May 2, 2012, 10:40 PM

Top News

Tom Warren / The Verge:
Exclusive: $99 Xbox 360 + Kinect bundle launching next week with two-year subscription  —  Microsoft is planning to launch a $99 Xbox console package with a monthly subscription as early as next week, according to our sources.  The software giant will offer the 4GB console with a Kinect sensor …
Ross Miller / The Verge:
It's official: Target will phase out all Kindle-branded products this spring  —  Last night we reported on Target's plans to discontinue sale of the Kindle due to “conflict of interest,” and now the company has confirmed to us that it will, indeed, discontinue sale.
Wil Wheaton / WWdN: In Exile:
Google is making a huge and annoying mistake.  —  I like Google Plus.  Some of the smartest people I've ever read are on Google Plus, and the Hangout is amazing.  —  But Google is doing everything it can to force Google Plus on everyone, and it's pissing me off.  —  Yesterday, I tried to like a video on YouTube.
Jim Edwards / Business Insider:
Tumblr Wants $25,000 Per Ad—Here's What They Look Like  —  Tumblr, the blogging platform with a massive audience but negligible revenues, has set its entry-level ad price at $25,000, the company said in an email.  —  The ad spots are on Tumblr Radar and Tumblr Spotlight …
John Cook / GeekWire:
Zillow to buy RentJuice for $40M in cash, posts record revenue and profits  —  Zillow is using some of its new-found cash to gobble up San Francisco's RentJuice, adding a new set of technologies that help landlords and property managers more easily keep track of properties, upload photos, manage revenue and deals.
Kim-Mai Cutler / TechCrunch:
Yelp's Post-IPO Earnings: $27.4M in Revenue, Up 66% From A Year Earlier, But Net Loss Triples  —  In its first ever earnings report as a publicly-traded company, Yelp said it earned $27.4 million in revenue in the first quarter, up 66 percent from the $16.5 million it made in the same time a year ago.
Tero Kuittinen / Forbes:
Is the OMGPOP Acquisition Haunting Zynga?  —  Zynga's much-anticipated quarterly report was very close to being a non-event - ten minutes after the press release, the share price was within 0.3% of the close.  Yet ZNGA declined from nearly $16 to $8 between early March and late April.
Steven Bertoni / Forbes:
The 26-Year-Old VC Who Cashed In On Instagram  —  Joshua Kushner was in Mexico in April for a family Passover trip, up late in his hotel room reading The Power Broker, Robert Caro's biography of New York City's master builder, Robert Moses, when the text message arrived from an insider.
Jessica Dolcourt / CNET:
Verizon's LTE-powered in-home broadband goes national  —  While Sprint and T-Mobile are struggling to launch their 4G LTE networks, Verizon apparently has enough LTE to power your devices at home.  —  Starting Thursday, Verizon's HomeFusion Broadband service will bring LTE-powered Internet access nationwide.
Enigmax / TorrentFreak:
Pirate Bay Enjoys 12 Million Traffic Boost, Shares Unblocking Tips  —  Last Friday the UK High Court ruled that several of country's leading ISPs must censor The Pirate Bay website having ruled in February that the site and its users breach copyright on a grand scale.
Stuart Dredge / Guardian:
The dark side of in-app purchases  —  Decision to make music game unplayable is controversial, but it's not the only example  —  The glory days of guitar-based music games may be firmly in the past, yet there are plenty of people still firing up Rock Band or Guitar Hero on their consoles for a nostalgic glow.
Jennifer Baker / PC World:
Programming Languages Not Copyrightable Rules Top EU Court  —  Europe's top court ruled on Wednesday that the functionality of a computer program and the programming language it is written in cannot be protected by copyright.  —  The European Court of Justice made the decision in relation …
Daniel Frankel / paidContent:
Demand and Google leave farm fight behind with “premium” YouTube channels  —  It was only about 14 months ago that Google made headlines for targeting Demand Media with algorithmic pesticides, classifying the Santa Monica, Calif.-based company's freelancer-produced content …
More: WebProNews
Peter Kafka / AllThingsD:
Amazon Gets Into the Sitcom Business  —  Amazon has been stocking up its Web-video offering with lots of old TV shows.  Now it's going to start making some of its own.  —  The company is pulling back the covers (a bit) on its plans to produce kids' shows and sitcoms via its “Amazon Studios” …
Brendan Sasso / Hillicon Valley:
Senate to examine Obama plan for online privacy ‘bill of rights’  —  The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee will examine the Obama administration's plan to protect users' online privacy at a hearing on May 9, committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) announced Wednesday.
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
DEV, NYC's New Seed Fund For Digital Media Startups, Announces First Investments  —  Here comes money for media startups: former MediaNet CEO Alan McGlade and VC Michael Yang are announcing the launch of a new NYC-based firm called DEV (Digital Entertainment Ventures) whose early stage capital fund …
Kara Swisher / AllThingsD:
Silver Lake Grabs Large Minority Stake of WME to Push Digital Initiatives  —  Large private equity firm Silver Lake is buying a large stake in powerful Hollywood talent agency William Morris Endeavor Entertainment, which is being described as a way to turbocharge its digital efforts.
David Pierce / The Verge:
LTE-enabled PlayBook coming soon, says RIM CEO Thorstein Heins  —  Rumors have been swirling that RIM is preparing an LTE version of its PlayBook tablet, but rumor no longer: CEO Thorstein Heins let us know this morning at a press briefing at BlackBerry World that there will indeed be an LTE-capable PlayBook in the near future.
Rip Empson / TechCrunch:
Castlight Lands A Whopping $100M D Round To Bring Transparency To Healthcare Costs  —  One of the biggest causes of the high cost of healthcare in the U.S. has been an utter lack of transparency in pricing, even for the most routine procedures.  A recent study at UC San Francisco revealed …
Jennifer Van Grove / VentureBeat:
Prezi zooms past 10M users, releases PowerPoint import tool  —  In building an intuitive and fluid alternative to PowerPoint, startup Prezi is helping presenters reimagine their productions.  Tuesday, the company announced that it surpassed 10 million users, and released a PowerPoint import tool …
Mary Jo Foley / CNET:
Microsoft to drop Windows Live branding with Windows 8  —  Microsoft's perpetually confusing Windows Live branding is about to get a long-overdue clean up.  —  Microsoft is doing away with the Windows Live brand, according to a May 2 post on the Building Windows 8 blog.

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Ingrid Lunden / TechCrunch: