They are some drugs for COVID 19 treatment that people are currently using to fight the Coronavirus (#COVID19) in Nigeria. This treatment involves a set of drugs that are not officially prescribed for patients by doctors, but the drugs are usually bought over the counter to personally assist in fighting hospitalization, need for oxygen, and deaths from #COVID19.
Official COVID 19 Prevention
The official way to handle COVID 19 treatments in Nigeria or any other part of the world are as follows;
The COVID-19 Vaccine Center in Port Harcourt is now available and free to access. We are now having increasing deaths and the spread of Coronavirus has led various health NGOs, medical and government agencies to provide free access to COVID-19 vaccination centers. You can walk in freely to register and get your first shot of the COVID vaccine.
COVID-19 Vaccine Center Addresses in Port Harcourt
The table show list of currently identified COVID-19 vaccination centers in Port Harcourt, updates will be provided soon.
BMH – Braithwaite Memorial Specialist Hospital (aka. Rivers State University Teaching Hospital)
84 Forces Ave, Orogbum 500101, Port Harcourt
UNIPORT – University of Port Harcourt Teaching Hospital – UPTH
Military Hospital Port Harcourt
GRA Bus stop, Aba Road, Rurome-Rezigbu 500272, Port Harcourt
Rivers State Ministry of Health at the Rivers State Secretariat
2nd Floor, Block A Rivers State Secretariat Complex, Port Harcourt
Rivers State Primary Health Care Management Board Sick Bay
323 Port Harcourt – Aba Expy, Rumueme 500101, Port Harcourt
Port Harcourt City Council Sick Bay
Moscow Rd, Old Port-Harcourt Township
Obio/Akpor Council Headquarters Sick Bay
Ikwerre Rd, Rumuodomaya 500102, Port Harcourt
Government House Clinic
Q299+3HC, Port Harcourt 500101, Port Harcourt,
Model Primary Health Center Orogbum
Opposite Boms, Elekahia Rd, Junction, Port Harcourt
Model Primary Health Center Bundu
Ship Builders Road, Old Port Harcourt Twp 500101, Port Harcourt
Model Primary Health Center Potts Johnson
28-32 Potts Johnson St by, Ilorin St, Port Harcourt
Model Primary Health Center Churchill Road
1 Harold Wilson Dr, Port Harcourt 500101, Port Harcourt
Model Primary Health Center Nkpolu/Mini Mile 3
Model Primary Health Center Mgbundukwu
Model Primary Health Center, Opposite Boms, Elekahia Rd, Junction, Port Harcourt
Model Primary Health Center Elekahia
Model Primary Health Care Centre, Elekahia., R27F+RP7, Elekahia 500101, Port Harcourt
Model Primary Health Center Okuru-ama
Ede Okia Community Road, Abuloma 500101, Port Harcourt
Model Primary Health Center Azuabie
Trans Amadi 500101, Port Harcourt
Model Primary Health Center Ozuboko
13 David Street, Off peace Drive, Ozuboko, Fimeama 500101, Port Harcourt, Rivers
Model Primary Health Center Abuloma
Model Primary Health Center Amadi-ama
Model Primary Health Center Eliozu
Eliozu Road, 500102, Port Harcourt
Model Primary Health Center Iriebe
Model Primary Health Center Rumuodomaya
Rumuokwurusi 500102, Port Harcourt
FSP Clinic Elelenwo
Model Primary Health Center Woji
Edukasin Filling Station, Woji 500102, Port Harcourt
Obio Cottage Hospital
Trans-Amadi Industrial Layout Rd, Rumuobiakani 500102, Port Harcourt
Model Primary Health Center Mgbuosimini
Model Primary Health Center Rumueme
Model Primary Health Center Rumuigbo
Model Primary Health Center Rumuepirikom
Behind Community Secondary School, Rumuepirikom City Centre 500272, Port Harcourt
Model Primary Health Center Elelenwo
185 Old Refinery Road, Elelenwo 501101, Port Harcourt
Health Post Rumuokwuta
Model Primary Health Center Eneka
V2VR+VCP, Eliowani 500102, Port Harcourt
Model Primary Health Center Rukpokwu
W232+9J9, Rukpokwu 500102, Port Harcourt
Primary Health Clinic Rumuekini
RX54+7HC, 500102, Port Harcourt
Model Primary Health Center Ozuoba
VWCH+GJX, 500102, Ozuoba
Model Primary Health Center Rumuolumeni
RX54+7HC, 500102, Port Harcourt
U.O.E Demonstration Clinic
Health Post Elieta
COVID-19 Vaccination Mapped Locations in Port Harcourt
Covid-19 Related Knowledge Sources
Related Queries Searched by People Online in Nigeria
Find a list of COVID-19 related queries searched by people online in Nigeria.
