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AfterDawn: News

Amazon launches retail operations in Mexico

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 30 Jun 2015 23:52

Amazon launches retail operations in Mexico Amazon has announced today the launch of retail operations in Mexico, giving customers in the nation the chance to buy millions of items.

Until now, Mexicans only had access to the Kindle e-book store, and today's launch was Amazon's largest ever, internationally.

The site is Spanish language and Amazon has also rolled out iOS and Android apps as well as fulfillment services for marketplace users.

Due to a notoriously shaky postal system in Mexico, Amazon has also made it possible to pick up many of your items from hundreds of locations across the nation. These will not be Amazon Lockers, but rather pickup location operated by trusted business partners.

"The expansion of Amazon.com.mx represents Amazon's biggest international launch ever," said Juan Carlos García, Amazon's Country Manager for Amazon Mexico. "With convenient and secure payment options and fast delivery, our goal is to deliver a world-class shopping experience for customers in Mexico."

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AfterDawn: News

Xiaomi launches first smartphone outside of Asia

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 30 Jun 2015 23:32

Xiaomi launches first smartphone outside of Asia Chinese startup giant Xiaomi has released their first smartphone outside of Asia today with the Redmi 2 now available in Brazil.

Besides being sold in Brazil, the company is also manufacturing the devices there. By doing so, Xiaomi gets to avoid the massive taxation electronics companies face on imports. However, the labor and parts are much more expensive in Brazil than they would be back in China.

Brazilian smartphone sales are expected to jump to 64 million this year, making it one of the largest markets on the planet, coveted by all the major smartphone makers.

"It's a major undertaking because up until today, we didn't have that complexity in our supply chain," said Xiaomi's global VP Hugo Barra. Brazil is tough because "it requires re-architecting a lot of our supply chain from the components suppliers to financial systems to everything else."

The Redmi 2 will sell for just 499 reais ($159 USD). The device runs on Xiaomi's own Android-based MIUI operating system, a 720p 4.7-inch IPS display, a Snapdragon 410 64-bit processor and 2MP/8MP cameras.

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AfterDawn: News

Facebook Messenger payment platform now available to all in the U.S.

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 30 Jun 2015 22:37

Facebook Messenger payment platform now available to all in the U.S. Following its initial rollout to users in New York City, Facebook's Messenger payment platform is now available to all U.S. users.

Says the company: "To pay friends via Messenger, all you have to do is add a debit card so you can pay straight from your checking account without fees. To request payments, simply type the dollar amount and it will hyperlink users to a payment window. Alternatively, you can click the coin icon below the text box."

Facebook recommends keeping your checking accounts synced to Messenger (of course they do), but if you do not feel comfortable doing so you can enter your information anytime you make or receive a payment.

Notably, you do not even need a Facebook account any longer to use Messenger, making it even easier to pay your friends.

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AfterDawn: News

Siri does not like being asked "what is zero divided by zero"

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 30 Jun 2015 22:07

Siri does not like being asked "what is zero divided by zero" The Internet seemed to take offense to a 'sassy' response from Siri when asked "what is zero divided by zero."

Siri has been known to be sarcastic, but this answer goes right for your self-esteem.

This is what Siri will respond: "Imagine that you have zero cookies and you split them evenly among zero friends. How many cookies does each person get? See? It doesn't make sense. And Cookie Monster is sad that there are no cookies, and you are sad that you have no friends."

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AfterDawn: News

Vivendi acquires video sharing site Dailymotion for $242 million

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 30 Jun 2015 21:33

Vivendi acquires video sharing site Dailymotion for $242 million Media and content giant Vivendi has announced their acquisition of an 80 percent share in video sharing site Dailymotion.

The company paid 217 million euros for the stake, which is owned by European telco Orange.

Vivendi says the acquisition will give them access to "particularly attractive music and audiovisual content." Dailymotion offers content from independent producers, premium partners and millions of regular users.

