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So far Olivia Tambini has created 55 blog entries.

Samsung confirms it’s stopping Blu-ray player production

By | February 18th, 2019|Categories: TechRadar|

Samsung has confirmed that it will not be making any new Blu-ray players, having not announced a new player since the launch of its UBD-M9500 4K player at CES 2017.

The news was first reported on by Forbes who claimed that the company is  "no longer going to be making any new models of 4K Blu-ray player". 

Samsung later released a statement confirming the news to CNET, saying "Samsung will no longer introduce new Blu-ray or 4K Blu-ray player models in the US market." 

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Panasonic reveals new Dolby Atmos soundbars

By | February 18th, 2019|Categories: TechRadar|

Panasonic has revealed what it calls its "most cinematic and musically refined soundbars ever", the SC-HTB900, SC-HTB700, and SC-HTB510, at its annual launch event in Frankfurt, Germany.

The HTB900 and HTB700 soundbars both support Dolby Atmos and DTS:X, which both use object-based audio to position different sounds in a 3D space – in other words, the inclusion of up-firing tweeters in both soundbars means they should deliver highly immersive, cinematic audio in the comfort of your own home.

Both the HTB900 and HTB700 use a wireless subwoofer for thumping, impactful bass, as well as powerful speaker drivers, which Panasonic says "deliver a dynamic yet acoustically refined soundstage from even the most sonically demanding of movie soundtracks."

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Amazon’s Alexa Store now allows some users to create and share skills

By | February 14th, 2019|Categories: TechRadar|

Amazon has opened up its US Alexa Store to allow anyone to publish and share Alexa skills created with its 'Blueprints' program.

So far, there's no word on when this feature will be rolled out to the UK and Australia, but the US launch alone will likely see an influx of new skills becoming available for the voice assistant. 

As well as opening up the Alexa Store to have-a-go skill-makers, Amazon is set to launch a number of new Blueprints templates aimed at bloggers and organizations. 

Read the full article

LinkedIn is testing a video broadcasting feature called LinkedIn Live

By | February 12th, 2019|Categories: TechRadar|

LinkedIn, the social media network for professionals, is testing a new feature called LinkedIn Live, which will allow you to broadcast live video streams to other users.

That is, if you have an invite. Right now, LinkedIn is launching an invite-only beta version of LinkedIn Live, although it looks like a request form will become available in the next few weeks if you want to test the feature out yourself.

The beta will only be open to invited users in the US initially, although we imagine that if the trial is successful the feature will be rolled out to all LinkedIn users.… Read the full article

AirPods 2 could have ‘deeper bass’ and support AirPower wireless charging

By | February 11th, 2019|Categories: TechRadar|

A new report from My Smart Price claims that the Apple AirPods 2 will boast "superior audio quality" to their predecessors, but will largely look the same as the original AirPods

Citing a "trusted source", Apple has apparently updated the inner workings of its flagship wireless earbuds to allow for a "more impressive bass response", as well as a new coating on the housing of the earphones for "improved grip".

My Smart Price says that the new coating could be "similar to the the one Google uses for its Pixel smartphones."

The report also further backs up claims that the AirPods 2 will have biometric sensors, allowing them to double up as a fitness tracker.… Read the full article

Apple HomePod 2 could support Face ID

By | February 8th, 2019|Categories: TechRadar|

Details about the rumored Apple HomePod 2 have been thin on ground so far, but a recently filed patent by Apple suggests that the second generation smart speaker could support Face ID.

According to MacRumors, the patent describes a "countertop speaker" that could "identify users in the vicinity of the speaker using facial recognition, as well as measure the distance of users [in relation] to the speaker".

So, while Apple hasn't explicitly named the HomePod 2, a Bloomberg report in July 2018 suggested that Apple could be looking to release the HomePod 2 in early 2019, so it would make sense if the patented tech was designed for a second gen smart speaker. 

Having Face ID built into the Apple HomePod 2 could provide an additional layer of security for users, as well as allowing for multiple user profiles, with each user identified via facial recognition. 

The patent also explained the countertop speaker would be kitted out with "various sensors and cameras that gather hand gestures and other three-dimensional gesture input."

If the countertop speaker mentioned in the patent really is the HomePod 2, it may be possible to control it by waving or clapping for example, with no need to actually touch the device itself. 

According to the patent, the smart speaker could have LEDs woven into the fabric to provide "visual feedback for the hand gestures," as well as being configured to "display alphanumeric characters through the fabric that change depending on time of day".… Read the full article

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iPhone apps continuing to secretly record your screen could face Apple’s ban hammer

By | February 7th, 2019|Categories: TechRadar|

Update: Apple is reportedly instructing developers to either inform and request consent from users to record user screen data, or remove the code entirely. Apps that do neither will be removed from the App Store, according to follow-up TechCrunch coverage.

It’s not unusual for apps to collect your data whether it’s to create targeted advertising, help with technical support, or to learn about the demographics of customers.

However, it looks like some companies have taken their data collection practices even further, by recording your screen when you use their iPhone apps. 

According to reports by TechCrunch and the App Analyst, iOS applications from the likes of Air Canada, Abercrombie and Fitch, Singapore Airlines, Expedia, and Hotels.com have used "session replay" technology from data analytics company Glassbox to record user's screens while using their apps.… Read the full article

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Sonos’ new outdoor speaker lets you take the party outside

By | February 5th, 2019|Categories: TechRadar|

Speaker colossus Sonos and audio manufacturer Sonance have joined forces to create a new line of in-wall, in-ceiling, and weatherproof outdoor speakers designed to work with the Sonos Amp.

The new line, called Sonos Architectural, promises to bring built-in music streaming to your entire home, whether you're doing chores around your home or relaxing in the garden. 

It's the first time Sonance has created a speaker solely for Sonos, whose CEO Patrick Spence explained that "our goal was to create a solution optimized for installers, bringing the Sonos experience to architectural speakers for the first time.… Read the full article

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Your Amazon Echo or Google Home Hub could soon dial 999 for you

By | February 4th, 2019|Categories: TechRadar|

If you find yourself in an emergency at home, but you don't have your phone to hand, your smart speaker might just save your skin. 

According to The Sunday Times, Greater London's Metropolitan police service is working on a system that will allow you to dial 999 using your smart speaker, whether you have an Amazon Echo, an Echo Dot, or a Google Home Hub in your house. 

The Sunday Times claims to have seen documents outlining how the system will work, which say:

“Contact may be triggered by the human issuing a command to their bot, or it may be automatically generated by the bot through AI.… Read the full article

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‘AI could send us back to the stone age’: In conversation with the End Of The World

By | January 31st, 2019|Categories: TechRadar|

Our existence as a species is, in all likelihood, limited. 

Whether the downfall of the human race begins as a result of a devastating asteroid impact, a natural pandemic, or an all-out nuclear war, we are facing a number of risks to our future, ranging from the vastly remote to the almost inevitable.

Global catastrophic events like these would, of course, be devastating for our species. Even if nuclear war obliterates 99% of the human race however, the surviving 1% could feasibly recover, and even thrive years down the line, with no lasting damage to our species' potential. 

There are some events that there's no coming back from though.… Read the full article

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