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Showing posts from May 3, 2018

Apple Introduces New Security Measures To Defeat GrayKey Password Cracker

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The next update to iOS 11 ill ship with a new USB Restricted Mode, intended to offer users some protection against the GrayKey device, which government agencies around the world are using to bypass iOS device security.
The new mode will turn off data transmission over the Lightning port if the device hasn't been unlocked for seven days. Once that limit has been reached attempts to use the Graykey tool will be fruitless. With the GrayKey device requiring several days to defeat the iOS password, this effectively puts a time limit on how long an agency can have the iOS device before needing to start trying to unlock it. 
The concept is good, but I think Apple hasn't got its timeframes right here. If it had set the lock out of the Lightning port to three days rather than seven it would have achieved near 100% protection against GrayKey.

Apple iPhone 7 Plus Ad Recognised At Awards Show

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Apple’s advert for the iPhone 7 Plus “Barbers”, which focused on the new Portrait Mode, depth of field effect which its dual camera array allowed, has been awarded at the ADC Advertising Awards show.Advertising has been a real strength for modern Apple, effectively showing off the best features of its products to potential customers, selling them on a lifestyle which fits the Apple ideal.

HTC Had A Terrible Q1 - But Made A Profit Anyway

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HTC had a terrible first quarter of 2018, all but halving sales from 2017, and calling into question the company’s long term viability once more. Operating loss was $175m, with a net profit booked as a result of a $1.1bn injection of cash from Google, after last year’s purchase of HTC’s smartphone team.At that rate of burn, Google’s money isn’t going to keep the wolf from the door for long.With the new U12 due to launch later this month, you have to feel that HTC is now in the last chance saloon. Unless the new flagship leads the company to profitability there’s the very real prospect of HTC exiting the smartphone market.A sale of the part of the smartphone business Google didn’t get to a company with the marketing muscle to relaunch the brand would be the ideal outcome, and the current separation of the Vive VR and HTC smartphones into different brands suggests this is the business’s main hope.

Land Rover - 70 Years Of Adventure

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Land Rover is seventy years old and the company is celebrating with a look at those who gave the brand it's spirit of adventure - epic road trips taken at a time when most vehicles weren't guaranteed to get you to the end of your commute.
For all that Land Rover fetes its adventurers, the remarkable thing about the Land Rover was the way it became a workhorse, not just in the UK, but across the world. For every one that crossed continents or completed epic adventures there were a thousand that did nothing more than provide years of solid service down on the farm, or as trucks for service providers or with armies and police forces.
Which is probably what makes them so special.

Google Revamps Its News Service

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Google has announced at IO that it has completely overhauled its news service in order to better surface news which is of interest to you. That means five topics in your Assistant card stack with the headlines Google's AI thinks might interest you and a link to go to full coverage for a broader take on the news.
Sounds promising, as long as Google's definition of 'broad' includes all competing viewpoints. Otherwise we risk a sanitised news service presenting just a limited range of views.
The new News will be rolling out to new users over the coming months.

Microsoft Changing Revenue Model For Consumer Apps

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The Windows Store continues to be a disappointment, and it just doesn't seem as if Microsoft has been able to persuade developers or customers of the value in using Store apps, rather than Win32 versions acquired outside of the Store.
At Build this week it took the first step to address that problem, and its answer is cash. Specifically a redrawing of the split between Microsoft and developers in order to persuade them to re-engage with Windows 10 Store publishing.
For consumer apps, Microsoft will now give developers 85% of the revenue when a Store app is purchased. If the developer sends the customer to the Windows Store, either as a result of a click on a web link, an advert from a campaign or any other referral; the developer will get 95% of the revenue.
It's a clear challenge to developers to bring apps to the Store in order to benefit from these new rates.
Unfortunately it only addresses half of the problem. Whilst the iTunes App Store and Google Play Store returns Bill…

Google's Duplex Is A Leap Forward In Voice Assistant Technology

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You have to hand it to Google, this is far away the biggest step forward in voice assistant technology since Apple sprung Siri on the world with the iPhone 4S.
Watching the video, it's just astonishing what Google is able to achieve today. What this technology will be able to do in a couple of years time is mouth-watering.
In one step Google has moved ahead of Amazon, and blown Apple and Microsoft completely away.

