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Archivo del Autor: Belen De Leon

LG retains confidence in its mobile business despite continued losses

LG remains confident that it can turn the corner for its serially unprofitable mobile business despite the division racking up a loss of over $400 million this year so far.

The Korean company as a whole is having a good year. Following a record six months of profit and revenue in the first half of 2018, the group saw Q3 revenue jump 2.7 percent sequentially to reach 15.43 trillion KRW, or $13.76 billion. Operating profit rose by 45 percent year-on-year to reach 748.8 billion KRW, that’s $667.7 million.

The company’s home entertainment business is the standout performer generating total sales of 3.71 trillion RKW ($3.31 billion) and a 325.1 billion KRW ($289.9 million) profit, with LG Mobile second in terms of revenue. But, the mobile division continues to bleed cash. This time around in Q3, its losses were 146.3 billion RKW, that’s $130.5 million.

That betters large losses for Q3 2016 and 2017 — 436.4 billion KRW and 436.4 billion KRW, respectively — but it means that LG’s mobile division has lost the company $410 million in 2018 so far. But, as the chart below shows, LG has a long way to go before its mobile business stops hurting the group’s overall bottom line and restricting its otherwise impressive growth as a company.

The company played up its performance with a claim that it had weathered challenging global markets — where Chinese brands are competing hard and mobile saturation is weakening consumer demand — by “significantly reduced its operating deficit as a direct result of its business plan and its stronger focus on mid-range products.”

LG recently outed its new V40 ThinQ, a flagship smartphone that packs no fewer than five cameras, and it is optimistic that its launch will boost sales in the final quarter of the year. More widely, it said that the cost-cutting strategy implemented with the appointment of new LG Mobile CEO Hwang Jeong-hwan last November will see it continue to “consolidate and implement a more profitable foundation.”

That strategy has focused around mid-range devices and emerging markets, where LG believes it can offer strong value for money that’ll appeal to consumers in the market for a deal. That explains why mobile division sales are down this year but, crucially, the division is bleeding less capital. Whilst that strategy has helped stem losses, it remains to be seen whether it is the right one to turn the unit profitable.


Source: TechCrunch

Star Wars composer John Williams pulls out of concerts due to illness – CNET

Musical legend won’t conduct planned concerts in London and Vienna.
Source: CNET

Terrific Active Safety Tech Can Lead to Terrible Car Repair Bills

A new AAA report finds that when cars with active safety features like automatic emergency braking do crash, they can cost thousands of dollars to fix.
Source: Wired

Yahoo agrees to pay $50M damages for biggest-ever data breach

Yahoo has agreed to pay $50M in damages for a huge security breach in 2013 that hit all three billion of its user accounts. If the settlement is approved by a court next month, affected U.S. users can claim a portion of the funds.

The post Yahoo agrees to pay $50M damages for biggest-ever data breach appeared first on Digital Trends.


Source: Digital trends

Netflix horror Bird Box might be Sandra Bullock’s A Quiet Place – CNET

The first trailer throws us into a world where looking at monsters might just get you offed.
Source: CNET

Hackers target major airline in data breach affecting nearly 10M customers

A major international airline has been targeted by hackers, with personal data belonging to nearly 10 million of its customers stolen. Cathay Pacific, which operates out of Hong Kong, says it’s now contacting those affected.

The post Hackers target major airline in data breach affecting nearly 10M customers appeared first on Digital Trends.


Source: Digital trends

How to buy Red Dead Redemption 2 – CNET

Rockstar’s open world western sequel officially drops Friday, but it might be a bit more complicated to get than you think.
Source: CNET

Tesla to bring portion of Model 3 production to China next year

Tesla, which reported its first quarterly profits in two years Wednesday, is looking to extend its earnings streak by bringing its new Model 3 to customers beyond North America. And part of that plan involves accelerating its manufacturing plans in China.

Tesla saw its revenue skyrocket to $6.8 billion in the third quarter (and a $312 million profit) thanks to sales of its new Model 3 vehicle, despite production bottlenecks and more recent issues with delivery logistics. The company was able to achieve that profitability milestone just through sales in the U.S. and Canada. That leaves two other massive markets on the table. Cue Europe and China.

