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Google Photos adds ‘Live Albums’ an automated way of sharing people, pet photos with anyone

October 9, 2018 Alex 0

Just ahead of today’s Google’s hardware event, the company has quietly rolled out an update to its Google Photos application which introduces a new, automated way of organizing and sharing photos: Live Albums. According to the app’s “What’s New” description, Live Albums appear to be a spin-off from partner sharing, introduced last year. But instead of automating sharing of a set of photos – like those of a child – between just two people, Live Albums allow you to automate the sharing of people and pet photos with anyone you choose.

For example, the feature could be used to share photos of your children with your extended family, instead of just a spouse. You could also specify certain, close friends who would always receive the photos you took together.

Easy, collaborative photo sharing has been something of a holy grail for photo apps for years. It’s been the basis of numerous startups including Bump, whose founder David Lieb now leads Google Photos, Fabric, Batch, Color, Cluster, a..

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Review: The Marshall Woburn II packs modern sound, retro look

October 9, 2018 Alex 0

Marshall speakers stand out. That’s why I dig them. From the company’s headphones to its speakers, the audio is warm and full just like the classic design suggests.

The company today is announcing revisions across its lines. The new versions of the Action ($249), Stanmore ($349) and Woburn Bluetooth ($499) speakers now feature Bluetooth 5.0, an upgraded digital signal processor and a slightly re-worked look.

Marshall also announced a new version of the Minor wireless in-ear headphones. The wireless headphones were among the company’s first products and the updated version now features Bluetooth 5.0 aptX connectivity, new 14.2 mm drivers and 12 hours of battery life. Marshall also says the redesigned model will stay in place better than the original model.

It’s important to note that the company behind these Marshall speakers and headphones is different from the company that makes the iconic guitar amp though there is collaboration. The Marshall brand is used by Zound Industries, whi..

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Princeton Identity debuts a new walkthrough biometric scanner — in a shipping container

October 9, 2018 Alex 0

Soon, you might be walking across the border through a shipping container.

Yes, you read that right.

You’re off the flight, seven hours later, exhausted and hungry, and cranky from being hurtled at your destination at more than half the speed of sound. You grab your bag from overhead, stumble through the bright lights of the airport towards customs and then — suddenly — you’re funneled through a 20-foot shipping container that’s packed to the rafters with biometric gadgetry.

That’s the latest vision from Princeton Identity, a New Jersey-based startup, which will this week lift the lid on its latest offering.

The container — dubbed the Biometric Conex — can work almost anywhere — from government buildings and border control to large events that require personnel checks to prevent improper access or perimeter breaches.

The Conex takes several of the company’s existing biometric technologies and integrates it into a self-contained air-conditioned unit that can process as many as 20 p..

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Freight trucking startup Shipwell gets a $10 million boost

October 9, 2018 Alex 0

Shipwell, a startup pitching a marketplace for domestic ground shipping and fleet and cargo management services for freight trucking companies, has raised $10 million in a new round of funding.

A booming American economy coupled with failing infrastructure and a low-margin business reluctant to adopt new technologies have put stress on domestic logistics companies in the $900 billion market for U.S. trucking services.

Shipwell combines a marketplace for shippers to connect with freight companies and online tools to manage those shipments. In effect, the company is pitching a version of the proprietary logistics management toolkit that has made Amazon so successful, to any retailer or outlet.

“We coordinate the freight, we pay the truckers, we help optimize the fleets,” says Shipwell president and co-founder, Jason Traff.

Those services — and the company’s growing business among small and medium-sized suppliers to the construction industry — brought the Austin-based company to the..

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Microsoft shows off government cloud services with JEDI due date imminent

October 9, 2018 Alex 0

Just a day after Google decided to drop out of the Pentagon’s massive $10 billion, 10-year JEDI cloud contract bidding, Microsoft announced increased support services for government clients. In a long blog post, the company laid out its government focused cloud services.

While today’s announcement is not directly related to JEDI per se, the timing is interesting just three days ahead of the October 12th deadline for submitting RFPs. Today’s announcement is about showing just how comprehensive the company’s government-specific cloud services are.

In a blog post, Microsoft corporate vice president for Azure, Julia White made it clear the company was focusing hard on the government business. “In the past six months we have added over 40 services and features to Azure Government, as well as publishing a new roadmap for the Azure Government regions providing ongoing transparency into our upcoming releases,” she wrote.

“Moving forward, we are simplifying our approach to regulatory complia..

