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Archivo del Autor: Belen De Leon

Apple Store robbery ring: 17 charged in $1M scheme – CNET

The alleged crimes took place across 19 counties in California.
Source: CNET

Voting Machines Are Still Absurdly At Risk

A new report details dozens of vulnerabilities across seven models of voting machines—all of which are currently in use.
Source: Wired

Last day to buy early-bird tickets for TC Sessions: AR/VR 2018

Holy smokes, TC Sessions: AR/VR 2018 is less than a month away, and it’s going to be an epic, day-long event. But listen up tech fans, the following reality is neither augmented nor virtual: our $99 early-bird ticket price — a 50 percent savings — ends today. If you want to join us in Los Angeles on October 18 at the lowest possible price, buy your ticket here today.

We’re also offering a special discount to students. You can buy your $45 ticket right here.

Looking to save even more money? Simply tweet your attendance through our ticketing platform, and you’ll save an extra 25 percent — for early-bird tickets — and 15 percent for student tickets.

What can you expect at TC Sessions: AR/VR 2018? An excellent question! We partnered with UCLA’s Anderson Venture Accelerator for a program-packed day featuring some of the world’s brightest minds in AR/VR. You’ll have ample opportunity for hands-on demos, deep-dive conversations, in-depth workshops — and time to network with influential, ground-breaking leaders in all realities augmented and virtual.

Here’s just a quick sampling of our speakers: Parham Aarabi, founder and CEO of ModiFace; Adam Arrigo, co-founder and CEO of TheWaveVR; and Cyan Banister, a partner at Founders Fund.

We have great presentations on tap, too. Hear Ashley Crowder (VNTANA), Shawn Frayne (Looking Glass Factory) and Brett Jones (Lightform) talk about using holograms to replace expensive headsets.

AR and VR — it’s not all fun and games. Derek Belch (STRIVR), Clorama Dorvilias (DebiasVR) and Morgan Mercer (Vantage Point) will talk about ways business can use the technologies to train employees.

Greg Castle (Anorak Ventures) and Peter Rojas (Betaworks) will discuss how early-stage investors have changed their approach to funding new talent and suggest ways founders can grab their attention.

That’s just a taste of what industry leaders, content creators and game changers will present. Take a gander at the full agenda.

Join us October 18 in Los Angeles at TechCrunch Sessions: AR/VR for an incredible gathering of the augmented and virtual reality community. Our early-bird pricing ends today, so get real and buy your ticket today.


Source: TechCrunch

The new Wear OS starts hitting smartwatches

Google’s in a tough spot with Wear OS. It’s been four and half years since the operating system arrived as Android Wear, and while plenty of manufacturers have tried their hand at devices, the operating system has failed to make a large dent on the smartwatch category. Apple continues to dominate the space, while top competitors Samsung and Fitbit have opted to go in-house with their operating systems.

In February, Android Wear got a modest 2.0 update, and the following month, the operating system got a full-on rebrand. “We’re now Wear OS by Google, a wearables operating system for everyone,” the company said at the time. Even with all of that movement over the past year, Wear OS is still in need of an upgrade. By a number of early accounts, the 2.1 update, which is starting to roll out to users, is a strong step in that direction.

This latest version brings new swipe gestures, prioritizing notifications, settings, Google Fit and Assistant. Those last two are also getting some key upgrades, helping bring the company’s health and AI offerings up to speed with the competition.

While the smartwatch play has appeared fairly stagnant at times, it’s important to remember as Android celebrates its 10th anniversary that the smartphone OS wasn’t exactly a rousing success out of the gate. In the meantime, Apple, Fitbit and the like have proven that smartwatches do have some staying power, and once again analysts are bullish on the category.

Earlier this month, meanwhile, Qualcomm reaffirmed its commitment to Wear OS by showcasing its chip architecture promising extended battery life. It seems as if enough players are involved and hopeful in Wear OS to keep it going, but there’s still a lot of work to be done if it’s going to break out of the looming shadow of the Apple Watch.


Source: TechCrunch

Blockchain startups: Apply to exhibit for free at TechCrunch Disrupt Berlin 2018

Back in July, TechCrunch held a sold-out event focusing on Blockchain and we want to see those startups at Disrupt this year! On 29-30 November thousands of attendees will descend on Berlin, and what better way to get your blockchain business in front of them than to exhibit in Startup Alley?

Oh wait, we know a better way — apply to be a TechCrunch Top Pick and exhibit at Disrupt Berlin for FREE! Our highly discerning editors will review every application and choose up to five of the absolute best early-stage blockchain startups. Each TC Top Pick receives one free Startup Alley Exhibitor Package along with prime real estate in Startup Alley where they can strut their stuff in front of influential technologists and investors, potential collaborators and customers. It’s an opportunity you can’t afford to miss, so don’t wait — apply before the 28 September deadline.

