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Google launches Android Studio 2.0 beta with Cold Swap, app indexing improvements, and multi-touch support

Google has released Android Studio 2.0 beta, the latest version of its integrated development environment (IDE).

U.S., Britain consider letting spy agencies, police seek email, chat data from companies

(By Mark Hosenball, Reuters) – U.S. and UK spy agencies and police may soon be allowed to directly ask media companies in each others’ countries for email and online chat data for people being investigated, under a tentative bilateral deal, officials said on Friday.

Indiegogo lays off some employees in restructuring

EXCLUSIVE: Crowdfunding site Indiegogo last month made a round of layoffs affecting a small percentage of employees, VentureBeat has learned.

The Pirate Bay now uses Torrents Time to let you stream all its movies and TV shows

On Tuesday, a new simple solution for streaming torrents directly in your browser showed up on the Web.

Watch us play Unravel, an adorable puzzle platformer from Electronic Arts

Electronic Arts isn’t a gaming publisher known for taking a ton of risks these day, but it is giving at least one smaller, unknown game a chance in 2016.

LinkedIn sheds $11 billion on stock’s worst day since debut

(by Supantha Mukherjee and Tenzin Pema for Reuters) — LinkedIn Corp’s shares closed down 43.6 percent on Friday, wiping out nearly $11 billion of market value, after the social network for professionals shocked Wall Street with a revenue forecast that fell far short of expectations.

Big in Tehran: Inside Iran’s $140M console and PC market

GUEST: I’ve chalked up 2015 revenue for the PC and console games market in Iran to approximately $140 million, based on research firm Newzoo’s latest data, and project it to grow to $167 million this year.

Ubisoft hypes up Trackmania Turbo’s VR capabilities with 360-degree video app

Someone should follow the money to see if Ubisoft chief executive Yves Guillemot has invested heavily in Dramamine or a barf-bag company because his publisher is preparing to release a game that I’m not sure anyone will have the stomach to handle in virtual reality.

Hacker hijacks Dridex botnet to serve free antivirus

If you need a reminder that the term “hacker” should not have a negative connotation, this one is for you.

BMW-backed valet startup, Zirx, kills off consumer business to focus on enterprise

Zirx, perhaps the second-most hyped startup in the we’ll park your car nook of the tech industry — see: Luxe — announced today that it plans to shut down its consumer business at the end of the month.

Twitter says it’s ‘suspended over 125,000 accounts’ related to terrorism

Twitter today said it has suspended more than 125,000 accounts that were used to make threats about or promote terrorist activity, especially as it pertains to ISIS.

BlackBerry confirms layoffs, but not magnitude

BlackBerry has confirmed a MobileSyrup report that the company recently laid off employees at its Canadian headquarters in Waterloo, Ontario.

H1Z1 zombie game splits into two strains — and spreads to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One

The thing about a zombie virus is that it spreads so fast you can’t contain it. Now, publisher Daybreak is finding that something similar is true of zombie survival games.

Scoring high-value customers: You don’t win the Super Bowl with everyone on offense

SPONSORED: This sponsored post is produced by Sailthru. Imagine a Super Bowl coach so fanatical, he invests almost everything in offense.

Professional networking site TalentSky raises $7.5 million to tackle Linkedin

TalentSky, a startup that claims to “represent an evolution in the employment search,” announced today that it took in a $7.5 million series A investment from over 100 different angel investors.

Google confirms Hangouts will now use peer-to-peer connections to improve call quality and speed

Google Hangouts has received a small but important backend upgrade: peer-to-peer (p2p) connections. Google confirmed to VentureBeat that the functionality started rolling out to all users this week.

GamesBeat weekly roundup: Hearthstone’s big changes, and Nintendo’s mobile debut imminent

Welcome to another GamesBeat weekly roundup! This time, Nintendo’s earnings fall a little short of expectations, someone builds a calculator inside Super Mario Maker, and Uncharted 4 gets its own PlayStation 4 bundle.

The DeanBeat: Fallout, Skyrim director Todd Howard earns lifetime achievement award

Todd Howard isn’t a big guy, but he’s going to be honored as one of the giants of the video game industry.

Microsoft, Nokia, and the burning platform: a final look at the failed Windows Phone alliance

ANALYSIS: When Microsoft acquired Nokia’s Devices and Services division in late 2013 and began integrating the storied Lumia brand into its offerings, it was hailed by Microsoft’s then-CEO Steve Ballmer as “a bold step into the future — a win-win for employees, shareholders, and consumers of both companies.” Since then, Microsoft has folded much of its $7.5 billion acquisition into other divisions of the company, laid off thousands of former Nokia employees, slashed its output of smartphones per year, and eventually wrote off the entire purchase in a $7.6 billion impairment charge. Fast forward to early 2016, when we will soon see a quiet launch of what’s widely believed to be the final Microsoft Lumia-branded handset, the Lumia 650.

Messaging app Wiper raises $2 million to launch movie subscription service

Wiper announced today that it has raised another $2 million, bringing its total seed round to $4.5 million as the messaging app expands into entertainment.