The Next Web’s Weekly Recap: Twitter Features, Apple Event and Google in China

The Next Web’s Weekly Recap: Twitter Features, Apple Event and Google in China

The Next Web's Weekly RecapWelcome to The Next Web’s Weekly Recap. Make sure to check out The Next Web’s Podcast (iTunes or XML) where we analyze, rant and have fun with the weekly tech news.

This week saw a bunch of Twitter news including the launch of a new Suggested User List as well as local based trends. They also announced an upcoming feature to claim dormant usernames. All wasn’t good for Twitter as disappointing December growth rates were released. Also in the news was Apple after the long awaited Tablet announcement was officially scheduled for this coming Wednesday the 27th. The Google China drama also continued this week as the US Government stepped in.

The Next Web PodcastThe Next Web Podcast: Episode 7
Check out this week’s podcast where we discuss Twitter’s new Suggested User List as well as their plans to release dormant usernames, rumors that Bing could be replacing Google as the default search provider on the iPhone, a spoof political site that has become one of the biggest political sites in the world, some more ranting about FarmVille and much more.

Apple-Come-see-our-latest-creationApple’s Event on January 27th
After months and months of rumors and speculation, everyone will finally get to see what Apple’s tablet is all about. This Wednesday Apple is holding a press event in San Francisco. Although the release date of the tablet is uncertain, it will be nice to finally see what the product is about and stop the perpetual cycle of rumors about the design or the possible data connectivity the device will have. Also expected to be discussed at the event is iPhone 4.0, which is expected to have the ability to run apps in the background as well as system-wide multi-touch.

twitter-logoTwitter News
This week Twitter had a couple of significant announcements. The biggest was the launch of a new and “improved” Suggested User List that now splits up suggested users into categories. The list has had criticism since it was launched and this will likely not silent those complaints about it being somewhat elitist and unfair. Twitter also launched and announced two other features. They launched geo-specific trends (why it matters) and announced an upcoming feature to claim dormant usernames (also check out TwitterCounter’s new username claiming feature released this week). In other Twitter news, we had the first tweet from space (yawn) as well as the world’s richest man, Bill Gates, join Twitter (and start a blog). While all great news, Twitter’s growth rate figures for December weren’t as positive.

GoogleGoogle vs. China
Last week was filled with reports about Google’s potential exit from China following an alleged attack by the Chinese government to seize emails from human rights activists within China. This week the drama continued as US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called out to China urging them to investigate the attacks and also denouncing Chinese Internet censorship. China was quick to respond to Clinton letting her know that her comments could harm Chinese – US relations. President Obama was quick to support Clinton’s remarks and call out China for their censorship. How this situation plays out is yet to be seen but for now Google is staying in China.

Quick Hits

  • Bing To Replace Google On The iPhone? The latest rumors indicate the possibility.
  • South Korea tops the world in Internet Connection Speed – US a measly 18th.
  • Music discovery site TheSixtyOne launched a major redesign. Turns itself into one of the slickest music web services out there.
  • YouTube struck a deal this week to live broadcast Cricket’s India Premier League. The big move towards live streaming sports online.
  • Ancestry.com launched a new iPhone app this week. Personally, my genealogy site of choice is Geni.
  • SeatGeek is a pretty nifty site that predicts the future price of tickets.
  • Moluko is a service that provides an E-Commerce solution for Facebook fan pages. It’s not the first to do this but it does look promising.
  • If you’re looking for a simple collaboration tool check out tgethr, a tool we covered this week.
  • ICQ Launches ICQ 7 – Introduces social messaging across networks.
  • Alex continues his ranting regarding FarmVille.
  • Momento offers a unique approach to recording your life with it’s mobile diary application.
  • A great discussion on social media marketing strategy and its place in business.
  • The White House goes mobile with an iPhone App and Obama live stream.
  • Seesmic launches Seemsic Look, a unique way to consume real time info using Windows 7.
  • An SEC filing this week revealed that Google co-founders Brin and Page have sold off a significant amount of their shares.
  • Google’s Nexus One voice recognition censors curse words. Really!?
  • Facebook announced a Games and Application Dashboard to make it easier for users to interact with their apps.
  • Music labels appear to be sick of ad-supported streaming – news coming from the MIDEM, Europe’s largest music industry conference. It was also noted this week music execs are pleased with Spotify and are “paying labels well”.
  • Will the Nexus One spawn a new advertising world order? Lara discusses how the Nexus One will change the way Google’s advertising tools will affect other mobile vendors.

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