Tech | Published | LinksFever
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Apple’s earnings call yesterday was an upbeat one, and with good reason. The company reported that the holiday quarter saw it earn $88.3B in revenue and make $20B in profits – both all-time records. Revenue grew 13% year-on-year, earnings per share were up 16%,

Questions about how well the iPhone X has been selling were also answered, albeit somewhat obliquely. While Apple never breaks down iPhone sales into models, as that’s information it doesn’t want competitors to have, CEO Tim Cook did say that the iPhone X has been the top-selling model every week since its launch.
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The iPhone X and Samsung Galaxy Note 8 have similar camera hardware: Dual-rear cameras, 2x optical zoom, dual-optical image stabilization (OIS), 4K video and Portrait Mode. But despite these similarities, photos and videos from each look pretty different.

I compared these camera twins in a variety of locations around San Francisco. Both phones were left in Auto HDR and iPhone pictures were saved as HEIC files instead of JPEG -- a new file format that makes photo files smaller than JPEGs with minimal loss to image quality.
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The SoftBank Vision Fund has struck again. This time, it's investing $300 million in on-demand walking and dog care startup Wag. Wag has also brought on Hilary Schneider, formerly of identity theft protection company LifeLock, to serve as the company’s new chief executive officer.

Last year, Wag was reportedly in talks with a handful of investors, including NEA and Kleiner Perkins, The Information reported last week. SoftBank was interested, but reportedly didn’t want to invest in a round less than $300 million. That’s when NEA and Kleiner Perkins reportedly dropped out.

Wag, which launc
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hed back in 2015, offers on-demand walking and boarding for pups. The startup initially launched in Los Angeles and New York City before expanding to more than 100 cities across the country.
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Smart speakers have been called the Trojan horses of the smart home. They sit on your shelf, always listening for their wake word. They then send your queries and commands to the cloud, always learning more about you in the hopes of becoming even more useful. Amazon started the trend, first putting its Alexa assistant in the Amazon Echo, then the Show, Echo Plus, Dot, Tap, and Spot as well as allowing third-party device makers such as Sonos to have access.

The Google Home was next, followed by the Google Home Mini and Max, all of which feature Google Assistant and are making huge strides in
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the voice assistant market. They’re lagging behind the competition in some areas but dominating in others. Now it’s Apple’s turn, with the recently unveiled HomePod. Although we’ve only done preliminary tests of the latest smart speaker, we do have some idea about how these products will stack up against one another in terms of design, features, and pricing. Read on to find out more.
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So that flamethrower that Elon Musk teased The Boring Company would start selling after it ran out of its 50,000 hats? Yeah, it's real – and you can pre-order one now if you want need a ridiculous way to spend $500.

Musk revealed the flamethrower on Saturday, after some digging tipped its existence late last week. The Boring Company Flamethrower is functional, too, as you can see from this Instagram featuring some Boring Co. staff, presumably well safety trained, firing off two of the things IRL.
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Google has been dabbling in the realm of Internet-based calling for years. First it was Gmail, then Hangouts got in on the action. While there were ways (a... by Cody Toombs in APK Teardown, Applications, Downloads, News
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He’s back again. Acclaimed KGI Securities’ analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has been prolific in January and now he brings us insight into Apple’s iPhone plans for 2018 and not everyone is going to like them…

In three new reports each attained by MacRumors, Kuo states Apple will launch three iPhones based on the iPhone X design this year: a second generation 5.8-inch iPhone X, a 6.5-inch ‘iPhone X Plus’ and a long awaited and supersized 6.1-inch ‘iPhone X SE’. So far so good and there’s more good news as well.
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A recent survey from McAfee highlights some interesting trends and serious concerns for how people secure and protect their personal information as we head into Data Privacy Day.
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Raenette Yangson was sentenced to three years in federal prison yesterday after it was discovered that she had embezzled more than $750,000 from her employer. She worked for Western Construction and Equipment in Anchorage, Alaska, and it took a bizarre…
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China’s crackdown on Bitcoin miners has prompted a flood of second-hand equipment onto the market, easing a global bottleneck for the servers used to generate the coins, North American crypto miners say.
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Apple wants to change how you access your medical records.

Today the company officially unveiled its plan to make iPhone owners' medical records available at the touch of a button via its Health app.

Though not entirely unexpected (rumors of Apple's plans have been swirling for months), the announcement confirms that Apple's ambitions in the healthcare space go far beyond simple fitness tracking. The feature, which will be available to iPhone and Apple Watch owners once the iOS 11.3 update rolls out later this year, stands to completely change how people access and track their medical h
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istory and care.
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Samsung is officially announcing the long-awaited Galaxy S9 smartphone on February 25th, at a special event at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

It's pretty minimalistic, but it contains one big hint as to what this event holds. For starters, there's the big 9, which seems to give the game away.

Otherwise, the only thing we have to go on is the tagline: "The camera. Reimagined." This tracks with a leak earlier this month, holding that the the biggest difference between the previous S8 and the new S9 will be found in the camera.
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The Android 8.1 Oreo beta update is now available for the Nokia 8. The software introduces some new features like revamped menus and the correct burger emoji.
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The iPhone X has been with me constantly for more than two months. There’s a lot to like and some not to like.

In this review, I’ll start with the don’t-likes
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HTC has some big news for anyone that owns a U11, at least on Sprint. HTC has received technical certification for the latest software update from the carrier, which means you can expect the Android Oreo 8.0 update to start rolling out on Monday. Good way to start the week, no?

