Nintendo Is Back in Black, Sony Abandons SoundCloud, & More… [Tech News Digest]
Nintendo makes money, Sony sounds off, Spotify chases video, Stan Lee loves YouTube, color-blind Chrome, and a video showing Siri being your mom.
Nintendo Makes a Small Profit
Nintendo is making a theme park? Cool. pic.twitter.com/e1iUCwpwwY
— Adam Kovic (@adamkovic) May 7, 2015
After several tough years in the red, things are looking up for Nintendo [PDF link]. Not only has the Japanese company registered its first annual operating profit in four years, it has announced plans to bring rides to theme parks operated by Universal Studios.
Nintendo made an operating profit of $207 million on $4.6 billion in revenue for 2014 (April 2014 to March 2015). These profits are lower than expected, but are still a profit nonetheless. Nintendo is also evolving with the market, with big plans to muscle in on the mobile gaming scene .
Before today, Nintendo last made a profit in 2011, riding high on the back of the Wii. Then it released the Wii U , which failed to sell, leading to several years in the doldrums. The future is looking brighter though, in part because of the plan to bring rides to theme parks.
Details are rather thin on the ground, but Nintendo-themed rides will be coming to Universal Studios theme parks in the near future. Universal currently operates parks in the US, Japan, and Singapore, with further parks planned for China and Russia. So, a real-life Mario Kart, anyone?
Sony Pulls Music Off SoundCloud
Sony Music has removed songs by a number of its big-name artists from SoundCloud after a failure to reach an agreement with the streaming music service. Adele, Hozier, Miguel, and Kelly Clarkson are among the musicians affected, although it’s not yet clear whether this is a negotiating tactic or a more permanent problem.
As reported by Billboard, sources familiar with the negotiations are blaming Sony’s belief that there’s “a lack of monetization opportunities” on SoundCloud. But SoundCloud is maintaining that, “We are in ongoing conversations with major and independent labels and will continue to add partners to the program.”
SoundCloud does advertise while delivering content to users, but obviously not enough to assuage the moneymaking desires of at least one of the major record labels. Whether Sony continues to pull artists off On SoundCloud, or, even worse, whether other record labels follow suit, remains to be seen. But things certainly aren’t looking good.
Spotify Is Getting into Video
The next 30 minutes of music are sponsored ad-free by…Spotify Premium? Great! Now I don't have to upgrade to Spotify Premium.
— Hunter Olson (@HunterO) May 7, 2015
Spotify is plotting a move into video, discussing potential partnerships with digital media companies. According to The Wall Street Journal, Spotify has approached several multichannel networks which specialize in creating content for YouTube.
It’s being suggested that Spotify wants to both acquire existing content and co-create more original content. Which strongly suggests the beginning of plans to create a streaming television service to sit alongside its insanely popular music streaming service.
This is surely the next logical step, but could Spotify really compete with the likes of YouTube, Netflix, and Hulu?
YouTube’s World of Superheroes
Legendary comic book writer Stan Lee has announced the YouTube World of Superheroes. This project, a joint partnership between YouTube Spaces and POW! Entertainment, is a project aimed at celebrating the genre while encouraging YouTube creators to create original content.
Creators will be invited to use facilities in LA, London, Tokyo, and New York, where they will use sets to film their ideas. The results will then be published on various channels through June and July. Some lucky creators will enjoy a script consultation with Lee himself.
Google Chrome Helps the Color-Blind
Benefits of being colorblind = wearing two different colored dress socks to class all day and thinking your clothes match for a presentation
— Ben Lenig (@BenLenig) April 28, 2015
Google has released a Chrome Extension aimed at helping people with color blindness. According to François Beaufort, the extension, called Color Enhancer, offers “a customizable color filter you can apply to all webpages in order to improve color perception.”
While most people don’t ever consider the colors they’re seeing while browsing the Web , people suffering from color blindness certainly do. Color Enhancer lets sufferers choose the color scheme that suits them best, applying it across the Web regardless of the design of specific sites.
What If Siri Was Your Mom?
And finally, imagine having Siri as your mom, quite literally. If you think Siri is annoying when divulging information, offering advice, or failing to understand what you’re saying, just think how annoying it would be to put up with that all the time.
The Daily Dot demonstrates how this would be, actually employing Susan Bennett, the actor who voiced Siri to play the part. Suffice to say, having Siri as your mom would be extremely annoying. So be thankful for your own mom, especially on Mother’s Day.
Your Views on Today’s Tech News
Are you pleased to see Nintendo back in black? How do you feel about Sony pulling its music off of SoundCloud? Do you wish Siri was your actual, honest-to-goodness mom?
Let us know your thoughts on the Tech News of the day by posting to the comments section below. Because a healthy discussion is always welcome.
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