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UberX drivers honk horns in downtown Seattle to protest low wages

Hear those horns in downtown Seattle? It’s the sound of angry UberX drivers fed up with the way they’re being paid. The frustrated contractors are gathering outside of Uber’s Seattle office at Smith Tower for a rather loud protest. They are part of a new group called Seattle Ride-Share Drivers Association that met on Wednesday to discuss a recent price… Read More

Vittana founder Kushal Chakrabarti.

Educational microloan non-profit Vittana shutting down

Vittana, the Seattle non-profit that facilitates micro-loans to students in developing countries, is closing down. The organization sent an email to its supporters Friday morning notifying them of the news. “Vittana has never been a conventional charity,” wrote CEO Robin Wolaner. “One of our founding beliefs was that once we reached scale, we could do our work… Read More

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Ex-Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer pledges to help bring NBA basketball back to Seattle

Steve Ballmer may now own an NBA franchise in Los Angeles, but he’s going to do everything in his power to help bring back professional hoops to Seattle. The former Microsoft CEO made the pledge during a fantastic hour-long interview on Thursday with KJR’s Mitch Levy, during which the former Microsoft CEO detailed his path to becoming the owner of the Los… Read More

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Tech Moves: New CEO to take roost at Angry Birds maker; former Blue Nile exec joins Rightside board; and more

—There’s a new CEO heading to Angry Birds maker Rovio. The Finland-based game company announced today that Pekka Rantala will take over the top spot at the game maker, replacing Mikael Hed, who is joining the board. Rantala most recently worked at beverage company Hartwall, and before that spent 14 years at Nokia, overseeing the… Read More

BoldIQ President and CEO Roei Ganzarski

Startup Spotlight: BoldIQ crunches real-time data to help organizations optimize business operations

The World Health Organization (WHO) earlier this week announced that an “unprecedented” number of healthcare workers are infected with the deadly Ebola virus, raising questions about resource allocation and global health crisis management. The WHO cited shortages of personnel, scarcity and misuse of protective equipment, and medics working far more than the number of hours deemed safe. Crisis management of… Read More

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Sidecar CEO responds to Uber’s questionable recruiting tactics: ‘I can’t say I’m surprised’

The Verge story that published earlier this week and exposed Uber’s questionable recruiting tactics was a shock to many. After learning how Uber’s independent contractors take Lyft rides as a way to recruit new drivers — and sometimes canceling those rides to avoid being caught by Lyft — many vowed never to use Uber again. Sidecar CEO Sunil Paul, however,… Read More

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GeekWire Calendar Picks: Silicon Beach meets Seattle tech, Bellevue Tech Hive, and more

The (somewhat contentious) phrase “Silicon Beach” has surfaced to describe the few miles between Santa Monica and Venice that have emerged as the heart of Southern California’s burgeoning tech scene. The affluence of the entertainment industry and idyllic weather continue to draw startups and venture capital firms to the region. Although Silicon Valley and Seattle still outrank SoCal as tech… Read More

infoSpace

Former eBay VP Peter Mansour named president of InfoSpace

Peter Mansour, who led eBay’s Bellevue operation and served as the company’s vice president of shipping and marketing technologies, has been named president of InfoSpace, the Internet search business that’s now a part of Bellevue-based Blucora. Earlier this week, Mansour was publicly announced as general manager of eBay’s Seattle area operations, replacing Ken Moss who… Read More

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Gamers can pre-load Destiny on their Xbox One starting today

For Xbox One owners that want to avoid waiting in line late at night to purchase Destiny, Microsoft is allowing people to pre-load the highly-anticipated game on their consoles. That means those that pre-order the first-person shooter can pre-load a $59.99 digital version of the game onto their Xbox One and begin playing at 12:01 a.m. on Sept. 9. Sony… Read More

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T-Mobile shares rise after Deutsche Telekom expresses interest in sale

Shares of T-Mobile went up today after Bloomberg reported that Deutsche Telekom, T-Mobile’s parent company, is willing to negotiate a sale for the wireless carrier. Bloomberg noted that Deutsche Telekom, which owns 67 percent of the Bellevue-based U.S. carrier, is entertaining offers that value T-Mobile at $35 per share or more. This comes after Deutsche Telekom turned down… Read More

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UberX drivers quit working in Seattle to protest lower wages

Some UberX drivers in Seattle are no longer working for Uber as a way to protest how they’ve been treated by the transportation company. About 100 drivers from a new group called Seattle Ride-Share Drivers Association gathered Wednesday to show their frustration with a recent price reduction Uber has implemented. Back in June, Uber lowered prices for… Read More

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How to win at PAX Prime: Tips from a PAX veteran

Heading to PAX Prime this weekend? So am I! In fact, I’ve attended every day of every PAX Prime since 2006, when a 3-day all-weekend pass cost just $35—the same price as a one-day pass to PAX Prime 2014. All told I’ve spent 25 days at PAX over the last 8 years. Based on those… Read More

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Microsoft’s Nadella set to visit China; company says plan predates antitrust probe

Satya Nadella is preparing to take his first trip to China as Microsoft CEO, as reported by Reuters overnight, but the company says in a statement this morning that the travel plans predate an antitrust investigation into the company by Chinese authorities at the State Administration for Industry and Commerce. “Satya’s trip was planned before the Chinese… Read More

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Microsoft debuts ‘dual use’ OneDrive app for Android

Microsoft’s new OneDrive cloud storage app for Android, released this morning, reflects one of CEO Satya Nadella’s goals for the company — bridging work and personal lives in “dual use” experiences. It’s the first single app to integrate both OneDrive for Business and the standard OneDrive experience for consumers, allowing users to access work and business… Read More

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Urban Airship launches cross-platform interactive notifications service

Interactive push notifications are going to increase in use this year, with Apple announcing that users will be able to interact with and respond to notifications while their phone is locked, and Google launching the same capability on Android 4.3 last year. Portland-based mobile analytics and push messaging powerhouse Urban Airship is taking advantage of the new capabilities by… Read More

Aaron Easterly with Caramel on the GeekWire podcast

Barking up the right tree: Rover’s dog-sitting marketplace sees massive growth

Two weeks ago, DogVacay CEO Aaron Hirschhorn said that he thought his dog-sitting startup was an order of magnitude larger than its close competitor, Seattle-based Rover.com. It seems he may have spoken too soon. Rover announced today that its revenue has increased by 575 percent year-over-year, blowing past DogVacay’s 200 percent jump. While Rover won’t release exact… Read More