LA-based game studio Singularity 6 has banked more funding as it scales itself up and readies for the launch of its debut title.
The startup tells TechCrunch, they’ve raised $30 million in a Series B bout of funding led by FunPlus Ventures with additional participation from Andreessen Horowitz (a16z), LVP, Transcend, Anthos Capital and Mitch Lasky. The studio has now disclosed some $49 million in funding, a sizable sum, but one that showcases how much investors are looking to rally around gaming platform plays in the wake of Roblox’s monster IPO.
In 2019, Singularity 6 raised a $16.5 million Series A led by Andreessen Horowitz. At the time, the studio was mum on details about its upcoming debut title, but we’ve learned more about it since.
The title, Palia, is a community simulation game that seems to be more focused on Animal Crossing-like community mechanics in an MMO environment, rather than endless battles. Last month, the studio showcased a launch trailer of the title which hinted at a good deal of the gameplay. Palia looks to be a medieval Zelda-like environment where users can move between towns in an open world environment while farming and collecting resources to build structures in a shared world.
The company has said in marketing materials that the title is “designed to create community, friendships and a real sense of belonging.” In a statement, a16z partner Jonathan Lai called the upcoming title, “warm and dynamic.”
There are still quite a bit of unanswered questions about the title, which is currently taking sign-ups on its website to be alerted to pre-alpha access. We do know that plenty of VCs are betting millions on the prospect that this multi-player title could be big.
Common Sense Media has made a name for itself among parents as a useful resource for vetting entertainment and technology in terms of its age-appropriateness. Now, the organization’s for-profit affiliate, Common Sense Networks, is taking inspiration from those kid-friendly recommendations with the launch of new streaming service called Sensical. The service offers age-appropriate, entertaining, and educational videos for children ages 2 through 10.
At launch, the free, ad-supported service includes over 15,000 hand-curated videos and over 50 topic-based channels for children to explore. And unlike other platforms, like Netflix or YouTube, Sensical doesn’t use algorithms to make content recommendations. Instead, kids are encouraged to follow their own interests and passions across over 50 topic-based channels. This includes things like Adventures, Animals, Arts & Crafts, Music, Science, Sports, Video Games, and other sorts of kid-friendly topics.
Kids can star these channels, or individual videos or series, in order to keep up with their favorite content in a dedicated Favorites section within the app.
Kids will see a selection of these channels based on their age, but the company is working to expand the channel lineup so there will be even more specific categories in the future. For example, instead of just “sports,” there could be channels like “soccer” or “gymnastics.” Instead of “Arts,” there could be “drawing” or “origami.” Instead of just “science,” it could include channels like “geography” or “robotics,” and so on.
Image Credits: Common Sense Networks
The app also features a Live TV section, which is programmed throughout the day with kid-friendly content so kids don’t have to browse to find something to quickly watch.
While other streaming services on the market offer kid-friendly content — as that’s a huge selling point for subscribers — it’s not always organized in a way that makes sense. Sometimes, all the content gets lumped into a general “Kids” category where videos for little kids are mixed in with content for older children. Sensical, meanwhile, curates the content recommendations into three different experiences, including preschool (2-4), little kids (5-7), and big kids (8-10).
What the child sees is based on how parents configure their profile. Plus, parents can use the service’s ParentZone in-app dashboard to set screen time limits, extend limits as needed, and view daily reports on what the child has watched.
The service’s best feature, however, is that the content is assured to be age-appropriate — even the ads.
This is possible because the curation approach Sensical takes, which is very different from YouTube Kids. YouTube’s app for kids leans on algorithms to filter out adult content from YouTube’s broader library, but the company doesn’t manually review all the videos it includes. It warns parents that some inappropriate content could slip through. (Andithas). Common Sense Networks, meanwhile, says dozens of trained child development experts view, vet, and rate “every single frame of video” that goes live on its service using its proprietary IP and patentpending process. This system involves tagging content with specific child developmental benefits, too.
Sensical also vets its advertising, which is how the service is supported, with similar direct oversight. Its experts review the sponsor’s content to ensure it’s appropriate for children — an area that’s often overlooked on other services.
Image Credits: Common Sense Networks
To fill its library, Common Sense Networks partnered with dozens of studios and distribution partners as well as digital-first creators.
