Whole Earth boosts its spread portfolio with new almond butterPosted By: News Deskon: July 04, 2017In: Flavours, Food, Health, Industries, New products, Nutrition, SnacksPrintEmailNatural food brand Whole Earth has expanded its UK range with the launch of a new almond butter – its first non-peanut based spread.The Wessanen UK-owned brand aims to target health conscious consumers who are looking for a spread high in protein and fibre.The new product is the latest step in Whole Earth’s Nature’s Wonder-Fuel campaign, which focuses on supporting healthy lifestyles with natural products.The company’s sales have grown 26% year-on-year and it hopes to tap into the growing popularity of non-peanut spreads.Kirstie Hawkins, Whole Earth brand controller at Wessanen UK, said: “Whilst peanut butter sales remain in strong growth, consumers are becoming more knowledgeable and expanding their nut butter repertoire – making it an ideal time for Whole Earth to expand our portfolio.“The popularity of almonds continues to rise, and we are pleased to bring our own distinct approach to this fast-growing category.“We are now a nation of nut butter lovers, and there’s great appetite for highly versatile, protein-rich spreads. We are fiercely committed to innovation, developing and diversifying our portfolio with highly nutritious, top quality spreads that meet all consumer needs.”To support the launch, Whole Earth will develop and share almond butter recipes to demonstrate menu options.This is the latest in a series of innovative new product launches by Whole Earth. Last year it debuted a crunchy peanut butter spread using only peanuts high in oleic acid as well as a three-nut butter spread.The new almond butter is available to buy in Waitrose with a recommended retail price of £4.49 for a 227g pot. The brand hopes to introduce the spread to health food shops and independent retailers later in the year.Share with your network: Tags: Almond butternew productsnutritionproteinspreadsUK
Glanbia acquires SlimFast from Kainos Capital in $350m dealPosted By: Jules Scullyon: October 11, 2018In: Business, Food, Functional, Health, Industries, Mergers & Acquisitions, SnacksPrintEmailGlanbia has acquired weight management brand SlimFast from Kainos Capital for $350 million as it expands its performance nutrition portfolio. The deal also includes SlimFast’s sister company HNS.Headquartered in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, SlimFast offers products such as sweet and savoury snacks, iced coffee, and meal replacement shakes and smoothies. In 2017, the brand delivered $212 million of net sales.Glanbia plans to operate SlimFast within its performance nutrition segment, which consists of brands such as Optimum Nutrition, BSN and Isopure.Siobhán Talbot, group managing director of Glanbia, said: “I am pleased to announce that we have agreed to acquire SlimFast, a leading consumer brand in the $8 billion weight management nutrition market, an adjacency to the Glanbia performance nutrition brand portfolio.“SlimFast is an established and enduring brand and, along with nutritional supplements brands Healthy Delights and Nu-Therapy, complements our existing portfolio targeting lifestyle consumers. It plays to global consumer trends focused on convenient formats and snacking.The announcement comes just four years after Kainos bought SlimFast from Unilever.Kainos managing partner Andrew Rosen said: “Our acquisition of SlimFast came with no employees or systems. Behind the leadership of CEO Chris Tisi, who we partnered with when we invested in his company HNS in 2014, we quickly built a 60-plus person team in the US and the UK. “This team, combined with our own internal resources, did a great job revitalising what was an orphan brand within a large multinational company. SlimFast is positioned to continue its great success as a part of Glanbia.”SlimFast CEO Chris Tisi added: “It was very important for us to work with our retail partners to reclaim the SlimFast heritage, which is providing effective solutions for real people who desire to lose weight or live a healthy lifestyle. “By partnering with Kainos, my team and I had the resources and support to dramatically increase our consumer base and offer a variety of innovative, great-tasting and effective products, including high-protein SlimFast Advanced, SlimFast Advanced Energy with caffeine, and our most recent Keto product offering.”It is anticipated that the transaction will close before the end of 2018.Share with your network: Tags: GlanbiaIrelandKainos CapitalslimfastUS
Nestlé launches $24.6m Nescafé marketing campaign in ThailandPosted By: Contributoron: October 17, 2018In: Beverage, Industries, Marketing, Tea & CoffeePrintEmailNestlé has started a THB 800 million ($24.6 million) campaign in Thailand to reinforce Nescafé’s position and celebrate the brand’s 45 years in the country.Called ‘Nurture Stronger Bond’, the initiative seeks to strengthen the coffee brand’s engagement and connection with Thai society.The campaign consists of three television commercials and a music video for Nescafé Blend & Brew, Nescafé Red Cup and Nescafé Ready-To-Drink, as well as digital communications, out-of-home media and in-store activities.Vladislav Andreev, business executive officer – coffee and creamer business unit at Nestlé (Thai), said: “For 45 years, Nescafé has created varieties of coffee for every taste and occasion, becoming a familiar household name with a range of products that Thai coffee lovers enjoy like Nescafé Blend & Brew, Nescafé Red Cup and Nescafé Ready-To-Drink, all while being an integral part of new connection, friendship, and relationship people are making every day as they are enjoying indulgent, and pleasurable coffee experience.”He added: “Nescafé is the No. 1 coffee brand in Thailand. It’s in homes, offices, and shops throughout Thailand. In fact, every minute over 20,000 cups of Nescafé are consumed in Thailand. That translates to more than 300 cups every second.“Today we are introducing ‘Nurture Stronger Bond’ campaign to continue to cultivate experiences around the lives of today’s consumers and to encourage Thai people to grow stronger bonds together, which reinstates Nescafé brand as a connection builder.”Share with your network: Tags: NescaféNestléThailand
MomentFeed Reports “Customer Brand Loyalty is on Life Support” Business Wire5 days agoJuly 18, 2019 brand marketing mixJim D’ArcangeloMarketing Technology NewsMobile Brand SearchMomentFeedNews Previous ArticleFreshworks Named in Gartner’s 2019 Magic Quadrant for Sales Force AutomationNext ArticleOtter.ai Integrates With Dropbox to Collaborate, Manage, and Search Video and Audio Files Only 18 Percent of Consumers Search on Mobile for Brand NamesMomentFeed, a leader in software that connects global and national brands with consumers who use mobile when they are ready to buy locally, published a report that reinforces the value of local-mobile in the brand marketing mix.Only 18 percent of consumers search on mobile for brand names. Proximity, convenience, relevance, and quality are more important than ever.Although major brands are spending upwards of $70B in TV advertising and digital marketing spend is at 44 percent of budgets and on the upswing, location marketing strategy is often forgotten, especially by the largest of consumer brands. This can be deadly for companies that rely heavily on local stores and venues for the vast majority of sales.A new report called “The Rapid Death of Mobile Brand Search” highlights the facts and trends behind local-mobile search.Marketing Technology News: Fastbase New 3.0 Extension to Google Analytics Boosts Lead Generation to a New High Level for B2B companiesFor example, 82 percent of consumers search their phones for a product type (e.g., “nitro brew near me” rather than a specific branded coffee shop) and will often make choices based on Google ranking and proximity first.“I’ve met with many senior marketing executives who assume that because they’ve invested in search marketing and digital that they’ll automatically show up in mobile searches,” says Jim D’Arcangelo, MomentFeed CMO. “But to show up consistently in the ‘Google 3-Pack’ (top three listings), brands need to be hyper-focused on and savvy about their location marketing and review management and their impact on SEO. We’ve seen huge sales boosts among retailers and restaurants who focus on location marketing in addition to brand-building.”Marketing Technology News: Tapad and AdsWizz Partner to Enable Digital Identity Resolution Across Audio Ad CampaignsAdds Greg Sterling, VP of Strategy, Local Search Association, “Brands that aren’t devoting significant attention and resources to local and mobile marketing are not only falling behind competitors, they’re potentially losing revenue”Marketing Technology News: Icertis Cements Undisputed CLM Market Leadership with $115 Million Round
Innovid Continues Rapid Global Expansion with New Tokyo Office and Appointment of Toichiro Watanabe as Regional Director, Japan Business WireJune 26, 2019, 9:49 pmJune 26, 2019 Leading Connected TV and Video Advertising Platform Brings Its Award-Winning Technology and Video Solutions to Japan to Meet Accelerating International DemandInnovid, the world’s leading connected TV and video advertising platform, announced its global expansion in Japan, with the opening of its Tokyo office and the appointment of local industry veteran Toichiro Watanabe to oversee Innovid’s presence as regional director. Watanabe’s expertise in this region and his in-depth knowledge of ad serving technologies positions Innovid to better serve regional and global advertising partners. Under his leadership, the team will address market-specific trends and opportunities, engage with new Japan-based advertisers, and expand existing client relationships.“I am thrilled to join the world-class Innovid team and bring innovative data-driven video and connected TV campaigns to the leading brands and agencies in Japan,” said Watanabe. “The Japan market is an intricate and exciting place to explore connected TV advertising and there are many opportunities unfolding. Innovid’s presence in APAC has grown significantly over the past few years, and I look forward to developing and expanding the new Tokyo office.”Marketing Technology News: Top of Mind Networks Adds BombBomb Integration to Surefire CRM Watanabe comes to Innovid from Google’s DoubleClick, where he served for more than six years and launched pivotal products, such as DoubleClick Search (Search Ads 360) and DoubleClick Bid Manager (Display and Video 360). While at Google, he also developed the DoubleClick Campaign Manager (DCM) business in Japan and supported the GTM launch of Ads Data Hub across the APAC region. Previously, Watanabe served as a product specialist at Adobe/Omniture.