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Google announces Android ‘zero-touch enrollment,’ makes rolling out Android devices in organizations easier

Usually when a company purchases smartphones (or computers) for use by employees, there’s a long setup process involved. Taking every phone out of the box, setting everything up, and installing management software can eat up a lot of time. Google is trying to solve this problem with ‘zero-touch enrollment,’ a way to make Android rollouts in the enterprise more seamless and secure.

With this new feature, companies can configure the devices during the purchase process, so they are ready to go the moment they are shipped.

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Google announces Android ‘zero-touch enrollment,’ makes rolling out Android devices in organizations easier was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Sony Xperia XA1 Plus launched in India

Sony has launched the Xperia XA1 Plus in India. The phone is priced at INR 24,990 ($384) and will be available starting tomorrow, September 22.

The Xperia XA1 Plus is Sony’s mid-range smartphone aimed at multimedia consumption. It has a large 5.5-inch 1080p display, which is larger than most Sony smartphones. It runs on a MediaTek Helio P20 processor with 4GB of RAM and 32GB of expandable storage.

On the back is a 23 megapixel camera with f2.0 aperture and Sony’s SteadyShot digital image stabilization for videos. On the front is an 8 megapixel sensor with f2.0 aperture and…

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London and Antwerp-based Hummingbird Ventures closes new $95M fund

London and Antwerp-based Hummingbird Ventures, which counts Deliveroo and Showpad in its portfolio, has closed a new $95 million fund to invest in tech startups at the “late Seed and Series A” stage. Read More

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Bose’s Google Assistant-optimized QuietComfort 35 II headphones are now official

It’s been known for some time that Google was planning to release its own Google Assistant headphones (Bisto), and we also knew that third parties would be releasing headphones with similar functionality. Thanks to a couple of leaks, we knew that Bose would be launching the QuietComfort 35 II with the Assistant built-in, and today that news has been officially announced by both Google and Bose.

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Bose’s Google Assistant-optimized QuietComfort 35 II headphones are now official was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Tech Tip: Retiring the Google Drive Desktop App

While its current desktop app for Windows and Mac is headed off into the sunset, Google has new apps for backing up and syncing files online. – Source

KeySmart Pro review: Tile tracking on a great key organizer is invaluable

If you lose your keys — or if you even think you might lose your keys — then this is a no-brainer.

I can’t say that I’ve ever really lost my keys. I tend to put them in the same place every time I return home. And I keep them in the same spot in my bag when I travel.

Keys, they say, are pretty important.

Having written that, I now fully expect to lose my keys in the coming days.

That brings me to a new version of an old toy. I’ve long been a fan of KeySmart — sort of a Swiss Army Knife sort of thing for your keys, so you’re not stuck with a mangled mess of metal, stabbing you in the pocket when you least expect it. And now KeySmart has gotten even smarter, teaming up with the Tile tracking service. So you can use your phone to find your keys. No extra dongles — it’s just all built in.

Let’s take a quick look.

See at KeySmart See at Amazon

The keys, please — what is KeySmart Pro?

First things first: KeySmart is one of those key organizer things, as opposed to a simple key ring. It takes maybe 5 minutes to unscrew it, plop in your keys and then put it back together. KeySmart has a bunch of weird little accessories, too, including (and most importantly) a bottle opener, a USB flash drive, a golf divot tool — you know, normal, everyday stuff like that.

What’s new in the Pro is the integration with Tile. And that’s required some changes to the hardware. The KeySmart itself is now plastic instead of metal, and it’s about twice as thick. That’s the tradeoff you’ll have to make to cram electronics inside this thing (radio waves and metal don’t play all that nicely together), including a battery, Bluetooth radio, Micro-USB charger, buttons, LED flashlight, and a tiny speaker.

There’s a lot going on in this little thing, for sure.

Installing your keys is as easy as it’s always been with KeySmart. You unscrew the thing, arrange your keys and spacers and accessories, then screw it all back together.

