July 12, 2013, 9:15 AM

Top News

Revealed: how Microsoft handed the NSA access to encrypted messages  —  • Secret files show scale of Silicon Valley co-operation on Prism  —  • encryption unlocked even before official launch  —  • Skype worked to enable Prism collection of video calls
Tom Warren / The Verge:
Microsoft is cutting the price of its Surface RT tablets, base model to cost $349  —  Microsoft is planning to cut the price of its Surface RT tablets.  Sources familiar with Microsoft's Surface plans have revealed to The Verge that the price cut could occur as early as next week, with each model being cut by $150.
Ingrid Lunden / TechCrunch:
Google Will Shut Down Alfred, The Local Recommendations App, July 19  —  Looks like Latitude wasn't the only Google product that got shut down yesterday in the wake of a new version of Google Maps.  Alfred, the local recommendations app that Google picked up through its acquisition …
Julie Bort / Business Insider:
Chairman Eric Schmidt: Google's Relationship With Apple Has Improved  —  On Thursday, Google chairman Eric Schmidt revealed a surprising thing: Google's relationship with Apple has improved after many meetings, he said.  —  He praised Apple alongside Google saying, “These are two proud, well-run, different companies.”
The Coinbase Blog:
Instant Bitcoin Purchases at Coinbase  —  You know what's really satisfying?  Being able to buy Bitcoin without a lot of hassle.  That's what Coinbase has always let you do.  But you know what's really awesome?  Being able to buy Bitcoin instantly, on-demand, any time you want …
David Meyer / GigaOM:
AT&T and Verizon lose bid to maintain secrecy of French interconnection deals  —  AT&T and Verizon have failed in their attempt to block the French telecoms regulator from examining their secret interconnection agreements - deals that may be key to the erosion of net neutrality.
More:, CNET and Engadget
Harry McCracken / TIME:
PCWorld Exits Print, and the Era of Computer Magazines Ends  —  The last of the big general-interest PC magazines is no longer a magazine.  —  By Harry McCracken @harrymccrackenJuly 11, 2013  —  The news isn't shocking.  In fact, it's sort of a shock it didn't happen several years ago.
More: The Verge, ZDNet and ParisLemonTweets: @shonaghosh
Ingrid Lunden / TechCrunch:
Following Amazon And Netflix, Rakuten Is Expanding Its Wuaki Video Service Across Europe; First Stop UK  —  E-commerce giant Rakuten, often called the Amazon of Japan, is taking another step in a bid to square up to is rival: today it is officially launching a beta of its Wuaki video streaming service …
Mike Isaac / AllThingsD:
More Moves Abroad for Twitter's Top Brass as Three Execs Head Overseas  —  Three of Twitter's top execs are moving away from the company's headquarters in San Francisco, charged with overseeing international offices across multiple countries.  —  The changes, noted in the three executives' Twitter profiles …
Ellen Nakashima / Washington Post:
NSA's Snowden case review focuses on possible access to China espionage files, officials say  —  A National Security Agency internal review of damage caused by the former contractor Edward Snowden has focused on a particular area of concern: the possibility that he gained access to sensitive files …
Tweets: @pierre
Jon Brodkin / Ars Technica:
Verizon joins Ubuntu's potential smartphone launch partners  —  Verizon will help “shape” Ubuntu phone OS, possibly sell the phones.  Verizon Wireless today joined Canonical's “Ubuntu Carrier Advisory Group (CAG),” meaning the company is exploring smartphones based on Ubuntu.
Sarah Silbert / Engadget:
In Amazon dispute, EU Court of Justice rules that levies on blank CDs can be collected ‘in some cases’  —  Amazon's spent quite a bit of time in court as of late; in addition to a recently settled trademark dispute with Apple, a row with an Austrian copyright collection agency is keeping the e-tailer busy.
Taylor Soper / GeekWire:
New peak: Amazon shares surpass $300 for first time  —  The rapid growth of was echoed Thursday on Wall Street, as the company's stock briefly topped $300 for the first time ever during the trading session.  Shares rose $7.27, or 2.5 percent, to close at $299.60.
More: CNET and Quartz
jessica lessin:
Andreessen Says Foreign Web Co.'s Could Take Advantage of Prism Fallout  —  SUN VALLEY, Idaho- Venture capitalist Marc Andreessen said in an interview that U.S. Internet companies may lose business to foreign competitors following revelations about Prism, the government data-mining effort.
Tweets: @jessicalessin
Leena Rao / TechCrunch:
YouWeb Founder Peter Relan Debuts New Company Building Studio And Accelerator, 9+; Raises $2M In Funding  —  As we reported a couple of weeks ago, serial entrepreneur Peter Relan is sunsetting his gaming and mobile focused incubator YouWeb, which spawned Crowdstar, Agawi, Spaceport, OpenFeint and others.

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Josh Ong / The Next Web: