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Sunday, March 29

Pebble Time completes Kickstarter campaign with $20.3M in pledges

Pebble has finished its second crowdfunding campaign for its second generation of smartwatch, with the Pebble Time bringing in more than $20.3 million in funding from over 78,000 backers on Kickstarter. The final total makes the Pebble Time the most-funded Kickstarter campaign ever, eclipsing the original device's $13.4 million haul from two years ago. ...

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Microsoft bringing Windows 10 technical preview to more Lumia phones

Microsoft is making the technical preview of Windows 10 for smartphones available to more devices, the software giant has advised. Initially available to a small number of Lumia smartphones, the technical preview will be installable on a wider array of hardware, with over 30 Lumia devices on a preliminary list set to receive the software in the next preview release....

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Briefly: Licensed Uber service in Germany, PlayStation TV price cut

Uber is going to launch a new service in Germany, following its ban by a local court this month. The court banned Uber over its use of unlicensed cab drivers, reports Reuters, and intends to fine Uber drivers violating local transport laws. A new service will be launching this summer, with Uber paying the commercial passenger transport licenses and to register drives as taxi companies at a cost of between 250 euro ($...

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Saturday, March 28

Best Buy completes assimilation of Future Shop brand, 66 stores closed

Canadian technology retailer Future Shop has essentially been absorbed into parent company Best Buy overnight. While 66 locations were completely shut down overnight, 65 locations will be reborn as Best Buy stores on April 4. Reports scattered across Canada are seeing employees being notified of the closure and their future employment status as they arrive for a Saturday shift at the store....

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Friday, March 27

NBC denies ever having television streaming discussions with Apple

Throwing some doubt on the veracity of earlier reports by the Wall Street Journal NBCUniversal has said in a letter to the US Federal Communications Commission that not only is it not keeping back content from any prospective Apple television network, it has not even been launched discussions with Apple in the first place. The revelation was made as part of an information request fulfilled by the programmer, answerin...

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Windows 10 may not be free to new customers, virtualization users

Microsoft has made a passing attempt to clarify some of its policy on free upgrades to Windows 10. In an interview, senior director of product marketing at Microsoft Aaron Woodman detailed what the company has decided about the offering -- and an alarming amount of decisions seem to have not been made yet about licensing the OS....

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Daily Deals: 3TB WD Red, Xbox One, Disney Infinity Toy Box

Welcome to Daily Deals, our regular look at the discounts, offers, sales, and other money-saving items for you, the discerning MacNN and Electronista reader. As usual, we recap the still-active deals from over the last week, as well as introducing new items, including a cheap Disney Infinity entry point, a Microsoft Xbox One to play it on, and 3TB WD Red hard drives. ...

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Blackberry posts $28 million quarterly profit, falling revenue

BlackBerry is declaring a win on restructuring efforts, despite plummeting revenue. The company today reported a profit of $28 million for the last quarter despite currency exchange issues, and still falling sales. Wall Street was expecting a $5 million loss on the quarter, with $734 million in revenue -- well more than realized by the company....

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Micron, Intel roll out new NAND tech allowing for future 10TB SSDs

Micron Technology and Intel today revealed the availability of their 3D NAND technology, the world's highest-density flash memory. This new 3D NAND technology, which was jointly developed by Intel and Micron, stacks layers of data storage cells vertically with extraordinary precision to create storage devices with what the company calls three times higher capacity than competing NAND technologies, potentially leading...

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Google to face trial in UK over ignoring Safari cookie setting

The Court of Appeal of England and Wales has dismissed an attempt by Google to prevent British computer users from being able to sue it in England. The landmark hearing followed an earlier defeat for Google in the English High Court in which it was unsuccessful in preventing three British computer users from having the right to sue it for breach of privacy, after the computer giant ignored users wishes not to have tr...

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Fortune names Apple CEO Tim Cook 'World's Greatest Leader'

On Thursday, Fortune magazine named Apple CEO Tim Cook to the top spot of its "World's 50 Greatest Leaders," which largely refers to business and industry leaders rather than government officials. The honor came with a new interview with Cook as well as some of those who work with him, and addresses many of Cook's and the company's successes (and a few missteps) in the lengthy profile....

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Thursday, March 26

Google adding IE Pointer Events API to Chrome, releases Data Saver

Google is going to be leaning on some Internet Explorer technology to fix scrolling and touch support in its Chrome browser. At the same time, Google has launched an extension for the desktop versions of Chrome which aims to reduce the amount of data used to surf the Internet, a feature that has already made an appearance on iOS and Android versions of the browser. ...

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LG Watch Urbane LTE shipping in South Korea this week for $590

LG is going to be putting the LTE-equipped version of the Watch Urbane on sale in its native South Korea later this week. The stylish smartwatch, initially revealed by the manufacturer last month, is able to run as a standalone device thanks to its cellular connection, allowing it to make and receive calls and messages, and also receive app notifications, all without being connected to a smartphone. ...

