Techmeme
July 28, 2014, 8:00 AM

Top News

Liz Gannes / Re/code:
Apple to Buy Radio App Swell for $30 Million  —  Apple is close to buying the Pandora-for-talk-radio app Swell, according to multiple sources.  —  The deal is worth about $30 million, these sources say.  —  Swell had raised $7.2 million from investors including DFJ, Google Ventures and InterWest Partners.
Mark Gurman / 9to5Mac:
Amazon apparently set to launch Square-competitor in August as it develops biometric payment solutions  —  Amazon could be preparing to launch its own mobile credit card reading hardware in the coming weeks, according to internal Staples documents hinting at such a launch that we've obtained.
Builtvisible:
A history of the undersea cables that carry much of the world's international internet traffic  —  Messages in the Deep - The Remarkable Story of the Underwater Internet  —  In October of 1971, in the midst of the Cold War, the nuclear-powered submarine USS Halibut entered heavily guarded Russian waters in the Sea of Okhotsk.
Kashmir Hill / Forbes:
How Your Security System Could Be Hacked To Spy On You  —  On a recent Friday evening, Logan Lamb and his girlfriend turned up at a co-worker's birthday party in Knoxville, Tennessee with a 12-pack of cheap beer, 4 craft beers for the birthday boy, and some hacking tools, namely a software-defined radio …
Ellen Huet / Forbes:
Snapchat stars begin making lucrative advertising deals to create “authentic” branded content  —  Snaps To Riches: The Rise Of Snapchat Celebrities  —  Shaun McBride takes no risks when drawing a Snapchat.  He takes screenshots instead, to protect his works in progress in case of calamity.
More: TIMETweets: @stevecheney
Robin Sloan / Medium:
Why Minecraft is a phenomenon: it requires its players to co-create it  —  The secret of Minecraft  —  And its challenge to the rest of us  —  It's almost inevitable: I encounter Minecraft somewhere online—it's easy to do, because there's a lot of Minecraft out there—and I end up convinced I'm doing the wrong thing with my life.
Farhad Manjoo / New York Times:
Ultrapak external battery packs can grab a full charge for a standard smartphone in 15 minutes  —  How to Charge Your Phone in 15 Minutes  —  Say you've got 15 minutes in an airport between flights and your phone is nearly dead.  What do you do?  —  In the past, you had two choices.
More: AndroidHeadlines.comTweets: @msquinn
Brian Krebs / Krebs on Security:
Behind “GoodGoogle”, a service for depleting your competitor's AdWord budget via click fraud  —  Service Drains Competitors' Online Ad Budget  —  The longer one lurks in the Internet underground, the more difficult it becomes to ignore the harsh reality that for nearly every …
More: PC MagazineTweets: @dtunkelang
Tom Warren / The Verge:
Windows Phone 8.1 Update 1 includes support for folders and interactive cases  —  Microsoft is planning to release its first update to Windows Phone 8.1 soon, and the company has started detailing some of the upcoming features to phone manufacturers.  One of the main visual changes with Update 1 …

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