Uber Plans Self Flying Taxis, In The Week That Risk Taking In Software Is Blamed For Fatal Autonomous Car Accident

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In what seems to be an attempt to emulate Elon Musk and use carefully timed high profile news items to try and distract from bad news, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi announced the company's flying taxi, with testing expected to begin in 2020.
This comes within hours of reports which suggests that the death of Elaine Herzberg, the pedestrian killed by an Uber autonomous car, was caused by a software error. The reports say that the sensors attached to the car detected the pedestrian and her bike but the software ignored the sensors and carried on its planned path, striking her fatally.
Reading between the lines it looks very much like Uber's team prioritised a smooth drive over pedestrian safety. One of the issues which autonomous cars have to overcome are false positives - those times when something in the field of vision is incorrectly identified as an obstacle, causing the computer to take evasive action or come to a halt.
This makes for a less than pleasant ride for passengers…

Microsoft Adds Payments To List Of Outlook Capabilities

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Microsoft Pay has to be the least successful payment system since the Golgafrinchams adopted the leaf as currency and decided to burn down all the forests. Now Pay will get a boost as Microsoft makes it the enabling technology behind prompted payments from Outlook web clients and, eventually, desktop clients too.
The solution will utilise Outlook's new Adaptive Cards feature and will allow companies to flag emails as invoice requests when sending, which will then prompt the recipient to pay the invoice through Microsoft's partner services, Stripe and Braintree.
It seems that Microsoft is seeking to turn its apps into platforms, in order to make up for its lack of a mobile platform and reduced focus on its desktop platform. Whether adding this level of app integration will allow Microsoft to keep users loyal to Office 365 platform remains to be seen. Right now it is adding features to the product left, right and centre; and for most users the value proposition is good. 
Office…

New Zealand Football Takes Initiative On Gender Equality

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New Zealand's male and female football teams, the All Whites and Football Ferns respectively, will get the same pay and benefits in future, as the Kiwi Football Association breaks new ground for equality.
Football, and sport in general, has an issue with pay equality. The top male football stars earn tens of million of dollars every year because of the enthusiastic support of the game. Big money comes into football in the men's game, which means its stars can demand huge salaries. The women's game doesn't get the support, coverage of sponsorship to come anywhere close to paying whole teams the sort of money that even average Premier league players can command.
In New Zealand things are rather different. Rugby and the All Blacks consume all of the media attention, and football gets very limited exposure. To the point where the A-League are threatening to kick New Zealand's team, Wellington Phoenix, out for failing to generate sufficient gate receipts.
The All White…

iPad And Android Phone? Use Pushbullet To Get The Best Continuity Feature

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If you’re in the unusual position of pairing an Android phone with an iPad, or indeed a Mac, and are missing out on the functionality Continuity gives iPhone users, there is a tool which can get you to parity.
Pushbullet is a pretty awesome tool for sharing files, links and notifications, but the Mac and iPad versions don’t support text messages.
Don’t let that put you off though, because the web version does - and it works on both Mac and iPad. Install the Android version to your phone and use the web version to message from your Mac or iPad. It’s not the full Continuity feature set, but it is the most useful.

Apple Mandates iPhone X App Support From June - More Super Retina Displays Coming

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Developers submitting apps or updates to the App Store from July will have to use the latest iOS 11 developers kit and support the iPhone X Super Retina notched display if they want to make it through review.The news was announced on the Apple Developer website and suggests that the iPhone X notched display will become a standard going forward. The rumour mill suggests that the iPhone X will be replaced by two versions of the same design, a large and small version, and this change backs that rumour up.

Microsoft Your Phone - A Pushbullet Clone To Sync SMS And Notifications To Windows 10

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Pushbullet is a great little service which allows you to access key features from you phone on your PC. That includes file sharing, SMS, notifications and sharing links. Pushbullet even works from a web browser, so you don’t have to install it on the device you want to access your phone from. I use it this way on my iPad to access my Android phone.

