1 in 7 mobile users back Ofcom proposals to make new networks handle the switchover – not the one being left behindOne in seven UK mobile customers back proposals by Ofcom to make it easier to switch networks by requiring the new provider to handle the switch – not the one being left behind.Research from uSwitch claims the average person spends 25 minutes trying to leave their existing network, with two fifths having to contact their operator twice or more and 11 percent having to make contact four or more times.More than one million customers switched from one operator to another in the past year but spent 143 million minutes in phone calls and live chats, or 2.4 million hours.Network switchingmobile workforceJust 23 percent described the current process as easy , with a fifth claiming they felt pressured into staying or bombarded by questions.Currently, mobile users must obtain a PAC code from their old service provider if they wish to use their existing phone number on their new network.Ofcom has launched a consultation that includes an option to change the mobile switching process to one where it s all handled by the new provider, but at the moment the old system still stands – and it s clearly costing people both time and money.
E-trading Ikea customers in Sweden to start paying with MasterCard's payment solution in June. Customers save their card details in the MasterCard system, and can then choose which card the money will be drawn from when a purchase online. Read more: Swish challenge Klarna - would take 30 percent of e-commerce Fo r Ikea, it is important that the whole cow pprocessen fra n that huh our customers are looking at and right following their goods to the implemen is his cow couples smooth. Master Passes are available in the current situation of 29 countries and more than 270 000 traders, according to card giant. Among the service's Swedish customers are already airport buses and the Arlanda Express. In the Swedish market, both Swish and Klarna launched e-commerce solutions in the past year.
It s based on existing technology, including Google Now.The assistant will power Google s upcoming Amazon Echo competitor, Google Home.Speaking at the beginning of the keynote at the Google I/O developer conference in Mountain View, California, Google chief executive Sundar Pichai described the technology as a conversational assistant that can carry on an ongoing two-way dialogue.We want to be there for our users asking them, How can I help?'Pichai said.The technology is voice-activated and available across devices, but the interface is packaged up inside of a chatbot — something like, say, Facebook Messenger s M. We are getting ready to launch something later this year, Pichai said.The Google Assistant is built into the Allo mobile messaging app, which is also being introduced today.Over the years Google has amassed a whole lot of AI talent and technology.And the systems are regularly improving — last year at I/O Google chief executive Sundar Pichai said Google s speech recognition technology was down to an 8 percent word error rate.Indeed, today Pichai said that 1 in every 5 Google search queries on Android in the U.S. is a voice query.But even though Google s AI technology represents value for the company internally, in the past year Google has shared some of that technology with the rest of the world as open source code.Now it s clear that Google is a few steps ahead of Apple.Earlier this week The Information reported that Google would give third-party developers access to speech recognition, some aspects of the Google Now personal digital assistant, and Android s Google Now On Tap feature for recognizing known entities mentioned in text onscreen and providing explanations and relevant links.While the world s biggest technology companies have been fixated on chatbots lately, the whole idea itself is not new.Voice-activated assistants like the Alexa-powered Amazon Echo speaker are another emerging medium, but currently bots seem more likely to be adopted by the masses.
GIFMove over, El Niño.That s right: the El Niño phenomenon that fueled endless weird weather, hot months, and Chris Farley jokes this past year is on the downswing.And if the latest NOAA data is any indicator, La Niña is liquored up and ready to rage.Cold Blob has been migrating eastward for the past few months, indicating that the La Niña phase of the ENSO climate pattern may develop by the end of summer.You can see that as the months go by, the hot water anomaly contracts as the icy undercurrent grows in size.La Niña is also associated with mild winters in the southeastern United States, cold winters in the Northwest, and favorable Atlantic hurricane conditions.
Amazon might soon turn the tables on Google, who mostly reigns in the mobile market, by putting out a new kind of tablet.Codenamed "Knight", this tablet will differentiate itself from Amazon's existing Fire tablet line by being focused around its smart assistant, Alexa.Details about the "Knight" tablet are still shrouded in secrecy aside from the Alexa factor.It may or may not be the continuation of the 14-inch "Cairo" tablet that the retail giant was rumored to be working on.Despite the "yet another platform" syndrome, reception has been surprisingly positive.Preferably before Google or Apple also secure the market.
