Tesla opens up solar roof preorders today UPDATE

first_imgAfter revealing its solar roof to the world back in October, Tesla is now ready to open the flood gates. In the wee small hours of this morning, Elon Musk said that Tesla will be opening up pre-orders for its solar roof this afternoon. More information followed later, with Musk giving us an idea of just what to expect when pre-orders actually become available. Story TimelineSolar Century, Solar RoofsSolarCity plans “solar roof” to power Tesla’s master planTelsa and SolarCity’s solar roof slated for October revealTesla solar roof will likely cost less than regular roof before electricity savings In a follow up tweet, Musk said that solar roofs will start going out to customers in the US later this year. “Solar roof can be ordered for almost any country,” Musk said, and though he didn’t delve too far into specifics, he did confirm that solar roofs will be available to those in Australia and the UK in replies to other users. When it comes to countries outside the US, Musk says that deployment will begin next year.Tesla‘s solar roof will come in four different styles: smooth, textured, slate, and Tuscan. Unfortunately, not all of these styles will be available at launch. In a reply to yet another user, Musk said that only black smooth glass and textured will go up for pre-order today, while orders will open up for the slate and Tuscan styles in about six months.Also unknown is whether or not Tesla will begin offering Powerwall batteries in more countries with the launch of its solar roof. At the moment, Powerwall can be ordered in about 35 countries around the world, which implies that there will be some countries getting the solar roof but not Powerwall. Tesla clearly considers Powerwall and its solar roof to be complementary technologies, so that may change when solar roof pre-orders open up later today.At the time of this writing, Tesla’s website still prompts visitors to sign up for updates on solar roof. While that means pre-orders aren’t live yet, they should be launching shortly. We’ll keep an eye on things and update this post when Tesla begins accepting orders, so stay tuned.Update: As promised, Tesla’s solar roof is now available for order through the company’s website. The order page asks you to fill out a form with your address along with the square footage and number of stories in your home and then provides an estimate on how much the whole package will cost. You can also order Powerwall batteries to go along with your solar roof package.While the textured and smooth styles are up for grabs, we may have a little longer to wait for the other two than initially expected. Tesla’s website now says that the Tuscan and slate styles will be arriving in 2018, a little longer than Musk’s stated six month timeline. In any case, if you’ve been chomping at the bit to order a solar roof for your home, now’s your chance.SOURCE: Elon Musklast_img read more

Squeeze for Alexa coming to the HTC U11 very soon UPDATE Its

first_imgStory TimelineHTC U11’s squeezable edges come at a terrible costHere are the Edge Sense features coming to the HTC U11These are the features coming to the HTC U11 soon Once that happens, you can assign Alexa to one of the two possible actions associated with the Edge Sense squeeze. There is no word yet on what will be possible or not possible in this incarnation of Amazon’s smart virtual assistant, but we can pretty much presume the sky’s the limit. Mind you, this isn’t the first time Alexa officially came to a smartphone. That distinction belongs to the Huawei P10 earlier this year. Still, it’s interesting to see not one, not even two, but three assistants battling it out on a single phone. Not that the HTC Companion is even worth mentioning at this point.HTC has been trying to jump into the spotlight with new features like the HTC Companion and Edge Sense which, while great in theory, have been somewhat disappointing. HTC has promised and even teased updates to build on those foundations, but the bigger question is how soon and how fast it can roll those out.UPDATE: As promised, HTC has indeed flipped the switch and has made Alexa ready to answer your beck and call. Provided you have an HTC U11 and live in the US, that is. With Alexa, you can get fast access to media, facts, and your appliances without having to scroll through apps and menus. When enabled, you can activate Alexa without touching your phone as long as it is already unlocked. Alternatively, you can also use Edge Sense to squeeze and get Alexa’s attention. Alexa integration comes via an HTC Alexa app that is only available in the US for now. UK and Germany are promised to follow soon. Your #HTCU11 is about to get a new personal assistant. pic.twitter.com/oZ62kgHqON— HTC USA (@HTCUSA) July 14, 2017 In the future, we might no longer need to even touch our phones to control them. We can just do it by voice. That is, if Samsung’s vision for Bixby ever truly takes off. In the meantime, however, we’ll have to content ourselves with less powerful but more useful personal assistants like Google Assistant and Alexa. And we’ll still need to have a physical way to trigger those, like, say, squeezing your phone, which is exactly what HTC wants you to do with its U11 phone, possibly starting this week. As nice and pretty as the HTC U11 may have been when it launched, it was, in practice, somewhat of a half-baked product. Many of its features, especially related to its “squeezable” Edge Sense have yet to come. While HTC has teased what may be in the future for Edge Sense, one of those might actually come even sooner: integration with Amazon Alexa.The HTC U11 was supposed to officially support at least 3 personal assistants: HTC’s own underwhelming Companion, Google Assistant, and Amazon Alexa. Two out of three worked out of the box but Alexa was notably missing. But not for long. Over the weekend, HTC pushed out an update to the Edge Sense app that added an option to launch Alexa by squeezing the phone. Amusingly, that option actually didn’t do anything. The actual functionality will only be rolling out soon. How soon? If HTC’s tweet is to be believed, or if they’re on schedule, the switch will be flipped this Monday, 17th July.last_img read more

Ryzen 5 2500U benchmark hints at AMDs laptop play

first_imgAMD is really hitting Intel hard, even in places where Intel might not have a firm grasp on. So far, however, AMD’s new Ryzen line of processors remains absent from one crucial segment: mobile computers, a.k.a. laptops or notebooks. That could very well change really soon as AMD readies its Ryzen chips design for lower power consumption. Starting with the Ryzen 5 2500U which has been spotted at benchmarks standing shoulder to shoulder with Intel’s 7th gen notebook processors. AMD’s naming convention is no accident nor is it a mystery. It has three major Ryzen tiers, numbered 3,5, and 7, to match the same tiers as Intel’s Core i3, i5, and i7, respectively. Now it seems that AMD has also adopted the “U” suffix to denote processors meant for portable computers. The Ryzen 5 2500U, however, seems to cross tiers in terms of performance. At least compared to Intel’s previous generation.Based on the benchmark sightings, the Rzyen 5 2500U will have Zen 4 cores and 8 threads and utilize AMD’s equally new Radeon Vega graphics architecture. If those benchmarks are close to the real thing, we’re looking at 2.0 GHz base speeds right off the bat. Based on the scores, AMD’s upcoming notebook chip is on par or even outperforms the Intel Core i5-7200U or the Core i7-7500U.There are some caveats to this almost dreamy situation. One is that we are naturally uncertain about the veracity, let alone accuracy of these numbers. These also don’t compare the Ryzen 5 U to Intel’s latest 8th gen lineup. Nonetheless, it’s still a promising start for AMD, even if it looks like it’s only catching up with last year’s tech.Geekbench apparently also to have an entry for the Ryzen 5 2500U being used on a certain AMD Tambourine board that is noted to be running a 32-bit version of Android. While Android is definitely no stranger to the x86 architecture, it is the first time the mobile platform has been linked to AMD’s new Ryzen processors.VIA: Liliputinglast_img read more

Japanese banks prep JCoin digital currency in move against cash

first_imgCash is king in Japan, but the nation’s biggest banks are hoping to change that. A new report out of The Financial Times reveals that Japan’s central bank is planning to launch a cryptocurrency called J-Coin, one that will be based on blockchain technology. Assuming everything goes according to plan, J-Coin will co-exist alongside yen with a one-on-one value. Per the FT‘s report, Japan’s banks are aiming to launch J-Coin before the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, giving it only a couple years to get the currency established. This would be an effort to get Japan’s population to gravitate away from cash, which continues to dominate the nation’s society to a greater degree than that of other first world nations.It is possible the effort won’t go the way it’s planned, and perhaps J-Coin ultimately won’t be launched at all. Though there are some benefits to digital currency, such as eliminating the cost associated with paper bills and coins, there are also many potential downsides. One big criticism surrounding digital currency like bitcoin is the degree to which governments can track consumers.Cash is more or less anonymous, at least in certain circumstances. Someone particularly worried about their privacy can exclusively use cash to avoid establishing a paper trail; it can exchange hands without any transaction being recorded by a bank. That’s good from a privacy standpoint, but problematic for governments.Black markets thrive on cash, including drugs and weapons trades, and shifting toward a trackable currency would help officials combat that problem. That’s not to say that anonymous digital purchases can’t happen; bitcoin initially grew in popularity due to its anonymous nature and the way that helped online black market customers and vendors.SOURCE: Financial Timeslast_img read more

100 Alexa skills every Echo owner should know about

first_imgChristmas has come and gone and the odds are high you received an Echo device; maybe it was the flagship model, maybe it was the smaller Dot or the display-toting Show. Regardless, Alexa is now a resident in your home, and she can get stuff done…if you know how to use her properly. Key to Alexa’s usefulness are her skills, of which she has many, but they’re not all made equal. Find here more than 100 skills every Alexa owner should know about. Note: You can browse and install skills within the Alexa app. Tap the left-hand menu, select “Skills” from the menu, and then tap “Categories” to view skills broken down by category.Travel skillsIf you frequently travel or entertain the idea of traveling, Alexa’s various travel-related skills are great. SkyScanner, for example, allows Echo owners to ask for flight prices between various destinations, making it easy to get an idea of how much your next trip will cost. SkyScanner is only one of multiple similar skills, though. Booking websites Kayak and Expedia also have skills, which support getting hotel prices in addition to flight prices. Other options include My Disney Visit, Cruise Planners, Flight Tracker, and Travel Bug.Uber & LyftThe two big ride-sharing services both have Alexa apps, enabling Uber and Lyft riders to get quotes and order cars using their Echo device. You’ll need an account on whichever service you want to use; upon installing the app, you’ll be prompted to link your account by signing into it. After that, you can say things like, “Alexa, ask Uber to order a ride for me,” substituting “Uber” with “Lyft” if appropriate.MusicAlexa not only plays music upon request, but also has a new feature that allows you to set an alarm that plays music rather than typical alarm sounds. If you’re an Amazon Prime customer, you’ll be able to use Amazon Music right out of the box, but you have alternatives like Spotify, Pandora, iHeartRadio, SiriusXM, TuneIn, and more.Note: To use a music service, you must link it as the default music player. If you’re an Amazon Prime customer, Amazon Music will be made your default music service once you sign into your account. However, by opening the left-hand menu and choosing “Settings” > “Music and Media,” you can choose a different default service and sign into that account.Podcasts, Audiobooks, Sports, & NewsAlexa simplifies listening to your favorite podcasts; simply tell her to play the next episode in your favorite series and it’ll start, no tapping and searching necessary. You’ll need to choose a podcast skill to enable, though, of which there are several options. Some skills exist for a specific podcast, such as Dan Carlin’s “Hardcore History” skill. Most skills are for podcast apps that can be used to access many different podcasts, including Stitcher, AnyPod, The Podcast Player, Pod Buddy, Speaker Podcast Radio Player, and Earplay.Echo devices can also play audio news segments and audiobooks from various skills, as well as audio content that doesn’t rigidly fall into either category, including: Ted Talks, Radio Mystery Theater, Science Kid Radio, Vintage Radio, Radio Sherlock Holmes, The Dave Ramsey Show, Radio Fear, and Mindfulness Radio.News apps cover big and small services alike, such as BBC News, NPR, Daily News Radio, CNN Flash Briefing, NPR News Now, Fox News, The Wall Street Journal, The Daily Show, AARP Now News, and others. There are even sports apps with audio content like the NBA skill, Dallas Football, Yahoo Fantasy Football, ESPN, and similar.Note: You can set your favorite apps so that they play with simple commands. For example, if NPR is your favorite news source, you can set it so that its news plays by default when you ask for your daily Flash Briefing. Do this in the left-hand menu under “Settings” > “Sports Update,” “Flash Briefing,” and other options.GamesAlexa is capable of playing some voice-based games depending on which skills you have enabled. Jeopardy is one such skill; enable it and you can answer questions as if you are a contestant on the show. Alexa also has a 20 Questions game, having the user answer questions while Alexa tries to guess what they’re thinking of. Others include Question of the Day, Would Your Rather, Song Quiz, Word Chain, World Detective, State Capital Game, The Wayne Investigation, Trivial Pursuit Tap, Blackjack, and more.Note: You can find these voice-based games by opening the Alexa app menu, choosing “Skills” > “Categories,” and then “Games” from the category list.KidsKids find Alexa especially fun for conversations and games, and for that reason there is a robust Kids category with skills for young users. Perhaps the most popular one this winter was the NORAD Tracks Santa skill, but many remain for post-Christmas fun. Some of the most popular skills for kids include See Say, Sesame Street, The SpongeBob Challenge, Tricky Genie, Musical Chairs, Kids Trivia, Kids Animal Sounds, and Kids Mad libs.Amazon also has its own app for kids called “Amazon Storytime,” which reads stories written for kids aged 5 to 12-years-old.Smart HomeAlexa is a key element in many casual smart homes; it can be daunting to know where to start, but it’s actually very simple. Most smart home skills are designed for specific products from specific companies, such as the Sonos skill for controlling Sonos products. This is also true for the Samsung SmartThings, Ring Video Doorbell, Nest Thermostat, Philips Hue, Harmony, Tile, ecobee, Wemo, Arlo, LINK, Bose, Wink, Honeywell, iRobot, Nest Camera, ADT, and similar apps. If you have any of these Internet of Things devices, simply download the related skill and you can use Alexa to control the device(s).Food & DrinkAlexa can find some recipes for you, but it can also walk you through things. “The Bartender” skill, for example, enables Echo devices to guide you through more than 12,000 cocktail recipes, making it a welcomed addition to any kitchen. If you’re more interested in cooking than news, you can set up “Cook’s Illustrated Daily Cooking Tips” to play for your Flash Briefing, getting exclusive cooking content. This app is particularly excellent for the Echo Show as it supports video playback.If you’re still learning to make the perfect evening dinner, Alexa supports a skill called “Wine Pairing,” which is exactly what it sounds like — it tells you which wine to pair with which food. As far as recipes go, skills include “Allrecipes,” “Food Network,” and “Recipe Generator.” Still not enough? Check out “Out of Milk” to create a shopping list, “Instant Pot,” and “OurGroceries.”On the hardware side of things, Alexa can be used to get a reading from the wireless smart meat thermometer via its MEATER skill.Note: Alexa has the ability to create lists, including shopping lists. Just say, “Alexa, add *food item* to my Shopping List.”ProductivityVoice commands are addictive. Things that previously required you to pull out your phone and tap at the screen can now be accomplished with simple phrases and commands. While some productivity skills are obvious, others are less common but just as welcomed. “Let’s Do Chores” is one example, using Alexa to make doing chores fun so that kids won’t complain.Suffering from decision fatigue? Alexa will take the burden off your shoulders via its “DecisionMaker” skill. With this, you can ask Alexa to make a decision on your behalf, such as which cuisine you’re going to have for dinner. Alexa has its own reminder and list features, and you can also link your calendar and then verbally add appointments. As well, Alexa lets you set alarms and timers, such as, “Alexa, set a timer for 1 hour.” You can then ask for a timer status, which reminders you have coming up, and what’s still on your to-do list.AmbianceAlexa has a bunch of skills that can be used to set the ambiance in your home, office, or wherever you have an Echo placed. If you need some noise to fall asleep, for example, Echo has some popular skills like Sleep and Relaxation Sounds, Sleep Sounds, Good Night, Ambient Sounds: Thunderstorms/Ocean Sounds/Rain Sounds/Fireplace Sounds, Sleep Sounds, Spa Music, White Noise, Zen Sounds: Healing Noise, and “Beautiful Dream.”Echo can also drives your cats crazy, if you have them, via its “Box of Cats” skill that plays cat noises. If you’re more of a dog person, there’s also the “Jurassic Bark” skill.Because most music apps have curated playlists, you can trigger a certain musical mood just by asking for a specific type of audio: “Alexa, play romantic music” is one example. There are some apps for specific types of moods, though. “Peaceful Habit” is one popular skill, which allows Echo owners to trigger meditations lasting as little as 5 minutes. If meditation isn’t your thing but you need people to chill out, Alexa also has a “Breathe Therapy” skill that offers guided breathing practices to encourage relaxation.Wrap-upAlexa has been around for years and during that time has built up a huge library of skills. Developers have come up with some truly creative uses for the voice-based device, and the skills above represent only a small number of those. If you’re still on the hunt for that perfect skill, open the Alexa app and head into its “Skills” menu for more!last_img read more

