Hundreds of businesses in London are about to flip the switch on payments via iBeacons

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In Brixton, South West London, hundreds of businesses will soon integrate iBeacons as part of one of the first real-world networks for mobile payments using Apple’s Bluetooth LE iBeacon tech

In Brixton, businesses introduced a local currency in 2009 that eventually switched from paper into mobile payments by text. Around 250 businesses in the area accept the currency, which is meant to keep the money in the community and support smaller independent local businesses. By the starting of next month, the currency will have its own mobile app called Brixton Pound, and iBeacons will make it easy to automatically prompt users for payments. The Brixton Pound organization teamed up with Dingo for the payment solution and kontakt.io for the iBeacon hardware and integration: Read more

A&E and History Channel add live TV stream in iOS apps

A&E Networks has just updated iOS apps for two of its most popular TV channels, A&E and History, with the ability to watch live TV on both iPhone and iPad. The apps, which previously provided full episodes and clips on-demand to users in the US, will now provide a live stream of what’s playing on the TV channels. The live TV feature, however, will require a cable subscription.  Read more

Behind the scenes look at Apple TV app development w/ the new Bloomberg channel

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Unlike its developer program and vast ecosystem of apps on iOS and Mac, there’s not much we know about Apple’s strategy for content on the Apple TV. There’s been a lot of talk that a much rumored refreshed Apple TV set top box— or perhaps even the rumored full-fledged TV set— might also come alongside a more open developer platform with app distribution.

For now, however, Apple is slowly and quietly behind closed doors making deals with select content partners that are building apps for the platform. How is Apple working with developers to build and approve these apps? Does it have an Apple TV SDK that could in theory be released to all developers? With Bloomberg TV today becoming the latest app to launch on the platform, we’ve talked with the people that built the app to get some insight into the Apple TV development process. Read more

Bloomberg launches on Apple TV globally with 24/7 live news stream, on-demand content, iOS integration & more

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Following Apple’s steady release of new content and features for its existing Apple TV platform in recent months, this week it adds yet another as Bloomberg becomes the first channel to live stream business news 24/7 to Apple TV customers. We spoke with Bloomberg’s head of mobile Oke Okaro who told us all about the new Apple TV app.

The majority of the content you’ll find in the new app is the same Bloomberg TV content you’ll find on its website and in its mobile apps but specifically optimized for the larger screen. That includes a live stream of business news, on-demand content with a mix of full TV show episodes and clips, and a special live stream that will appear only for events and breaking news. While there is similar news programming already on the Apple TV through apps like The Wall Street Journal and SkyNews, Bloomberg will be the first to have a 24/7 live stream of business news. That’s compared to the WSJ app which often only live streams content on certain hours throughout the day. It’s also going beyond the other news apps by offering all of its content for free in full-length form in addition to integration with its iOS apps coming in a future update. Read more

Flint mobile billing app adds invoicing, Passbook coupon support, and card scans via camera

iOS users looking to accept payments on their mobile devices now have another option. Flint has just been updated to version 2.0. The app adds several new and useful features for small businesses, such as the ability to create invoices right in the app.

The app also introduces support for Passbook coupons. Merchants can create their own coupons and issue them to customers as Passbook passes. The Flint app can then scan these coupons and apply them directly to a transaction.

The 2.0 update also allows merchants to create orders with multiple items, and scan credit and debit cards using the camera on their iOS device. Cash and check sales can also be tracked within the new app and customers can get receipts for their transactions.

Read more