Studio and distribution partners include CAKE (Poppy Cat), Cyber Group Studios (Leo The Wildlife Ranger), The Jim Henson Company (The Wubbulous World of Dr. Seuss, Jim Henson’s Animal Show with Stinky and Jake), Mattel (Kipper, Pingu, Max Steel), Raydar Media (Five Apples’ limited series, Apple Tree House), Superights (Bo Bear, Handico), WildBrain (Teletubbies, Rev & Roll), Xilam Animation (Learn and Play with Paprika, Moka’s Fabulous Adventures), ZDF Enterprises (Lexi & Lottie, School of Roars), Zodiak Kids (Mister Maker, Tee and Mo), ABC Commercial, CBC & Radio-Canada Distribution, Jetpack Distribution, Nelvana, 9 Story Distribution International, Sesame Workshop, Serious Lunch, and Studio 100.
Digital creators, meanwhile, include ABCMouse, Aaron’s Animals, Alphabet Rockers, batteryPOP, California Academy of Sciences, GoldieBlox, The Gotham Group’s Gotham Reads, Guggenheim Museum, Howdytoons, Kids’ Black History, MEL Science + Chemistry, N*Gen, Pinkfong, Penguin Random House’s Brightly Storytime, Studio71 (Parry Gripp, Maymo, Hyper Roblox), Tankee, Ubongo Kids, Vooks, Bounce Patrol, Hevesh5, Mother Goose Club, StacyPlays, Super Simple Songs and The Whistle.
The service abides by the U.S. children’s privacy laws (COPPA), and is certified by the kidSAFE Seal Program.
Image Credits: Common Sense Networks
Having briefly toyed around with the mobile app, it appears Sensical works as described. If I had any complaints personally, it would only be that the experience could be dismissed as “baby stuff” by older kids approaching their tween years, due to the cute pictures and youthful iconography used in the app’s design. Kids in older age groups take issue with being treated as if they’re younger — and they take particular notice of anything that does so. The same complaint goes for the Live TV programming, which was clearly aimed at littler kids when we checked it out, despite testing the app as child profile whose age was set to “10.”
I also think it would be nice if there was a better way to track Favorite channels and see when they’re updated with new videos, as kids moving to Sensical from YouTube will want to “feel” like they’re still connected to new and fresh content, not a library. But Sensical isn’t YouTube. There’s a trade-off between hand-curation and timeliness, and Sensical is favoring the former.
Sensical had been first introduced this spring during a closed beta, but is now publicly available to stream across web and mobile on iOS, Android,Roku, Amazon Fire TV and Apple TV. This summer, it will expand to more distribution platforms, including VIZIO.
After launching its IPO last week with an expected listing price range of $26 to $29 per share, cybersecurity company SentinelOne is going tomorrow with some momentum behind it. Sources close to the tell us that the company, which will be trading under the ticker “S” on the New York Stock Exchange, is expecting to raise over $1 billion in its IPO, putting its valuation at around $10 billion.
Last week, when the company first announced the IPO, it was projected that it would raise $928 million at the top end of its range, giving SentinelOne a valuation of around $7 billion. Coming in at a $10 billion market capitalization would make SentinelOne the most valuable cybersecurity IPO to date.
A source said that the road show has been stronger than anticipated, in part because of the strength of one of its competitors, CrowdStrike, which is publicly traded and currently sitting at a market cap of $58 billion.
The other reason for the response is a slightly grimmer one: cybersecurity continues to be a major issue for businesses of all sizes, public organizations, governments and individuals. “No one wants to see another SolarWinds, and there is no reason that there shouldn’t be more than one or two strong players,” a source said.
As is the bigger trend in cybersecurity, Israel-hatched, Mountain View-based SentinelOne‘s approach to combat that is artificial intelligence — and in its case specifically, a machine learning-based solution that it sells under the brand Singularity that focuses on endpoint security, working across the entire edge of the network to monitor and secure laptops, phones, containerised applications and the many other devices and services connected to a network.
Last year, endpoint security solutions were estimated to be around an $8 billion market, and analysts project that it could be worth as much as $18.4 billion by 2024 — another reason why SentinelOne may have moved up the timetable on its IPO (last year the company’s CEO Tomer Weingarten had told me he thought the company had one or two years left as a private company before considering an IPO, a timeline it clearly decided was worth speeding up).
SentinelOne raised $267 million on a $3.1 billion valuation led by Tiger Global as recently as last November, but it has been expanding rapidly. Growth last quarter was 116% compared to the same period a year before, and it now has more than 4,700 customers and annual recurring revenue of $161 million, according to its S-1 filing. It is also still not profitable, posting a net loss of $64 million in the last quarter.
It may be a little while longer until Starlink hits profitability. The SpaceX project, which aims to deliver global high-speed broadband via a satellite network, sells its beta kits to customers for around $500 dollars despite it costing much more to produce them, CEO Elon Musk said in an interview Tuesday.
