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TC Roundup: Twitter adding 'mute' feature to remove unwanted content, Yahoo launches mobile-first native ads & other stories

Twitter adding 'mute' feature to remove unwanted content: Micro-blogging site Twitter has introduced a new account feature called 'mute' to people who use its iPhone and Android apps and Twitter.com. In the same way you can turn on device notifications so you never miss a Tweet from your favourite users, you can now mute users you'd like to hear from less. Muting a user on Twitter means their Tweets and retweets will no longer be visible in your home timeline, and you will no longer receive push or SMS notifications from that user. The muted user will still be able to favourite, reply to, and retweet your Tweets; you just won't see any of that activity in your timeline. The muted user will not know that you've muted them, and of course you can unmute at any time. (Twitter Blog)

Airtel introduces new pricing strategy to drive data uptake: Bharti Airtel plans to cut billing charges starting Thursday midnight of its postpaid customers after they exhaust their 3G and 2G data limits, a move that will increase stickiness with existing subscribers and push more prepaid subscribers to postpaid, which brings higher margins and revenue for the company. Under the new plan, if a 3G data customer with Rs 250 rental exhausts 1 GB data limit, then another 1GB of 3G data capacity will be added to his quota for an additional Rs 250. This way, customers can add up to three times of their data capacity in the plan, people familiar with the development said on Thursday. (The Economic Times)

AT&T said in talks to buy DirecTV for About $50B: AT&T Inc., joining the ranks of US TV, Internet and wireless providers racing to consolidate, is in advanced talks to acquire DirecTV for about $50 billion, according to people familiar with the matter. The purchase would give AT&T a national satellite-TV provider to combine with its wireless, phone and high-speed broadband Internet services as competition ramps up. The pool of pay-TV customers is peaking in the US because viewers are increasingly watching video online, and the combination would keep DirecTV from being on its own with just a TV offering and no competitive Internet package. (Livemint.com)

Microsoft says it is ready with 4G devices: Software and mobile handset major Microsoft is ready with 4G band devices, said a senior executive today. "As soon as the operators decide about the 4G, we can offer them the technology. We have been LTE-ready with devices starting 2012; we have the technology. As the India LTE landscape has been recently clarified, we are working closely with operators. We also support FDD band 3 (1800MHz) which was recently auctioned," said Raghuvesh Sarup, sales director at Nokia India, a subsidiary of Microsoft Mobiles. (The Economic Times)

Yahoo launches mobile-first native ads: Yahoo has rolled out new, image-rich native ads — designed to be mobile-first, seamlessly integrated with the content, and targeted to the right consumer to drive even better results. Available within the Yahoo Gemini marketplace, the new mobile ads include larger, richer graphics and photos for brand storytelling, combined with the performance brands need. While clearly marked as sponsored, the ads will look and act just like the content around them, and will appear within users' personalised content streams, article pages and image galleries across Yahoo mobile and desktop products. When people tap on the ads, they can visit the brand's site directly or view a full-screen visual for even greater interactivity and impact. (Yahoo blog)

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