Sothebys newly acquired AI suggests artwork based on buyers tastes

first_imgAuction house Sotheby’s has acquired image recognition and recommendation startup Thread Genius. With this technology, Sotheby’s will be better positioned to serve customers by using AI to find and recommend artwork to potential customers based on their own preferences. The technology will be used in conjunction with the data the auction house gathers and stores. Thread Genius is behind software that intelligently identifies artwork and recommends similar artwork based on it. The startup’s website offers a preview of this technology, allowing users to select one piece of artwork, then view related pieces. The user can also select just a portion of an existing image and then get artwork recommendations based on that selection.It’s easy to see how Sotheby’s would be interested in this type of technology. The auction house is home to a large variety of artwork; many buyers are interested in acquiring pieces and may have a style in mind, but struggle to translate that preference into actual purchases.Based on wording in Sotheby’s acquisition announcement, it seems the auction house will use the tech to recommend artwork to customers based on the info it has stored on buyers. “Historically,” Sotheby’s CEO Tad Smith said, “transactions would come together by matching an object with an individual’s preference at a certain price point, and Sotheby’s retains data in those three areas.” AdChoices广告Thread Genius’s technology can speed up that matching process while offering “better insights,” according to Smith. The terms of the acquisition weren’t revealed, however Sotheby’s says the startup’s founders will be joining the auction house soon.SOURCE: PRNewswirelast_img read more

Samsung teases 2018 QLED TV lineup reveal

first_imgIt’s hard to know exactly what new features are in store for the new lineup of QLED TVs, however Samsung noted back in January that it would be bringing its AI assistant Bixby to its premium TV models in 2018. It’s a safe bet Bixby will allow users to browse and interact with TV content using voice commands, as well as power any number of other features.CES 2018 saw Samsung reveal an impressive 146-inch micro LED TV, while this year has also seen QLED monitors begin rolling out. The company has suggested that it believes QLED is a better fit over its existing OLED technology for larger displays such as TVs, and instead reserves the latter for its smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices.SOURCE Samsung Story TimelineSamsung’s first QLED TV up close: intense color, versatile hardwareSamsung Q9 QLED TV is an 88-inch behemothSamsung The Wall 146-inch TV, 8K AI tech take viewing to the next levelSamsung Bixby coming to TVs, washing machines, appliances Samsung was one of the first TV manufacturers to launch a line of QLED televisions, starting with their debut in early 2017 (seen above). But the Korean electronics giant notably withheld revealing the new 2018 lineup from this year’s CES event in January, instead waiting until March. The company has now announced that it will be holding its own “first look” event in New York on Wednesday, March 7th, where it will unveil its newest QLED, or quantum dot LED, TVs.center_img Interestingly, the event is being held at the American Stock Exchange in New York City, which is not your typical venue for a consumer product launch. “Throughout the continuous evolution of its technology, Samsung always designs its products around the lifestyles of its customers. The new QLED TVs will do this in brand new ways for 2018,” Samsung said in a statement.last_img read more

Instagram developing tool thatll let users download their data

first_imgInstagram is currently developing a tool that will enable users to download their account data, a feature that’ll mirror the similar “Download your info” tool available on Facebook. The downloadable data will include photos/videos the user has shared on the platform, as well as messages posted and sent. The tool will mark a big change for the company, which historically had made it difficult for users to download their own content. Facebook has long offered a tool that enables users to download their account data, but Instagram (which is owned by Facebook) still lacks one. However, a company spokesperson recently told TechCrunch that it is working on a data portability tool that will enable users to “download a copy of what [they’ve] shared on Instagram…”Based on the official comment, it sounds like the tool may be limited to the “big” data — image, photos, and messages, leaving other things like follower lists and stories behind. The company hasn’t confirmed whether that is the case, though. Another big question is whether the downloaded videos and photos will be in the full resolution they were uploaded or a compressed resolution that won’t make them suitable for easily switching to an alternative service. Instagram told TechCrunch that it’ll have more of these details available in the future.Assuming the downloaded data is robust enough, this is a win for users who can use the feature as a backup tool and a way to simplify leaving the service for another. SOURCE: TechCrunchlast_img read more