“Expanding Innovid’s presence in APAC has been a major area of focus and we are now able to welcome many new global and regional advertising clients in Japan,” said Zvika Netter, CEO and Co-Founder of Innovid. “Toichiro’s executive leadership, deep technical expertise and local market relationships with both brands and agencies will enable Innovid to serve the Japan market in the best way possible. We are excited to welcome him to the team.”Marketing Technology News: Yext Study: 58% Of Healthcare and Pharmaceutical Marketers Say Their Marketing Management Strategy Needs Major ImprovementsThe new Tokyo office comes a year after Innovid’s expansion into the APAC region with the opening of its Singapore hub. The Tokyo office will be Innovid’s ninth location and fifth international office, further expanding its presence in Asia to complement the company’s overall global footprint.The opening of the Japan office is another significant milestone in what has been a banner 2019 for Innovid, including a $30 million fundraise in January from Goldman Sachs, adding more than 60 strategic hires globally, the appointment of new leadership in EMEA and, most recently, being named to Inc. Magazines’ Best Workplaces.Marketing Technology News: PMG Launches Marketing Intelligence Platform — Meet Alli DoubleClickInnovidMarketing TechnologyNewsvideo advertisingZvika Netter Previous ArticleOrange County United Way and Salesforce Team Up to Revolutionize PhilanthropyNext ArticleComm100 Launches Agent Assist to Boost Agent Performance and Customer Satisfaction
Chris HemsworthMen in BlackMen in Black InternationalMen in Black International early reviews First Published: June 13, 2019, 11:25 AM IST Early reviews for the latest instalment in the Men in Black series are out on Twitter and netizens aren’t too elated about Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson’s new we-are-here-to-save-the-world movie.Directed by F Gary Gray, Men in Black International features Chris and Tessa as the new goofy agents who are trying to save London from some not-so-peaceful extra-terrestrials. The fourth film in the popular franchise, it also stars Liam Neeson and Emma Thompson, who will reprise her role from the previous films. Calling the film boring and uninspired, one user tweeted, “#MenInBlackInternational starts off okay, but gives up about fifteen minutes in. It mostly just goes through the motions. No witty banter between the 2 leads. Lots of boring filler. There’s one word in particular that’s said so frequently, it could be used as a drinking game.”#MenInBlackInternational starts off okay, but gives up about fifteen minutes in. It mostly just goes through the motions. No witty banter between the 2 leads. Lots of boring filler. There’s one word in particular that’s said so frequently, it could be used as a drinking game. pic.twitter.com/ZRqgYMONGr— Courtney Howard (@Lulamaybelle) June 12, 2019 “About two-thirds of the way through I thought, “do I even like movies anymore,” she added.Yes. About two-thirds of the way through I thought, “do I even like movies anymore?”— Courtney Howard (@Lulamaybelle) June 12, 2019Another tweeted, “A galactically gormless fall to earth | The earnest introduction of gender and migrant issues can’t save this space-invaders caper from CGI-dependent mediocrity.”#MenInBlackInternational review – a galactically gormless fall to earth | The earnest introduction of gender and migrant issues can’t save this space-invaders caper from CGI-dependent mediocrity https://t.co/uE2PZiWRGK pic.twitter.com/CJThbkW8ai— George Roussos (@baphometx) June 12, 2019A third wrote, “#MenInBlackInternational is a frothy sci-fi spy flick, and #Thompsworth are absolutely electric. But it’s kind of amazing that a franchise about immigration services has nothing even vaguely relevant on its mind in 2019.”#MenInBlackInternational is a frothy sci-fi spy flick, and #Thompsworth are absolutely electric.But it’s kind of amazing that a franchise about immigration services has nothing even vaguely relevant on its mind in 2019.My review is here, at @TheWrap! https://t.co/fOaznAwy77— William Bibbiani (@WilliamBibbiani) June 12, 2019Mocking the film, yet another wrote, “I do want to say that while #MenInBlackInternational is nothing special, Chris Hemsworth’s hair in it is a work of art. I basically spent a third of my review talking about it.”I do want to say that while #MenInBlackInternational is nothing special, Chris Hemsworth’s hair in it is a work of art. I basically spent a third of my review talking about it. https://t.co/XucJaNDzfI— Matt Singer (@mattsinger) June 12, 2019Men in Black International is slated to release on June 14. Follow @News18Movies for more.