The kit includes a user terminal, a kind of dish, that connects the customer to the satellites and enables broadband access. “To be totally frank, we are losing money on that terminal right now,” he said. That terminal costs us more than $1,000, so obviously I’m subsidizing the cost of the terminal.” He went on to add that SpaceX is working on a next-gen terminal capable of providing the same capability, but at a lower cost to make.
SpaceX’s overall investment in the project could be between $5-10 billion initially and as much as $30 billion over time, as the company continues to provide improvements and stay competitive against improvements in cellular technology, he said.
Musk, who made these comments during a virtual keynote at the Mobile World Congress event in Barcelona on Tuesday, also provided other details about the current status of Starlink. The project is on track to have over half a million users within the next twelve months, he said, and is operational in around 12 countries with more “being added every month.”
SpaceX is also getting close to launching satellite version 1.5, which will have laser inter-satellite links to provide continuous connectivity over high-latitude and polar regions. Next year the company will launch version 2, “which will be significantly more capable,” Musk noted.
Starlink satellites streak through a telescope’s observations.
The project has entered into two partnerships with major country telecommunications companies, though Musk declined to specify their names.
It is hard to imagine Starlink without the breakthrough in rocket reusability achieved by SpaceX. “But we still need to take this to another level with [. . .] the Starship development,” Musk said. That rocket will be designed for rapid reusability – so the ability to relaunch with little to no time on the ground between flights, similar to an airplane’s capabilities today.
Starship is key to Musk’s vision to build a base on the Moon or a city on Mars. He said the company is hoping to make the first orbital launch attempt with Starship in the next few months. SpaceX filed a request for approval with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to fly Starlink terminals on the new spacecraft in order to “demonstrate high data rate communications” between Starship’s launch system and the ground throughout the mission.
Taylor Price got her inspiration from Ikigai Philosophy, makes $33,000 per Month
A 20-year-old TikToker earning $33,000 a month explains how she got her start as a money influencer. She got her inspiration from Ikigai Philosophy. Taylor Price makes her money actively sharing financial knowledge, teaching it to Gen Z after learning about personal finance, and then began implementing it. “Taylor Price got inspiration from Ikigai“, what pillars make up the Ikigai of life?.
Taylor Price inspiration from “Ikigai Philosophy, thought her about the four pillars of a fulfilling life:
Do what you’re actually good at;
Do what you can get paid for;
Do what the community actually needs today; and
Do what you actually love.
She shares financial knowledge lessons and information on her TikTok account.
As her follower base grew, she was ready to leverage sponsorships and partnerships with other companies. She also consults for brands on values that are important to Gen Z. She does all of this through her personal brand, Taylor Price LLC, which now generates about $13,000 a month, consistent with financial documents from the primary quarter of 2021, with another $200,000 in contracts secured for the rest of the year, consistent with records viewed by Insider.
She makes extra cash doing side jobs on Fiverr. Price generates about $1,000 a month writing content, blogs, and sales copy.
Goldman Sachs will offer ether options and futures to its clients because the investment bank expands its cryptocurrency trading business, Bloomberg first reported.
“We’ve actually seen tons of interest from clients who are wanting to trade as they find these levels as a rather more palatable entry point,” Mathew McDermott, head of digital assets at Goldman, told Bloomberg.
He continued: “We see it as a cleansing exercise to scale back a number of the leverage and therefore the excess within the system, especially from a retail perspective.”
The New York-based bank is expanding from its bitcoin offering after restarting its cryptocurrency trading desk to trade bitcoin futures earlier this year amid a boom within the popular coin. Goldman first found out a cryptocurrency desk in 2018.
The 47-year-old McDermott also told Bloomberg that Goldman has plans to facilitate trades via exchange-traded notes tracking bitcoin.
Cryptocurrencies, led by bitcoin, have staged a modest rebound on Monday following its massive crash in May when it lost almost half its market price in one week alone.
Yet a recent finding from crypto-asset broker Voyager revealed that 81% of respondents during a recent survey are more confident within the way forward for cryptocurrency following last month’s sell-off.
“Institutional adoption will continue,” McDermott said. “Despite the fabric price correction, we still see a big amount of interest during this space.”
In March, that bank’s COO and president John Waldron said he has seen a rise in interest from his clients when it involves investing in bitcoin.
“Client demand is rising,” Waldron said during a Wolfe Virtual FinTech Forum. “The pandemic has been a big accelerant. there’s no doubt in our mind there’ll be more digital commerce … and (use of) digital money.”
In the past couple of years, we’ve seen a growing trend of creators adopting digital and social media, not just as a supplement to their media presence but also as a cornerstone of their personal brand.
