Apple Is Ramping Up R&D to Find Its Next Big Product

Amid stagnant growth and declining profits, Apple is pouring money into research and development. August 2, 2019 3 min read This story originally appeared on PCMag Apple’s Q3 earnings came with good news and bad news. The tech giant’s services segment continues to grow steadily and helped buoy Apple’s overall revenue growth, but profits dipped more than 12 percent amid declining iPhone sales. Though Apple’s services, wearables, and accessories products are still showing healthy growth, the iPhone has been its cash cow for a decade. As the smartphone market stalls and iPhone sales stagnate, Apple needs a breakthrough technological innovation the likes of which we haven’t seen much of during the Tim Cook era. And the company knows it. So it’s not surprising that Apple spent a higher percentage of its total sales revenue in Q3 on research and development than it had in any quarter since before the launch of the iPhone. The company spent […]

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Netflix, YouTube, Prime Video and Hulu Dominate Streaming, for Now

The big four streaming apps make up the majority over over-the-top (OTT) viewing right now, but that may change. July 12, 2019 2 min read This story originally appeared on PCMag In the past few months, everything Netflix has spent billions preparing for has begun to come to pass. Preceding a new wave of video streaming competition from heavy hitters including Apple, AT&T, Comcast, and Disney, all launching in the next year, Netflix announced it’s losing its two most popular shows. Friends will depart for HBO Max in 2020, and The Office is heading to NBCUniversal’s service in 2021. According to a recent comScore report, 64 million US households used over-the-top (OTT) streaming services in March 2019, through a smart TV, media streaming device, game console, and other means. The report found that Netflix reaches 75 percent of those households, followed by YouTube at 55 percent. Amazon Prime Video and the now fully Disney-controlled Hulu reach 44 and 32 percent of those OTT households, respectively. […]

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Everything We Know So Far

Facebook’s big blockchain play will reportedly create a crypto-based payments ecosystem across Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, WhatsApp and beyond. June 18, 2019 11 min read This story originally appeared on PCMag Facebook’s long-rumored cryptocurrency is about to get its big debut. The formal launch is expected sometime in 2020 after a testing phase later this year, but the social network is gearing up to officially announce it with a white paper on Tuesday laying out the basics of its crypto token. Here’s everything we know so far. We’ve heard rumblings about a secret blockchain project since last May, when Cheddar’s Alex Heath reported that Facebook had been exploring blockchain and the creation of its own cryptocurrency for use within its apps since 2017. Facebook’s goal is to launch a virtual token allowing the company’s billions of users across Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp to make digital payments. This includes both internally among other users within […]

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Justice Department to Block T-Mobile-Sprint Merger

Antitrust officials at the DOJ are poised to block the deal between the two wireless carriers, days after the FCC announced it planned to approve the merger. May 22, 2019 2 min read This story originally appeared on PCMag Days after the FCC signaled its intent to support the merger between T-Mobile and Sprint, the Department of Justice has reportedly decided to block the deal. According to CNBC and Reuters, the DOJ’s antitrust division has recommended that the agency file a lawsuit to block the deal between the two wireless carriers. The agency will reportedly make its final decision in the next month. The FCC’s seal of approval came after the carriers agreed to sell off Sprint subsidiary Boost Mobile to spur competition at the low-cost end of the market. T-Mobile and Sprint also agreed to numerous nationwide milestone goals around the 5G infrastructure rollout over the next half-dozen years. However, the merger always needed […]

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Facebook’s Dead Users Will Outnumber the Living Sooner Than You Think

Every user who passes on joins the rapidly swelling ranks of Facebook’s army of the dead. May 3, 2019 3 min read This story originally appeared on PCMag Death is coming for us all. But in the internet age, those who remain are faced with the very 21st-century problem of figuring out what to do with the data, social media accounts, and other digital remains of those who’ve passed on. Facebook has been planning for this eventuality. The company rolled out a Legacy Contact feature several years back that lets you designate a loved one to take over your account when you die. And it recently announced a Tributes section on deceased users’ profiles, giving friends and family a place for a memorial. Issues have arisen that the company never foresaw. Facebook is now using AI to stop users from getting painful notifications, such as birthday reminders or flashback posts from friends and family who […]

