Archive for August, 2013

Skype is working on 3D video calls says executive

Skype is working on 3D video calls says executive

In an interview with the BBC, Microsoft's Corporate Vice President for Skype, Mark Gillett, confirmed that the company is working on 3D video calling functionality. Though he warns that it will still be awhile before such a feature is available - and probably longer yet until it is widely adopted - he also states that he "can imagine a day" when 3D use is more widespread.

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Facebook “Trending” box in testing as Twitter-aping continues

Facebook “Trending” box in testing as Twitter-aping continues

Facebook is trialling a new "Trending" topics section pulling together current hot topics on the social network, in a move that is unlikely to do anything to dismiss accusations that the site is copying Twitter. The new section shows around five currently topical subjects in the upper right corner of the Facebook news feed, though is "only available to a small percentage of US users" at present, a Facebook spokesperson confirmed.

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Twitter’s General Counsel to step down, look for work elsewhere

Twitter’s General Counsel to step down, look for work elsewhere

Twitter's General Counsel Alexander Macgillivray has announced that he will soon step down from his position in the company, handing the reigns over to his soon-to-be replacement Vijaya Gadde. He won't be completely leaving the company initially, instead taking up the position of adviser for things like public policy and corporate development while looking for employment elsewhere

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Google Project Loon explains smart balloons for flocking internet

Google Project Loon explains smart balloons for flocking internet

Google borrowed flocking patterns from birds for early design of its ambitious Project Loon, rolling out blanket coverage simulations to prove to naysayers that delivering wireless internet access from the stratosphere is practical. While some have questioned how the project expects to be able to consistently provide service when the mesh-networking balloons responsible are moving at speed through the changeable atmospheric winds, Project Loon pointed to research done by one of the search giant's Rapid Evaluators that proves it can be achieved.

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iBooks price-fix settlement hits $162.25m but Apple appeal delays payout

iBooks price-fix settlement hits $162.25m but Apple appeal delays payout

The iBookstore lawsuit promising partial refunds for ebook buyers who paid over-the-odds for their downloads is another step closer to making payouts, with cash from Penguin and Macmillan swelling the combined coffers to $162.25m. In a new batch of emails to iBookstore customers affected by the price-fixing suit, the State Attorneys General and Class Counsel E-book Settlements responsible for managing the case - and distributing the money - confirms the new contribution from the two settling publishers, TidBITS reports, though that's not to say the cash will actually arrive any time soon.

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Hybrids and EVs could soon cost up to $4k more Toyota warns

Hybrids and EVs could soon cost up to $4k more Toyota warns

Hybrid and ZEV car prices could rise by up to $4,000 as battery technology fails to keep pace with dwindling federal tax credits, Toyota has warned, despite aggressive targets for low-emission cars in the US. Development of cheaper, more power-dense batteries are likely to bring down the cost of building cars like the Prius, Toyota's Tom Stricker, VP of technology and regulatory affairs said, but countered that good news with the company's own internal calculations that its cars - and those of competitors, like GM's Volt and Nissan's Leaf - could still end up costing between $2,000 and $4,000 more as subsidies and credits expire and are not reinstated.

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Apple support vacation blackout dates suggest September iPhone launch

Apple support vacation blackout dates suggest September iPhone launch

A document has surfaced today from the inner realm of Apple product support that suggests the dates between and including September 15th through the 29th will not be available for employee vacation. This range of dates for a blackout provided by AppleInsider suggest something very similar to what we saw earlier this week from T-Mobile USA, they having a black-out range starting on the 20th of September and running through a 3-day range (through the weekend, that is). Such dates suggest not only an iPhone launch, but the release of iOS 7 as well.

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BlackBerry 10 loses Morgan Stanley upgrade commitment insiders claim

BlackBerry 10 loses Morgan Stanley upgrade commitment insiders claim

One of BlackBerry's highest-profile enterprise wins for BlackBerry 10, international bank behemoth Morgan Stanley, will reportedly freeze plans to upgrade over concerns that the Canadian smartphone firm lacks resolve in the OS. The brokerage firm will instead stick with its existing BlackBerry 7 phones, two sources tell Bloomberg, having become wary of BlackBerry's recently confirmed exploration of "strategic alternatives" announced earlier this week.

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Google acquires WIMM Labs for smartwatch finesse

Google acquires WIMM Labs for smartwatch finesse

If you've not heard a lot of chatter out of WIMM Labs over the past few months, there may be a very big reason why: it's been reported today that Google acquired the company as early as a year ago. While it's not immediately apparent why this news has broken just now, GigaOM suggests that staff members at WIMM have just now updated their profiles on LinkedIn to make the change to Google clear. Woodside Capital Partners have also listed a page which suggests they facilitated the acquisition in full.

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