Online shopping prices likely to rise after new sales tax ruling

first_imgA surprise Supreme Court ruling could make your next online shopping spree more expensive, after deciding that states can impose sales tax on internet purchases made from out-of-state retailers. The issue had been pushed to the fore by South Dakota, which had argued that its recent law insisting on applying tax even to purchases made online beyond the state’s borders should be upheld. Story TimelineeBay seeks help from users to fight an upcoming federal sales tax legislationSenate gives go-ahead on Internet sales tax Thanks to a 1967 Supreme Court ruling, states have only been allowed to collect sales tax on a purchase made when the retailer has a physical presence within that state. At the time, the ruling was focused on mail-order catalogs, but it has held up even as shopping has transitioned to online instead. A “physical presence” could count as a store or headquarters, or other facility. Back in 1967 though, it’s been argued, the proportion of out-of-state transactions to local retail was slim. Today, of course, online shopping represents a huge proportion of overall retail each year. South Dakota took that as a prompt to change its state laws, demanding that retailers – whether online or with a physical presence – must collect taxes on their sales to state residents. Today the Supreme Court upheld South Dakota’s law, with a 5-4 decision that states could, indeed, force sales taxes on residents’ online purchases from out-of-state retailers. It’s likely to impact smaller to midsize vendors disproportionately, despite claims by some – including President Trump – that it will target behemoths like Amazon. Since Amazon has a local presence in most states, in fact, it has been collecting sales taxes for customers located in the 45 states that actually collect them since April 2017. Indeed, Amazon had been in favor of online sales tax collection. Unsurprisingly, consumer rights advocates aren’t especially pleased with the ruling. “Today, the Supreme Court applied bacon grease to the slippery slope of states taxing and regulating outside their borders,” Andrew Moylan, Executive Vice President of the National Taxpayers Union Foundation and head of the organization’s Interstate Commerce Initiative, said of the ruling. “For centuries, states have threatened the free flow of interstate commerce by attempting to tax and regulate businesses all across the country, regardless of location.” “By validating South Dakota’s law today,” Moylan argues, “the Supreme Court has granted states the power to tax any business, anywhere in the country, simply for daring to use the internet to access a nationwide market.” The NTUF is now calling on Congress to take action and limit states power to apply sales taxes. Without that, there’s theoretically nothing stopping a state from copying South Dakota’s laws and insisting that all online retailers above a certain size collect sales tax. The ruling explicitly exempts smaller businesses along with all but the most successful of individual sellers using, say, eBay or other online sales channels. Indeed, only those sellers that “deliver more than $100,000 of goods or services into the State or engage in 200 or more separate transactions for the delivery of goods or services into the State” each year will be affected, according to the decision. Big Supreme Court win on internet sales tax – about time! Big victory for fairness and for our country. Great victory for consumers and retailers.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 21, 2018last_img read more

Apple Personal Data download How to get your stuff

As of this week, users are able to download a copy of their Apple data, including most of the history they’ve got with the company digitally. That includes the data you store with Apple too, including calendars, photos, documents, and more. This data download is very similar to what Google offers with Google Takeout, and both services are entirely free to use. With the initial release of the Apple Data and Privacy page, users were invited to log in with their Apple ID. Once inside, the page displayed a Manage Your Data header with several options. Users could get a copy of their data, correct their data, deactivate their account, or delete their account.With “get a copy of your data,” Apple allows the download of one whole heck of a lot of data all at once. Users will find “App usage and activity information as spreadsheets or files in JSON, CSV, XML, or PDF format” and contacts, calendars, and bookmarks in VCF, ICS, and HTML format. All documents, photos, and videos are available in their original format.Included in the first mix of info was the option to checkmark the following categories. This was the list as of October 18th, 2018:• App Store, iTunes Store, iBooks Store, Apple Music activity• Apple ID account and device information• Apple Online and Retail Stores activity• Apple Online and Retail Stores activity• AppleCare support history, repair requests• Game Center activity• iCloud Bookmarks and reading list• iCloud Calendars and Reminders• iCloud Contacts• iCloud Notes• Maps• Marketing subscriptions, downloads, and other activity• “Other data”AdChoices广告Apple also listed the following categories of data download, but included a disclaimer. Apple wrote: “The following items may be large and take a long time to download.” These categories were as follows as of October 18th, 2018:• iCloud Drive files and documents• iCloud Mail• iCloud PhotosThis set of downloads notably abstains from including the following sorts of downloads and datasets: “Your download will not include App, book, movie, TV show, or music purchases.” OK but how, though: To get to Apple’s “get a copy of your data” download service, head over to Apple Data and Privacy. To get in, you’ll need your Apple ID and password. This is the same ID and password you’d use to log in to any Apple app store and/or the iTunes music store, etcetera.Apple’s data download service included the following disclaimer as of October 18th, 2018. “Select the data you’d like to download, and we’ll prepare a copy for you. This process may take up to seven days. To ensure the security of your data, we use this time to verify that the request was made by you.” Story TimelineGoogle Voice Added to Takeout Service via Data Liberation FrontGoogle Takeout now offers more support for Blogger and Google+Google Takeout adds Gmail and Calendar export for data departuresFacebook and Oculus data privacy update: AR and data downloadInstagram data download tool arrives, but only on desktop for now read more

Evernote open source alternatives Part 3 Joplin

It will probably be a long while before Evernote disappears if it does at all. And it will also be some time before any open source software will be able to fill in those extra large shoes. Some alternatives, like Turtl, just stick to the bare minimum while others like Standard Notes try to find sustainability by offering features as part of a paid subscription. Joplin takes a rather different approach. In order to provide a note-taking interface and experience that matches or even surpasses Evernote, it mostly offloads one functionality to others: synchronization. One thing Joplin doesn’t exactly focus on but does support is encryption, specifically end-to-end encryption. That option exists but is disabled by default due to the decentralized nature of the software, or so the developer says. The setup is more involved compared to Turtl or Standard Notes which both do the heavy lifting for the user. It’s one of the tradeoffs that Joplin’s flexibility incurs.Joplin is pretty much like the power user note-taking application. While on the surface it’s as easy to use as Evernote, providing nearly all the same features or even more, it requires the user to set things up a bit beforehand or at least decide on certain matters, like which sync backend to use. At least it doesn’t require you to host your own server, though that option is at least available for those who can afford it. Admittedly, synchronization is one of the most important aspects that made Evernote the success that it has become. If Evernote didn’t sync its data across all platforms in a convenient and reliable way, it would have been no better than the isolated built-in note-taking apps on your phone or PC. But data synchronization is a tricky, fragile, and expensive business, that’s why no service offers it for free completely or for long.Rather than get bogged down by the details of keeping servers for users, making sure their data is secure and whole, and tying users down to a single cloud service, Joplin lets the user decide where to sync their notes to. They can even opt not to sync at all or let some local networked filesystem do it for them. While it is more inconvenient than signing up for a single account, you get flexibility, freedom, and control over your own data. Unless you decide to share that data with, say, Dropbox or Google Drive.In exchange, Joplin offers a note-taking experience that neither Turtl nor even Standard Notes with its extensions can provide. For one, Joplin is not only available on all those major platforms, it has a Web Clipper browser extension and even a command-line version for the hardcore power users and system administrators.Joplin natively supports Markdown-formatted plain text but it can do much more than just “embed” images, attach files, or add tags. It can, for example, set alarms on both desktop and mobile apps. It can attach geo-location metadata. It can even mathematical expressions using the KaTeX notation. read more