The pandemic has surely accelerated creator economy trends. Many popular artists and figures have had to postpone concerts and live events, subsequently using social media to carry out these activities and engage their fans. Proliferating through Western and far East markets, the creator economy bug, which has made platforms like Cameo and Patreon unicorns, is beginning to take center stage in MENA.
Today, Minly, an Egypt-based creator economy platform, is announcing that it has closed a $3.6 million seed round to allow stars across the MENA region to create authentic, personalized connections with their fans.
The round, which Minly says was oversubscribed, was co-led by 4DX Ventures, B&Y Venture Partners and Global Ventures. It also included participation from unnamed regional funds and angel investors like Scooter Braun, founder of SB Projects, and Jason Finger, co-founder of Seamless and GrubHub.
Experts say time spent viewing social media surpassed time spent viewing TV within the MENA region. But one shortcoming with social media is that its content often feels mass-produced. When creators make posts, it’s most times void of personalization. In a way, this dilutes the fan experience and limits the extent and number of ways the creator can monetize.
This is where Minly, founded last year by Mohamed El-Shinnawy, Tarek Hosny, Tarek ElGanainy, Ahmed Abbas, and Bassel El-Toukhy, comes in. It provides tools for creators to craft what it calls ‘authentic connections’ with their superfans and audience at scale. “In short, our goal is to eventually deliver tens of millions of unique, unforgettable experiences to fans each year,” El-Shinnawy told TechCrunch.
Shinnawy, who brings more than 15 years of media and technology experience to the table, is the chief technology officer at Minly. He sold his first company, Emerge Technology, to a U.S.-based media company. He has also delivered work for Hollywood’s top studios, such as Sony Pictures, Universal, Disney, Fox and Warner Brothers, while playing a role in the global expansion of Apple TV+, Disney+, and Netflix to the MENA region.
Mohamed El-Shinnawy (co-founder and CTO, Minly)
Minly has experienced rapid growth since launching late last year. It has more than 50,000 users and an impressive list of popular regional celebrities ranging from actors and athletes like Fifi Abdou and Mahmoud Trezeguet to musicians and internet influencers like Assala Nasri and Tamer Hosny.
On the platform, users can buy personalized video messages and shoutouts from these celebrities, and they, in turn, connect with their fans on a more personal level.
“We think that we have already differentiated ourselves from other creator economy platforms in the region. We do this by offering the best catalogue of stars and user experience. And our entire team is working hard to grow this gap even further,” said El-Shinnawy on the crop of celebrities Minly has onboarded to the platform.
Minly takes a small commission on transactions made through its platform. However, the majority of the transaction price, a figure Minly didn’t disclose, goes directly to creators. And at the same time, Minly urges celebrities to automatically donate a portion of their earnings to partner charities on the platform.
Minly’s knack for creating a personalized experience is why Pan-African VC firm 4DX Ventures invested. The firm’s co-founder and general partner Peter Orth, who will be joining Minly’s board, said the company is fundamentally changing the relationship between celebrities and fans in the MENA region. “The team has both the ambition and the expertise to build a full-stack digital interaction platform that could change the way digital content is created and consumed in the region,” he added.
The creator economy market surpassed $100 billion in value this year and is still growing at an impressive rate. The pace of content creation will only speed up since surveys suggest that being a YouTuber or TikTokker or the most common term, vlogger, is one the most desirable careers among Gen Zs. VC heavyweights like Andreessen Horowitz, Kleiner Partners, and Tiger Global have also heralded this growth considerably, contributing to the more than $2 billion invested in creator economy platforms this year.
In MENA, there’s a huge opportunity for Minly. The region has over 450 million people, of which 30% are between the ages of 18 to 30. This demographic is known to have a deep connection with social media, and El-Shinnawy believes MENA will soon contribute to a large part of the total creator economy.
For Minly, the goal is to capture a huge portion of that spend and become a multibillion-dollar, category-leading company. The creator platform has a case to do so. As it stands, the opportunity to build a creator economy one-stop-shop in MENA is huge compared to other regions that already have multiple entrenched incumbents. Also, Minly is one of the few platforms in the region with meaningful venture funding.
“The creator economy is in its infancy and growing at lightning speed. We have the opportunity to build this category’s first unicorn in MENA,” the CTO remarked.
With this investment, Minly is doubling down on building local celebrity acquisition teams in Egypt and other parts across MENA and the GCC, where it has seen significant traction. The company will also scale its engineering team to churn out more products to build a horizontal creator platform.
Welcome back to This Week in Apps, the weekly TechCrunch series that recaps the latest in mobile OS news, mobile applications and the overall app economy.
