If you have an Xbox Live Gold subscription only to access media apps such as Netflix and Hulu, Microsoft’s recent decision to remove the digital requirement may have left you feeling short-changed. After all, many consumers buy an upfront 12-month subscription to get a discount on the standard monthly fee. To make amends, Microsoft is promising to refund Xbox Live Gold subscribers who will no longer need their membership from June, when the changes come into effect. Payments will be made on a pro-rata basis, calculated from the day of cancellation to when their membership would have normally ended. “Cancellation and pro-rata refund requests must be made by August 31, 2014 and require six to eight weeks for processing,” the company said.
Read the full story at The Next Web.
Shazam Entertainment, the music-identification app, landed small investments from the world’s biggest record companies, according to people familiar with the matter. Warner Music Group owner Access Industries – the holding company of billionaire Len Blavatnik – along with Vivendi’s Universal Music Group and Sony Music Entertainment, are each taking $3 million stakes in Shazam, these people said. All of the shares were purchased from a single third-party investor, according to people familiar with the transactions. Shazam’s most recent valuation was $500 million, a spokeswoman said. She declined to comment on the labels’ stakes. Shazam, which is based in London, helps people identify music playing on the radio or other public setting. For the labels, Shazam’s biggest value lies in its role as a marketing partner.
Read the full story at the Wall Street Journal’s Bits Blog.