The Tile tracking part of the equation

What makes this one new, of course, is the ability to find your keys with Tile. The tracking system is built into the KeySmart Pro itself, so you don’t need any dongles hanging off.

Setup was simple enough. Load up the Tile app (either from Google Play or from the iOS App Store, log in, and attach the KeySmart Pro to your account. (If you’ve been anywhere near the Internet the past, oh, decade, you’re probably good to go here.)

Organizing your keys is great. Knowing it’s much harder to lose them is even better.

If you’re new to all this tracking stuff, here’s how it works. I like to think of it as short range/long range. – Source

HTC in a nutshell: What went wrong and what went right

HTC has sold off part of its R&D workforce to Google in an attempt to right the ship – so the $1.1 billion deal won’t hurt there. The cash injection will keep the lights on at HTC in its original form and help keep the dream alive for a little while longer – far better than what happened to Nokia when it was struggling.

It’s definitely good news for the 20-year-old company and gives it a fighting chance at sticking around for the next 20 years. And who knows – HTC was once a true contender. As Nokia fell during the start of the Android revolution, HTC was making hay.

Around 2010, the company wisely switched from Windows Mobile to Android, bringing out the first phone to market with the new, open source OS. There’s a good chance you or someone you know had an HTC phone that they remember fondly from around this time.

See also:Using the first Android smartphone I owned in 2017Using the first Android smartphone I owned in 2017August 19, 2017

Fast forward a few years and Google is now set to take some 2,000 or so of HTC’s ‘Powered by HTC’ research and development team and make them Googlers, Googlers who will be set on a new hardware mission. What that is we won’t know for some time, but the scope is broad: new smartphones, adding Google Assistant to IoT devices, and so on.

But how did we get here? What went wrong and what went right for the storied Taiwanese manufacturer?

One timeline that tells the story in a graph is the stock valuation of the company – the meteoric rise and catastrophic freefall that might have finally been put on halt:

What went wrong vs what went right

The what went wrong list isn’t a short one, nor is it a new take. As far back as 2012 you can find opinion pieces asking what happened to HTC.

There’s rarely a single smoking gun for any struggling company. Nokia and HTC have their similarities in that they were both squeezed out by the likes of Apple and Samsung.

If you ask HTC, both marketing budgets and slogans are to blame.

If you ask HTC (along with most tech journalists), both marketing budgets and slogans are to blame. ‘Quietly Brilliant’ never hit the mark, while advertising spends weren’t in the ballpark of rivals. And no matter which way you cut it, HTC’s idea of advertising has always been bizarre.

“Samsung spent four to six times more in advertising than us,” said HTC’s president of global sales and marketing at HTC, Jason Mackenzie, back in 2012. (Mackenzie left HTC in January this year.)

But was it marketing, or was it the product?

Hardware: The highs and lows

Credit where it’s due: HTC has released some strong devices over the years, and it consistently got its designs more right than wrong.

But what was once clearly good fell into confusion. HTC put out more than 100 different phones – Source

You know you want to watch a barrel of wine explode in slow motion

Imagine a whale’s blowhole was capable of pushing out red wine instead of air and you’ll have a pretty good idea about what’s going on in this video.

A sealed barrel of wine built up waaaaayyyyy too much pressure from gas created during fermentation. Then, when the clamp on the barrel was released, the red wine gushed into the air like a geyser.

It’s sad to see all that wine go to waste. RIP, wine.

