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Netflix blames confused customers not rising prices for Q2’s failings

Netflix blames confused customers not rising prices for Q2’s failings

Netflix fell far short of its goals for subscriber growth in Q2 2016, blaming customer confusion around price rises for missing its 2.5m target. The streaming video service had predicted adding 2.5m users worldwide in the three month period, but confirmed today that only 1.68m were added, as churn - the number of people canceling their service - proved greater than Netflix had expected.

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Now Amazon’s Echo is besties with Spotify and Pandora

Now Amazon’s Echo is besties with Spotify and Pandora

Amazon's Alexa-powered Echo speaker has long been able to pull streaming music from a number of services, but now Amazon is allowing users to set their Spotify account as the default. The new functionality, confirmed by Spotify - one of the streaming options with Echo support - means that no longer do users have to specify which provider they want to hear a track or playlist from.

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Devialet’s Gold Phantom packs 4,500W of French ear-melting power

Devialet’s Gold Phantom packs 4,500W of French ear-melting power

If you thought Devialet's oddball Phantom speaker was extreme, get ready to slap on some ear protection for the new Gold Phantom. Squeezing more power into the same curvaceous body, Gold Phantom is the French company's most potent standalone speaker to-date, but it promises more than just potential hearing damage.

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Sonos iPhone lock screen controls added plus 3D Touch

Sonos iPhone lock screen controls added plus 3D Touch

Sonos is finally answering one of the biggest requests from users of its streaming speakers, and embracing Apple's 3D Touch on the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus in the process. Ditching its standalone remotes in favor of its smartphone apps made a lot of sense - who wants to spend a couple hundred dollars on a dedicated touchscreen remote, when you have a far slicker one in your pocket already - but they did make adjusting things like volume and track a little more time consuming since you needed to unlock your phone and load the app first.

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This is Xiaomi’s Mi Box, the new Android TV superstar

This is Xiaomi’s Mi Box, the new Android TV superstar

Android TV hasn't quite managed to clamber aboard the hype-train yet, but if any company can light a fanboy fire for the set-top box platform, it's Xiaomi. The Chinese firm - and outspoken VP Hugo Barra - brought the Xiaomi Mi Box along to Google I/O this week for its first public outing, complete with 4K Ultra HD resolution and a pair of very different controllers.

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With Nomads for Gear VR, Oculus embraces new age of film

With Nomads for Gear VR, Oculus embraces new age of film

When going to the movies involves strapping a virtual reality headset to your face, you have to be delivering more than the local IMAX, but Oculus is confident a new golden age is almost upon us. Released today, Felix & Paul Studios' Nomads app for the Gear VR takes what has, until now, been a fairly gaming-focused device and turns it into an anthropological safari.

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Fluance RT81 Turntable Review – Your retro gateway

Fluance RT81 Turntable Review – Your retro gateway

The current music industry pivot back to vinyl maybe have been exaggerated by the media, but it still warms my record-collecting heart to see so many new options available for those who enjoy listening to LPs. This includes a fresh crop of turntables being built by companies outside the mainstream of traditional platter-spinners like Sony, Technics, and Numark.

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The Netflix fix for bill-shock is better streaming control

The Netflix fix for bill-shock is better streaming control

Intentionally reducing the quality of the video you're watching may sound strange, but Netflix's new granular control over bandwidth could very well save you from cellphone bill-shock. The streaming video company has come through on its promise to give Netflix app users more flexibility in the bitrate at which they watch movies and TV shows, after being criticized by some for chewing through too much of their data allowance.

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Amazon Prime Music graduates for full Sonos streaming

Amazon Prime Music graduates for full Sonos streaming

Sonos' streaming speakers are gaining another source of tunes, with Amazon Prime Music graduating from its beta on the popular audio players. The support had begun trials in October last year as Amazon and Sonos worked out the kinks, with the 1m+ tracks Amazon offers to listeners as part of their annual Prime subscription able to be added to Sonos playlists and mixed with music from other sources.

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Sony’s newest team hunts oddball tech for post-PlayStation world

Sony’s newest team hunts oddball tech for post-PlayStation world

Sony is creating a new idea incubator unit, pulling together wearables, unusual home entertainment, and other odd R&D in the hope of figuring out the next big thing. The Sony New Business Incubation Group (NBIG) will hunt down potential "products that span and integrate conceptual consumer technology, human interaction and the environment around them," the company says today.

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Virtual reality sports is Intel’s big gamble on mainstream VR

Virtual reality sports is Intel’s big gamble on mainstream VR

Intel has snapped up a virtual reality sports startup, with the chip behemoth seeing Replay Technologies as a way into the lucrative arena of digitized entertainment. The deal, announced today, will see the five year old startup's freeD format folded into Intel's technology, with the potential for football, basketball, and other sports being digitally captured from multiple angles that can then be recreated by the fan at home.

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Hale, hearty, and horny: Sonos and Apple study tests if music matters

Hale, hearty, and horny: Sonos and Apple study tests if music matters

Could listening to Beyoncé make food taste better, streaming Slipknot make you more frisky, or slapping on Paul McCartney's greatest hits make your kids do chores? Turns out the answer might be yes to all three, with Sonos bankrolling a scientific study into the effect of music on home life.

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