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China’s fast-rising Bullet Messenger hit with copyright complaint

October 9, 2018 Alex 0

Bullet Messenger, a fast-rising Chinese messaging upstart that’s gunning to take on local behemoth, WeChat, has been pulled from the iOS App Store owing to what its owners couch as a copyright complaint.

Reuters reported the development earlier, saying Bullet’s owner, Beijing-based Kuairu Technology, claimed in a social media posting that the app had been taken down from Apple’s app store because of a complaint related to image content provided by a partner.

“We are verifying the situation with the partner and will inform you as soon as possible when download capabilities are resumed,” it said in a statement on its official Weibo account.

The company did not specify which part of the app has been subject to a complaint.

We’ve reached out to Apple to ask if it can provide any more details.

According to checks by Reuters earlier today, the Bullet Messenger app was still available on China’s top Android app stores — including stores owned by WeChat owner Tencent, as well as Baidu and..

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Here’s Google’s Pixel Stand

October 9, 2018 Alex 0

Google is launching its Pixel Stand today, a new wireless charging accessory for your Pixel phone that lets you dock your phone and — as you’ve probably guessed — sit your phone upright next to your bed or on your kitchen counter. That way, you can use it hands-free, similar to the new Google Assistant-powered smart displays that Google, Lenovo, LG and JBL have now announced.

While Google hasn’t officially announced this new gadget yet, we now know for sure that it’s coming, thanks to Verizon (via 9to5google), which put up its Pixel 3 page a bit too early.

Moments later, the head of hardware at Google, Rick Osterloh, made the device official at an event in New York City.

The Pixel Stand is basically a sleek little round dock for your phone. While it can obviously charge your phone, what’s maybe more interesting is that when you put your phone into the cradle, it looks like it’ll start a new notifications view that’s not unlike what you’d see on a smart display.

You’ll be able to us..

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The Wing, a co-working space for women, opens its doors in San Francisco

October 9, 2018 Alex 0

Women-focused co-working space The Wing has made its way to California, opening its first of two planned locations in the state this morning.

On Sansome Street in San Francisco’s Financial District, The Wing hopes to attract professional women able to shell out $215 per month for access to its 8,000-square-foot workspace, which is complete with conference rooms, a cafe, a library stocked with books on feminist theory, a lactation room and more.

In addition to its chic decor and feminist messaging, The Wing is also known for its programming. Headquartered in New York City, where the company operates three of its four existing spaces, The Wing has hosted events with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, actress Jennifer Lawrence and New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, to name a few. The San Francisco location will be no different.

A spokesperson for The Wing tells me they have a fully booked calendar of politics, tech, entertainment and lifestyle-focused events prepped for membe..

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Here is the Google Pixel 3

October 9, 2018 Alex 0

There are no surprises in the world of consumer electronics. We’ve already seen the Pixel 3 from every conceivable angle, both in video and still. And now, mere minutes before today’s event is set to kickoff, Verizon (the company that owns the company that owns TechCrunch, mind) has gone ahead and confirmed the thing on its site.

Moments later, the head of hardware at Google, Rick Osterloh, made the device official at an event in New York City.

Contrary to some earlier renders, the third version of Google’s Android flagship (spotted by 9 to 5 Google) does boast a sizable notch up top, in keeping with earlier images of the larger XL. Makes sense, after all, Google went out of its way to boast about notch functionality when it introduced Pie, the latest version of its mobile OS.

The specs are admittedly still a bit spot via the carrier page, but the bullet points do confirm most of what we thought we knew about the handset. Google’s sticking to the single camera on the rear of the dev..

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Here’s Google’s Echo Show competitor, the $149 Home Hub

October 9, 2018 Alex 0

This is Google’s Echo Show competitor, the Home Hub. We knew it was coming, via an avalanche of leaks and now, moments before the event has officially kicked off, here it is in all of its glory by way of the full leaked product video (again spotted by 9 to 5 Google). The product is a looker — especially compared to the last two generations of Amazon’s Echo Show.

Moments later, the head of hardware at Google, Rick Osterloh, made the device official at an event in New York City.

The device looks like an Android tablet mounted on top of a speaker — which ought to address the backward firing sound, which is one of the largest design flaws of the recently introduced Echo Show 2. The speaker fabric comes in a number of different colors, in keeping with the rest of the Pixel/Home products, including the new Aqua.

Google says the product was also purposefully made smaller in order to better fit in the home. Size wise, the device seems to split the difference between the Show and Spot. The p..