pack called “Hollywood Extra” for $5 per month, which includes content from EPIX and Sundance TV. The “Hollywood Extra” also introduces a replay feature which will let viewers watch programming that’s up to a week old on demand, as an alternative to using a DVR.
Sources: CNET; Boy Genius Report; Engadget; Gigaom; SlashGear; TechCrunch, USA Today, online; Fortune, online; Ars Technica; Mashable; The Verge, PhoneScoop.
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