This update will bring all of the regular goodies from Android 8.0 while building on Edge Sense, arguably the U11’s most unique feature. You’ll get picture-in-picture, enhanced notifications, and better security through Google, and more emoji.
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Apple this morning announced the expansion of its "Everyone Can Code" initiative to 70 educational institutions across Europe, and following the announcement, Apple CEO Tim Cook spoke at Harlow College in Essex, one of the schools that will adopt the new curriculum.

The Guardian shared several of Cook's comments, which covered overuse of technology and boundaries for children.

Cook said he believes there are concepts that can't be taught using technology, and in many courses, technology shouldn't dominate.
"I don't believe in overuse [of technology]. I'm not a person that says we've a
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chieved success if you're using it all the time," he said. "I don't subscribe to that at all."

"There are still concepts that you want to talk about and understand. In a course on literature, do I think you should use technology a lot? Probably not."
According to Cook, Apple cares about children out of the classroom, a topic that's notable as Apple investors recently urged Apple to do more to protect children from smartphone addiction.

Apple in early January said in a statement that it thinks deeply about how its products are used and the impact they have on people, including children. Apple takes its responsibility to protect children "very seriously," and has promised more robust parental controls for iOS devices in the future.
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What, you thought they were done? Never one to rest on their laurels,

Apple actually snuck out one last Public Beta build late Friday/early Saturday. This release took a little longer than previous builds to download and install. If you haven't already, set aside a chunk of time this morning and grab it.

Is there anything new in iOS 11.2.5 Public Beta 7? Nope. At least, nothing that anyone but an Apple developer would care about. This has been a rather tame beta cycle, with its biggest feature being an addition to Siri's repertoire. Of course, the emergency bug fixes of iOS 11.2.2 have
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been rolled into this release as well, along with a host of other bug fixes and behind- the-scenes code changes.
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By now many have heard of Amazon's most audacious attempt to shake up the retail world, the cashless, cashierless Go store. Walk in, grab what you want, and walk out. I got a chance to do just that recently, as well as pick the brain of one of its chief architects.

My intention going in was to try to shoplift something and catch these complacent Amazon types napping. But it became clear when I went in that this wasn’t going to be an option. I was never more than a foot or two from an Amazon PR rep, and as Dilip Kumar, the projects VP of Technology, convinced me, they’d already provided agai
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nst such crude attacks on their system.
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Android TV has exploded, basically out of nowhere, in popularity this year. We saw it all over the place at CES 2018, and that expansion is continuing as well. Recently, a Japanese manufacturer has released a new HDMI stick running Google’s OS.

The CCC Air Stick TV is a compact HDMI stick form factor which runs on top of Android TV. The well-equipped device can push 4K HDR10 content and aptX/HD, a first for Android TV. That can be used for high-quality audio playback with Bluetooth headphones or a wireless soundbar.
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Cryptocurrencies are experiencing a price correction, with the size of the market shrinking from about $830 billion a week ago to $570 billion.

The correction is likely a result of several factors. Last week, South Korea's Justice Minister Park Sang-ki said the country is preparing a ban on cryptocurrency trading. Even though other branches of government later said the ban is not finalized, the country's stance towards the cryptocurrency market does seem to be getting tougher.

Charles Hayter, the CEO of CryptoCompare, thinks the unclear future of cryptocurrency regulations in Asia is th
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e main driver for the correction.
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WhatsApp today officially launched its new WhatsApp Business app in select markets, including Indonesia, Italy, Mexico, the U.K. and the U.S., ahead of its planned worldwide rollout. The addition of business profiles and new messaging tools aimed at business customers is part of the company’s broader plan to generate revenue by charging larger enterprises for advanced tools to communicate with customers on the platform now used by over a billion people worldwide.

The WhatsApp Business app is the initial entry point in this market.
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Amazon has reviewed the proposals from potential candidate cities for its second North American headquarters location, and it found 20 of those the most promising. The mayors of these top 20 cities will now fight to the death in a Battle Royale-style island arena… er wait, no actually they’ll just move on the next portion of Amazon’s submission phase, which includes further proposal evaluation and working directly with the candidate cities on getting more info.
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Squash chiefs have long held a desire for the sport to be a part of the Olympic Games and thanks to innovations in technology, their dream may be closer to becoming a reality.
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Twelve Wirecutter reporters and editors spent three days working overtime at CES 2018 to find the stuff that might actually improve your life in 2018.
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Using the world's first phone with a fingerprint scanner built into the display was as awesome as I hoped it would be.

There's no home button breaking up your screen space, and no fumbling for a reader on the phone's back. I simply pressed my index finger on the phone screen in the place where the home button would be. The screen registered my digit, then spun up a spiderweb of blue light in a pattern that instantly brings computer circuits to mind. I was in.
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A few months ago, rumors were floating around that Samsung would unveil the Galaxy S9 – or at least tease it – during CES. Two days into the event, it’s clear that’s not the case; Samsung mobile chief DJ Koh confirmed the device would instead be revealed at Mobile World Congress late February, according to zdnet.com
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Taxi users are facing inflated fares because their position has been wrongly located thousands of miles away.
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As Ripple prices fall, Ethereum takes the chance to return to second most valuable cryptocurrency on the market, behind Bitcoin.
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Encrypted messaging startup Telegram plans to launch its own blockchain platform and native cryptocurrency, powering payments on its chat app and beyond.

According to multiple sources which have spoken to TechCrunch, the “Telegram Open Network” (TON) will be a new, ‘third generation’ blockchain with superior capabilities, after Bitcoin and, later, Ethereum paved the way.
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Acer announced an updated version of the Swift 7 Ultrabook at CES 2018, which it claims is the thinnest laptop in the world, along with updates to its Nitro 5 and Spin 3 models