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Daily Deals: Sol Republic headphones, Linksys router, OCZ SSDs

Welcome to Daily Deals, our regular look at the discounts, offers, sales, and other money-saving items for you, the discerning MacNN and Electronista reader. As usual, we recap the still-active deals from over the last week, as well as introducing new items, including Sol Republic Master Tracks headphones, a $40 Linksys router, and OCZ Vertex SSD storage....

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Twitter unveils Periscope live video broadcasting app

Twitter has added another video service to its roster, alongside Vine, one which provides live video streaming to the microblogging platform. A rebranding of an app Twitter acquired in January, Periscope lets users instantly stream from their smartphone to their Twitter feed, with viewers able to provide feedback to the broadcaster in real time. ...

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Amazon Cloud Drive adds unlimited storage tier for $60 per year

Amazon is going after Dropbox, Google Drive, and OneDrive, by offering customers unlimited cloud storage at a very low cost. The retailer is upgrading its existing Cloud Drive service by adding two more tiers for non-Prime subscribers, each providing unlimited storage of files and photographs, but with subscription prices that severely undercut the same offerings by its competitors. ...

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Apple, Google coalition demands Patriot Act changes prior to renewal

Nearly all of the tech industry, including Apple, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, and LinkedIn have co-signed a letter to the US government, calling for reform of Section 215 of the Patriot Act before it expires and is likely renewed in May. The coalition is seeking an "effective end to bulk collection" of user metadata, "transparency and accountability mechanisms" for federal and industry reporting, and eased declassifica...

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BT becomes a carrier again, offers discounted SIM-only contracts

British telecommunications giant BT has started its return to the mobile phone market earlier than expected, by offering its customers cellular connections. Becoming a carrier once again, after spinning off what would become O2 in 2001, BT is providing modest SIM-only contracts to consumers, with existing home broadband customers getting a monthly discount on their plan. ...

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Briefly: Amazon Prime Now Dallas, Channel 4 rebrands 4oD as All4

Amazon Prime Now, the retailer's high-speed delivery service, is opening up in Dallas. Just as with its other Prime Now locations, Prime subscribers in the fourth location will be able to use a mobile app on iOS and Android to place orders for groceries and household goods, between 8am and 10pm seven days a week, with TechCrunch reporting it still costs $8 for one-hour deliveries, while two-hour deliveries are free....

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Wednesday, March 25

Razer OSVR headset to have optional Leap Motion-embedded faceplate

Razer's virtual reality headset will include the ability to track the motion of the wearer's hands. The OSVR Hacker Dev Kit from Razer will include an optional faceplate with Leap Motion hardware embedded inside it, allowing for developers to create apps that take into account the wearer's hands, and potentially allowing for a more intuitive and realistic virtual reality experience for users. ...

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Daily Deals: iPad Air 2, 750GB WD Elements, LG 49-inch 4K TV

Welcome to Daily Deals, the regular post where we, the staff of MacNN and Electronista, search online retailers for discounts and savings on general tech, gadgets, and software, for our discerning readers. Today, we recap the still-active deals from earlier this week, with the new deals including $100 off the iPad Air 2, an external 750GB drive for $35, and a 49-inch LG 4K TV for less than half price. ...

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Logitech Harmony gains voice control from Ubi, Ivee smart home devices

Owners of Logitech Harmony devices will soon be able to perform various automated home commands using their voice. Ubi and Ivee are both using Logitech's Harmony API to communicate directly with smart home devices and appliances, allowing both systems to take control and change settings for various connected items around the house. ...

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Google reportedly planning YouTube game streaming service

Google may be planning to boost its live streaming functions in YouTube by taking on Twitch. A report claims YouTube will soon launch a game streaming service on the video site, one that is set to directly compete against the Amazon-owned service, by providing viewers access to live streams of esports and other similar content in a refreshed YouTube Live. ...

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FAA speeds up drone authorizations, Amazon complains over slow process

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is speeding up the process for commercial drone operators to be provided exemptions allowing them to fly. The change in policy comes amid complaints from Amazon over the application process, which it claims is so slow that its recent FAA approval it received was for a drone that has since become obsolete. ...

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Google bringing Fiber to Salt Lake City, Oregon law change backfires

Google has revealed Salt Lake City, Utah will be joining the roster of seven other cities as Google Fiber locations. The announcement of the eighth Google Fiber location comes alongside news that Google is unlikely to bring its high-speed fiber Internet service to Portland, Oregon anytime soon, as a bill designed to draw the service to the city has seemingly backfired. ...

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Telefonica agrees to sell O2 UK to Hutchison Whampoa for £10.25B

The owner of British carrier O2 has agreed to sell the company to Hutchison Whampoa, the result of negotiations between the two owners which started in January. Telefonica, the owner of O2, has confirmed it will be handing over the carrier for £10.25 billion ($1.53 billion), with the deal still to receive regulatory approval before it can close completely. ...

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