Microsoft has decided it wants in on this action and has revealed a new Windows 10 tool called Your Phone, which will effectively do much the same as Pushbullet. With Apple already allowing users with Macs, iPads and iPhones to do all this and more; whilst limiting what third party apps can do, it’s clear that this is really about adding functionality to Android phones.

Except most users who want to do this will probably benefit from the additional flexibility of doing it from Pushbullet.

This will be yet another tool designed to crack the synchronisation of smartphones and Windows, following on from Cortana, Microsoft Launcher, Photos and a …

Nissan Leaf Gets New Ad Featuring Margot Robbie

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Nissan has a new ad for the Leaf, which doesn’t mention the Leaf and talks about the wider reasons why you’d choose an electric vehicle.

Nissan’s new ambassador, Australian actress and director Margot Robbie features, doing what all Australians do, which is mostly surfing, but does sneak a drive of the Leaf in, right at the end.

Microsoft Goes After iPad With Surface Pro Ads

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Microsoft released a who heap of new shorts for the Surface Pro, clearly targeted at the iPad. Each of the videos entitled ‘Surface Pro the perfect laptop for...’ and briefly proposing certain scenarios.

Even though the ads call the Surface Pro a laptop, most of the scenarios exclusively feature the pen, and the Surface Pro in tablet mode.

They aren’t bad ads by any stretch of the imagination, however I can’t help but feel that they lack the emotion to connect with customers in the way that Apple’s ads manage to do.

F1: Screw The Draft, Bring Back Winter Testing

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New F1 Chairman Chase Carey wants to make F1 exciting for race fans 12 months of the year, without actually extending the season. He likened the idea to something like American Football's draft, which is apparently a way of weighting the selection of new blood teams can hire based on the last season's performance.
Which is obviously never going to work in F1. To be honest I think he was searching for an analogy rather than serious suggesting an F1 draft, but just in case, let me reiterate that would never work in F1.
Having got that out of the way, how can we help Chase with his search for out of season excitement?
Well there were two things which used to happen to keep fans interested back in the day. The Trans-Tasman series and winter testing. The former is no longer relevant now that we have an Australian Grand Prix, but the latter could certainly be an option to spice things up.
Winter testing used to be the opportunity for teams to try out new ideas for the coming season…

Microsoft Shows How Software Enables Higher Yields For Farms In Australia

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The Yield is a Microsoft partner using software to improve the efficiency of farms in Australia. The video highlights how the use of software, hardware and AI changes the game for farmers in different areas across the country.
The need to improve the yields delivered from farms is well known, although increasing the volume of oysters farmed around the Australian coast is unlikely to do anything to improve global hunger, the technologies showcased, clearly have great potential.
It's interesting that the data used to provide these improvements has always been available, but its only now that the data is able to be turned into the sort of intelligence which takes the guesswork out of farming.

Hawaii To Get First Fuel Cell Buses From BYD

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BYD and the US Hybrid Corporation have teamed together to bring the first fuel cell powered bus to the road. The clean air vehicle, which uses hydrogen as a power source for its fuel cells, will go into service in Hawaii, serving the country's main airport in Honolulu.
The vehicle will be based on BYD's existing K9 electric bus platform, integrating fuel cell technology rather than batteries to deliver power for the electric motors. The buses will be assembled in the US.
BYD has already seen much success with its modern, clean air bus platforms being adopted widely in China. With tens of thousands of new electric buses being adopted every quarter in China, the company is on a path to record growth. This deal, which expands its offerings and reach can only be good for the company.
It is inevitable that electric bus adoption across the rest of the world will soon start to catch up with that of China, even if it's just because of the significantly lower lifetime costs of run…

Kia Introduces Electric Niro, Bringing More Normal To The EV Market

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Kia’s Niro is a bog standard small family SUV which is available to buy today in petrol, hybrid and plug in hybrid versions. It is the most normal of small SUVs. Now you can own an all electric version, with Kia’s announcement of the Niro EV.

This is what the EV market needs right now, electric cars which are cars first and EVs second. The choice of drivetrain spreading across as many models as possible.

