Sarah Perez

Sarah currently works as a writer for TechCrunch, after having previously spent over three years at ReadWriteWeb. Prior to becoming a professional blogger, Sarah worked in I.T. across a number of industries, including banking, retail and software.

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  • Uptime, YouTube’s experimental app for watching videos with friends, opens to all

    Uptime, YouTube’s experimental app for watching videos with friends, opens to all

    YouTube’s experimental app Uptime, which lets you watch videos with friends while reacting and commenting, has now opened up to all users. The app was first launched in March of this year, from Google’s internal incubator, Area 120, as a means of testing a more interactive and social way to watch YouTube. However, it initially required an invite to use it. That requirement was… Read More

  • Tumblr says it fixed the ‘Safe Mode’ glitch that hid innocent posts, including LGBTQ+ content

    Tumblr says it fixed the ‘Safe Mode’ glitch that hid innocent posts, including LGBTQ+ content

    Tumblr this week introduced a “safe mode” for its service, which combines the company’s previously available “safe search” functionality with a new filter that would hide “sensitive” content from the site’s main Dashboard, using an overlay. However, Tumblr quickly came under fire for hiding “sensitive” content that was anything… Read More

  • 42 percent of smart speaker owners have bought a second device (or more)

    42 percent of smart speaker owners have bought a second device (or more)

    Here’s a promising metric for Amazon, in terms of its ability to maintain its current lead in the voice computing market: 42 percent of smart speaker owners have two or more devices, according to Edison Research. This figure is seemingly growing, too. Last year, there were about 1.18 Amazon Echo devices per Alexa household, but this new finding pushes the number to around 1.5 to 1.6… Read More

  • YouTube’s mobile app will soon better display all video formats, add messaging

    YouTube’s mobile app will soon better display all video formats, add messaging

    On the heels of a major redesign of its desktop site which delivered an overall cleaner look-and-feel and a “dark mode” for nighttime watching, YouTube this week announced it will soon roll out an update to its mobile app, as well. The new app will better support video shot in other formats and orientations, by dynamically adapting its player to whatever video you’re… Read More

  • YouTube TV expands to 10 more U.S. markets, adds more YouTube Red series

    YouTube TV expands to 10 more U.S. markets, adds more YouTube Red series

    YouTube TV, Google’s $35 per month streaming service aimed at a younger demographic of cord cutters and cord-nevers, is expanding to ten more markets, the company announced this week at VidCon. The service had initially launched in April offering streaming live TV and DVR functionality to just five major metros: San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Chicago and Philadelphia. In just… Read More

  • After three days, Skype’s outage is resolved

    After three days, Skype’s outage is resolved

    After three days of connectivity issues that prevented some Skype users from being able to log in, make calls or send and receive messages, the company says it has now fully resolved the problem. What it isn’t saying — at least not yet — is what exactly happened. Read More

  • Do Not Disturb While Driving feature rolls out in Apple’s newest iOS 11 beta

    Do Not Disturb While Driving feature rolls out in Apple’s newest iOS 11 beta

    Distracted driving has become a national safety crisis because of the rise of smartphones. With the release of iOS 11’s latest beta on Wednesday, testers can now get their hands on one of the new mobile operating system’s most important — if not most glamorous — new features: a long-needed “Do Not Disturb While Driving” mode. Read More

  • Amazon’s Echo Show gets more practical by adding support for smart home camera feeds

    Amazon’s Echo Show gets more practical by adding support for smart home camera feeds

    Amazon today announced a notable new trick for its next-generation Echo device, the Echo Show (aka the one with the screen), which could make it a more compelling purchase: it will be able to display the live streams from a number of smart home cameras. Already, companies like Ring, Arlo, Nest, August, EZViz, Vivint, Amcrest, Logitech Circle 2, and IC Realtime have created Alexa Skills that… Read More

  • Virgin Mobile goes iPhone-only, offers a year of service for $1

    Virgin Mobile goes iPhone-only, offers a year of service for $1

    In attempt to woo customers away from competitors, Virgin Mobile USA today announced a deal that will see it transitioning to become an iPhone-only carrier. The company is also partnering with Apple to activate Virgin’s services in Apple’s stores. To kick off this change, Virgin introduced a limited time promotion that will see it giving away a year’s worth of unlimited… Read More

  • Mobile gaming sessions down 10 percent year-over-year, but revenue climbs

    Mobile gaming sessions down 10 percent year-over-year, but revenue climbs

    The U.S. is leading the world in mobile gaming, accounting for 20 percent of all sessions played. That’s the word from a new industry report on the mobile gaming landscape, released this week from Flurry. That puts the U.S. ahead of markets including India, China, Brazil and Russia, it found. However, gaming sessions are dropping, even as the money to be made in games climbs, and the… Read More

