Talking tech since 2003

Happy Sunday, people, and welcome to another edition of the BestTechie Weekend Wrap-Up. If you’re new to this, it’s the post where we pretty much summarize four of the biggest tech stories from the past week. We didn’t have anything truly earth shattering occur this week, but there were some interesting moves made by some well-known companies and not-as-well-known startups. So we’ll hit on those for sure.

And, by the way, keep your eyes peeled for another post today that will save you some money on electronics.

Now let’s dive into the news.

Rap Genius Drops the ‘Rap’ and Raises $40 Million

The company’s leadership hasn’t been all that “genius,” but rap lyrics annotation startup Rap Genius has still managed to truck along and retain both its popularity and its attractiveness to investors. Those in charge did manage to figure out that deciphering rap lyrics alone would not be a viable business model, so the company is now rebranding as Genius. And, instead of simply annotating rap lyrics, Genius has its sights set a bit higher — annotate everything. Is that an attainable goal? We’ll find out.

aereo-logoAereo Now Considers Itself a Cable Provider

Aereo, the streaming TV company that racked up court win after court win against broadcast companies, eventually suffered its first defeat in the worst place possible: the Supreme Court. Since then, the company has been searching for a way to stay alive, and it appears that it may try to do so by calling itself a cable provider. Why? Because, by doing so, the company is actually afforded some protections under the Copyright Act. This move probably won’t please the broadcast companies, but it could make it possible for Aereo to continue providing its services.

Inbox Wants to Be the Future of Email

Want to put together an impressive-looking technology company? Combine some MIT alums with some veterans from cloud storage service Dropbox. That’s what Inbox has done, and luckily for us, these bright minds have decided to tackle one of the most ancient technologies on the Internet: email. Inbox (the service) is built by Inbox (the team), and the goal is to bring email out of the dark ages by building services on top of a more modern platform. It’s a pretty tall order, and we’ll be keeping an eye on Inbox to see if the company can make it happen.

Microsoft CEO Nadella Reaffirms Commitment to Xbox

Remember all that talk about Microsoft potentially selling off its Xbox business? That’s not happening, according to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, who came out in full support of Xbox in a letter to employees last week. I wrote previously that Microsoft selling Xbox would be insanity, and it appears that Nadella at least sees enough value in Xbox to keep it around. It is one of the most popular brands the company has; doing away with it would be foolish in the long-term. Nadella, by the way, also mentioned Cortana as a “core” part of the future Microsoft experience. So expect to see more of Master Chief’s AI pal in the future.

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