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Smart home automation app on mobile with home interior in background. Internet of things concept at home. Smart technology 4.0
Internet, Technology,

Google to acquire Xively IoT platform from LogMeIn for $50M


Google announced today that it intends to buy Xively from LogMeIn for $50 million, giving Google Cloud an established IoT platform to add to their product portfolio.

In a blog post announcing the acquisition, Google indicated it wants to use this purchase as a springboard into the growing IoT market, which it believes will reach 20 billion connected things by 2020. With Xively they are getting a tool that enables device designers to build connectivity directly into the design process while providing a cloud-mobile connection between the end user app and the connected thing, whatever that happens to be.

Internet, Social Media,

Tinder to adopt Bumble’s ‘ladies first’ feature in a future update

Tinder will make a change to its dating app in an upcoming update that will allow women to message first, according to a report from MarketWatch this morning, which TechCrunch has also confirmed. The new option will allow women to choose when to start a conversation, but it will not be the default setting as it is in Bumble. Instead, women will be able to decide whether or not they want to enable it, we understand.

Computers, Internet,

Windows 10 can now show you all the data it’s sending back to Microsoft

Microsoft’s and its partners’ engineers use the telemetry data from Windows 10 to diagnose crashes, learn about its users hardware configurations and more. It’s on by default and while Microsoft tells you that it collects this data and gives you a choice between basic (the default setting) and “full” diagnostics, it never allowed you to actually see exactly what was being sent back to Redmond. That’s changing now, though. Windows 10 insiders will soon be able to install a new program from the Microsoft Store, the “Windows Diagnostic Data Viewer,” that gives them full access to all the diagnostic data from their Windows device.

Google stock

Google’s AutoML lets you train custom machine learning models without having to code

A general view of the Google offices in Six Pancras Square, London. (Photo by Jonathan Brady/PA Images via Getty Images)

Google today announced the alpha launch of AutoML Vision, a new service that helps developers — including those with no machine learning (ML) expertise — build custom image recognition models. While Google plans to expand this custom ML model builder under the AutoML brand to other areas, the service for now only supports computer vision models, but you can expect the company to launch similar versions of AutoML for all the standard ML building blocks in its repertoire (think speech, translation, video, natural language recognition, etc.).

The basic idea here, Google says, is to allow virtually anybody to bring their images, upload them (and import their tags or create them in the app) and then have Google’s systems automatically create a customer machine learning model for them. The company says that Disney, for example, has used this system to make the search feature in its online store more robust because it can now find all the products that feature a likeness of Lightning McQueen and not just those where your favorite talking race car was tagged in the text description.

SoftBank World 2017

Softbank invests €460M in Germany’s Auto1 car dealer platform


Softbank’s Vision Fund has made another investment: The Japanese conglomerate has agreed to invest €460M in Berlin-based online car dealer Auto1.
Auto1 confirmed the investment in a press release put out today, saying the deal values the company at €2.9BN. Around half of the investment is being made through the issue of new shares, it added.
The FT reports that Softbank is taking a 20 per cent stake in Auto1 via this investment — though a spokesman for the fund declined to confirm the size of the stake.
SoftBank’s Akshay Naheta is joining the Auto1 Group board following the investment.
Commenting in a statement, he said: “Auto1 Group has built a fast growing, data-enabled platform introducing efficiency and transparency to the fragmented used car market, which is worth more than $300BN annually. The SoftBank Vision Fund’s capital and our operational expertise with marketplace businesses will support continued global growth.”
Also commenting in a statement, Auto1’s co-CEO Hakan Koç added: “We believe that the Fund’s deep investment and technology expertise will help us to accelerate our growth as we continue to focus on making the used vehicle market more efficient and transparent.”
Koç suggested the new financing will go towards product development, telling the FT: “This gives us a big lever when it comes to rolling out new products and services.”
Since launching in 2012, Auto1 has expanded into more than 30 countries, and says it is now trading with more than 35,000 professional partners and selling more than 40,000 cars per month. The startup’s analytics and logistics platform aims to match supply and demand for used cars.
Prior to Softbank stepping in, the company had raised around $520M, according to Crunchbase, with its most recent round being €360M in Series E debt and equity financing, announced in May last year, when it said the funding would go towards expanding its business activity in Europe.
The investment is not Softbank’s first with a car theme; at the end of last year the Vision Fund secured a sizable stake in ride-hailing giant Uber by buying up shares from existing investors.
Setting out his vision for the fund last year, Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son said his conviction that humans are going to invent superintelligent AI within the next 30 years underpins his haste to raise the fund and cut so many sizable checks — even if a lot of the fund’s early bets are rather more prosaic than the 100-legged robotic moonshots he was sketching in his 2017 pitch for Vision Fund partners.


Scammers Are Using Fake Apple In-App Subscriptions to Make Lot of Money


In this year’s annual event, Apple announced that the company had paid out $70 Billion to developers in the App Store’s lifetime and that $21 Billion of the amount was paid in the last year alone.

But has all this money gone to the legitimate app developers?

Probably not, as app developer Johnny Lin last week analyzed the Apple’s App Store and discovered that most of the trending apps on the app store are completely fake and are earning their makers hundreds of thousands of dollars through in-app purchases and subscriptions.

Scammers Use ‘Search Ads’ Platform to Boost App Ranking

 Shady developers are abusing Apple’s relatively new and immature App Store Search Ads, which was launched at last year’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC), to promote their app in the store by using a few strategically chosen search ads and a bit of SEO.
“They’re taking advantage of the fact that there’s no filtering or approval process for ads, and that ads look almost indistinguishable from real results, and some ads take up the entire search result’s first page,” Lin wrote in his lengthy Medium post.
“I dug deeper to find that unfortunately, these aren’t isolated incidents, they’re fairly common in the app store’s top grossing lists. And this isn’t just happening with security related keywords. It seems like scammers are bidding on many other keywords.”

Watch Out, Don’t fall for Fake Apple In-App Subscriptions

One of the top earning apps Lin found was named “Mobile Protection: Clean & Security VPN” that tricked users into signing up for a $99.99 per week subscription for a complete garbage service by just laying their thumb on the Touch ID.

Computers, Internet, Technology,

Tim Cook confirmed the work of Apple over unmanned technologies


Tim Cook, chief executive officer of Apple Inc., speaks during a Bloomberg Technology television interview during the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in San Jose, California, U.S., on Monday, June 5, 2017. The conference aims to inspire developers from around the world to turn their passions into the next great innovations and apps that customers use every day across iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, Apple TV and Mac. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

In the press, more than once appeared information that Apple is working on their own car, unmanned systems and other projects from this sphere. But the company itself has never directly expressed its own development. Now CEO Tim Cook for the first time clearly stated that Apple is concentrating on unmanned technologies, but did not confirm the work on the product – automobile.

“We focus on autonomous systems. This is a key technology that we consider important. We, kind of, see it as the “mother” of all projects based on artificial intelligence. This is probably one of the most complex AI projects that you can work on, “Cook said in an interview with Bloomberg.

CEO Apple believes that the car industry is facing a serious shock. It comes simultaneously from three sides: unmanned technologies, electrification of cars and services for the sharing of cars.

Initially, from 2014, the company from Cupertino planned to work on the product in two of these niches. It was reported that Apple is working on its own electric vehicle with potentially unmanned technologies: the company even rented an office and hired up to 1,000 people for the Project Titan project. But in the fall of 2016, information appeared that the corporation had abandoned the car in favor of unmanned systems. Already in April 2017, Apple received permission to test three unmanned cars on the roads of California.