The app industry continues to grow, with a record 218 billion downloads and $143 billion in global consumer spend in 2020. Consumers last year also spent 3.5 trillion minutes using apps on Android devices alone. And in the U.S., app usage surged ahead of the time spent watching live TV. Currently, the average American watches 3.7 hours of live TV per day, but now spends four hours per day on their mobile devices.
Apps aren’t just a way to pass idle hours — they’re also a big business. In 2019, mobile-first companies had a combined $544 billion valuation, 6.5x higher than those without a mobile focus. In 2020, investors poured $73 billion in capital into mobile companies — a figure that’s up 27% year-over-year.
This week, there’s big news with the expansion of Android apps to Windows. Apple also came out swinging against sideloading and expanded its profitable Search Ads business to China…with more than a few caveats. Meanwhile, TikTok launched its own take on mini-apps after tests, making its videos more interactive.
Microsoft surprised industry observers this week at its Windows 11 event with news that it will make Android apps available on the next version of its operating system. The apps will run natively on Windows 11 and can be downloaded from Amazon’s Appstore through the new Windows Store included in the updated OS. They’ll also be able to be integrated into the Start menu and pinned to the taskbar, and can tile or “window” as part of the OS’s new application placement user interface.
The Amazon partnership will bring increased attention to the Amazon Appstore, whose importance has somewhat fizzled over the years given the general lack of investment and its close ties to Amazon Fire devices, which are outsold by iPad. App developers today tend to focus initially on the App Store and Google Play, not Amazon’s Appstore. However, bringing some 3 million Android apps to Windows users opens up a huge new potential market for Android. But could it actually make coding for “iOS first” less of a given for certain types of applications — like those that complement the productivity environment enabled by a Windows PC, perhaps?
In the near-term, more consumers may begin to sideload the Amazon Appstore app on their Android devices for their paid app installs in order to gain access to the cross-platform support a Google Play version would not necessarily provide.
Microsoft noted during the event that it’s partnering with Intel to use its Intel Bridge technology to make this Appstore integration possible on x86 systems. However, the Intel-powered apps will also run on AMD and Arm processors, The Verge noted, though the technical details of how that will work were not immediately available.
Microsoft during the event demonstrated how the app integration would work by showing off TikTok running in a vertical format on the new Windows OS. This may not have been the best example, as TikTok has a fairly usable website for watching videos. Meanwhile, the image of the Amazon Appstore in the Windows Store showed other apps including those from Ring, Uber, Yahoo, Khan Academy, Kindle, Game of War: Fire Age, My Talking Tom Friends, and more, which indicates this is a comprehensive rollout.
Ahead of this news, Amazon announced it would soon lower its cut on app developer revenues from 30% to 20%, as part of a new program for small businesses. The program, which also includes promotional credits for AWS, could help boost developer support for the Appstore. Plus, on the larger Windows Store, non-game developers can keep 100% of their revenue if they use their own payment platforms for in-app purchases. Apps and games using Microsoft’s payment platform split revenue with the company at 85%/15% and 88%/12%, respectively. This sort of commission structure combined with the introduction of Android apps makes the Windows Store seem more developer-friendly than Apple’s App Store, which Microsoft likely hopes will keep it out of antitrust crosshairs.
Apple launches Search Ads in China
Apple this week brought its search advertising business to China five years after its U.S. debut. The system allows developers to bid on an advertising slot based on keywords users search for in the App Store. Though the move opens up a major new market for app developers, the system in China is fairly complex and comes with several caveats. Developers will need to upload documents, including business licenses and other files, that confirm their account has been approved before being able to run ads. Apple may then submit these documents to third-party databases and government entities for validation.
According to Apple’s guidelines, the industry-specific licenses required exclude most foreign businesses from directly advertising in mainland China. Instead, they’ll need to work with local partners who will run ads on their behalf.
The expansion for now only includes the Search Ads in the App Store and not the newly added Search Tab ads, where developers can bid on a slot directly on the Search tab in the App Store itself.
Apple released iOS 15 beta 2 and iPadOS 15 beta 2 for app developers. New features include support for SharePlay, updated Memoji outfits, a new Maps icon, a welcome screen in the updated Weather app, access to launch Quick Note with a swipe from bottom-right on iPad, Shortcuts improvements, bug fixes for iCloud Private Relay, and more. WatchOS 8 beta 2 was also released.
The iOS 15 beta code also revealed Apple is working on a feature that will allow users to update to a beta release when restoring a device from backup instead of being told that you can’t use backups of newer iOS versions.
iOS and iPad apps will now be able to request privileged access to more RAM in iOS 15, exceeding normal system memory limits, 9to5Mac also discovered.
