Mobile

Apple said to debut voice-activated Siri AirPods in 2018, water-resistant model in 2019



 Apple is preparing a couple of updating models of AirPods, according to Bloomberg. The popular fully wireless earbud-style headphones that Apple introduced last year are currently on track for a refresh in 2018 with the addition of a new version of the “W” line of chips that Apple created specifically to manage and improve Bluetooth-based connections between gadgets. The 2018… Read More

Intel ships update for newest Spectre-affected chips



 Intel has announced that the fix is out for its latest chips affected by Spectre, the memory-leakage flaw affecting practically all computing hardware. The patch is for the Skylake generation (late 2015) and newer, though most users will still have to wait for the code to be implemented by whoever manufactured their computer (specifically, their motherboard). Read More

A system to tell good fake bokeh from bad



 The pixel-peepers at DxOMark have shared some of the interesting metrics and techniques they use to judge the quality of a smartphone’s artificial bokeh, or background blur in photos. Not only is it difficult to do in the first place, but they have to systematize it! Their guide should provide even seasoned shooters with some insight into the many ways computational bokeh varies in quality. Read More

Signal expands into the Signal Foundation with $50M from WhatsApp co-founder Brian Acton



 Perhaps the most surprising thing I learned about Signal when I spoke with Moxie Marlinspike, the app’s creator, last year at Disrupt, was that it was essentially running on a shoestring budget. An tool used by millions and feared by governments worldwide, barely getting by! But $50M from WhatsApp founder Brian Acton should help secure the app’s future, through the newly founded… Read More

Gabi gets $9.5M to help car and home owners find better insurance once it’s available



 If you own a car or home, one of the biggest challenges you’ll face is finding the right insurance plan that’ll cover everything you need and save you some money — but those plans are always changing, and consumers are getting stuck footing a bill they don’t necessarily need, according to HannoFichtner. That’s why he started Gabi, which gives car and home owners a… Read More

Google tries to make Android more enterprise-friendly with new recommendation program



 With so many Android devices out there to choose from, it’s not always easy to find one that’s enterprise-friendly. To help alleviate that problem, Google announced the Android Enterprise Recommended program today. As the name implies, it’s designed to point enterprise IT departments at devices that Google has deemed to be enterprise-ready. This involves a number of… Read More

Apple could be buying cobalt from mining companies directly



 Cobalt is the new oil. Car companies and battery manufacturers are all rushing to secure multiyear contracts with mining companies for their lithium-ion batteries. According to a Bloomberg report, Apple is also participating in this game as the company wants to secure its long-term supplies.
The company has never done this before with cobalt. Apple relies on a ton of suppliers for all the… Read More

Nest rolls out a $5 cloud recording plan for its cameras



 Just a quick bit of news for those with Nest cams around the house: a new, cheaper Nest Aware plan is on the way. Nest has long offered two plans: a $10/month plan that lets you store the last 10 days of video history, and a $30/month plan that gives you 30 days of video history. This new plan will cost $5 per month and, yes, will give you five days of video history. Read More