legal

Amazon ordered to hand over Echo recordings in double murder

Amazon ordered to hand over Echo recordings in double murder

Smart speakers like the Amazon Echo, Google Home speakers, and Apple HomePod are becoming more and more common in houses. But more than just homes for smart assistants, these devices might very well become silent witnesses to crimes. That seems to be the reasoning leading to a ruling in North Hampshire where a judge has ordered Amazon to provide any and all recording made by an Amazon Echo in the home of one of two victims in a double murder case.

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New DMCA exceptions allow jailbreaking smart speakers, phone repairs

New DMCA exceptions allow jailbreaking smart speakers, phone repairs

The right to repair movement is still facing an uphill battle in Congress but they may have gained a reprieve, at least for the next three years. The US Copyright Office has just passed a ruling that modifies exceptions to the contentious section 1201 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) in favor of third-party repairs. In a nutshell, it will be legal next week to jailbreak Amazon Echoes and Google Homes and, to some degree, repair smartphones on your own.

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Google app fees for Europe could add $40 to each Android

Google app fees for Europe could add $40 to each Android

Google's shift to charging Android device-makers in Europe fees to include the Google Play store could add as much as $40 to the cost of each smartphone, leaked documents confirm, a move which is leading some to predict more expensive products for buyers. Google announced the change in strategy after being forced by the European Commission to unbundle its apps - like Chrome and Google Search - from Android.

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Google imposes Android app fees after huge Euro antitrust ruling

Google imposes Android app fees after huge Euro antitrust ruling

Google will charge Android phone-makers in Europe to include Google Play access, as the search giant adjusts its policies to comply with an EU antitrust ruling. The European Commission slapped Google with a 4.34 billion euro - $5bn - fine three months ago, after complaints that it had stymied the smartphone space by forcing phone-makers to install Chrome and Google Search if they wanted Play store access.

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Arizona teams with Intel to create research institute for self-driving cars

Arizona teams with Intel to create research institute for self-driving cars

In an announcement today, Arizona officials revealed the creation of the Institute for Automated Mobility (IAM). This consortium is composed of private companies, university researchers, and public officials, according to the state, the goal being a collaboration on state of the art research within Arizona. Intel is listed as a founding partner.

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Seattle police launch registry to combat swatting calls

Seattle police launch registry to combat swatting calls

The Seattle Police Department has launched a new registry that will help it deal with potential swatting calls. The tool, which is open to the public, allows anyone in the city to register swatting concerns with the PD, helping shed light on what may be future prank calls directed at them. This will help police make informed decisions when dealing with possible swatting situations.

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California bans automated bots that pretend to be human

California bans automated bots that pretend to be human

California has banned bots that pretend to be human, a move that will help users avoid falling victim to automated messages hawking products or ideologies. Under the newly signed bill, these bots will need to disclose their nature, making it clear to the user that they're conversing with a machine rather than a human. Such as a message could be as simple as stating, "I am a bot."

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Elon Musk settles SEC fraud case – and his Tesla tweets are the big casualty

Elon Musk settles SEC fraud case – and his Tesla tweets are the big casualty

Elon Musk has settled with the SEC, stepping down as chairman of the Tesla board and paying $20m in penalties - a figure matched by the automaker - though the biggest loss may well be on his Twitter account. The outspoken and often controversial billionaire found himself on the wrong side of the US Securities and Exchange Commission earlier this year, after tweets about taking Tesla public were accused of being securities fraud.

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Spotify family plan crackdown threatens account sharing [Updated]

Spotify family plan crackdown threatens account sharing [Updated]

Spotify may crack down on friends sharing subscriptions to its more cost-effective family plan, demanding GPS location data from some of its users. The streaming music provider has offered a family plan since 2014, making it more competitive in mid-2016 by allowing up to six people to share a premium subscription for $14.99 per month.

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Qualcomm accuses Apple of stealing secrets to help Intel with its chips

Qualcomm accuses Apple of stealing secrets to help Intel with its chips

Qualcomm has accused Apple of not only stealing its trade secrets but sharing them with Intel, alleging that the iPhone-maker turned to nefarious means in order to prop up the rival chip company. Apple and Qualcomm are currently embroiled in an ongoing legal battle over chip licensing and how the Cupertino firm uses third-party technology.

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Facebook sues BlackBerry over alleged voice messaging patent infringement

Facebook sues BlackBerry over alleged voice messaging patent infringement

Facebook has slapped BlackBerry with a lawsuit accusing it of patent infringement. The legal spat follows BlackBerry's own lawsuit against Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp over allegations of "mobile messaging intellectual property" infringement, an issue that has boiled over into Facebook's own complaint. In it, the social media company claims BlackBerry has violated some of its voice messaging patents, among other things.

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Madden tournament shooting victim files suit against EA and venue

Madden tournament shooting victim files suit against EA and venue

Last week's mass shooting tragedy in Jacksonville, Florida at a bar hosting a tournament for the Madden 19 video game left three people dead and 11 others wounded. Now, one of the victims that was shot twice and survived has filed a lawsuit against EA, the developer/publisher of the football game, and the venue that hosted the tournament. The suit alleges that the game company "failed to provide a safe and secure environment" for the event.

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