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Swedish tourism lets you call 1 number, talk to random Swedes

Swedish tourism lets you call 1 number, talk to random Swedes

Did you ever get bored and had the urge to talk to a random Swedish number out of the blue? If you've ever had a fantasy that specific and, frankly, odd, then dream no more. Sweden has just answered your prayers. Boasting to be the first country to have its own, official, national phone number, the Swedish government is inviting anyone and everyone outside of Sweden to dial +46 771 793 336 (or +46 771 SWEDEN) and get the chance to talk about anything and everything with a random Swede.

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Facebook Instant Articles is adding video advertisements

Facebook Instant Articles is adding video advertisements

Facebook is going to add video advertisement support to Instant Articles, a platform for publishers that presents articles more quickly to the social network’s users. In addition to the new video advertisements, Instant Articles will also get a new ad unit block on top of the ones already available, something Facebook anticipates will boost ad impressions more than 20-percent.

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Lenovo now has Ashton Kutcher promoting Moto phones

Lenovo now has Ashton Kutcher promoting Moto phones

"The mobile phone is stuck." If you were told that those words were uttered by Ashton Kutcher, you'd probably start hearing it in the same tone as actor's "Dude, where's my car?" phrase. But Mr. Kutcher's tone on the Motorola blog where he uttered (wrote, actually) those words was serious, very serious. He deplores how innovation in smartphones have basically stagnated, likening it to TV technology where focus has simply been on bigger screens and lower prices. His solution? Why to get a Lenovo Moto smartphone, of course!

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Like it or not, Firefox Suggested Tiles have arrived

Like it or not, Firefox Suggested Tiles have arrived

Mozilla may be a non-profit organization, but that doesn't of course mean it's not interested in raising some cash on the sides. Even if the court of public opinion says otherwise. Months after it launched its contentious Directory Tiles, it has rather silently started pushing its perhaps even more criticized Suggested Tiles feature to the Firefox browser. Unlike the previous Directory Tiles, this one is clearly, and formally, more advertisement centric. But don't worry, as Mozilla claims it hasn't made a profit from it. Yet.

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Amazon will start rejecting Flash ads next month

Amazon will start rejecting Flash ads next month

The Internet’s collective move against Flash — the frequently vulnerable software that increasingly has more downsides than up — just gained a big new ally: Amazon. The Internet retailer announced this week that it will soon stop accepting Flash advertisements, making it the latest company to gravitate away from Adobe's longstanding and much-maligned software. This announcement follows news earlier this month that Yahoo’s advertisements were used to spread malware that, ultimately, used vulnerable versions of Flash for success.

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Netflix users reclaim 140 hours others spend watching TV ads

Netflix users reclaim 140 hours others spend watching TV ads

Discussions of cord-cutting usually touch on the financial and less-limited aspects of eschewing traditional television. The latter of those two talking points are less relevant today as networks embrace on-demand and live streaming, but there's another aspect of ditching cable that, well, cable can't compete with: the lack of advertisements. Some video streaming services like Hulu still have commercials, but others like Netflix don't, and those who use Netflix are regaining a significant number of hours otherwise spent watching TV commercials.

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Study: Ad-blocking software use is rising at breakneck speed

Study: Ad-blocking software use is rising at breakneck speed

AdBlock and apps like it are the bane of ad-supported websites, and an occasional bit of browser extension-based guilt for users. On one hand, no one wants to deal with ads, at least not the poorly utilized ads found on many websites. At the same time, many users recognize that their favorite websites probably depend on those advertisement dollars, and so they may disable AdBlock for certain websites. Many ad-blocking users don’t bother doing the latter, however, and that makes a new report from Adobe and PageFair particularly worrisome for companies.

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Yahoo’s ads spread malware via hackers, vulnerable Flash

Yahoo’s ads spread malware via hackers, vulnerable Flash

Yahoo was recently hit by hackers who used its advertisements to deliver malware to an unspecified number of visitors on several of its own websites, it has been revealed. The malware campaign carried on for a full 7-day week before Yahoo, having been alerted by the researchers who discovered it, took it down. Yahoo says it is investigating the matter, and though it has not revealed how many people were affected, it said through a spokesperson that the initial reports "grossly misrepresented" the scale of the attack.

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Forever 21 shows Instagram on giant screen made of thread

Forever 21 shows Instagram on giant screen made of thread

What would be the best way to display Instagram posts to a large crowd? Your immediate and of course logically expected answer would be a large LCD screen or something like it. Fashion retailer Forever 21 naturally won't settle for something so plain, so conventional, so boring. Hiring the expertise of rapid product company BREAKFAST, Forever 21 setup what could be the world's first, and probably last, giant screeen that uses not LCDs or even LEDs to show content. It uses nothing than colorful threads for that same purpose.

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Microsoft’s first Windows 10 ad wants you to think of kids

Microsoft’s first Windows 10 ad wants you to think of kids

With barely two weeks before the momentous occasion, Microsoft is unsurprisingly oiling up all the marketing machinery it can muster. Aside from its Upgrade Your World party, Redmond has just released the first ever video ad for Windows 10. Now you might think this will geek out over all the new features in the upcoming OS. Well, yes and no. Sure it mentions them in passing, but what the new Microsoft really wants you know is how human Windows 10 will be. And what better way to say "human" than with kids?

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Snapchat adds tap to view feature and more

Snapchat adds tap to view feature and more

Snapchat has updated its mobile app, and with the update comes a change to a commonly used feature: opening snaps and stories. In the past you had to press and hold the screen to view these things — with the update, though, you can just tap to view instead. It might not seem like much, but all that holding was taking up precious milliseconds, and if you’re a frequent Snapchat user the difference will add up. That’s not the biggest feature among the changes, though.

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Comcast tipped in agreement to acquire Visible World

Comcast tipped in agreement to acquire Visible World

A source has cropped up claiming that Comcast has entered into an agreement to acquire Visible World, a television advertisement targeting firm — something that, if the deal becomes official, will boost Comcast’s advertising efforts. Visible World is based out of New York and is a firm that opens up avenues for marketers to hawk products to more relevant audiences based on data acquired from their set-top boxes and more. Such could usher in more targeted advertisements on Comcast's cable service.

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