The Niro EV has an impressive theoretical range of 400km, which should do wonders for those worried about range.

My only concern is with pricing. Here in NZ the petrol Niro sells for a shade under $35k, with the PHEV version costing $56k. If the EV is even more expensive it’s unlikely to find many buyers at all. And that would be a disaster. Even with Auckland’s new fuel tax a buyer of an electric version of the Niro is likely to need decades to recoup the additional upfront cost of the vehicle in fuel savings.

For now the Niro joins other normal EVs as being a niche curiosity. Premium …

ZTE Seeks Stay Of US Trade Ban

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According to the South China Morning Post, ZTE has requested a stay of execution in the US, seeking a delay of the order which prevents US companies from doing business with the Chinese OEM.

In addition, Chinese Government officials are said to be in talks with US counterparts, to prevent what could be the destruction of ZTE as a viable business.

The outcome of these talks is likely to depend upon who is prepared to play hardball. The US Government appears to have viewed ZTE’s embargo busting trade with Iran in the dimmest light and having already punished the company financially, is seeking to destroy it too. The Chinese Governemt is unlikely to want to allow that to happen.

For now any purchase of a product from ZTE should be undertaken with caution, as there’s a very real prospect of the company not being around to back up its products in the near future.

iPhone Microphones Being Disabled By iOS 11.3

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Apple seems to be struggling with delivering reliable iOS updates just at the moment. The latest issue sees iPhone 7 and 7 Plus models which have been upgraded to iOS 11.3.1, disabling the microphone and preventing calls. Some users also see speaker and proximity sensor issues, which may or not be related.Apple has already intimated that iOS 12 will focus on reliability rather than new features, and that’s good to hear, because iOS updates have been of questionable quality for a while now.Why Apple has so many issues, when it has such a limited fleet to test against, is of concern though. For this particular issue there may be a component of hardware problems. Apple has also issues a knowledge base document for this issue, whcih can be found here.With Apple advising repair centres that microphones should be tested and at least suggesting that out of warranty devices will be prepared at no cost to the customer, it seems to be doing the right thing by its customers. That’s important and…

Apple iMac - There’s No Step Three

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The use of Jeff Goldblum to voice over these Apple iMac adverts twenty years ago was inspired. This was the pick of the bunch. As someone who worked in the business in the 90s, I can tell you that the prospect of setting up their new PC was the number one concern for computer buyers.

The iMac changed all of that and this ad made that obvious to everyone.

F1: Ayrton Senna’s Donington Triumph Remembered Twenty-five Years On

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F1 in the late 80s and early 90s was defined by the brilliance, determination and skill of Ayrton Senna. From his arrival with Toleman in 1984, through the Lotus years and finally at McLaren, he bestrode the sport like a colossus. Ayrton won 41 of his 161 races, but for me there is no question about the one which was the greatest: the 1993 European Grand Prix.

The one and only modern Grand Prix to be held at Donington Park, it was a race blighted by changeable weather conditions, a race almost made for the incredible feel and mastery of slippery conditions for which Senna was renowned.

On a dry circuit Senna would have stood no chance, the Williams-Renault was just so much better than the rest of the field. Alain Prost would have run away and hid in the dry. In the rain however things would be different. In qualifying, in the dry, Prost had been more than one and a half seconds faster than Schumacher and Senna, who were the fastest drivers not driving a William-Renault. That’s an un…

Is This A Marketing Fail Or A Ploy By HTC

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The teaser for the next HTC phone dropped earlier this week, revealing the new flagship’s release date, set upon an image of some smartphone components.Not components of the new flagship U12. Or indeed of any HTC mobile phone. Instead it is the internals of an iPhone 6.So either an epic marketing fail - and we’ve had a few of those from HTC over the years - or a most excellent troll of the media. Let’s really hope its the latter, because sloppy marketing is the last thing HTC needs right now.Update: HTC has told CNET this is intentional. Here's the statement from HTC:We're glad people are studying our teaser so closely. The fact people have noticed parts from different phone models is exactly right – they represent the jumble of parts (specs) that our competitors inelegantly cram into their phones, while the space in the middle outlining HTC's next phone represents 'a phone that is more than the sum of its specs.' To be clear, none of the parts illustrated in the t…