The content behemoth also owns Universal Music Group and Canal+ Group, and adding Dailymotion to the mix will allow for "the joint development of original and distinctive content and formats that will meet the expectations of a whole new generation of digital consumers."

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AfterDawn: News

AC/DC will finally join streaming services including Spotify and Apple Music

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 29 Jun 2015 23:28

AC/DC will finally join streaming services including Spotify and Apple Music AC/DC, one of the most notable bands to not be available on streaming services, is finally signing up.

The rock band - which has sold over 72 million albums in the U.S. - has long been against digital in general and just had their catalog added to iTunes in 2012, nine years after the store launched.

This week, the band's catalog will be available via streaming services like Spotify and Rdio and the new Apple Music.

AC/DC remained a holdout well after other bands bit the bullet, including Metallica, Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd, each of which joined in 2012 after years of rejecting the format.

Source:
NYT




AfterDawn: News

Samsung wants to build more Tizen phones this year

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 29 Jun 2015 23:05

Samsung wants to build more Tizen phones this year Samsung has confirmed plans to build more handsets running its own Tizen operating system, with launch scheduled for this year.

According to the sources, Samsung will launch a few Tizen phones at different price points although specs and design are still unknown.

Samsung has been long trying to break their dependence on Google's Android, and thus built Tizen which now runs their smartwatches and smart TV sets.

The company has been selling its sole Tizen smartphone in India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh and has sold over 1 million units to date.

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AfterDawn: News

Here are the leaked design photos of the upcoming OnePlus 2

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 29 Jun 2015 22:35

Here are the leaked design photos of the upcoming OnePlus 2 Although OnePlus has been slowly releasing important tidbits about its upcoming OnePlus 2 flagship, there is still little known about the actual design. That is, until today.

Thanks to a new report, we have two alleged leaked photos of the device, which should look pretty familiar to OnePlus One owners.

The front of the phone looks almost exactly the same as its predecessor with straight edges and the bottom/top having curved sides but the back is where the more significant differences appear to lie. The rear side has a lining around the camera that appears to connect to a fingerprint reader, which would be interesting since OnePlus has not even mentioned such a feature as of yet.

So far, the company has confirmed a customized Snapdragon 810 processor and USB C connectors, the first smartphone to include the future standard.

OnePlus will officially launch the device on July 27th at an event that will only be available in VR.




AfterDawn: News

Apple to increase its iTunes Match cloud limit to 100,000 songs

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 29 Jun 2015 21:51

Apple to increase its iTunes Match cloud limit to 100,000 songs Since its launch in 2011, Apple's iTunes Match service has allowed users to store 25,000 songs in their iCloud but it appears that that figure is set to increase significantly.

Among the yet unannounced features of iOS 9 is the fact that subscribers to iTunes Match will now be able to store 100,000 tracks, a number that should satisfy even the biggest music fans on the planet.

Apple's Eddy Cue also confirmed again that Apple Music subscriptions will include iTunes Match, so there is no need to pay for two subscriptions. iTunes Match costs $25 per year as a standalone and allows you to upload and store all your physical music in the cloud for playback anywhere.

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AfterDawn: News

Apple Music will be available on Sonos speakers this year

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 29 Jun 2015 21:22

Apple Music will be available on Sonos speakers this year Sonos users who were considering Apple Music based solely on what their speakers support should be happy as Apple has confirmed that the service will be available on Sonos speakers by the end of the year.

John Paczkowski of Buzzfeed says Apple confirmed the two companies are working together to ensure the connected speaker system will support the new streaming music service.

Unfortunately, that also confirms that Apple Music will not launch with Sonos support, which could put it at a disadvantage against Spotify, Google Play and others, at least for a little bit.

Apple Music will launch on June 30th in conjunction with iOS 8.4 and the launch of the Beats 1 Internet radio service.