Alexa on Fire TV has gradually improved since it first debuted last September; Tuesday's update adds television controls and app-launching capabilities.While the new features are not immediately available, Amazon will roll these out via software updates over the next few weeks.Among the key new features are Fire TV app-launching capabilities and the option to ask Alexa to play content from Amazon Video and any add-on subscription content, as well as the capability to find movie showtimes at nearby theaters, read Kindle ebooks, and local business search.The Fire TV version was really no more than just another Echo speaker in your system when it launched in September, although Amazon added smart home support two months later.Consider it a move to put it on par with compeitors: Apple TVs already have Siri integration, and the Roku 3 and 4 have similar voice-enabled functionality.Besides the Alexa improvements, Amazon also made a move Tuesday to improve content availability.
Google gave an update on this today at its Google I/O Developer conference, when VP of Engineering Dave Burke announced 65 billion installs from Google Play over the past year.And I m just in constantly in awe of all the amazing apps and services that s fueling this, he said.For comparison s sake, Andreessen Horowitz partner and mobile analyst Benedict Evans said in June 2015 that Google Play app downloads had reached 50 billion over the past 12 months, compared to iOS s then 25 billion.And app analytics platform provider App Annie said that there were 111.2 billion total downloads in 2015 across iOS, Google Play and third-party Android stores.The company noted that over 600 Android smartphone models launched in the last year alone, Android Wear now had 12 partners making smartwatches, Android TV was now on millions of units, and there are over 100 car model and stereos running Android Auto.Last September, Google said there were 1.4 billion Android users worldwide, and IDC estimates that Google s Android operating system will close out the year with 82.6 percent market share.
Google has begun to use computer processors its engineers designed to increase the performance of the company s artificial intelligence software, potentially threatening the businesses of traditional chip suppliers such as Intel Corp. and Nvidia Corp.During the past year, Google has deployed thousands of these specialized artificial intelligence chips, called TensorFlow Processing Units, in servers within its data centers, Urs Holzle, the company s senior vice president of infrastructure, told reporters Wednesday at the company s developer conference.Google declined to specify precisely how many of the chips it s using, but stressed the company continues to use many typical central processing units and graphics processing units made by other companies.It s been in pretty widespread use for about a year.Google has no plans to sell the specialized chips to third-parties, said Diane Greene, Google s senior vice president of cloud.Google and other big data-center operators are the largest consumers of server processors, the main engine of growth and profit for Intel, the world s biggest semiconductor maker.Graphics maker Nvidia is also pinning much of its future growth ambitions on the bet that its chips will have a larger role to play in data processing, including artificial intelligence and machine learning.Google s chip connects to computer servers via a protocol called PCI-E, which means it can be slotted into the company s computers, rapidly augmenting them with faster artificial-intelligence capabilities.As the field matures, Google might very well build more specialized processors for specific AI tasks, he said.Over time, Google expects to design more system-level components, Holzle said.Even Nvidia, which makes traditional graphics processing units that have been adopted for machine learning, is beginning to add more custom elements to its hardware.
Photographer: Sharon Steinmann / TT One of the airline Egyptairs aircraft on its way from Paris to Cairo with 66 passengers and crew on board disappeared over the Mediterranean. Weather conditions are said to have been good when the plane disappeared from radar and according to the airline does not have a distress signal sent out, something also confirmed by the government Egyptian newspaper Al-Ahram. - The sun has just gone up so within an hour we should have more information, said Ahmed Abdel Egyptair at CNN. The plane took off from Charles de Gaulle Airport 23:09 local time for a trip that normally takes about four hours. The airline tweeted out that the plane disappeared, which should have taken place shortly after it crossed Egyptian airspace over the Mediterranean. The Egyptian airline industry has been hit by several events over the past year.
Other Web It has been one year since the pay group Bambora was launched with the goal to challenge a complicated industry. - The industry has gotten much better over the past year to meet the requirements for simplicity and ease of use - it pleases us. But there is much left to do and why we are launching four new solutions to make life easier for entrepreneurs. Bamboras new services Checkout is a complete payment solution for e-commerce. Getting started takes less than 24 hours. Bambora is owned by Nordic Capital Fund VIII and consists of a consolidation of the companies Samport, MPS, ePay, DK Online, Key Corp and Euroline.
There has been a lot of talk over the possibility of a Xiaomi drone, now a teaser posted moments ago seems to finally officially confirm the device.The drone market has quite literally taken off over the past year.Every sort of drone from basic toys to professional models used in movie shoots have been taking to the skies in swarms.China has been a big part of the growing popularity in the drone market with many models coming from the country including prosumer level DJI units, and soon there will be another.It looks as though Xiaomi have been working on their drone for a long time now, with patents appearing in China for a drone that can be controlled via a wearable and simply gestures.To further confirm a Xiaomi drone, a Xiaomi drone app was briefly launched earlier this week showing specs that include up to 4K video recording.This one detail not only confirmed the Xiaomi drone will come with a built-in camera like DJI drones but also be a top-end device rather than a budget model.But the icing on the cake for drone fans is this first official teaser today, which hints at a Mi UAV.Generally Xiaomi tend to only start teasers slightly earlier than than the final launch date so expect the Xiaomi drone and Mi Band 2 to arrive before the end of May.
