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Automakers hoarding driver data as Apple and Google circle

Automakers hoarding driver data as Apple and Google circle

Unable to ignore Apple and Google's efforts to infiltrate the dashboard, car makers are picking different routes to collaborate and compete, with driver data the prize. Platforms like Android Auto and CarPlay - which allow smartphone users to plug their device into a car, see a subset of apps and services more safely displayed on the vehicle's own systems, and control them both by voice and physical buttons - are increasingly being expected by new car buyers. Tensions around what data sharing is required has slowed the spread, however, as manufacturers wrestle with the pros and cons of allowing Apple and Google into their dashboards.

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Trying the iOS 9 public beta is easier than you think

Trying the iOS 9 public beta is easier than you think

Apple isn't releasing iOS 9 until this fall, but if you can't wait for a taste of the new iPhone and iPad software, the public beta holds an easy sneak-preview. Announced back at WWDC 2015, and launched this past week, the iOS 9 public beta software may not be quite final but it's certainly ready for a broader audience to try out, not to mention an opportunity for iPhone users to flag up any final bugs to Apple. Trying the public beta needn't be a headache, though, as long as you take a few precautions.

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Amazon Kindle Paperwhite Review (2015) – Middle child syndrome

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite Review (2015) – Middle child syndrome

If you’re only going to do one thing, you need to do it really, really well, so the stakes are high for Amazon’s 2015 Kindle Paperwhite. Slotting in-between the $79 Kindle and the well-esteemed - but, at $199, expensive - Kindle Voyage, the $119 Paperwhite now gets a 300 dpi E Ink screen not to mention new software intended to make reading more immersive. Question is, does the new Kindle suffer from middle-child syndrome, or has Amazon managed to eclipse not only its entry-level ereader but its flagship. too?

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Did Nadella just put the nail in Windows Phone’s coffin?

Did Nadella just put the nail in Windows Phone’s coffin?

Just a while ago we looked into the reasons why it wouldn't be in Microsoft's best interests to suddenly switch to Android as its mobile platform. And then head honcho Satya Nadella dropped the huge bombshell. Microsoft has, for all intents and purposes, stricken off Nokia from its books. This has lead many to conclude Microsoft's surrender in the smartphone market. And they might very well be right. Or not. Like many things in life, things aren't as clear cut as we would like, and Microsoft's struggle with mobile is far from over.

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The big deal about IBM’s tiny chips

The big deal about IBM’s tiny chips

IBM is making a big deal of celebrating a tiny achievement, successfully producing a 7nm chip that could mean huge efficiency improvements in phones, laptops and more. Squeezing more than 20 billion transistors into a chip the size of a fingernail took figuring out new manufacturing processes and chewed through part of a $3bn investment IBM earmarked back in 2014, but it's shaping up to be worth every cent. Big Blue predicts a power/performance increase of more than 50-percent from the smaller processors.

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Samsung wearable to beat HoloLens with 3D-cam and 2x Glass

Samsung wearable to beat HoloLens with 3D-cam and 2x Glass

Samsung may be next on the list of hardware companies to deliver a smart headset with dual-Google Glass-like displays, 3D cameras, and augmented reality/holography. This device does not yet have a formal name, instead opting in early registration documents as a "wearable display apparatus" only. The image you see before you is not the same as Samsung's earlier Google Glass competitor seen back in January of 2014 - this headset is brand new. It's wireless, and it's sporting virtual imagery the likes of which we've never seen before.

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OS X El Capitan public beta is out: Here’s what you get

OS X El Capitan public beta is out: Here’s what you get

Mac developers have already had a taste of OS X El Capitan, and today Apple is releasing the public beta. The brave and the curious can as of today install a pre-final version of El Capitan onto their Mac to get an early glimpse of what the updated platform brings, complete with things like split-view multitasking, supercharged search in a much-improved Spotlight, and big changes in Mail and other apps.

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Huge Force Touch iPhone 6s orders tipped plus 4th color

Huge Force Touch iPhone 6s orders tipped plus 4th color

Apple is ordering record-setting numbers of new iPhone handsets, insiders claim, pushing suppliers to their limits as the iPhone 6s nears. Production of what's expected to be the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus is believed to have begun back in June, but new leaks indicate Apple has potentially placed orders for as many as 20m more of the handsets than of last year's new phones. Among those orders could be a fourth color option, it's said, as well as a Force Touch display.

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Microsoft axes 7,800 jobs; Failed Nokia buy a $7.6bn write-off

Microsoft axes 7,800 jobs; Failed Nokia buy a $7.6bn write-off

Microsoft will slash 7,800 jobs, the majority from its struggling phone division, and write-off $7.6bn over its Nokia acquisition, the company has confirmed today. The sweeping cuts cast a shadow over the future of Windows for smartphones, or at least Microsoft's role in building them, with the CEO Satya Nadella saying that for the moment the company plans a "focused phone portfolio" at least in the near-term. Where that leaves the rumored flagship Windows 10 smartphone many fans of the platform had been hoping for remains to be seen.

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Game streaming: fad or future?

Game streaming: fad or future?

Sony, NVIDIA, and, just recently, GameFly. These are the companies that are trying to push game streaming to the forefront. And they are just the bigger ones, with smaller players also trying to make a name for themselves in this niche, either through innovation or through sheer force of will. But behind all these attempt lurks one unanswered question: is it worth it? Is game streaming just a fad that will fade away quietly or is it the path to the future? While the technology admittedly has benefits, who is it really benefiting, players or the big companies?

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For surprise hit Tangerine, iPhone the movie camera of choice

For surprise hit Tangerine, iPhone the movie camera of choice

Necessity is the mother of invention, but moviegoers were still astonished to hear that unexpected Sundance 2015 hit Tangerine was filmed entirely on iPhone. The high-energy, sharply comic, but also touching film wasn’t the first to rely on Apple’s smartphone, but with a theatrical release this week it’s perhaps the highest-profile. After an early screening in San Francisco, I sat down with Tangerine’s writer/director Sean Baker and co-screenwriter Chris Bergoch to find out how the iPhone helped shape a movie that at times can be as challenging to watch as it is rewarding.

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This is Motorola’s new “Kinzie” phone

This is Motorola’s new “Kinzie” phone

Details for the next Motorola flagship device have leaked in two different iterations, one internationally, one domestic. The domestic version goes by codename "Kinzie" and is almost certainly headed for Verizon as a DROID device. Verizon will not release this device until later this year for more than one reason. The first reason is - they've just released new editions of the DROID Turbo right under our noses. The devices aren't all that different - they've just been given new paint jobs, so to speak.

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