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Uber CEO sees commercialization of flying taxis in 5-10 years

TOKYO: Uber Technologies Inc Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi said on Tuesday he can see commercialization of the Uber Air flying taxi service happening within five to 10 years. The U.S. ride-hailing app maker has said it expects flying vehicles to eventually become an affordable method of mass transportation. Khosrowshahi was speaking at an investor forum in Tokyo on his...

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Watch: iPhone battery explodes after man bites it in China

A man at an electronics store in China decided to give a smartphone battery his own litmus test by biting it. The battery ruptured and caused a small explosion. As soon as he was shown the battery, he picked it up and gave a gentle bit to see if the smartphone component is authentic and in accordance with his liking....

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Google gets into audiobooks as rivalry with Amazon heats up

SAN FRANCISCO: Alphabet Inc’s Google introduced audiobooks to its online store on Tuesday, making its smart speakers and virtual assistant more competitive with Amazon.com Inc’s Echo devices and Alexa voice assistant. Listening to audiobooks is among the most popular nighttime uses for smart speakers, a burgeoning type of home appliance that provides audio streams of music, news and other data...

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Facebook acknowledges social media’s risks to democracy

WASHINGTON: Facebook acknowledged Monday that widespread use of social media can be harmful to democracy, while pledging to work to minimize these risks. The world's biggest social network's comments were the latest response to persistent criticism for its role in allowing the spread of misinformation, reinforcing "filter bubbles" and facilitating harassment of dissidents and activists. "Now, we're as determined as...

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Amazon to open first cashierless shop to public on Monday

SAN FRANCISCO: Online giant Amazon on Monday plans to open a convenience store in Seattle where hungry customers will be able to grab sandwiches and go, without having to wait in line or use a checkout. The American group unveiled the concept for its cashierless "Amazon Go" shop just over a year ago, saying the 1,800 square feet (170 square...

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Facebook to open digital training hubs in Europe

BRUSSELS: Facebook said on Monday it will open three new centers in Europe to train people in digital skills and committed to training one million people over the next two years, part of the social media giant’s drive to show its contribution to the bloc. The US company - which has faced regulatory pressure in Europe over issues ranging from...

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Facebook to let users rank ´trust´ in news sources

SAN FRANCISCO: Facebook announced Friday it will ask its two billion users to rank their trust in news sources, in its latest attempt to combat the spread of misinformation on the social network. The change to the Facebook news feed comes as the online giant seeks to address charges that it has failed -- along with Google and Twitter --...

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WhatsApp introduces app for business accounts in select countries

SAN FRANCISCO: Messaging application WhatsApp said on Thursday that it would begin allowing business accounts for the first time, a step that brings the free service closer to a plan that would make money for its corporate parent, Facebook Inc. Some businesses already use WhatsApp, with 1.3 billion users, to answer inquires from customers. Business accounts will allow them to...

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Google, Tencent eye collaboration on new technologies

Internet titans Google and Tencent on Friday signalled possible future collaboration on developing new technologies as the US and Chinese firms announced a long-term patent-sharing agreement. The companies gave no details on the scope or nature of the potential cooperation but said in a joint statement that they “are open to deeper collaboration in the future on innovative new technologies”....

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US Senate passes bill renewing internet surveillance programme

WASHINGTON: The US Senate on Thursday passed a bill to renew the National Security Agency’s warrantless internet surveillance programme for six years with minimal changes, overcoming objections from civil liberties advocates that it undermined the privacy of Americans. The legislation — which easily passed the House of Representatives last week — is expected to be signed into law by President...

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Apple plans new US campus, to pay $38 billion in foreign cash taxes

Apple Inc will open a new campus as part of a five-year, $30 billion US investment plan and will make about $38 billion in one-time tax payments on its overseas cash, one of the largest corporate spending plans announced since the passage of a tax cut signed by US President Donald Trump. The company has been under increasing pressure to make...

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Twitter may alert users exposed to Russian propaganda during 2016 election

WASHINGTON: Twitter may notify users whether they were exposed to content generated by a suspected Russian propaganda service, a company executive told U.S. lawmakers on Wednesday. The social media company is “working to identify and inform individually” its users who saw tweets during the 2016 U.S. presidential election produced by accounts tied to the Kremlin-linked Internet Research Army, Carlos Monje,...

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What’s in a name? Chinese automaker nixes ‘Trumpchi’

DETROIT: Chinese automaker GAC is changing the name of models it plans to introduce in the US market next year because "Trumpchi" sounds too much like its linked to President Donald Trump. "The name will change for the US market to avoid the wrong connotation or misunderstanding," a GAC spokesman told AFP on Tuesday at the Detroit auto show. The...

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Goodbye, Facebook Newsfeed: The Newsfeed Armageddon

Earlier today, Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, announced the end of the Facebook News Feed as we know it. Earlier today, Facebook announced the end of the Facebook News Feed as we know it. In a Facebook post, Mark Zuckerberg today wrote: "Recently we've gotten feedback from our community that public content -- posts from businesses, brands and media --...

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YouTube toughens rules regarding which videos get ads

SAN FRANCISCO: YouTube on Tuesday announced ramped-up rules regarding when it will run ads with videos as it scrambled to quell concerns by brands about being paired with troublesome content. "There´s no denying 2017 was a difficult year, with several issues affecting our community and our advertising partners," YouTube vice president of display, video and analytics Paul Muret said in...

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U.S. transport chief to unveil revised self-driving car guidelines

The Trump administration plans to unveil revised self-driving car guidelines this summer as the government sets out to rewrite regulations that pose legal barriers to robot vehicles, U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao said on Sunday. Chao told a Detroit auto show forum that the revised voluntary guidelines would address not only self-driving automobiles but “barriers to the safe integration of...

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Facebook to emphasize friends, not news, in series of changes

SAN FRANCISCO: Facebook Inc on Thursday began to change the way it filters posts and videos on its centerpiece News Feed, the start of what Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg said would be a series of changes in the design of the world’s largest social network. Zuckerberg, in a sweeping post on Facebook, said the company would change the filter for...

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