Amazon may be testing cashierless checkout tech for bigger stores

first_imgAmazon is testing its cashierless grocery store technology in bigger stores, sources have claimed, potentially paving the way for future casher-free shops that are larger than existing Amazon Go locations. Amazon is allegedly testing this technology in Seattle using a large area designed to imitate a “big store,” such as a full-size grocery store. Story TimelineAmazon Music app for Android TV appears on Google Play StoreNOOK 7-inch appears as strong Amazon Fire tablet alternativeAmazon shows off The Grand Tour Game in new gameplay trailer Amazon Go stores are relatively small, featuring a combination of grocery items, drinks, and prepackaged food. Unlike other stores, Amazon Go doesn’t feature cashiers, instead using a variety of technology to track what a customer picks up and automatically charge them for it.Amazon has been slow to rollout these stores, currently only offering destinations in Seattle, Chicago, and San Francisco. A new report claims on behalf of unnamed sources that Amazon is testing the technology for use in bigger stores, though, potentially paving the way for larger deployment in grocery stores and other destinations.The testing is reportedly taking place in a large space in Seattle, though Amazon hasn’t commented on the report. Assuming Amazon does figure out a way to scale up its technology for larger stores, it’s possible we’ll see it eventually arrive in Whole Foods destinations, which are now owned by the Internet giant.Amazon is already a big threat to brick-and-mortar stores, which have struggled to compete with the two-day shipping and high level of convenience that Amazon Prime offers. Expanding into physical stores — with a futuristic twist — would give Amazon a new way to compete with these other companies, leaving them with relatively little time to adjust.Walmart has started testing cashier-free checkout technology in a Sam’s Club store, though it doesn’t work the same as Amazon’s alternative. Unlike Amazon Go, where cameras and sensors do the hard work, Walmart’s alternative requires customers to scan products with their smartphone as they put them into the cart. The goods are then paid for with the store’s app; a door attendant scans a code on the customer’s phone to complete the sale.Of course, there’s another side to the battle — the consumer. Not all customers like the idea of a cashier-free shopping destination, particularly older shoppers who may be uncomfortable with the technology. Systems like Walmart’s, for example, would require customers to own a smartphone, a requirement that a small pocket of the population continues to resist.The report claims that Amazon anticipates opening more Amazon Go stores in the future. It’s unclear whether the same technology found in these stores will ever deploy in larger destinations.last_img read more

Ford EksoVest exoskeleton helps workers lift things overhead

first_imgFord has been working on a trial of a slick-looking exoskeleton that is not meant to make its production line employees stronger. This exoskeleton, called the EksoVest, is meant specifically for workers on the assembly line that must reach above their heads repeatedly during their shifts. Ford says that the vest helps workers that must lift the equivalent weight of a bag of flour or watermelon over their heads up to 4,600 times per day. That sort of repetitive motion can lead to fatigue and injury for the workers and downtime for the assembly line for the automaker. Since Ford rolled out the exoskeleton in a trial it says that its incidence rate of lost time on the job in 2018 was one of the lowest years on record. Ford plans to use the EksoVest in 15 plants in seven countries around the world to help reduce the physical toll the jobs take on the bodies of the workers.The exoskeleton is a wearable device designed to support the arms of the worker while they perform overhead tasks like reaching up with a power tool to screw bots to the car’s brace from under the vehicle. The vest fits workers that range from 5′ 2″ tall to 6′ 4″ tall. It gives assistance for lifting weight ranging from five to fifteen pounds per arm. The workers wearing the exoskeleton say that it is comfortable, light, and not bulky allowing them to move arms easily. The pilot program for the EksoVest was in an assembly plant in Wayne, Michigan and another in Flat Rock over the past year. The workers using the exoskeleton helped to refine the device ahead of launch.center_img As of now, all the Ford assembly plants in North America have EksoVests and the vests are in use in Asia-Pacific, Europe, and South America. It’s not clear exactly how many of the vests are in use currently.SOURCE: Fordlast_img read more

Will Medicares Quality Incentives Be Big Enough To Make A Difference

first_imgIncentives are among the quality issues coming to the fore as the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services prepares to hand out bonuses and penalties based on how hospitals perform.  Reuters: Medicare Reimbursement Incentive Less Than EffectiveRecord-keeping for a patient complication used by Medicare to determine how much hospitals get reimbursed is not comprehensive or accurate, undermining the policy’s value, a new study suggests. In an effort to get more for their money, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) — as well as some individual insurance companies — don’t reimburse hospitals for certain conditions listed on billing records that are costly and believed to be preventable (Pittman, 9/4).Kaiser Health News: Are Medicare’s New Quality Incentives Large Enough to Change Hospital Behavior? With Medicare poised next month to give bonuses and penalties to hospitals based on how they ranked in quality standards, a number of health policy experts are questioning whether the amounts of money at stake are large enough to make a difference” (Rau, 9/4). Will Medicare’s Quality Incentives Be Big Enough To Make A Difference? This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.last_img read more

Crunch Time In The Countdown To Health Exchanges Opening Day

first_imgNews reports also offer insights to how these online marketplaces are taking shape in Oregon and Connecticut. CNN: Gearing Up For Health Exchanges: Crunch Time For ObamacareA calendar on the office wall of senior White House communications adviser Tara McGuinness counts the days until marketplaces under the sweeping health care law championed by President Barack Obama open in states nationwide. McGuinness and others working to insure the uninsured have fewer than 10 weeks until open enrollment in state and federally managed insurance exchanges begins on October 1. Then they’ll have just six months to educate as many people as possible about the Affordable Care Act, a 2010 law that for many is just a political attack line (Aigner-Treworgy, 7/24). The Wall Street Journal: Low-Cost Insurance Offer Limits Federal Subsidies For Portland BuyersFederal subsidies in the new health-care law will help offset the cost of insurance for lower-income buyers. But in the Portland area, the subsidies will be smaller than expected because of the low prices offered by a regional insurer. The subsidies are based on the cost of the second-cheapest midlevel plan, as well as annual incomes (Weaver and Radnofsky, 7/24).The Associated Press: Apple-Inspired Conn. Stores Planned For Health LawBesides television and radio advertisements, billboards and signs on buses, Connecticut’s new insurance marketplace is planning to open storefronts inspired by Apple to help get the word out about President Barack Obama’s health care law and coming enrollment. Officials at Access Health CT, the state’s marketplace, believe Connecticut is the only state running its own marketplace that plans to set up insurance stores modeled after computer giant Apple’s establishments (Haigh, 7/24). Crunch Time In The Countdown To Health Exchanges’ Opening Day This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.last_img read more

