John Propps

John Propps

Followers 45
Following 11
China
Chinese technology giant Xiaomi, best known for making smartphones and once hailed as an iPhone slayer, has decided the key to breaking the Indian market lies in a rather different product: the air purifier.The air purifier is the product for us to further establish ourselves in India,” said Eugene Chan, regional manager of Mi Home, Xiaomi’s retail outlet chain.The air purifier is the product for us to further establish ourselves in IndiaEugene Chan, regional manager, Mi HomeThe Beijing-based firm is betting big on a bricks-and-mortar strategy to expand its presence in India, a country viewed by tech companies around the world as the next big internet market after China.Another part of the growth strategy is to branch out into making and selling products besides smartphones in an effort to rejuvenate the brand as an “everything store” in the South Asian country.
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The Nintendo Switch is proving a popular console, as is its big launch title: The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.So popular is this latest Zelda instalment, it's managed to become the fastest-selling Nintendo launch game of all time, as well as the fastest-selling game ever in The Legend of Zelda series.But back at GDC, before the game launched and started smashing records, Nintendo showed off a 2D prototype version of the game which it had been using to test out some of the game mechanics.Now, that very prototype has been used as the basis of a fan-made 8-bit version of Zelda that recreates the look of the demo shown off during the game conference.'Breath of the NES' has been developed over a month by Zelda fan and developer WinterDrake and is available now on itchio for anyone to download.As WinterDrake explains on the page: "After being inspired by Nintendo's 2D prototype of Breath of the Wild, I've decided to try out making my own fan-game!
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Netflix is betting big on original content as the surest route to enticing new subscribers to the service by announcing it wishes to borrow a hefty $1bn to fund the production of a new wave of exclusive movies and TV shows.The cash will be raised through a debt offering as the business is unable to fund such an aggressive push from its current 94 million strong subscriber base, gambling that the new content will be such a hit that it will be able to pay off these debts and more going forward.New shows in the works include a Brad Pitt movie called War Machine due out later this month as well as films starring Adam Sandler and Will Smith and new seasons of House of Cards.Netflix is throwing every penny and cent it can get at new programming just now amid fierce competition from rival streaming services such as Amazon Prime Video pushing it into negative cash flow of $2bn this year.The streaming service is also spending big on marketing, allocating $1bn, allocating $1bn toward advertising in an effort to smash the 100m subscriber barrier this year.The Chip Shop Awards is about fostering and recognising creativity without limits.
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By scaling back promotions, integrating digital capabilities and focusing on global expansions, Aldo has been able to stay afloat in a market particularly hostile to mid-priced retailers with vast fleets of brick-and-mortar stores and a hefty mall presence.The footwear and accessories retailer, which has 2,000 stores globally, expanded this week by redesigning its website for both mobile and desktop, and launching e-commerce in 10 additional countries.“We had been taking a new direction in smaller steps, so the sites were moving, but slowly,” said Grégoire Baret, general manager of omnichannel experience at Aldo.“Finally, we decided to take a stand to align our brand positioning with our customer needs.They needed to bring it up to date.”Aldo, a privately held company headquartered in Canada, has all the markings of a mall retailer, with a presence in an estimated 50 percent of America’s shopping centers.
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VistaJet is now the first international private jet operator that lets clients book flights on WeChat.The company hopes its newly launched service on the mobile platform can replace the convenience of owning or renting a private plane by allowing affluent Chinese consumers to charter a private jet virtually in an instant.“For Chinese customers who require guaranteed aircraft availability 365 days a year, WeChat could genuinely become an alternative to ownership — merely instant message our team, and we’ll organise the rest, to your own specific taste.” Vista Jet founder and chairman Thomas Flohr said in a statement.The launch comes amid the rapid expansion of VistaJet’s business in the Great China region in 2016, where the number of Chinese clients now makes up 17 percent of their current global customer base.Heading into the year of 2017, the company’s growth has continued in the first quarter, when sales of flight hours doubled compared to the same period the year before.Flohr said VistaJet intends to use the WeChat service to continue this expansion by reaching out to China’s digitally active consumers and simplify the way they charter a private jet.