Image: via Giphy …

More about Wine, Exploded, Winery, Culture, and Food – Source

Apple’s little box is an expensive buddy for your big 4K HDR TV – CNET

With the capability to stream in 4K and high dynamic range, Apple’s latest TV box offers peak picture, for a high price. – Source

Solar eruption ‘photobombed’ Mars encounter with Comet Siding Spring

When Comet C/2013 A1 (Siding Spring) passed just 140,000 kilometers from Mars on 19th October 2014, depositing a large amount of debris in the Martian atmosphere, space agencies coordinated multiple spacecraft to witness the largest meteor shower in recorded history. It was a rare opportunity, as this kind of planetary event occurs only once every 100,000 years. – Source

Activehours raises $39 million for its new take on cash advances

Nine months after raising $22 million for its unique take on the cash-advance business, Activehours has gone back to the venture capital well and pulled out another $39 million in financing.
Led by Andreessen Horowitz, with participation from the company’s early-stage investors Matrix Partners, Ribbit Capital, and March Capital Partners, Activehours has managed to now raise nearly $65… Read More

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Big fat Stratolaunch plane tests all six of its engines

Remember the “Roc”? The awe-inspiring, gigantic carrier aircraft from Stratolaunch, the company owned by Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen?

SEE ALSO: Microsoft cofounder tweets a picture of his ginormous rocket-launching plane

Back in June, it was ready to make its first rollout for a series of tests, starting with fuel testing.

Well, this week the six-engine mothership completed its first round of engine testing, as tweeted by Allen:

Started up :

— Paul Allen (@PaulGAllen) …

More about Microsoft, Stratolaunch, Tech, and Innovations – Source

In one day, we saw two very different sides of esports

At the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, a team of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive players stands behind a giant stage, going over last-minute strategies before heading up on stage to play a semifinals match inside one of the biggest arenas in New York City.

Behind them sits a row of computers for practice, $400 gaming chairs, and a table stocked with bananas, granola bars, chips, and fruit gummies.

About 200 feet away in the bowels of the Barclays Center, a handful of the top Street Fighter V players in the world sit and stand among the crowd of fans, holding their fight sticks and controllers while waiting to be called up to compete in front of a crowd on fold-out chairs that take up about one half of the converted basketball practice court. Behind them is a nearly empty Red Bull refrigerator. …

More about Esports, Street Fighter, Counter Strike, Esl, and Csgo

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These are the best free apps for PlayStation VR

There aren’t many out there, but the free apps on Playstation VR are nothing to scoff at.

Sony launched PlayStation VR with a bang, including a ton of amazing games from nearly every genre. If you haven’t spent any time lurking through the PlayStation store since setting up your PlayStation VR, then you might not realize that there are a handful of free apps available for download right now. At the moment, the pickings are a bit slim, but that’s to be expected since we’re only a few short days past launch day. Well, don’t worry about searching through the PlayStation store because we’ve got the details on the best free apps on PlayStation VR.

at VR Heads

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No magic pill to cure alcohol dependence yet

A new study has found no reliable evidence for using nalmefene, naltrexone, acamprosate, baclofen or topiramate to control drinking in patients with alcohol dependence or alcohol use disorder. At best, some treatments showed low to medium efficacy in reducing drinking, but those findings were from studies with a high risk of bias. None demonstrated any benefit on health outcomes. – Source

Face filters come to Instagram Live

The next time you go live for your Instagram followers, you’ll be able to spice it up with some face filters.

The fun filters, stickers, and effects with which you bedeck your Instagram photos are now available for live video, Instagram has announced.

All you need to do is tap the face icon in the bottom right corner of your screen during your broadcast. Filter options will appear; tap one to see how it looks.

SEE ALSO: This couple had a tech-themed wedding that was super Instagram-worthy

Alongside the video functionality comes a new filter exclusively for live video: the “Sunglasses” face filter. The filter will place virtual sunglasses on your face with reflective lenses. Tap the lenses to change what’s reflected in them, and maybe trick your viewers into thinking you’re in a way cooler place than you are. …

More about Instagram, Smartphone, Smartphones, Live Video, and Smartphone Camera

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Co-founder Brian Fenty becomes CEO at TodayTix

There’s a new CEO at TodayTix, though he’s definitely not new to the company — Chairman Brian Fenty is becoming chief executive, while his co-founder (and the previous CEO) Merritt Baer is becoming the Head of Europe. TodayTix sells theater tickets in cities across the United States (including New York, Chicago and San Francisco), but its European presence is currently limited… Read More

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Bose launches new flagship headphones with Google Assistant

Bose’s new premium, noise-cancelling headphones, QC35 II, come with Google Assistant support, the company announced Thursday.