State Highlights Feds Chicago Hospitals Go Back To Court On Proposed Merger

first_img As the number of cases of diarrheal disease in a two-county outbreak has nearly doubled in the past week, some swimming pools have closed and health officials are reaching out to schools and day-care centers to encourage prevention. Cases of cryptosporidiosis linked to area pools, splash pads and a water park — in Columbus and Franklin and Delaware counties — have jumped from 107 a week ago to at least 202. That’s more cases than the health departments saw in the past four years combined. Late Thursday, the city of Columbus announced that it will close all of its pools, spray grounds and the Scioto Mile fountains on Friday. (Smola, 8/18) Chicago Tribune: Advocate, NorthShore Ready For Round Two In Merger Fight With FTC  Minnesota Public Radio News: Allina Nurses Authorize Open-Ended Strike The U.S. Department of Justice has decided to sue Georgia over its segregated “psychoeducational” schools for disabled children. The head of the department’s civil rights division sent a letter to Gov. Nathan Deal and other state officials Monday describing a breakdown in negotiations over the future of the Georgia Network for Educational and Therapeutic Support, or GNETS. “We have determined that we must pursue the United States’ claims in federal court to vindicate the rights of thousands of affected students with behavior-related disabilities across Georgia,” wrote Vanita Gupta, who heads the civil rights division. (Judd, 8/17) Nashville Tennessean: Dr. Oz And The Founder Of WebMD Just Planted Their Flag In Nashville Columbus Dispatch: Diarrheal Disease Outbreak Grows; Dublin And Columbus Close Pools The battle between the federal government and two area hospital systems will spill back into court Friday, in a case that could alter the Chicago health care landscape in more ways than one. The case, over a potential merger between Advocate Health Care and NorthShore University HealthSystem, could lead to changes in the cost and quality of health care in the Chicago area. Whether those changes would be good or bad depends on which side is doing the talking. (Schencker, 8/18) To many people, spring and fall are the prettiest and most pleasant times of the year in the Peach State. But these temperate, transitional seasons have a downside: They often help trigger allergies. The seasonal pollen that causes an uptick in watery eyes and runny noses has been on the rise in recent years, both in Georgia and elsewhere, and researchers and physicians are working hard to determine the cause and take preventive action. (Peters, 8/18) Health News Florida: In Florida’s Medical Marijuana Rollout, A Parent Who Would Not Wait Florida’s medical marijuana program took too long to start for the parents of some sick children. … Gail said Lucie has seizures that can cause her to fall to the ground. She’s broken her collar bone three times, and has a scar on her face from seizing and collapsing. When Gov. Rick Scott approved the use of a non-euphoric strain of medical marijuana in 2014, Gail believed this could help people like her daughter. … And then, she waited. It’s now been more than two years. (Forchecz, 8/18) The Philadelphia Inquirer: Study: Sports Don’t Protect Philly Kids From Obesity, High Blood Pressure Modern Healthcare: California Patients, Providers Face Hurdles As New Aid-In-Dying Law Takes Effect Experts from a variety of fields gathered Wednesday at the Statehouse for a mental health symposium spurred by an Emporia hospital’s struggle last year to find a psychiatric care bed for a suicidal patient. House Speaker Pro Tem Peggy Mast, a Republican from Emporia, said she was inspired to convene the symposium after hearing from officials at Newman Regional Health. That hospital nearly lost federal certification after a botched transfer of a patient who was having chest pains and thoughts of suicide. (Marso, 8/18) The Denver Post: Denver Woman Who Needed More Than 30 Gallons Of Blood Meets The Donors Who Saved Her Life  A new study of sports physicals has shown surprisingly high rates of obesity and elevated blood pressure among Philadelphia student athletes. Researchers at Thomas Jefferson University surveying four years of physical exam results for students ages 10 to 20 found obesity and high blood pressure appear to be as much of a problem for active kids as for their peers. The suggestion, the researchers say, is that even participation in athletics was not enough to protect the youngsters from these health concerns. (Giordano, 8/19) VA staffing shortages in the Corpus Christi area have created monthslong waits for him and many others among the region’s thousands of veterans as they try to see primary care doctors, dentists and other specialists. The VA also issues vouchers so veterans can see private providers that try to help with the patient load, but delayed payments on claims have forced many doctors’ offices to stop seeing veterans. The waits are emblematic of the challenges VA clinics across Texas and the nation continue to face even after series of stories in 2014 exposed systemic problems within the VA. (Rocha, 8/19) center_img As part of Florida’s Healthy Babies Initiative, state health officials are looking into several projects to help cut down on the racial disparities in infant mortality. One such project is the Baby Box—very popular in Finland. … Mike Mason with the Florida Department of Health’s Office of Minority Health adds it also includes supplies and products for the baby. And, the baby box is seen to have helped Finland with its infant mortality rates. (Cordner, 8/18) Health News Florida: Will Florida Moms Soon Be Adopting ‘Baby Boxes’ For Their Newborns?  Atlanta Journal Constitution: Feds Will Sue Georgia Over ‘Psychoeducational’ Schools Georgia Health News: With Seasonal Allergies On The Increase, Georgia Experts Seek Solutions Twin Cities nurses have authorized an open-ended strike at five Allina hospitals. The same group of 4,800 union nurses walked off the job for a week in June. Nurse negotiator Angela Becchetti said rank-and-file members overwhelmingly rejected Allina’s latest contract offer. … The Minnesota Nurses Association says Allina’s offer is unacceptable because it would force nurses to bear the brunt of premium increases on their union-only health insurance plans. (Benson, 8/19) A San Diego woman’s harrowing account of her aunt’s death last month under California’s new physician aid-in-dying law suggests that healthcare providers still have a long way to go to make the process work smoothly for terminally ill patients. … Compassion & Choices, a not-for-profit group that advocates for end-of-life choices and supports the law, has heard of California doctors writing 25 lethal prescriptions so far. The actual number is probably double or triple that, said Kat West, the group’s national director of policy and programs. (Meyer, 8/17) A transgender inmate at a Fort Worth federal prison has reportedly been approved to begin hormone treatment, a critical step in the process to transition. Marius Mason is believed to be the the first female-to-male inmate to obtain transition-related medical care after coming into federal custody, according to The Dallas Voice.  (Mervosh, 8/18) The Texas Tribune: In Corpus Christi, Veterans Still Facing Long Waits At Clinics State Highlights: Feds, Chicago Hospitals Go Back To Court On Proposed Merger; In Minn., Allina Nurses OK Open-Ended Strike Outlets report on health news from Illinois, Minnesota, Kansas, California, Texas, Georgia, Colorado, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Tennessee and Florida. Kansas Health Institute: Emporia Hospital’s Struggles Spur Mental Health Symposium  Dallas Morning News: Transgender Inmate In Fort Worth Reportedly Approved For Hormonal Treatment  The walkway leading up to Healthways’ building is dotted with stones memorializing the company’s 35-year history. It needs a new one to mark the next era: Dr. Mehmet Oz and WebMD founder Jeff Arnold want to turn the local health care staple into a leader in digital care. Arnold and Oz, the daytime TV medical personality, came to the firm’s Franklin office Wednesday to introduce themselves to the 1,700 Healthways employees who now work for their Atlanta-based company, Sharecare. (Fletcher, 8/18) Joyce Gottesfeld remembers the moment on Feb. 10, 2012, when a code blue rippled through Saint Joseph Hospital in Denver — a patient had gone into cardiac arrest. Gottesfeld had just met with expectant mother Cassidy Smith, who was ready to deliver her daughter, before the emergency struck and mobilized dozens of staff members. During labor, Smith suffered a catastrophic amniotic fluid embolism, a rare but serious condition that caused her heart and lungs to stop working and her blood to stop clotting — as well as her fetus’ heart to stop. (Wenzel, 8/18) This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.last_img read more