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Google is updating its search and Maps services with a small but significant update that should make it easier to find the best places to go and things to do when you travel.The next time you’re abroad and look up a place, restaurant, store or point of interest, both Maps and search will surface reviews from locals, translated into your preferred language so you don’t need to decipher them yourself.I typically use Foursquare to scope out places to eat, but they’re usually filled with reviews from travelers from around the world who aren’t always on the mark about which nearby restaurant offers the cheapest or most authentic cuisine.Being able to tap into insights from locals should help folks find better recommendations.Between this and Google’s excellent Trips app that launched last September, the company’s got you covered with the basics for planning your next vacation.The feature is currently rolling out on mobile and should be live worldwide soon.
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Nielsen Social Content Ratings for the week of April 17, as the latest El Clasico soccer match—FC Barcelona 2—generated 5.051 million interactions across Facebook and Twitter.National Basketball Association playoff tilt Thursday night, in which the visiting Indiana Pacers 119-114 (1.994 million total interactions across the two social networks), as well as another soccer match, Real Madrid’s 4-2 victory over Bayern Munich, at 1.635 million interactions.topped the television series and specials chart, with 549,000 interactions across Facebook and Twitter, followed by USA Network’s WWE Monday Night Raw (333,000).Image on homepage courtesy of juanrvelasco/iStock.
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Fintech platform Qianbaomu receives strategic investment of USD 14.5 MQianbaomuFounder: Chen FengFounded in: 2014Financing status: Strategic investment of RMB 100 million (USD 14.5 million) in 2017Qianbaomu is a fintech platform that started its business by providing financial products to women, and now it focuses its product offerings to supply chain assets.Founded in 2014 in Hangzhou, its core team members previously worked at Alipay, Tencent, China Construction Bank and some other financial institutions.The company first picked women in big cities with disposable income as its main target group.It then developed new financial products for its female customers, which contributed to its large user base.Qianbaomu has 1.4 millions users so far with a turnover of more than RMB 10 billion, and the assets it currently manages has reached RMB 500 million.This strategic investment was made by IMCIC, and the investment will be used to expand its company by recruiting more employees who are professionals at risk management and fintech technology, and create new financial products for its users.Sports social network Rejoice Sport Tech receives USD 14.5 M in Series C roundPhoto from 58pic.comRejoice Sport TechFounded in: 2014Financing status: RMB 100 million (USD 14.5 million) Series C financing in 2017Rejoice Sport Tech is a high-tech enterprise that provides users with health services via the development of a sports app and the sale of smart sports gadgets and sportswear.The app Yodo Run, which was developed by the company, is a data recording tool for running, fitness, cycling, and other sports.The app also has an online community where users share their sports experience and communicate with others to seek help with sports related matters.Launched in 2014 in Guangzhou, it has more than 100 million users.Rejoice Sport Tech also has an online store that sells smart sports gadgets including smart step counter bracelets, smart sport watches, smart weighing scales, and so on.