dehi-lok-sabha-elections-2019Gautam GambhirLok Sabha elections 2019lok-sabha-election-results-2019 First Published: May 23, 2019, 9:00 PM IST New Delhi: Someone who always wore passion on his sleeve, dared to speak his mind and cared little for reputations, Gautam Gambhir’s new innings is expected to be equally eventful as white flannels make way for spotless kurta pyjamas following his landslide victory from East Delhi.Gambhir, in cricketing parlance, hit a century on ‘debut’, winning his maiden Parliament elections by a massive margin. He sort of demolished his opponents, securing close to seven lakh votes, leaving close rivals — Congress’ Arvinder Singh Lovely and AAP’s Aatishi Marlena — way behind.The start has been typically ‘Gambhirsque’ with a direct sarcastic dig at his rivals Arvinder Singh ‘Lovely’ of Congress and Aatishi Marlena of Aam Aadmi Party after the people of East Delhi gave him an overwhelming mandate.”Neither it’s a ‘Lovely’ cover drive and nor it is an ‘?????’ ??????????? It’s just the BJP’s ‘?????’ ideology which people have supported. Thanks a lot to all the @BJP4India and @BJP4Delhi team-mates for getting this mandate. We won’t fail people’s choice,” he tweeted from his official handle.As a player, Gambhir certainly wasn’t the most talented in the Indian set-up which boasted the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, VVS Laxman, Sourav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid but it was his big heart that made him indispensable between 2007-2011, something he would like to bring to his political career.But politics will be an entirely different ball game. The pitch will be very different and unpredictable from the 22-yards where he faced the likes of Brett Lee, Shoaib Akhtar or Mitchell Johnson in his prime.For someone, who subscribes to ‘black or white’ philosophy, it will be interesting to see how the man from West Delhi’s upscale Rajinder Nagar performs in a regimented political set-up.His naysayers often term him a bigot for his political stance but his fans on social media, who call themselves ‘Gautians’, find him as a man of conviction.On Twitter and electronic media, Gambhir doesn’t play those half-hearted dab shots towards third-man but it is more of those inside-out lofted shots off spinners, which was his signature shot.Whether questioning Ravi Shastri’s cricketing achievements or questioning Virat Kohli’s tactical acumen, Gambhir as an analyst took no prisoners.He hails from a privileged background, father Deepak Gambhir being an established businessman but the filth of Delhi cricket created a street fighter in the feisty left-hander, which remained with him till his very last day in competitive cricket.The Indian cricket system never gave him security and he in turn became a non-conformist, ruffling multiple feathers, first as a player and then as the Delhi captain.As it is supposed to be in any walk of life, Gambhir’s decisions haven’t always been right but there is no question mark over his intent.His ability to pick up fights with all and sundry have been legendary.Whether it’s the Youtube smasher with Shahid Afridi, the shove to Shane Watson and a near bust-up with Kohli, Gambhir has shown his love for a scrap.And then comes his fights with Delhi cricket’s establishment based on “his principles”.A fight with former Delhi coach KP Bhaskar was based on allegations of the latter trying to deny opportunities to deserving junior players. There were arguments with Chetan Chauhan and he had his way — providing a raw Navdeep Saini the Ranji platform, straight from Karnal’s tennis ball circuit.Gambhir refused to play under Ajay Jadeja’s coaching for latter’s involvement in match-fixing.He stalled Manoj Prabhakar’s candidature for same reasons, so much so that his ‘uncomfortable questions’ to the former Indian all-rounder didn’t go down well with co-panelist Virender Sehwag.But that’s Gautam Gambhir, for whom there has never been half measures — right or wrong.