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the World Wide Web Turns 30

Celebrate the internet’s 30th anniversary with live-streamed World Wide Web Foundation events featuring Sir Tim Berners-Lee, contribute to a crowdsourced Twitter timeline, or travel back in time by firing up the original web browser. March 12, 2019 3 min read This story originally appeared on PCMag In March 1989, CERN computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee published a proposal for a “web” of hypertext documents that could be viewed through a “browser.” Three decades later, the internet has reshaped the fabric of communication, global access to information, and society at large. How better to celebrate the internet’s 30th birthday than with one big globe-spanning virtual party? The World Wide Web Foundation has a full slate of festivities planned, beginning with a speaker lineup featuring Berners-Lee at the CERN lab in Geneva, Switzerland, which kicked off early this morning (2 a.m. ET). Lee is then jetting to London’s Science Museum for discussions on how the internet has changed our lives and […]

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President Trump Signs Executive Order Establishing the ‘American AI Initiative’

The plan is light on details and loaded with China subtext. February 12, 2019 6 min read This story originally appeared on PCMag President Trump today signed an executive order establishing the “American AI Initiative” to guide AI development in the United States. The Trump administration released details about the initiative ahead of the announcement breaking down five “key pillars” of the overarching U.S. AI strategy, but details are scant on funding, timelines, and the larger geopolitical forces at play behind America’s long-awaited move to establish official policy overseeing and governing AI development. The Obama administration released a report in 2016 that broke down factors such as automation and economic transformation, cybersecurity, research, and foreign policy, but stopped short of providing anything beyond a potential regulatory framework. The American AI Initiative is currently broken down into five core areas: Funding: The government will direct federal agencies to “prioritize investments” in AI research and development, but there are […]

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Facebook Gets More Political With ‘Community Petitions’

The new feature will let users create and support petitions, and tag politicians and local officials. January 23, 2019 3 min read This story originally appeared on PCMag Though usage trends have changed and engagement declined, Facebook has made itself indispensable to millions through features like Events, Fundraisers, Groups, Pages and other community organization tools. Now the network is pushing event further into local activism with Community Actions, a new petition feature allowing users to rally around a cause and tag public officials. As TechCrunch reports, Community Actions will start rolling out in the U.S. this week. The feature essentially builds Change.org-style petitions into the Facebook News Feed, letting users add a title, description, and image for their petition and tag local government agencies and officials. From a Community Action, users can then create related events, fundraisers, call your representative drives, or join the petition with a click of a button. Users will be able to see […]

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Amazon May Split HQ2 Between Crystal City, Va., and Long Island City, N.Y.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Amazon is in final negotiations and plans to split its second headquarters evenly between two East Coast cities. November 6, 2018 3 min read This story originally appeared on PCMag As leaks and rumors hit a fever pitch, Amazon is reportedly on the brink of announcing the winner(s) of its nationwide urban pageant for the lucky city that will be home to its second U.S. headquarters, nicknamed HQ2. According to The Wall Street Journal, Amazon plans to split its HQ2 evenly between two of the biggest metropolitan areas on the East Coast: Crystal City, Va., (right across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C.) and none other than New York City. The Journal says a decision and announcement could come as soon as this week. The New York Times overnight corroborated the Journal’s story, and added that the New York location will reportedly be in Long Island City, a neighborhood in Queens just […]

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Instagram Has Announced Its New Chief

Instagram co-founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger announce their successor a week after their abrupt resignation and another tumultuous week for Facebook. October 2, 2018 3 min read This story originally appeared on PCMag A week after Instagram co-founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger abruptly announced their departure from the Facebook-owned social app, Instagram has a new chief in former Head of Product Adam Mosseri. Krieger and Systrom announded the succession in a blog post, effective yesterday. Mosseri has been with Facebook since 2008, working in various design and product roles on Facebook mobile and the News Feed before migrating over to Instagram earlier this year. Mosseri had been widely rumored as the heir apparent to the job. He confirmed the news on Twitter: Humbled and excited by the new role leading Instagram, thank you @Kevin @Mikeyk for all you’ve done. https://t.co/ViVQUI5z8i — Adam Mosseri (@mosseri) October 1, 2018 It’s been a messy […]

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