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Xiaomi Mi MIX was undoubtedly one of the most impressive smartphones of 2016 and probably a concept phone worth having available in mass production.It is obviously a mixture of innovative technology right from the display and the ceramic coating, to the earpiece and its impressive build quality.Join GizChina on TelegramOne of the most groundbreaking features of the MIX was the Cantilever piezoelectric ceramic technology used in order to convert digital input into mechanical energy so that we can hear what the other person in the line is saying to us.To do this, Xiaomi engineers used a procedure that basically converts electric signal from the digital to analog converter, sends it to the piezoelectric ceramic which turns the signal to mechanical energy and then vibrates the phone’s frame so that the vibration can reach the ear through the display.However this procedure didn’t offer the best user experience and now Xiaomi decided to use a different alternative with better results.According to analyst Sun Changxu, the Chinese company is said to cooperate with AAC technologies in order to develop a new tech called AAC actuator that could achieve better screen sound and improved compatibility with 3GPP standards.Xiaomi Mi MIX 2 is expected to launch along with Mi Note 3 (just like last year) in the coming months.Share this:TweetMorePocketShare on TumblrEmailPrint
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AVA Advisory, a Thai-owned fintech start-up, is planning the commercial launch of its first robotic adviser app for the financial sector in Singapore in the fourth quarter, aiming to create an entirely new breed of smart wealth and investment management activity.Using artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms in the robotic adviser or automated financial advice tools, the AVA Alpha Fund app can help customers manage and optimise their wealth and investment portfolio.“After spending 50 million baht (US$1.45 million) in developing the AVA Alpha Fund in the past 12 months, we’re ready for the commercial launch of our AI robotic adviser service in Singapore as the first country in the fourth quarter,” said Miranda Songpatanasilp, chief financial officer and co-founder of AVA Advisory.AVA Advisory is a Thai company but is registered and based in Singapore.Ms Miranda said the global robotic adviser will have US$8 trillion worth of assets under management by 2020.The emergence of AI will play an increasingly important role in financial investment services in Thailand, she said.
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Spotify is preparing to enter the hardware game, judging by job opportunities recently posted online.The firm is seeking a senior hardware product manager that could “deliver hardware directly from Spotify to existing and new customers.”A “trusted source” at ZatsNotFunny says this product is a “wearable.”Spotify didn’t go into specifics on the type of hardware it has in mind, but the posting outlines a “category defining product akin to Pebble Watch, Amazon Echo and Snap Spectacles.”This appears to suggest Spotify has something completely new in mind that could have a knock on impact across the rest of the tech industry.Is Spotify working on some sort of wearable device, as the original report suggests?
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Sorry folks, but it’s looking more and more like the iPhone 8 won’t be widely available until the start of next year.Following multiple reports hinting at delays due to implementation of completely new hardware features, one analyst now predicts mass production won’t commence until October/November.Noted commentator Ming-Chi Kuo reckons the addition of a custom OLED display, 3D sensing cameras and a new 3D Touch module are the main factors behind the potential delay (via 9to5Mac).Related: New iPad 9.7-inch 2017The possible relocation of the Touch ID sensor, as hinted at by recent leaks, could also provide challenges for Apple, although Kuo doesn't mention that specifically in his note to investors.It also means it may take a while for Apple to generate enough stock to satisfy demand as it seeks to refine the manufacturing process.
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Dmitry Bogatov, a lecturer at the Moscow Finance and Law University, was taken into custody on April 6 and charged with organizing mass unrest, which was later appended with the more serious charge of incitement to terrorist activity.He remains in custody at this time.Bogatov is accused of writing posts at sysadmins.ru in late March that encouraged protesters to join in an April 2 anti-corruption demonstration with “rags, bottles, gas, turpentine, styrofoam, and acetone.” Another post by the same handle, “Airat Bashirov,” linked to Kanye West’s “No Church in the Wild,” which is both a very stylized depiction of a fictionalized police protest and a really good song.Bogatov was charged after Russian authorities traced the IP address associated with the posts to his home.He maintains that the posts did not originate with him and instead were sent to his home server as part of the anonymous global traffic that travels to the Tor node that he hosts.Tor nodes serve as relay stations for anonymizing global web traffic in the Tor network, a popular online privacy tool for anyone looking to keep their browsing habits wholly obscured.
