legal

The FTC just sued Qualcomm for being anti-competitive

The FTC just sued Qualcomm for being anti-competitive

Qualcomm has been accused by the Federal Trade Commission of anticompetitive patent tactics, with the FTC filing a federal court complaint alleging the chip maker used nefarious tactics to maintain a monopoly on mobile processors. The case, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California today, argues that Qualcomm used standards-essential patents it holds to demand elevated royalties and other license payments from phone manufacturers. That would contravene the FTC Act.

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Samsung’s chief faces arrest over vast corruption scandal

Samsung’s chief faces arrest over vast corruption scandal

It's not a good week for Samsung executives, with special prosecutors in South Korea looking to arrest Lee Jae-yong for his involvement in political corruption in the country. Although officially vice chairman of Samsung Electronics, Lee - the son of Samsung's chairman - has over the past months taken on more and more of the leadership role at the company, given his father's continuing ill health. Now, he faces serious charges in the ongoing scandal that has rocked the country.

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Takata executives indicted by DoJ alongside $1 billion fine

Takata executives indicted by DoJ alongside $1 billion fine

Following recent news that an indictment and fine were nearly finalized, the U.S. Department of Justice has announced a $1 billion fine against Takata, the company behind faulty air bags. In addition to the fine, the Justice Department has indicted three company executives. Takata as a company will plead guilty to fraud. Though the news has just been publicized, the decision was made on December 7.

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FCC is still concerned about AT&T and Verizon zero-rated services

FCC is still concerned about AT&T and Verizon zero-rated services

Zero-rated services are becoming increasingly popular among carriers and companies, giving customers a way to consume certain content without using up their high-speed data allotment. Such arrangements have raised concerns about net neutrality in the past, and while the FCC isn't necessarily against zero-rated offerings, it has expressed concerns with some of them. Verizon and AT&T are, once again, the focus of that concern.

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Proposal seeks kill switch and mandatory registration for ‘smart’ robots

Proposal seeks kill switch and mandatory registration for ‘smart’ robots

The distant future once detailed and imagined in science fiction movies and books is now upon us, and humans are scrambling to stay ahead. Robots are no longer a foreign concept to the average consumer, and indeed you may even find versions of them, such as the Roomba, in the average home. Innovations in robotics will no doubt move quickly over the coming years, and will happen in step with advancements in artificial intelligence, painting a picture of a future where advanced robots can learn and think for themselves. To keep such advanced technologies in check, humans need a plan.

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FCA faces huge fines over Jeep and Dodge emissions cheating

FCA faces huge fines over Jeep and Dodge emissions cheating

Fiat Chrysler faces potentially millions in penalties, after being accused by the EPA of installing emissions cheating devices in more than 100,000 Dodge and Jeep vehicles. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) informed FCA today that certain models of its Jeep Grand Cherokee SUVs and Dodge Ram 1500 trucks violated the Clean Air Act, by virtue of the automaker having installed - and failing to disclose - engine management software that may have presented unrealistic emissions results under test conditions. Meanwhile, the agency is still investigating whether FCA also used illegal hardware in the vehicles.

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US Transportation Department reveals new self-driving cars advisory committee

US Transportation Department reveals new self-driving cars advisory committee

The United States Department of Transportation says it is assembling an advisory committee that will focus on automation as it relates to the automotive industry. More than two dozen committee members have already been named, including co-Chair Mary Barra of General Motors and co-Chair Eric Garcetti, the mayor of Los Angeles. The advisory committee’s Vice Chair position is held by Stanford University engineering professor Dr. J. Chris Gerdes.

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Russia proposes banning cigarette sales to people born in 2016 or later

Russia proposes banning cigarette sales to people born in 2016 or later

Society is slowly gravitating away from tobacco cigarettes, a shift resulting largely from dedicated anti-tobacco campaigns highlighting associated health risks and, more recently, the prevalence of nicotine vaping devices. The change isn't happening quickly enough in some critics' opinions, however, and not every country is seeing the same rate of decline. Now, in an effort to eradicate smoking within its own borders, Russia has proposed a radical new cigarette ban.

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Apple sued, FaceTime blamed for fatal car accident

Apple sued, FaceTime blamed for fatal car accident

Driving and using a smartphone at the same time is usually made illegal in some states, with some caveats, for a reason. Drivers have time and again proven themselves incapable of exercising good judgment in those cases. Sometimes, however, companies that implement the technologies, or rather fail to implement them, should be held accountable as well. That seems to be the reasoning behind a lawsuit filed in Texas against Apple, accusing it of not implementing a FaceTime patent it held which could have prevented the death of a five-year old girl in a tragic 2014 vehicular accident.

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Facebook copyright tracking system tipped as part of larger licensing plan

Facebook copyright tracking system tipped as part of larger licensing plan

Facebook is working on building its own copyright tracking technology, according to sources, and it'll use this technology as part of a larger licensing plan. Say the sources, big-name record labels have been pressuring the social network to remove user-uploaded copyrighted videos, and to license the music shared by its users. However, the sources caution that we likely won't see a deal struck between the record labels and Facebook until at least spring 2017.

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Takata tipped near billion dollar settlement with U.S. authorities

Takata tipped near billion dollar settlement with U.S. authorities

Takata is close to striking a massive settlement deal with U.S. authorities, according to sources, with the financial penalty possibly being as high as a billion dollars. According to these sources, Takata’s legal team is working with Department of Justice officials on the settlement, which could include Takata pleading guilty to criminal misconduct. We could see some significant updates as early as next month, but the matter may drag on into a later date in 2017.

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Alexa a hostile witness in murder investigation

Alexa a hostile witness in murder investigation

How reliable a witness is Amazon's Alexa? The voice-controlled assistant, star of the Echo smart speaker but increasingly spreading to other connected devices, has become the unexpected informant in an Arkansas murder investigation set to go to trial come 2017. According to police, and freshly-unearthed warrants filed by investigators, the always-listening Echo could hold crucial evidence in the case.

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