Apple this week published a white paper (PDF) where it presents its argument against any legislation that would force the company to allow sideloading of apps on iOS or iPadOS devices outside its App Store. While there are consumer benefits to allowing for choice — like getting your hands on apps that don’t fit Apple’s rules, for example — Apple makes the case that sideloading could compromise user privacy and security in a number of ways, including potentially opening up users to being scammed and making it more difficult for parents to lock down kids’ iPhones, among other things. Pirated apps could also eat into legitimate developer revenue, not to mention Apple’s own. Apple’s Director of User Privacy Erik Neuenschwander went into further detail with Fast Company about Apple’s position, noting attackers could even trick users into thinking they were downloading from the App Store when they were not.
Google’s Android Essentials is now generally availablethrough additional partners in the U.S., the U.K, Japan, France and Germany, with more countries coming soon after a more limited testing period. Essentials makes it easier for companies to manage and secure Android devices in the workplace by enabling features like remote wiping of lost or stolen devices, enforcing a screen lock, and preventing sideloading of applications.
Google opened its Play Media Experience Program globally. The program allows developers to invest in scaling their services beyond mobile to reach other devices including experiences across Video (Android TV, Google TV, Google Cast); Audio (Wear OS, Android Auto, Android TV, Google Cast); and Books (tablets, foldables, integration with the new Entertainment Space.)
Facebook announced a trio of new commerce features this week, including the expansion of its Shops service to WhatsApp as well as Marketplace in the U.S.; Shop Ads, including AR try-on ads in the U.S., and an A.I.-based Visual Search feature on Instagram, where users can upload photos to find similar items.
Apple launches an AR-enabled Snapchat Lens to promote Apple Pay Express Transit in New York. The Lens lets users ride the subway through Kings Theater in Flatbush, the Sea Glass Carousel in Battery Park, and the Great Hall at the New York City Hall of Science.
TikTok and Spotify teamed up with makeup brand MAC on a digital campaign that offers an AR lens with lip colors users can virtually try on. The campaign involves MAC’s Love Me Liquid Lipcolor and is running in the U.K. across both apps.
TikTok launched its own mini-app integrations. With its new Jump feature, creators can add interactive third-party integrations to their videos from services like Whisk, Quizlet, Breathwrk, StatMuse, Tabelog, BuzzFeed, Jumprope, IRL and WATCHA.
Instagram said it’s testing a new feature in English-speaking markets that will mix Suggested Posts into your Feed. The company will use its algorithmic suggestions to help point people to accounts they may want to follow, with an apparent goal of increasing time spent in the app.
Twitter announced a new feature will make it possible to share tweets directly to Instagram Stories. To use the feature, which is only on iOS for now, you’ll tap the share icon on a tweet and select “Instagram Stories.” When the Instagram app opens, you can resize or reposition the tweet sticker before posting.
Snap made a deal with Universal Music Group. The deal allows Snapchat users to add song clips from the UMG catalog to their Snaps and on Spotlight, Snap’s TikTok rival.
Twitter has opened up applications for U.S. users who want to test its Ticketed Spaces and Super Follows features. The company said only a “small group” will be able to test the features for the time being. Super Follows lets creators charge $2.99, $4.99, or $9.99 per month for exclusive content. Ticketed Spaces lets creators charge between $1-$999 for access to live audio rooms.
After a handful of competitors took on Tinder with video-based dating, Tinder this week introduced a feature that allows daters to upload up to nine videos to their profiles. It also added a speed-dating feature called “Hot Takes” that lets unmatched users chat for a short period before swiping left or right, from 6 pm to midnight on weekdays.
Streaming & Entertainment
YouTube for iOS is officially gaining support for picture-in-picture in the U.S. The feature will allow all users, both free and paid, to watch YouTube while using other apps on their iPhone.
Kuaishou, the operator of China’s second-largest short-form video app behind TikTok (Douyin in China), reaches 1 billion monthly active users. The company says the MAU figure includes all of its existing platforms in China, plus its Kwai and Snack Video apps in international markets.
Wattpad and WEBTOON merged their studio divisions to create Wattpad WEBTOON Studios. The deal follows South Korea-based Naver’s recent acquisition of Wattpad in a transaction estimated to be more than USD$600 million, which aligns the two storytelling and entertainment divisions. Both will benefit from the company’s data-driven approach to sourcing content from storytelling apps to turn into TV shows, movies and books.
New titles came to Google Stadia, including Madden NFL 2022 — the first sports title to launch on a cloud gaming platform. Google Stadia’s Android TV app also launched on the Play Store with a “Coming Soon” message.