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AfterDawn: News

Samsung backtracks on patch that disabled automatic Windows Updates

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 28 Jun 2015 23:38

Samsung backtracks on patch that disabled automatic Windows Updates Earlier this week, Samsung outraged Microsoft and consumers by patching its Window PCs and disabling Window's automatic updates.

The update made it so users had to manually check for updates and then choose to install them. Outside of the obvious convenience issues, not having automatic updates is also a major security concern. Samsung, at least at first, did not see it that way. "As part of our commitment to consumer satisfaction, we are providing our users with the option to choose if and when they want to update the Windows software on their products," said the company's first statement.

As of writing, Samsung has backtracked on their original stance, and will be "issuing a patch through the Samsung Software Update notification process to revert back to the recommended automatic Windows Update settings within a few days."

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AfterDawn: News

Sirius XM settles lawsuit with record labels for over $200 million

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 28 Jun 2015 17:40

Sirius XM settles lawsuit with record labels for over $200 million Satellite radio giant Sirius XM has settled with the major record labels, ending a lawsuit in which the labels accused the company of playing songs that were written before 1972 without paying royalties for them.

Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group, Warner Music Group, Capitol Records, and ABKCO Music & Records all brought the lawsuit against Sirius in 2013, claiming that the company was not paying royalties for songs recorded before 1972 including tracks from popular artists like The Four Tops.

The year 1972 is important because that is when the federal copyright law went into effect. However, California did have a state copyright law before that year, which seems to have been enough to make sure the labels won this suit.

As part of the settlement, Sirius XM will be allowed to continue playing the tracks in question through 2017.

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AfterDawn: News

Google to establish massive scale free WiFi in New York

Written by Matti Vähäkainu @ 28 Jun 2015 11:55

Google to establish massive scale free WiFi in New York Google-owned company Sidewalk Labs has announced acquisition of Control Group and Titan, two companies that are building a free city wide WiFi. The project will launch in September in New York City, Bloomberg reports.

The project aims to bring free and "superfast" WiFi to the city of New York and especially for tourists to exploit. It will use old phone booths – which there are thousands of – to provide WiFi hotspots as well as free phone charging, phone calling, and internet browsing.

It's been estimated that over $500 million can be made from the advertisements over the next 12 years.

Google has been interested in global free WiFi for quite some time and this is the first big push into that area. We will certainly hear more about similar plans in new cities in the future.




AfterDawn: News

Here's the story behind Microsoft's new Windows 10 desktop wallpaper

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 27 Jun 2015 0:12

Here's the story behind Microsoft's new Windows 10 desktop wallpaper Just like every time the company releases a new operating system, users will be treated to a new special desktop wallpaper.

The new Windows 10 logo will feature the classic Windows logo but the logo will be made out of light as Microsoft used lasers, projectors and some camera mapping to create the effect.

Microsoft's Windows 10 will be available on July 29th.

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AfterDawn: News

OnePlus 2 to launch on July 27th at VR event

Written by Andre Yoskowitz @ 26 Jun 2015 22:35

OnePlus 2 to launch on July 27th at VR event Chinese smartphone startup OnePlus has announced that their long-awaited flagship sequel will be unveiled on July 27th.

The company will livestream the launch in virtual reality starting at 7pm PDT on the 27th, and you can use a custom "cardboard" VR headset like those Google has created.

"A VR launch lets you stand right next to our team and our fans as we unveil our new flagship,"
company co-founder Carl Pei said in the announcement. "You'll be able to look around as you check out the phone in a new way and maybe even find a few hidden Easter eggs. It's a new way of thinking about a product launch. We aren't talking at you; we are talking with you."

The OnePlus Cardboard VR set will be available soon ahead of the launch: "We didn't cut any corners on production, and we're definitely losing money on this. But we want to share them with everyone."

Although we don't yet know all the details of the new phone, the company has been blogging bits and pieces. We do know the device will have a custom Snapdragon 810 processor and will also be the first smartphone with a USB-C port. We also know the device will run OnePlus' own OxygenOS operating system, based on Android Lollipop.

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