Over 60 investors have come together to launch BitAngels, the first multi-city angel investment network and incubator designed to encourage support of Bitcoin startups. The investment firm was set up by the founder of Engine.co, the founder of SocialRadius and Martketwire, and an angel investor, with the aim of promoting entrepreneurship in the cryptocurrency market. The firm has amassed an initial fund of approximately £4.4 million, which will be invested at a rate of around £13,000 per startup. Support and mentoring will also be offered from its offices in Austin, San Francisco and New York. Bitcoins have been around since 2008 and are continuing to catch the attention of investors, including the Winklevoss twins. However, the volatile nature of the currency, which has been subjected to numerous hacks and thefts, makes it debatable if it will ever become a mainstream alternative to standard online purchasing options.
More rumours about Apple's next mobile OS have emerged ahead of June's Worldwide Developers Conference, when the Cupertino company is expected to reveal iOS 7. Apple's senior vice president of industrial design is reportedly overhauling the system by dropping its current lifelike design in favour of a simpler interface. Unnamed sources describe the new iOS 7 as "black, white, and flat all over," tipping new black-and-white user interface elements and a long-awaited move away from heavy textures. Speculation about changes to the next iteration of iOS began in November, when Apple dropped its top iOS chief, Scott Forstall, and added "Human Interface issues" to Ive's plate, sparking rumours that the end of skeuomorphism was nigh. Citing sources familiar with Apple design meetings, 9to5Mac claims that many of the current textures — such as linen on the notifications panel and leather in the calendar app — will be replaced with flat black-and-white colouring. For more potential OS changes, follow the link above.
Fellow smartphone giant Samsung has announced that it will hold a 20 June event to show off what's next for its Galaxy and Ativ brands. The gathering, dubbed "Samsung Premiere 2013," will take place in London at 7pm BST. For those not in the UK, the event will be webcast on YouTube. The grey invite provides few other details, except to show zoomed-in edges of certain products, one of which appears to be a laptop. Samsung unveiled the Ativ moniker at IFA 2012. As an exec explained at the time, Ativ is the reverse of Vita, which means "life" in Latin. "[It] is a pledge by Samsung to make everyone's life easier," the company said. At this point, Samsung is much better known for its Galaxy lineup of smartphones, phablets, and tablets. It recently launched the Galaxy S4, which surpassed 10 million sales last week.
Finally, China appears to have delivered one of its most telling blows in the covert cyber-conflict with the US, after reports surfaced that critical weapons systems in the States have been compromised in hacks orchestrated by the Chinese regime. The Washington Post claims that more than two dozen systems have been breached, including designs critical to US missile defences, as well as combat aircraft and ships. The Post was supplied with a confidential report prepared for Pentagon leaders by the Defense Science Board, an advisory group comprising government and civilian experts. Senior military officials believe the attacks are part of an ongoing cyber-espionage campaign from China against American industry and government agencies, though the report does not accuse the Chinese of stealing any designs in the breaches cited. The Pentagon is believed to be unwilling to launch a full-scale cyber-war with China at present, though President Obama has already been cleared to escalate offensive action if it becomes necessary. This may be the case sooner rather than later, with US energy companies also coming under attack - this time from Iran - according to government officials last week.