The news is not exactly new, as these new cans leaked all over the internet a few days ago, but it’s still notable. Bose’s QC35, which precede this model, were widely praised as one of the best wireless, noise-cancelling headphones around. And Google Assistant on a pair of headphones like these is definitely an interesting feature.

SEE ALSO: The audio jack is officially dead forever — time to invest in some wireless headphones

Hardware-wise, the QC35 II appear to be just a mild update of their predecessor, the biggest difference being the new Action button on the right earcup, which launches Google Assistant. From there, you’ll be able to control your music through Assistant, such as playing a playlist with songs by your favorite artists. …

More about Gadgets, Google, Headphones, Google Assistant, and Bose – Source

Better rechargeable batteries coming soon?

Novel lithium electrodes coated with indium could be the basis for more powerful, longer-lasting, rechargeable batteries. The coating hinders undesirable side-reactions between the electrode and electrolyte, provide a more uniform deposition of lithium when charging, and augments storage in the lithium anode via alloying reactions between lithium and indium. Their success stems from the good diffusion of lithium ions along the interfacial layer. – Source

Royole’s ‘personal cinema’ headset carries a heavy premium

VR’s not-so-meteoric rise has also revived interest in that most sci-fi of concepts: the personal cinema. A head-mounted display that lets you immerse yourself in a movie, blocking out the distractions of modern life. No matter if you’re on a plane o… – Source

Toddler can’t help but tear up while watching a dinosaur fall down

Pixar movies are known for their impeccable animation and unparalleled storytelling, sure. But, they’re also known for their ability to turn adults and children alike into blubbering messes.

For example: Poor 2-year-old Jentree just couldn’t keep it together during an emotional scene from The Good Dinosaur.

SEE ALSO: Toddler has adorable reaction when hearing his dad play guitar for the first time

My mom sent me this video of my 2 year old niece jentree watching a movie and crying because the dinosaur fell and lost his mom…my heart 😭

— m (@emilybroderick) …

More about Disney, Culture, Pixar, Web Culture, and Culture

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Small dog’s reaction to being pet will speak deeply to your soul

Every now and then, a dog comes along that makes our very guts, the deepest depths of our souls, scream “same.”

Here is that dog.

SEE ALSO: Cats, ranked

Writer and voiceover actor Paul Rugg (you might remember him as Mr. Director on Animaniacs and Pinky and the Brain) tweeted a delightfully tongue-in-cheek video Tuesday extolling the benefits of petting one’s canine companion.

“You see,” he says in the clip, “petting your dog is one of the most relaxing things you can possibly do.”

Reader, the dog does not agree. Watch and be astounded.

Dogs: good even when they’re biting your hand.

WATCH: This adorable girl discovered the famous ‘Excalibur’ sword

More about Dogs, Culture, Web Culture, and Animals

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Big herbivorous dinosaurs ate crustaceans as a side dish

Some big plant-eating dinosaurs roaming present-day Utah some 75 million years ago were slurping up crustaceans on the side, a behavior that may have been tied to reproductive activities, says a new study. – Source

Ajit Pai’s plan to lower broadband standards is “crazy,” FCC Democrat says

Enlarge / FCC members Jessica Rosenworcel and Ajit Pai at INTX: The Internet & Television Expo in Chicago, Illinois, US, on Wednesday, May 6, 2015. (credit: Getty Images | Bloomberg)

The Federal Communications Commission chairman’s proposal that could lower the country’s broadband standard is “crazy” and does nothing to solve the United States’ broadband accessibility problems, a Democratic FCC commissioner said yesterday.

The FCC is “proposing to lower US broadband standard from 25 to 10Mbps,” FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel tweeted. “This is crazy. Lowering standards doesn’t solve our broadband problems.”