Here’s what you get with a Startup Alley Exhibitor Package:

  • One-day exhibit space
  • Three Disrupt Berlin Founder Passes
  • Access to CrunchMatch (our free investor-to-startup matching platform)
  • Access to the Disrupt press list
  • A chance to be selected as one of the Startup Battlefield Wild Card companies (and you might even compete in our $50,000 startup-pitch competition)

You’ll also have the opportunity to hear some of Europe’s blockchain movers and shakers speak from the Main Stage. People like Vinay Gupta, founder of Mattererum and Kaidi Ruusalepp, founder and CEO of Funderbeam.

Disrupt Berlin 2018 takes place on 29-30 November. If you want a shot at being one of the blockchain TC Top Picks and exhibiting for free in Startup Alley, then apply here before 28 Sept. We can’t wait to see you in Berlin!


Source: TechCrunch

Nielsen: US smart speaker adoption grew to 24% in Q2 2018, 4 in 10 own more than one

In the second quarter, the adoption of smart speakers — like Amazon Echo and Google Home devices — grew to 24 percent in the U.S., up from 22 percent the prior quarter, according to new data from Nielsen, released this week. The measurement firm took a look at how consumers were using their speakers, when, as well as how many were buying multiple devices.

The firm found that 4 out of 10 smart speaker owners have more than one device — a sizable percentage that points to consumers finding enough value in their first device to add more throughout the home.

The living room is the most popular location for smart speaker placement (63 percent), followed by the bedroom (35 percent) and then the kitchen (28 percent).

This is not surprising, given that the primary use case for the devices is music streaming, with 90 percent of smart speaker owners saying they stream music at least once per week.

Searching for real-time information like weather or traffic, followed by searches for historical facts, were the next most popular activities, at 81 percent and 75 percent, respectively. News was tied for fourth place, with 68 percent listening in a typical week (68 percent also said they chatted with their assistant for fun and used alarms and timers).

That so many people are chatting with their smart assistants, like Alexa and Google Assistant, in a more playful capacity is worth noting here. It’s not enough for these voice platforms to be good at finding and retrieving information and taking actions, they have to do that with some personality, too. Amazon has even gone so far as to give Alexa her own opinions on things like pets, beer, movies, colors and more, which change from time to time.

Smart speakers are also acting as a bit of an extension of our mobile devices, the report said. Nielsen found that consumers were syncing data from their phones to the voice-based devices for things like audio streaming (53 percent) and shopping apps (52 percent), and more. This latter figure seems to indicate that many are, in fact, using their smart devices for shopping-related activities, despite earlier reports that downplayed shopping’s connection with smart speaker devices.

A recent report from The Information, citing leaked Amazon data, claimed that consumers were not making purchases through Echo devices. However, it seems that consumers are taking a first step toward purchase — list making — through Alexa. When the sale later goes through, however, it’s on the web, mobile web or in the native app, not directly from the speaker. Whether or not that’s actually impacting sales, or just offering consumers a different way to create their purchase reminders, still remains to be seen. But there is a connection between the devices and the shopping app, this data shows.

Consumers were also found to use their smart speakers more often on weekends, and in the afternoons, increasing as it got later in the evening, the survey said.

Also notable is that consumer sentiment toward their smart speakers is highly positive.

Indeed, 75 percent said they’d like to learn how to do more with the devices, and 72 percent said they would recommend them or purchase them as a gift for family and friends.

The data in the report comes from a new Nielsen consumer tracking survey called MediaTech Trender, which aims to understand consumer sentiment and behavior around emerging technologies, like smart speakers, VR and other platforms. This particular survey was conducted among 2,000 U.S. consumers, and will continue to be done on a quarterly basis.


Source: TechCrunch

Why a Tennis Ball Goes Flying When Bounced on a Basketball

When you bounce a tennis ball off a moving basketball, the tennis ball goes careening off at high speed. Here’s why that happens.
Source: Wired

Digital IDs Are More Dangerous Than You Think

Opinion: Digital identification systems are meant to aid the marginalized. Actually, they’re ripe for abuse.
Source: Wired

Say Goodbye to @sweden, the Last Good Thing on Twitter

After seven years, the country’s grand experiment—turning its official Twitter account over to its citizens—comes to a close.
Source: Wired

Google is getting sued for failing to blur military sites – CNET

Belgium isn’t happy that its sensitive sites are visible in satellite images.
Source: CNET

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