Apple And Warren Buffet Hoovered Up Shares Whilst Apple Stock Was Down

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Whilst the world and his dog was reacting to analysts predictions of a disastrous quarter for Apple, Apple itself and Warren Buffet were both buying shares as the company’s stock was tumbling. Buffet secured some 75 million of them, which brings his total investment in Apple to something over $40bn. Through his fund Berkshire Hathaway, he is now the second largest shareholder in Apple.It seems we go through this with every passing quarter recently. Bad news about sales leaks out, warnings are given by analysts and the share price falls. At that point clued up investors are buying up shares and making massive profits. I’m not suggesting Buffet or Apple are involved in this in any way. But the fact that this cycle is repeated strongly suggests someone is manipulating Apple stock holders for their own advantage.As the graph shows, Apple’s stock is back to its pre-manipulation levels, but in the two weeks before earnings were reported stock tumbled. I can’t be the only one who finds this…

F1: Barcelona Test An Opportunity For Kubica To Claim Race Seat

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So far this season Williams has been disappointing. Even with last weekend’s fortuitous result for Lance Stroll, the team sits at the bottom of the constructors table with less than half of the points of the next lowest team.It’s been a difficult start to the season and neither driver has particularly shone, which makes next weekend’s Barcelona testing more important than ever.Reserve driver Robert Kubica will take the wheel at the test and a good performance will give the team something of a headache. Rest one of its underperforming race drivers and give Kubica a chance to restart the team’s season, or run the risk of falling further behind their rivals.

The biggest problem Williams faces is that both Stroll and Sirotkin have brought large sums of money into the team to guarantee their race seats. Shifting them out is likely to be costly and it is this which is the biggest hurdle to a race return for Kubica.

Apple UK Seems To Be Out To Damage Its Own Reputation

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What’s happening to Apple UK and how has it managed to fall foul of the BBC’s Watchdog consumer show?After Apple was caught downgrading performance of older iPhones in order to protect aging batteries, the weight of public opinion forced it to respond. That response was a change to allow users to disable the throttling ‘feature’ and an offer of discounted battery replacements.In the UK it looks like Apple is doing everything to weasel its way out of those discounted battery replacements, at least if Watchdog is to be believed. The company are refusing to replace batteries unless iPhones sent for repair are in perfect condition. One user complains he was refused repair because his iPhone frame was dented, another because his microphone and speaker were faulty. Those repairs ended up being completed by third party repairers.Apple is justifying this by an apparantly unpublished clause in its warranty. It’s strange behaviour from Apple, given that this is supposed to be an act of contriti…

The iPad Delivered Its Fourth Consecutive Positive Quarter

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Remember when the talk was of the iPad being a dying product? It came off the back of three years of falling sales and Apple’s inability to deliver a product which reversed that trend.The iPad Pro was expected to be that product, but its failure to ignite the market showed that Apple didn’t actually know why sales were falling.The introduction of the new entry-level iPad last year changed that. The fifth generation took the iPad Air chassis and packed in newer internals whilst dropping the price. Suddenly sales were on the up and they haven’t stopped climbing since.

The introduction of the sixth generation iPad can only accelerate those gains, adding as it does, crowd pleasing Apple Pencil support.

Against a background of a tablet market which is continuing to skrink - another 3% reported by IDC this quarter - the iPad’s sales turnaround is quite a success.

The iMac Is Twenty Years Old

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When Apple announced the iMac twenty years ago it promised the biggest computer launch of all time. What it actually delivered was the product which enabled all that has happened since. The iPod, the iPhone and the iPad can all trace their roots to the arrival of the original iMac.

When Steve Jobs returned to Apple it was a train wreck, publications had the company on deathwatch and Michael Dell even suggested it was time to shut down and return any remaining value to shareholders.

It was a bad time to be a Mac owner. Software availability was extremely limited, accessories were all but non-existent and there was no retail presence at all.

