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– Scott

YouTube TV 📺 Adds 5.1 Surround Sound to More Streaming Platforms

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YouTube TV has finally rolled out support for 5.1 surround sound across three major streaming platforms — Roku, Google TV, and Android TV, with a few more still officially waiting for the feature.

“We know you’ve been waiting, and it’s *finally* ready. 5.1 Audio is rolling out this week across Google TV, Android TV, and Roku devices,” said YouTube TV through its official Twitter account.

With this, these three devices join the likes of smart TVs from LG and Samsung, as well as older Chromecast models, which already had support for 5.1 audio.

The “5.1 surround sound” feature allows users to have audio from five directional speakers — left, right & center channels in front, two rear channels behind, and one subwoofer. This allows the audio to match the video even more than the more simplistic stereo setup.

YouTube TV is yet to support 5.1 surround audio for Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, and gaming consoles, which the platform said to be still working internally and with partners to enable the feature on those platforms.

Payments Company Checkout.Com Starts 🤝 Accepting Stablecoins

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Online payments company Checkout.com has started allowing businesses to accept and make payments using USD Coin (USDC), a popular stablecoin that’s pegged to the U.S. dollar.

With this move, the payments giant, which competes with the likes of PayPal and Stripe, has become the latest company to adopt crypto payments with stablecoins enablement.

To facilitate the new payments feature, Checkout.com has partnered with crypto-security firm Fireblocks.

The feature will allow merchants to settle payments even on weekends and public holidays, a feature that is currently not possible with fiat currencies.

“Stablecoins started as a fiat-denominated asset used by crypto traders to easily move in and out of more volatile crypto assets,” said Jess Houlgrave, Head of Crypto Strategy at Checkout.com.

“But we believe they will also play a fundamental role in improving the underlying payment landscape — the fact that we’re the first full stack payments provider to successfully pilot an end-to-end solution with weekend merchant-side settlement capability is testament to our commitment to crypto3,” he added.

Lending Protocol TrueFi Launches on Optimism 🎊🎉

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TrueFi, the protocol for uncollateralized lending, powered by the first-ever on-chain credit scores and governed by holders of the TRU token, has become the latest project to launch on Ethereum’s popular layer-2 scaling solution Optimism.

The move is expected to boost demand from non-institutional lenders as it will benefit TrueFi’s lender community to have access to a quicker and cheaper user experience and also gain exposure to a wider pool of retail lenders.

“TrueFi users can now lend, borrow and launch portfolios on Optimism to enjoy dramatically reduced transaction costs and network speeds,” said Rafael Cosman, co-founder of TrustToken in a statement.

He added, “Since Optimism transactions are on average 77x cheaper than Ethereum, we expect greater adoption from non-institutional lenders, hopefully increasing global access to TrueFi’s financial opportunities.”

Several projects have been launched on Optimism in 2022 with the aim of offering users quick transactions and lower gas fees.

Over 40 protocols are currently available on Optimism, suggesting more projects are keen to make use of its features, such as scalability and lower pricing.

Online Messaging Platform Take Blip Nabs $70 Million in Series B Funding 💰

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Take Blip, an online messaging platform for businesses that automates some of the most commonly used messaging services used by companies has raised $70 million in its Series B funding round. The funding was led by the private equity fund Warburg Pincus.

Founded in 1999, Take Blip has a robust operation with over 1,300 employees and nearly 3,000 clients in over 25 countries.

In 2021, the platform reached the 30 billion message mark from client brands that have used its service.

In the last 12 months, the company’s solutions have led to over 220,000 smart interactions between client brands and their consumers.

Over the years, the company has helped its clients to introduce their brands on messaging applications like WhatsApp, Messenger, and Instagram, among other messaging channels globally.

Take Blip customers, which include big companies like Coca-Cola and Nestle, get tools to automate conversations with chatbots that can hand off complex issues to customer service representatives.

Take Blip plans to use the latest proceeds towards product development, mergers and acquisitions, and customer acquisition.

Around the Web 🌐

Instagram Now Lets You Pin up to Three Posts to Your Profile: Instagram is rolling out the ability for users to pin up to three posts, including photos or Reels, to the top of their profile grid. The company says the feature will offer creators more flexibility to express themselves on their profiles.


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