business

Amazon tipped to launch its own private-label food by early June

Amazon tipped to launch its own private-label food by early June

Amazon will soon be launching its own perishable foods and other products under its own private-label brands, according to sources, something we've heard talk of in the past. These private-label brands are said to include things like laundry detergent and diapers, as well as food items like baby food, spices, and coffee. We may be seeing some of these products become available by the beginning of June, the sources say, and they’ll include brands like Mama Bear and Happy Belly.

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Acer joins Starbreeze in developing VR headset for theme parks, arcades

Acer joins Starbreeze in developing VR headset for theme parks, arcades

Starbreeze isn't a name you may hear very often, but for the last year the game studio has been working on the StarVR system, a high-end headset that will be used in theme parks and arcades. Now they've partnered up with Acer to continue development, the companies have announced. Part of the computer maker's contribution will be building desktops and laptops powerful enough for StarVR to run off of.

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Tesla nabs Audi exec Peter Hochholdinger as production boss

Tesla nabs Audi exec Peter Hochholdinger as production boss

Tesla has hired long-running Audi executive Peter Hochholdinger as its new Vice President of Vehicle Production. In his role, Hochholdinger will be aiding the auto maker in achieving its-ever growing production goals, ensuring the company is able to deliver on its Model 3 promises while keeping up Model X and Model S production. Before Tesla, Hochholdinger spent 22 years at Audi, where he has roles in ‘the entire production chain,’ helming production for multiple Audi models and more.

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Apple invests in Didi Chuxing, Uber’s Chinese rival

Apple invests in Didi Chuxing, Uber’s Chinese rival

For years now, people have been speculating on Apple's more formal entry into the automotive business, especially after Google revealed its self-driving car project. But while Cupertino remains coy on that matter, it is entering the industry through yet another door. It has just invested $1 billion in a Chinese company named Didi Chuxing, formerly Didi Kuaidi. While practically unheard of overseas, this company is seen to have single-handedly threatened Uber's dominance in the ride-hailing service market. And, quite surprisingly, Apple suddenly seems to want a piece of that as well.

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Walmart rolls out free two-day shipping in jab at Amazon

Walmart rolls out free two-day shipping in jab at Amazon

Walmart's no stranger to taking on Amazon; last year, for example, the retailer announced a flat-rate unlimited shipping option called ShippingPass that undercut Amazon Prime at $50/year while offering a similar level of convenience. Now the company is stepping up its game, revealing plans to offer free two-day shipping to customers who prefer ordering online rather than visiting a store; a $49/year ShippingPass subscription will be required.

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Nintendo insists on calling next mobile games “free to start”

Nintendo insists on calling next mobile games “free to start”

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet, Shakespeare did write. But the same is true for undesirable things as well. Nintendo might be trying to distance itself from the ubiquitous but still criticized free-to-play games, but its still ambiguous "free-to-start" model might not fare any better. In fact, given the literal interpretation of the phrase and Nintendo's rather colorful reputation in today's gaming market, the label might do more harm than good in promoting Nintendo's upcoming mobile titles.

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Apple denies that iTunes will end music downloads by 2018

Apple denies that iTunes will end music downloads by 2018

There's no doubt that streaming music is rapidly becoming the standard way people consume digital audio — it hasn't already for many users. Streaming has already surpassed physical music sales in terms of revenue, and it will likely overtake downloads sometime in the future. But the idea of streaming being the only option for paying for music is certainly something many would balk at, which is why Apple made the rare move of shutting down a rumor that iTunes would discontinue music downloads in the next few years.

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Sign language translating gloves turn sign language into audio

Sign language translating gloves turn sign language into audio

Two undergraduate students from the University of Washington have created a glove that could make a huge different in how people who use sign language communicate with people who don't understand sign language. The glove is able to translate gestures made in American Sign Language (ASL) into English and then says what the gestures mean via attached speakers. The invention is called the SignAloud glove.

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Disney Infinity shuttered as Disney exits game publishing biz

Disney Infinity shuttered as Disney exits game publishing biz

If you've been wondering about the lack of major updates on Disney Infinity, or why Apple said it won't update Infinity 3.0 on the Apple TV, now we all know why. Disney has formerly announced that it will soon be shutting down the relatively successful Disney Infinity game, though not before one last batch of updates. This is in line with the company's decision to pull out from the game publishing business, falling back instead on licensing its properties to external game studios and publishers.

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Hyperloop One will conduct a propulsion test in Vegas tomorrow

Hyperloop One will conduct a propulsion test in Vegas tomorrow

The company formally known as Hyperloop Technologies has announced a name change that brings it more in line with the company’s ‘singular leadership and incredible progress,’ it announced this evening. Henceforth, the company shall be known as Hyperloop One, and the name change comes just in time — the company will be conducting a propulsion open-air test in North Las Vegas tomorrow, marking the start of what it says will be a series of ‘full-scale tests’ as it tries to develop the Hyperloop transportation system.

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Netflix may ruin studio by refusing to adjust contract dates

Netflix may ruin studio by refusing to adjust contract dates

Netflix is on the receiving end of some incredulous stares and disappointed head-shaking, according to a new report. The company is planning to stream a pair of films from producer Relativity Media LLC before they arrive in theaters, and it may be able to do so because of the current contract in place. The studio, it turns out, ran into some pretty big financial troubles and is banking on movies “Masterminds” and “The Disappointments Room” pulling it out of the frying pan. While making some big financial adjustments, the company had to delay the theatrical release of both movies, and the expectation was that Netflix would agree to adjust its streaming dates for after the theatrical releases. Netflix, though, says it is going to proceed with the original dates against the studio’s wishes.

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Verizon and ESPN finally settle their skinny-bundle squabble

Verizon and ESPN finally settle their skinny-bundle squabble

More than a year ago, ESPN sued Verizon for alleged breach of contract over the latter company’s then-new skinny bundle packages that, according to ESPN, violated a contract between the two companies. Now, finally, the duo has announced a settlement that puts the matter to rest, but they didn’t provide any details about what the settlement entails. Recent changes to Verizon's channel options, though, hint at what may have happened behind closed doors.

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