The iMac changed everything. It looked like no other PC on the market and it threw away all that was legacy in favour of simplicity. USB ports may have appeared on PCs first, but until the iMac arrived actually using a USB device was an exercise in frustration.

Then there was the simplicity - something Apple played upon with some very clever ads featur…

Microsoft Education Introduces Trial In A Box For New Zealand Schools

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With Chromebooks and iOS offering viable alternatives to Windows in education, and with both Google and Apple focusing on education globally, Microsoft has taken the front foot in the battle for Kiwi schools, offering a new Trial In A Box program, designed to help schools define their IT solutions to the benefit of students.
The trial in a box involves a half day session demonstrating Office 365 for Education, the Intune device management tool and the Microsoft Store for Education. Schools who undertake the trial before the end of June will receive two Windows 10 laptops to keep, ostensibly to allow them to continue to evaluate the services which will be set up for them during the trial.

Schools can visit this webpage to arrange their trial.

Smartphone Market Showing Signs Of Consolidation As It Matures

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IDC has released its numbers for smartphone sales in Q1 and there's further evidence that the smartphone market is beginning the kind of shakeout that happened in the PC market over the last decade.
Overall sales were down by 3%, but three of the top five OEMs saw sales growth.
Biggest winner was Xiaomi, which nearly doubled sales compared to the same quarter in 2017. That moved it ahead of Oppo into fourth place, although if you were to lump together Oppo's sales with its sister BBK brands, Vivo and OnePlus, it would be closer to Huawei's third place than the fifth place it occupies on its own.
Huawei saw a 14% increase in sales, despite its problems in the US. Its plans of passing Apple and eventually Samsung to top the smartphone market look like they'll have to go on hold for now though.
Apple closed ground on Samsung as the iPhone X defied analysts claims of poor sales to be the best selling phone in the quarter.
The big loser were all the other brands in the mar…

Sony Mobile Back In The Red, Hopes Pinned On 5G Introduction

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After a brief run of small, but welcome profits, Sony Mobile is back in the red, once more seeing shrinking revenue thanks to falling sales. The company's CFP Hiroki Totoki said that the company is looking to leverage 5G to bring the division back to profit and it sees huge potential in the new standard.
I'm not so sure. Sony has failed to excite with its smartphones, producing worthy devices which don't really have an impact outside of Japan. In too many cases it looks very much like a flagship Xperia is designed as a shop window for other manufacturers looking to buy from the components division.
Sony Mobile's losses are small compared to the profitability of the remainder of the company's overall profits, and I suspect that they are of little concern to management. Sony will retain a mobile presence because it needs to be in the market, but it will do no more than that.

Don't Get Spooked Into Using A Password Manager

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Password managers are being touted as the best way to protect your access passwords around the web, and with the confluence of World Password Day and Twitter's problem with storing plain text passwords, a lot of sites are recommending you start using one.
Don't be fooled. A password manager only gives the illusion of security and adds a sheen of ease of use. As long as its password vaults are stored in the cloud your exposure is greater than any one service getting hacked.
Putting every facet of your online life behind one password and trusting once company with all those keys makes no sense at all, even if there hadn't already been examples of these services being hacked.
If you don't trust yourself to maintain a sensible and secure password scheme in your head, the next best option is to go with an offline password manager, such as Password Safe. This open source product has versions for all platforms, however ensure you avoid the sync options on Android/iOS/Mac ver…

Twitter Recommends A Password Change After Discovering Plain Text Passwords

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Twitter has uncovered an internal error which means that all users passwords have been stored unencrypted and in hashed in an internal log file. Whilst the company has no evidence that the file has been accessed anywhere or the passwords have leaked, it is still recommending users change their passwords anyway.
You should do this as a priority. More importantly, if you re-used this password anywhere else you should change it there too.
The problems with this sort of information is that once it exists it becomes incredibly difficult to control. Twitter hasn't indicated how long this error has been in existence and what measures it has taken to destroy all copies of the data.
Addressing the error itself is fine, but if that file has been written to storage there's a good chance it can be recovered. Backups of the information onto lower performance storage, like spindle disks and even tape, potentially increase the risk; and then there's the use of multiple data centres to p…