Theres A Revolutionary Procedure That Can Treat Severe Strokes But Most Hospitals

first_img Providers are still struggling to optimize revenue cycle-related electronic health record functions and manage the increase in self-pay consumers, according to a new survey. More than half of 107 hospital and health system executives surveyed said they struggle to keep up with EHR upgrades or underuse EHR functions, according to a Navigant analysis based on a survey by the Healthcare Financial Management Association. The share of executives who relayed that sentiment increased from 51% in 2017 to 56% in 2018. (Kacik, 11/28) The Washington Post: Scabies Outbreak: Kona Community Hospital Battles Highly Contagious Skin Infection Health News Florida: Hospitals Square Off Over Bone Marrow Transplants Modern Healthcare: Medicare Wage Index Overhaul Could Help Rural Hospitals  Modern Healthcare: Vanderbilt University Medical Center Could Lose Medicare Funding  New Orleans Times-Picayune: How Safe Are New Orleans’ Hospitals? See How They Ranked In A National Survey Seven hospitals in the New Orleans-metropolitan area received an ‘A’ rating from a national watchdog group recognizing their efforts in providing high safety standards for their patients. The Leapfrog Group’s Fall 2018 Hospital Safety Grade uses 28 measures of publicly available hospital safety data to assign grades to more than 2,600 hospitals across the U.S. looking at their performance in preventing medical errors, infections and other harms among patients in their care. The survey is released twice a year by the Leapfrog Group, a national independent, nonprofit organization founded in the year 2000 to act as a watchdog collecting and reporting hospital performance data. (Clark, 11/28) There’s A Revolutionary Procedure That Can Treat Severe Strokes, But Most Hospitals In U.S. Don’t Perform It Going to different hospitals only a few miles away from each other can make a profound difference on the chances of a patient recovering from a stroke. But sometimes local, state and regional rules dictate that ambulance drivers bring patients first to hospitals that don’t do the procedure before they can be transferred. Because the success of thrombectomies are dependent on how fast they are performed in relation to the stroke, that delay can mean a huge difference. Other hospitals news focuses on rural care, EHR improvements, surprise billing, and more. Houston Chronicle: Pearland Medical Center Adds Beds, Services Florida hospitals are battling about cancer treatment and the appropriate level of state regulation of bone-marrow transplants. In one corner is Cleveland Clinic Florida Health Systems, which has tried unsuccessfully to get approval from the state to offer bone-marrow transplants and is throwing its support behind proposed changes to eliminate a key type of regulation. And in the other corner are six Florida hospitals that argue bone-marrow transplant programs are services so complex and expensive that they rise to the level of requiring the blessing of state regulators. (Sexton, 11/28) KQED: S.F. Supervisor Pushes To Wipe Zuckerberg’s Name From City Hospital The Wall Street Journal: For Treating Severe Strokes, All Hospitals Aren’t Equal Providers, hospital associations and policy experts believe revamping the tool the CMS uses to set hospital payments could be a lifeline for rural hospitals. HHS’ Office of Inspector General suggested changes to the wage index in a new report that found holes in the system that has resulted in millions of dollars of improper payments to hospitals across the country. The flawed calculations have created a series of winners and losers whose reimbursement levels are minimally tied to wages, labor costs and cost of living, as the index initially intended. (Kacik, 11/27) center_img A hospital in Hawaii is battling a scabies outbreak after “a number of people” reported symptoms of the highly contagious skin condition, a spokeswoman said. A spokeswoman for Kona Community Hospital said Wednesday that the outbreak was confirmed Nov. 19, although she declined to say how many people had been infected, citing employee and patient privacy. Those who may have been exposed at the hospital, which is in Kealakekua, were contacted and treated for infection, and staff members were given instruction on scabies, according to a statement from the hospital. (Bever, 11/28) The Baltimore Sun: Hopkins Hospital In Florida Recorded High Rate Of Death, Complications In Young Heart Patients, Report Finds The Heart Institute at All Children’s was dedicated to children with heart defects and had been working in recent years to grow in size and prestige, according to the hospital, which announced it would integrate into the Johns Hopkins Health System in 2010. But through extensive interviews with current and former employees and family members of those treated there and a decade’s worth of billing records, the newspaper probe, published online Wednesday, identified many instances of treatment gone horribly wrong. (Cohn, 11/28) Pearland Medical Center, which became the first hospital in Pearland when it opened three years ago, has expanded to add 19 licensed beds in a second-floor medical-surgical area that includes an observation unit. …The HCA Healthcare-affiliated hospital opened in 2015 and debuted the $8.5 million expansion on Nov. 29, according to a news release from the company. Completed after six months of construction, the addition adds 14,380 square feet to the hospital, bringing the total size to 158,380 square feet, and increases its total capacity to 53 licensed beds. (Jones, 11/28) The CMS is threatening to strip Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, of its ability to care for Medicare patients because a patient died after receiving a large dose of the wrong medication. Termination from Medicare would take place Dec. 9 if Vanderbilt doesn’t implement specific efforts to ensure patients receive the right medication at the right doses. (Dickson, 11/28) San Francisco Supervisor Aaron Peskin wants Mark Zuckerberg’s name removed from the city’s public hospital.In an impassioned speech at the Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday, Peskin railed against the Facebook founder over allegations that the company mishandled user data. Keeping Zuckerberg’s name on the building, he argued, sends the wrong message, regardless of how much money he has contributed. (Coral and Green, 11/28) Modern Healthcare: Revenue-Cycle EHR Improvements Challenging For Hospitals  The complaints submitted to Attorney General Maura Healey’s office all described a similar scenario: Patients sought treatment in an ordinary physician office or urgent care center. But to their shock, they were billed for an expensive outpatient hospital visit instead. (Kowalczyk, 11/28) People who suffer severe strokes here can avoid the worst if stricken within a 30-minute ambulance ride to Rhode Island Hospital, the region’s only comprehensive stroke-treatment facility. Just across the Taunton River in Massachusetts, patients even closer to Rhode Island Hospital aren’t so lucky. There, state emergency-medicine rules decree that stroke victims are taken to local hospitals offering more routine treatment. Typically, those patients have to wait an hour or more before being transferred to RIH in Providence, doctors say. (Burton, 11/28) Boston Globe: To Patients’ Surprise, A Visit To Urgent Care Brings Steep Hospital Bill This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.last_img read more