#FCC proposing to lower US #broadband standard from 25 to 10 Mbps. This is crazy. Lowering standards doesn’t solve our broadband problems.

— Jessica Rosenworcel (@JRosenworcel) September 20, 2017

Redefining broadband to declare problem solved

The FCC’s current policy, a holdover from former Chairman Tom Wheeler, is that all Americans should have access to home Internet service with speeds of at least 25Mbps downstream and 3Mbps upstream and access to mobile broadband. If that policy remained in place, having one or the other wouldn’t be enough to be considered “served” in the FCC’s annual analysis of whether broadband is being deployed to all Americans in a reasonable and timely fashion.

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Mod that adds online play to Super Mario 64 draws Nintendo’s ire

Enlarge / A shot from the trailer for Super Mario 64 Online, which has since been taken down from YouTube by a Nintendo DMCA request.

Nintendo has issued a number of DMCA copyright takedown notices aimed at hindering a popular mod that adds online play to a PC-emulated version of Super Mario 64, letting up to 24 players run around the game’s world together as a number of different characters.

ROM hacker Kaze Emanuar says Nintendo issued takedown requests for several videos of Super Mario 64 Online gameplay on his YouTube channel. Those videos featured download links and instructions for installing the ROM hack, which have also been removed along with the videos.

The main video announcing the mod’s launch had received more than a million views since going up early last week (an archived copy of that video is still up on IGN). Emanuar told Kotaku that “tens of thousands” of people were playing the game as of yesterday.

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Nvidia Shield TV gets a new, lower price ahead of Apple TV 4K launch

Nvidia’s Shield TV, an Android TV-based device that’s currently the best option available for 4K streaming fans, is getting a price drop with a new package that leaves out the included video game controller. Bundled with just the remote, the 16GB Shield TV is now $179 – $20 cheaper than the Shield TV bundle that also includes the joypad, and in line with the pricing of the… Read More

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Production of key diabetes cells can be improved

In the future diabetics might benefit from getting insulin-regulating beta cells transplanted into their body because their own beta cells are destroyed or less functional. However, according to new stem cell research, the current way of producing beta cells from stem cells has significant shortfalls. The beta cells produced have some features resembling alpha cells. – Source

iOS 11 makes sexting on Snapchat riskier than ever. That’s why you need the next update.

iOS 11 has just blessed us with a cavalcade of newfangled, super useful features. But, with every blessing comes a curse. One that Snapchat sexters need to know about.

The new update for iPhone and iPad which dropped this week has a swanky “Screen Recording” feature that makes it easy-breezy for you to record disappearing photo and video snaps with a mere tap of a finger. Uh-oh.

Senders of sexually explicit and risqué snaps: here’s everything you need to know.

SEE ALSO: For better or worse, Snapchat changed sexting forever

Snapchat’s …

More about Tech, Watercooler, Iphone, Snapchat, and Sex And Relationships – Source

There’s another Louvre museum, and it’s floating on an artificial island

Did you know there’s more than one Louvre? That’s right – the world famous Paris museum has loaned its name and some of its art to a new structure in Abu Dhabi, which floats on an artificial island. Ooh la la!

After a series of delays, the Louvre Abu Dhabi is officially opening its doors to the public on Nov. 11. …

More about Tech, Mashable Video, Architecture, Innovation, and Island – Source

Frightened baby tries her best to hide from her mother in a face mask

Mom…is that you?

In an adorable viral video, a frightened baby Jaimes doesn’t recognize her mom in a charcoal blackhead peel off mask and starts crying every time she looks at her, probably thinking “who are you and what have you done to my mother?!”

Jaimes does her best to hide in her mother’s arms despite the overwhelming conflict, and every time her mother lifts her up, she covers her face in fear. Don’t worry, you’ll see your mother soon and you’ll forget the whole thing ever happened. …

More about Watercooler, Parenting, Kids, Babies, and Culture – Source

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