Sony Has Now Offloaded 50% Of Its Spotify Stake

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Spotify’s first earnings call wasn’t warmly received by the stock markets, and news that Sony has drastically reduced its share holding in the streaming company is unlikely to be seen as any better news.Sony cashed in a quarter of a billion dollars of stock the day that Spotify listed, and has reduced its stock further by selling almost twice as many shares since. That’s going to make for a nice bonus for Sony shareholders this quarter at least.Sony reports that it expects to book gains against its remaining Spotify stock, which suggests that the sale didn’t relate to any lack of confidence in the way Spotify’s business is runniing.

HTC Reveals Date For New Flagship, Future In The Balance

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The HTC U11 was one of the best Android phones of 2018, and HTC is expected to deliver a similar level of quality with the replacement, which may be called the U12. Leaks have shown a phone with dual front and rear camera arrays, a stretched display and slim bezels. Most importantly it looks like there’s no notch. With the bulk of the company’s smartphone teams now working for Google, HTC will be closely watched to see exactly what it can deliver and what it means to for the future of the company.The answer to that question will arrive on May 23rd.

Twitter Leaves Windows 10 Mobile Behind

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Twitter has replaced its UWP app with a new PWA, ending direct support for the Windows 10 effectively killing its service for Windows 10 Mobile users who are sticking with their platform. The lack of true PWA support in Windows 10 Mobile means those users might as well just use the mobile website for Twitter.

Now Windows Mobile has been dead for a while now, but users have been able to get by with existing services. This is the first of the big services to leave the platform, and marks the beginning of the end even for those users who are still hanging on.

Shame really, as Twitter’s Windows Mobile app was always one of the better apps, and for a long time Windows Mobile was the best mobile platform for accessing Twitter.

LG G7 ThinQ - Will Anyone Buy This LG Flagship

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LG has launched the G7 today and it's a solid looking flagship device, with a small bezel large screen design, latest SD845 CPU and 4GB of RAM. There’s even a sound chamber built into the chassis to improve performance of the stereo speakers, as well a high performance DAC for the headphone jack.Things go south from there though. LG has embraced the notch and although it follows Huawei in allowing you to mask it the use of an LCD scree rather than OLED means the masking effect won’t be as effective.Then there’s the LG name, which seems to hold its phones back even when they are real contenders. Perhaps the problems being faced by Huawei in the US will allow LG to pick up sales from customers prepared to look away from Samsung.

Even then, with HTC, Sony and Google all offering high end flagships with showroom appeal, LG may still struggle. Much will depend on pricing. A cut down price might help LG regain some standing in the market, a premium one might leave it floundering once mor…

Google, Samsung Pass On Nokia Health, So Withings Founder Will Buy It Instead

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After reports that both Google and Samsung were interested in taking Nokia's failed Health acquisition off the Finnish company's hands, it comes as something of a surprise that the company will return to its roots, with Eric Carreel, who co-founded the company as Withings, stepping in to take control.
No word on what the deal was worth, but it's a safe guess that it was a smaller amount than Nokia paid to buy Withings in the first place.
Did Samsung and Google decide there was no value in the acquisition, or did the EU's preference for a 'local' buyer influence the outcome?
Whatever the behind the scenes machinations which wrought this deal, it's expected to complete by the end of Q2.

Facebook Dating? On Your Head Be It

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Facebook will launch a new dating service which promises to pair up people who aren't friends on Facebook but are looking for love. The more data you provide Facebook the better the match it can make. What could possibly go wrong with that?
In reality this is a continuation of Facebook's existing business model, offering you services, games, love; and in return receiving more and more data about you which allows it to better predict the way you'll behave, the adverts you respond to or the way that you will vote.
Whether Facebook's algorithms are good or not doesn't matter, that it will have more data on you means it has more points of contact to connect you to like minded individuals. That the extra data will also be used for other purposes is unlikely to bother those who use the service. Until a scandal occurs and users say they didn't understand the transaction they were making.
For Match and Tinder, as well as other online matchmaking services, the writing …