Amazon has big plans for mobile and its not the Fire Phone

first_img This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply. Amazon could be considering buying Boost Mobile – and a wireless network – from T-Mobile and Sprint.The online marketplace is interested in buying Boost from the two carriers given that the deal will allow Amazon to use the new T-Mobile’s wireless network for at least six years, Reuters reported. New T-Mobile is the name used to refer to the outcome of a potential merger between T-Mobile and Sprint.Boost is a prepaid brand owned and operated by Sprint with an estimated seven to eight million customers.Purchasing Boost could cost Amazon up to three billion dollars in exchange for six years of access to the new T-Mobile’s wireless network and potentially any other wireless spectrum that the new T-Mobile may be willing to divest.Related: Best SmartphoneT-Mobile and Sprint have pledged to sell Boost regardless in order to reduce their market share in the prepaid wireless business and to be granted regulatory approval for the merger. If approved, the merger will knock the country’s four wireless carrier count down to just three which may tempt networks to raise prices due to a lack of competition.The US Justice Department actually wants T-Mobile to lay the groundwork for a fourth wireless carrier as a condition for the merger to pass in order to prevent these costs for consumers from rising.If the deal goes through, Amazon will subsequently be under scrutiny from the Justice Department to ensure that the asset stays viable and to preserve competition between carriers.Related: A new best UK mobile network has been crowned in 2018It is not entirely clear why Amazon is looking to source access to a wireless network now. The largely disappointing Amazon Fire Phone launched as an AT&T exclusive in the US in 2014 and lasted only a year before being discontinued.One theory is that the company is planning to give smartphones another shot on a network of its own in the US. An EU ruling late last year would also make it significantly easier for Amazon to sell Android devices in Europe without requiring Google’s buy-in.Read our review of the Amazon Echo Dot Amazon currently offers phone call capabilities through its Echo Connect. This allows your voice-activated smart speaker to make phone calls using your home phone service. Having access to its own wireless spectrum might encourage Amazon to go further down this route with its products in the future.Whatever its reason, Amazon could soon have its sights set on replacing Sprint as one of the big four carriers in the US. Sign up for the Mobile NewsletterSign Up Please keep me up to date with special offers and news from Goodtoknow and other brands operated by TI Media Limited via email. You can unsubscribe at any time. Show More Unlike other sites, we thoroughly review everything we recommend, using industry standard tests to evaluate products. We’ll always tell you what we find. We may get a commission if you buy via our price links.Tell us what you think – email the Editor We’d also like to send you special offers and news just by email from other carefully selected companies we think you might like. Your personal details will not be shared with those companies – we send the emails and you can unsubscribe at any time. Please tick here if you are happy to receive these messages.By submitting your information, you agree to the Terms & Conditions and Privacy & Cookies Policy.last_img read more

Win A Tesla Model S P100D By Donating To Some Great Causes

Source: Electric Vehicle News This is surely a win-win.When we heard the sweepstakes experts at Dream Giveaway were giving away a brand-new Tesla Model S P100D to help some great charities, our interest was immediately piqued. So we reached out to Dream Giveaway, which advertises its Tesla Dream Giveaway in direct mail, email, and on the Internet, to find out more.“We’re in our 11th year of giving away the best vehicles in the world,” said Christopher Phillip, the company’s Director of Communications. “Corvettes, Mustangs, Trans Ams … even SUVs and motor homes. We’re excited to share our first Tesla Dream Giveaway with the InsideEVs community. The grand prize is a loaded and customized 2018 Tesla Model S P100D.”First, let’s tell you about the grand-prize. This Tesla Model S P100D is bathed in Deep Blue Metallic paint and stitched in Cream leather. The exterior features stunning Concavo wheels wrapped in Continental Extreme Contact rubber, a carbon fiber spoiler, and an adjustable suspension-lowering kit. The interior – already a glorious design straight out of the box – features OE-quality carbon-fiber accents.So how do you win? “You have to be in it to win it,” Chris tells us.That means visiting www.dreamgiveaway.com/?promo= VJ0918L. The minimum donation to earn entry tickets is just $3 for one ticket, but the best value is spending $25 to get 25 tickets. Don’t forget the promo code for InsideEVs readers is VJ0918L. Get your entries in now.Dream Giveaway says it will fly the lucky winner to Clearwater, Florida, to drive home in the grand-prize, fully charged and ready for you to enjoy. They are such great guys that they’re even including an extra $35,000 to pay for taxes on the car and a Tesla home charger.As for the charitable aspect of this endeavor, these are some of the many charities your donations will help support by entering to win the grand prize – Mothers Against Drunk Driving, Detroit Rescue Mission, and Smile Network International. Check out the full list of charities right here. 6 photos Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on September 12, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News read more

Despite No Model 3 Yet Tesla Outsold Lexus In Europe In September

first_img Tesla Out Delivers Porsche In Q3: Model 3 Boom Continues Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on October 24, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News Lexus can be beaten by Tesla in Europe even without the Model 3.ACEA reports that new registrations of Lexus cars in Western Europe (EU15 + EFTA countries) stood in September at 4,837 (down 10.7% year-over-year) and at 31,714 in through the first nine months of 2018.According to industry analyst Matthias Schmidt (schmidtmatthias.de) strong Tesla sales in the last month of the third quarter enabled it to outsell Lexus, although the California company still is some 10,000 below Lexus YTD in Europe.Tesla results Tesla Now Outsells Jaguar Globally, Model 3 Outsold Jag In Q3 In other words, even without the Model 3 available in Europe yet, Tesla is above Lexus. However, when the Model 3 finally hits the market, Toyota’s premium brand will maybe then understand that the future is electric, not hybrid.#Tesla registered more vehicles than Toyota’s premium #Lexus brand in W-Europe during September according to AID and ACEA data.Tesla was helped by its usual end of quarter strong deliveries.However YTD after 9-months Tesla remains 10,000 units behind Lexus’ 31.7k deliveries pic.twitter.com/RkwxDQhc4b— Matthias Schmidt (@auto_schmidt) October 22, 2018 Source: Electric Vehicle News Plug-In Electric Car Sales In Netherlands Hit Almost 10% Market Sharelast_img read more