Player spending in U.S. mobile sports games rose 16% year-over-year to $648.8 million, according to Sensor Tower data. The top app by player spending in the U.S. between June 1, 2020 and May 31, 2021 was Golf Clash from Playdemic, which generated $132.8 million. The No. 2 and No. 3 grossing Sports titles were 8 Ball Pool from Miniclip and Fishing Clash from Ten Square Games.
More than half of the $175 billion earned by the games industry this year will come from mobile games, per Newzoo and Arm’s annual report. Mobile games will be increasingly high-fidelity and cross-platform, the report said.
Classic mobile game Jetpack Joyride is also being added to Apple Arcade, following a recent announcement that more classic games would be soon added to the subscription gaming service.
Health & Fitness
Google and the state of Massachusetts got busted by silently installing the state’s COVID-tracking service, MassNotify, on users’ devices without consent. The auto-installed version isn’t an app and instead is only available as a setting users could enable or disable.
Government & Policy
Indian microblogging app Koo is selling itself as a partisan Twitter alternative in Nigeria by supporting government restrictions on social media platforms.
A French court has set a date in the case over allegedly abusive App Store developer contracts brought by the finance ministry against Apple. The hearing will take place Sept 17, 2021, and could influence Apple’s decision to change developer terms and agreements.
Google may soon face antitrust claims over its Play Store from several U.S. states,Reuters reported. A group of state attorneys general may file a lawsuit against Google as early as next week, the report claims, citing sources. The investigation is being led by Utah, Tennessee, North Carolina and New York.
MAJORITY raised $19 million in seed fundingfor its mobile banking service for migrants. The app offers a $5 per month subscription that offers an FDIC-insured bank account, debit card, mobile credit, and at-cost international calls. The round was led by Valar Ventures, with participation from Avid Ventures, Heartcore Capital and several Nordic fintech founders.
Mobile commerce startup Via raised $15 million in Series A funding for its suite of mobile marketing tools for e-commerce apps. The round was led by led by Footwork, the new venture firm co-founded by former Stitch Fix COO Mike Smith and former Shasta Ventures investor Nikhil Basu Trivedi. The startup has generated $51 million in sales since May 2020.
Viva Republica, the maker of Korean financial super app Toss, raised $410 million at a $7.4 billion valuation. The app offers standard neobanking features, as well as P2P payments, money transfers, loans and more.
Sporttrade raised $36 million for its sports betting and stock trading combo service, which is set to release its app in New Jersey later this year. Investors included former heads of Nasdaq and MGM Resorts.
EA is acquiring Warner Bros. Games’ Playdemic mobile games studio for $1.4 billion in cash. Playdemic is best known for “Golf Clash,” a top mobile game in the U.S. and U.K. with over 80 million installs to date.
Charlotte, N.C.-based mobile payments platform Payzer raised $19.5 million according to an SEC filing. The company offers an end-to-end management platform for contractors on a subscription basis.
Happs raised $4.7 million in post-seed funding for its multicast livestream platform aimed at the creator economy. Users can broadcast live to Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Twitch simultaneously via the app, and view live comments from all supported social media sites.
Amazon’s AWS is acquiring the secure messaging app Wickr, which has been providing services to government and military groups and enterprises. Wickr had raised just under $60 million in funding, per Pitchbook data.
Image Credits: Brave
Alternative browser Brave this week introduced its own search service, Brave Search, now available in beta across all platforms — including web, Android and iOS. The service is different from other search engines because it does not track or profile users, and it leverages its own search index for answering queries instead of relying on other providers. Its ranking algorithms will be community-curated and open. Soon, it will also offer options for both an ad-free paid search and an ad-supported search option, allowing users to decide how they want to proceed.
Brave Search was announced in March when Brave acquired Tailcat. The company says the new service will later this year become the default in the Brave browser.
Image Credits: Moonbeam
Kayak’s co-founder Paul English this week officially launched Moonbeam, a podcast discovery app that leverages a combination of machine learning and human curation to create a newsfeed-style stream of audio content, similar to Podz. Podcasters can also select clips of their shows to feature on the app. Plus, the app allows fans to tip creators directly — and Moonbeam doesn’t take a cut. The app learns what sort of podcasts you may like based on how you interact with those it features, so your recommendations improve over time. Moonbeam can also serve as your podcast player, offering the ability to play back full episodes.
(Quick, painful aside: On the podcast I explained that Apple completely broke the method @LaunchCenterPro has been using for Home Screen customization. We now have to remove the feature from the app and somehow explain it to our users who paid for that feature. It’s crushing.) pic.twitter.com/k5nOVZHDXz