The company also announced in the blog post that they will be working with content partners like NBA, BuzzFeed and Tastemade to explore new ways of storytelling in virtual environments that will provide valuable lessons about the way creators and viewers interact with VR video.YouTube also announced that its bringing its Jump VR camera program to its YouTube Spaces in LA and NYC and plans to bring to all of its global locations soon to help content creators start working in virtual reality.Whereas Google Cardboard was mobile-first in that you selected and navigated Cardboard-compatible apps up to the point of viewing the content at which point you d slot the phone into your headset and hold the viewer up to your face, Daydream is designed for navigation within VR and thus this version of YouTube had to be designed from the ground up.It will be interesting to see how things like text-entry work on the app or whether the company will largely shift attention towards voice search across not just the YouTube app but the entire Daydream interface.The reference design controller that Google has shown off is capable of selecting items onscreen like a laser pointer so text entry could be relatively straightforward, albeit cumbersome.Based on the lone screenshot that YouTube generously showed off, it looks like the app allows interface navigation from within video playback on the pause screen which is quite interesting and offers suggestions of how user experience on Daydream may differ from the navigation frameworks of other mobile VR headsets like Gear VR.
This past year, Apple has begun to gradually change the concept for its stores, which was expected since Angela Ahrendts took over as director of operations. The new store has several new details that will eventually find its way into other stores: Fitting room for Iphone If you find it difficult to determine whether a particular shell fits well on your iPhone without having to actually try it, it is not alone, and Apple has done something about it. A wall with different shell makes it easy to test a variety of reasons before hitting something. High education The Forum calls Apple the section of the store that houses the huge high-resolution screen we've seen in a couple of stores before, and it's about education. Here Apple should keep small talk, give courses for both children and adults, and display pure inspiration videos. The idea is that a number of other stand-alone flagship stores around the world to receive similar squares.
But Oracle and Google are back in court, Apple unveiled a new redesigned store in SF and we learned that Amazon may start selling its own groceries soon.But in case you don t have time to read through our play-by-play coverage, we rounded up the major announcements.Highlights included the unveiling of smart home speaker Google Home, two new apps called Allo and Duo, Android Instant Apps, Android VR s Daydream platform and headset concept and updates from Firebase.We didn t pay for the free and open things.Brian Heater reviewed the Withings Go activity tracker, concluding that the device shows promise, but is mostly a non-starter.Crunch Network contributor Basel Farag argued that coding is not the new literacy in Please don t learn to code.
From NASA and asset-manager Jeremy Grantham at GMO, an update on global temperature trends.The global-warming skeptics had an encouraging run for a while.But the acceleration of warming over the past year is alarming.Here's Mr. Grantham:Global warming accelerates: so much for the pause Because 1998 was an outlier warm year due to a large El Niño effect in the Pacific, many subsequent years, including 2013, had lower global temperatures and led some to believe, or claim to believe, that global warming had ceased.And then came the real test as a new powerful El Niño started to build up in 2015.Ten of the twelve months of 2015 set new all-time records, an unheard of event, and 2015 in total became a monster, not only the warmest year in recent millennia but by a record increment.Yet, the early months of 2016, still under the influence of what had become one of the most powerful El Niño effects, showed temperature increases that were even more remarkable.This current El Niño has accelerated underlying warming caused by increasing CO2 – as all El Niños do – but this time the combined effect has been far ahead of scientific forecasts that in general remain dangerously conservative.Most recently, March was once again the warmest ever March, although not quite by a record amount see Exhibit 2 .The exhibit makes the scary point clear: global temperature is not just increasing, but accelerating.