  • Ebay will now match Amazon’s, Walmart’s and others’ prices on over 50,000 items

    Ebay will now match Amazon’s, Walmart’s and others’ prices on over 50,000 items

    As Amazon and Walmart continue their battle to become the world’s largest retailer, another longtime rival in the e-commerce business, eBay, is now stepping up its game as well. The company this morning announced a new Price Match Guarantee for over 50,000 items across its site – promising that it will have the best deal online, or it will match the lowest price of a… Read More

  • Spotify now lets you build playlists with friends inside Messenger

    Spotify now lets you build playlists with friends inside Messenger

    Earlier this year, Spotify introduced a new Messenger bot that let users share song clips with friends. Today, the company is expanding on that bot’s functionality to now allow a group of friends to build a playlist together via Messenger – even if not everyone in the group is on Spotify. The feature, called simply Group Playlists for Messenger, is accessed through… Read More

  • Microsoft’s Dictate uses Cortana’s speech recognition to enable dictation in Office

    Microsoft’s Dictate uses Cortana’s speech recognition to enable dictation in Office

    Dictate, a new project from Microsoft’s experimental R&D group, Microsoft Garage, is launching today to offer a way to type using your voice in Office programs including Outlook, Word and PowerPoint. Available as an add-in for Microsoft’s software, Dictate is powered by the same speech recognition technology that Cortana uses in order to convert your speech to text. This is… Read More

  • Tumblr rolls out new content filtering tools with launch of ‘Safe Mode’

    Tumblr rolls out new content filtering tools with launch of ‘Safe Mode’

    Tumblr this morning is rolling out a significant update to its content filtering system with the launch of a new “Safe Mode” for browsing content on its site. While the company already offered the ability to filter explicit content from its search results, Safe Mode goes a step further to also hide sensitive content in your Tumblr Dashboard. The Dashboard is Tumblr’s feed of… Read More

  • Skype outage causing connectivity issues, company says it’s a “global incident”

    Skype outage causing connectivity issues, company says it’s a “global incident”

    Microsoft’s recently updated communications app Skype has been suffering connectivity issues which began on Monday, June 19th, and are continuing today. After hours of downtime on Monday, the company confirmed the issue via a blog post and tweet, which stated that an incident was causing users to either lose connectivity to the application or lose their ability to send and receive… Read More

  • Netflix debuts choose-your-own-adventure stories for kids

    Netflix debuts choose-your-own-adventure stories for kids

    Netflix today announced the debut of “interactive” stories on its service – a sort of choose-your-own-adventure style of storytelling, where viewers get to decide what happens next. The new stories, whose development was rumored earlier this year, will initially cater to Netflix’s younger viewers, the company says, noting that kids in particular are already inclined… Read More

  • Mozilla brings its private web browser Firefox Focus to Android

    Mozilla brings its private web browser Firefox Focus to Android

    Late last year, Firefox introduced a new, private web browser for iPhone, called Firefox Focus. The browser by default blocks ad trackers and can erase your browsing history, including passwords and cookies. Now, over a half-year later, Firefox is bringing the Focus browser to Android devices, with some added functionality. Like the iOS version, Firefox Focus remains a minimalistic browser… Read More

  • Instant bank transfers are coming to PayPal and Venmo

    Instant bank transfers are coming to PayPal and Venmo

    PayPal announced this morning a plan to speed up money transfers between its service, Venmo and users’ bank accounts for those with supported MasterCard and Visa debit cards. This new “instant transfers” service will be available at a rate of $0.25 per transaction, and will deliver funds in a matter of minutes, instead of the day or so it typically takes when using PayPal… Read More

  • Outlook 2016 for Mac now lets you send emails later, track messages & more

    Outlook 2016 for Mac now lets you send emails later, track messages & more

    Microsoft this morning announced a series of new features coming to its Outlook for Mac 2016 software for Office 365 users, including those that will allow you to schedule your emails, track the message’s delivery, and find out if the email was read, among others. Some of the changes are rolling out first to those who receive early updates through Microsoft’s Office Insider… Read More

  • Hasbro launches a subscription service for games

    Hasbro launches a subscription service for games

    Toy company Hasbro is belatedly entering the subscription service market with today’s launch of Hasbro Gaming Crate – a service that ships a themed box containing three board games to users every three months. The service, which costs $49.99 per crate, offers two options – one designed for adults in search of new party games, and another with games better suited for… Read More

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