Tesla said Wednesday it will start to take orders for the Model 3 in Europe and China before the end of 2018. Tesla said it will begin deliveries of the Model 3 to Europe early next year.

“The mid-sized premium sedan market in Europe is more than twice as big as the same segment in the U.S.,” Tesla said in its shareholder letter released Wednesday. “This is why we are excited to bring Model 3 to Europe early next year.”

Notably, the company is further accelerating its timeline for China and said it will bring portions of Model 3 production to the country next year.

“We are aiming to bring portions of Model 3 production to China during 2019 and to progressively increase the level of localization through local sourcing and manufacturing,” Tesla said in its earnings report. “Production in China will be designated only for local customers.”

Tesla said earlier this month it plans for as rapid build out of a factory in China. But there’s something new here. The term “portions of Model 3 production” is the important phrase. This could be referring to a term used in the manufacturing world known as a complete knock down. CKD is basically a kit of non-assembled parts of a product, like say a Model 3. It’s a strategy used to avoid tariffs when shipping to foreign countries.

Tesla has plans to build a factory in Shanghai, but construction hasn’t even begun yet.

The company secured in October rights to about 210 acres of land in Lingang, Shanghai, the site of the electric automaker’s planned factory and its first outside of the U.S.

Tesla warned in its production and delivery report in early October that tariffs, combined with the cost of shipping its vehicles via ocean carrier and the lack of access to cash incentives available to locally produced electric vehicles, has put the company at a disadvantage in China. Tesla reiterated those cost constraints in its third-quarter earnings report.

Tesla reached a deal in July with the Shanghai government to build a factory that it says will be capable of producing 500,000 electric vehicles a year. Once construction begins, it will take about two years until Tesla can produce vehicles. It will be another “two to three years before the factory is fully ramped up to produce around 500,000 vehicles per year for Chinese customers,” a Tesla spokesman said at the time.


Source: TechCrunch

Facebook says it removed 8.7M child exploitation posts with new machine learning tech

Facebook announced today that it has removed 8.7 million pieces of content last quarter that violated its rules against child exploitation, thanks to new technology. The new AI and machine learning tech, which was developed and implemented over the past year by the company, removed 99 percent of those posts before anyone reported them, said Antigone Davis, Facebook’s global head of safety, in a blog post.

The new technology examines posts for child nudity and other exploitative content when they are uploaded and, if necessary, photos and accounts are reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Facebook had already been using photo-matching technology to compare newly uploaded photos with known images of child exploitation and revenge porn, but the new tools are meant to prevent previously unidentified content from being disseminated through its platform.

The technology isn’t perfect, with many parents complaining that innocuous photos of their kids have been removed. Davis addressed this in her post, writing that in order to “avoid even the potential for abuse, we take action on nonsexual content as well, like seemingly benign photos of children in the bath” and that this “comprehensive approach” is one reason Facebook removed as much content as it did last quarter.

But Facebook’s moderation technology is by no means perfect and many people believe it is not comprehensive or accurate enough. In addition to family snapshots, it’s also been criticized for removing content like the iconic 1972 photo of Phan Thi Kim Phuc, known as the “Napalm Girl,” fleeing naked after suffering third-degree burns in a South Vietnamese napalm attack on her village, a decision COO Sheryl Sandberg apologized for.

Last year, the company’s moderation policies were also criticized by the United Kingdom’s National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, which called for social media companies to be subject to independent moderation and fines for non-compliance. The launch of Facebook Live has also at times overwhelmed the platform and its moderators (software and human), with videos of sexual assaults, suicides, and murder—including that of an 11-month-old baby by her father—being broadcast.

Moderating social media content, however, is one noteworthy example of how AI-based automation can benefit human workers. Last month, Selena Scola, a former Facebook content moderator, sued the company claiming that screening thousands of violent images had caused her to develop post-traumatic stress disorder. Other moderators, many of whom are contractors, have also spoken of the job’s psychological toll and said Facebook does not offer enough training, support, or financial compensation.


Source: TechCrunch

Google Doodle honors Tyrus Wong, long unrecognized Bambi illustrator – CNET

His true contribution went largely unknown for nearly 60 years.
Source: CNET

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