Google announced some statistics for I / O, including that over 600 different Android phones were launched in the past year. Google wrote at the same time that Android is the world's most popular operating system. During the same period the installed user applications totaling 65 billion times. 600 different Android smartphones Launched this past year alone. io16 - Google @google May 18, 2016 200 million active users and 24 billion beautiful selfies. io16 @sundarpichai - Google Photos @googlephotos May 18, 2016
The goal of its newly released $250 Vivoactive HR is to compete directly with the king of fitness trackers: Fitbit.Over the past year, Garmin has pushed out software updates that have added activities like stand-up paddle-boarding and rowing to the mix.And you cannot add workouts later in the app if you forget—Garmin basically forces you to use the device as much as possible and only interact with the Connect app to look back at stats or change settings.You can swipe up and down to see separate pages that show your recorded activities for the day, the number of steps you've taken, miles traveled, and floors climbed, intensity minutes completed, the weather report for the day, a notification dump, and a heart rate graph.It's not limited to call and text alerts like the Surge is, but that also means your wrist might vibrate every few minutes with alerts.With skiing, snowboarding, and stand-up paddle-boarding included as well, the device pretty much tracks everything.
It s fair to wonder if Google had the same impulse when it took the stage at the Google I/O 2016 conference and declared that more than 600 phone models running Android were released in the last year.The firm went on to explain that across the same time period, users installed more than 65 billion apps.The photo service Google Photos, launched at last year s I/O, has more than 200 million active users.Quick not to let such valuable, and self-worth-approving information, go to waste, the company s Twitter accounts latched on to and reiterated the scale of their audience.Back in 2013, approximately 33 percent of the company s user base was using the latest version of Android, 4.4 KitKat.At the very least it s still making more money than your average human citizen could ever hope to see in a lifetime.
More In this Friday, May 20, 2016 photo, Tyler Cullen, of Vulcan Security Technologies, looks at video screens in the Hartford police Real-Time Crime and Data Intelligence Center in Hartford, Conn. Staff at the center analyze data from surveillance cameras, gunshot detectors, license plate scanners and other sources.Vulcan Security Technologies helped set up the center.AP Photo/Dave Collins HARTFORD, Conn. AP -- Live video feeds from cameras across Hartford, Connecticut, light up a wall of flat-screen monitors in a high-tech room at the city's old police department, while computers take in data from license plate readers and a gunshot detection system.Real time crime centers have opened in the past year in Hartford; Wilmington, Delaware; and Springfield, Massachusetts.They also tap into surveillance cameras at schools and businesses — after getting permission in a process agreed upon beforehand — to help police respond to active shooters and other crimes.Civil liberties advocates also have concerns about airports and how many police departments are now using facial recognition software to track and identify people, saying such software is known for mistakes.
To learn more and subscribe, please click here.The cord-cutters have scored another victory.Total U.S. cable subscribers among the top nine companies which make up about 95% of the total market declined year-over-year in the first quarter of 2016, while broadband customers rose, according to new data from Leichtman Research.These top nine companies added just over 50,000 subscribers in Q1 2016, but total subscribers hit 49.1 million, down 0.2% YoY and 3% from two years ago.The report analyzes the state of the pay-TV industry and maps out which demographics are more likely to stop buying traditional TV packages.The report also discusses the user base, original content offerings, and subscription models of the major subscription streaming services available today, including Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Video.Finally, it looks at how traditional pay-TV companies and premium channels like HBO and Showtime are addressing the shift to digital viewing, as well as the implications of their response for advertisers.Those abandoning pay-TV packages fall into three main groups: cord-nevers, cord-cutters, and cord-shavers.Still, younger viewers watch four times as much video content online than older viewers.Netflix is the largest SVOD service and will continue to dominate the industry with an impressive original content lineup and aggressive expansion plans.Amazon is trying to compete with Netflix by investing significant resources in original content.Hulu is the third-largest SVOD service, but the only one to offer ad-supported membership tiers.Hulu has been the slowest to roll out original and exclusive content, but it has inked numerous deals in the past year to boost its content library.Pay-TV companies are responding to the rise of SVOD services by offering subscribers "skinny bundles" and their own streaming services.In full, the report:Illustrates the fall of the traditional TV package and the rise of broadband only cable subscriptions.Lays out the different types of viewers that are leaving behind pay-TV: cord-cutters, cord-shavers, and cord-nevers.Examines the leading SVOD services including Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, and premium channel offerings from HBO and Showtime.Explains the various ways that pay-TV companies are responding to the rise of SVOD services, notably skinny bundles and standalone streaming services.Considers what the migration to SVOD services means to marketers.To get your copy of this invaluable guide, choose one of these options:Subscribe to an ALL-ACCESS Membership with BI Intelligence and gain immediate access to this report AND over 100 other expertly researched deep-dive reports, subscriptions to all of our daily newsletters, and much more.But however you decide to acquire this report, you ve given yourself a powerful advantage in your understanding of subscription video on-demand services.