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Plus, how the military and Wall Street helped prepare Anthony Noto for a job in techAdweek: How have your past roles in advertising, finance and the military shaped your approach to Twitter?Anthony Noto: I think Twitter is the culmination of a series of experiences that have built the foundation of what’s required to be an executive at Twitter.I was in the military as a communications officer, where I first learned about asynchronous transformation of technology, IP-based technology.From there, I went to Kraft as a brand manager, so I was on the advertiser side.I had to evaluate distribution channels like the internet, but also advertising vehicles like television and print and radio and outdoor as well as digital, and optimize for marketing mix and return on investment.
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Antivirus provider Webroot is causing a world of trouble for customers.A signature update just nuked hundreds of benign files needed to run Microsoft Windows, as well as apps that run on top of the operating system.Social media sites ignited on late Monday afternoon with customers reporting that servers and computers alike stopped working as a result of the mishap.The admin and security pundit who goes by the Twitter handle SwiftOnSecurity told Ars that, at the company he or she worked for, the false positive quarantined "several hundred" files used by Windows Insider Preview.Hundreds of "line of business" apps, such as those that track patient appointments or manage office equipment, suffered the same fate.Webroot was also flagging Facebook as a phishing site.
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I don’t want people to think I enjoy having my picture taken.Even when I slavishly follow an instruction to smile, I try to make sure my eyes betray a little resentment.I may be saying cheese, but my face is saying: I hate cheese.FaceApp uses “deep generative convolutional neural networks” to turn your frown upside down.It is meant to be more realistic than previous selfie filters, making subtle adjustments to the eyes and the rest of the face to produce a look of genuine merriment, instead of a cheese-hating grimace.It’s a bit disconcerting to see a picture of yourself smiling, using what are demonstrably someone else’s teeth.
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The folks at Unroll.Me are in hot water for selling user data to Uber this week – but as they are, I’m reminded to do a check.While it does not appear that Unroll.Me really sold any personal data to Uber, the angry mob has spoken.If you’re going to sell user data to 3rd-party companies, you need to make that clear in the user agreement nobody reads anyway!The folks at Unroll.Me offer a fairly valuable service for users of email – basically everyone on earth.They organize emails that come from subscriptions into a single list.Instead of seeing a dozen emails each day, a user might only see one.
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Once considered a darling and pioneer of the still nascent ride-hailing industry, Uber has quickly become the villain of a still ongoing drarma.It’s the typical story of a successful company willing to do anything and everything to stay that the top, even when that means breaking the rules.And break the rules Uber did, according to this new report.Uber has allegedly been “fingerprinting” iPhones, identifying them even after they have been fully erased.It was a gross violation of Apple’s privacy policies and a practice that went on for almost a year until Apple CEO Tim Cook put a stop to it.Back in 2014, the already dominant ride-hailing service was facing not just competition in China, it was also facing fraud.
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Aegis is in a state of complete disarray.But now it’s in virtual reality, and instead of juggling the requirements of a pizza oven you’re instead trying to keep an enormous starship from hurtling into an asteroid while attempting to rescue a marooned ship and fighting off angry Klingons.Up to four players can play together, choosing the role of either Captain, Engineer, Tactical Officer or Helm Officer.The on-screen help will be a life saver here, as the much older starship doesn’t have any of the fancier controls of the Aegis.Gone are the dials and levers and instead you have what can only be described as a wall of buttons for all aspects of the ship’s control.In the single-player training missions this rightly made me feel like master of the ship, as whatever commands I issued via the main UI were enacted pretty much immediately by the AI crew.
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Honda gifted its Clarity Fuel Cell crisp lines, sleek styling, and a spacious interior.It accelerates with a jolt, even if it won’t beat a Tesla of the line.I’ve heard the argument from Toyota, BMW, GM, Kia, and Hyundai, all of which have spent decades singing the hydrogen song.Honda’s original 2002 FCX was an awkward and anemic two-door subcompact.The new Clarity Fuel Cell is the latest result of the auto industry’s insistence that hydrogen can work, and for this try, Honda eliminated every weakness it could.Its engineers cut the number of fuel cells by a third yet wring 170 horsepower from them.
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