BJPcongressLok Sabha elections 2019Rahul Gandhi First Published: May 25, 2019, 6:34 PM IST New Delhi: Smriti Irani, who recently dealt a major blow to Congress in its bastion seat of Amethi, expressed her jubilation that a single BJP party worker was able to take down the grand old party. The BJP candidate was able to wrest the constituency from Congress, defeating its chief Rahul Gandhi with a margin of 55,120 votes. “For me, it was a matter of satisfaction that while their president and their whole system came down to fight it took just one karyakarta of the BJP,” she told CNN-News18 in an interview. Irani said that the party had started preparing for the 2019 battle all the way back in 2014. “Did you see the PM take a single break? You cannot divorce yourself from political realities, from work,” she said while taking a veiled jibe at the Congress for bracing for the race just a few months before the elections “When did 2019 start? In 2014,” she said. When asked about the changes she has planned to bring about in the constituency Irani said, “Amethi will see a representative who will visit every village. I think we need to start from scratch be it health, education, the building of roads, clean water or irrigation for that matter. We have many things which have been a challenge for the people.” The BJP leader who was the Textile Minister in the 16th Lok Sabha, remained reticent on the question of if she will be given a ministerial berth this time around. This is the third time that a non-Congress party has toppled the grand old party in its stronghold. The first was in the 1977 post-emergency election, which saw a Janata Party victory and the second time was in the 1998 election, which was won by the BJP.
Editors’ Recommendations Canon PowerShot G5 Mark II A7R, S, II, or III? Making sense of Sony’s full-frame mirrorless cameras The best digital cameras for 2019 Shoot like a Rebel (or a pro) with the best Canon cameras for 2019 Canon EOS RP vs. Sony A7 III: Can Canon’s cheap shooter keep up with the best? Nikon Z 6, Canon EOS R, or Sony A7 III? Basic full-frame mirrorless models compared Canon PowerShot G5 Mark II 1 of 4 Canon PowerShot G7 Mark III Previous Next Canon PowerShot G5 Mark II 1 of 3 Canon PowerShot G5 Mark II Previous Canon PowerShot G7 Mark III While both will deliver similar image quality thanks to identical sensors and processors, the two compacts have a few differences. The Canon PowerShot G5 X Mark II is the more compact of the two, yet the camera manages to pull off a new 5x optical zoom with the built-in lens. Unlike the predecessor, the G5 X mark II has a new pop-up electronic viewfinder to offer the convenience of an EVF while keeping the compact body style. The screen sports touch and drag autofocus, while a new panoramic mode is also included.The G7 X III has a few more updated features geared toward vlogging and video, thanks to the livestreaming capabilities and vertical video options. The lens on the G7 X III offers a 4.2x zoom. The body also houses a mic jack for video, along with an updated user interface.While the stacked sensor and pop-up viewfinder channels competing compacts like the RX100 series from Sony, the Canon options will sit at a more competitive price. Expected in August, the G5 X Mark II lists at about $900 and the G7 X Mark III at about $750. Canon is reimagining the lineup of advanced compact cameras by integrating more speed into the small cameras using a stacked sensor design. On Monday, July 8, Canon announced the PowerShot G5 X Mark II and PowerShot G7 X Mark III, both boasting updated 20.1-megapixel sensors with 20 fps stills and uncropped 4K video.The cameras new capabilities lie largely in the design of the sensor. The 1-inch sensors use a stacked design, an approach that Sony already integrated into several mirrorless and compact cameras. By separating the sensor into layers for gathering light and processing data, the camera can handle larger amounts of data faster, resulting in the 20 fps maximum burst speed found on both cameras. (Canon hasn’t yet released full specifications with details such as the maximum burst speed with continuous autofocus). That sensor is paired with the Digic 8 processor.The camera is also capable of handling 30 fps 4K without cropping from the 1-inch sensor, including HDR modes and HD slow motion up to 120 fps. The G7 X III can even livestream to YouTube using a Wi-Fi connection, and for pre-recorded videos, can tackle the increasingly popular vertical video designed for smartphone viewing.The 20-megapixel sensors also have the highest ISO speed yet for Canon’s compact PowerShot series, at up to 12,800. Predecessors like the G5 X topped out at ISO 6400. Canon PowerShot G7 Mark III Next
Get ready, emoji lovers: new emoji are coming to iOS, macOS, and watchOS later this year. Apple has taken time today to preview some of the new ones we can look forward to. Though only a handful of emoji are being previewed here, there seems to be a lot of diversity among them. These new emoji seem to separated into four distinct groups: people, faces, food and a miscellaneous bunch that offers both mythical creatures and real-world animals. The new people emoji we’ll be receiving include the creatively named “Bearded Person,” “Woman with Headscarf,” and “Breastfeeding.” I’m guessing that someone, somewhere will stir up controversy over emoji that reflect breastfeeding in public and headscarves in a positive light, because that’s somehow the world we live in now.In any case, the incoming face emoji seem to be quite descriptive. If your friend just blew your mind with some useless piece of trivia, you can respond with the head explosion emoji. On the other hand, if you managed to snap a picture with an unfortunate celebrity while they were trying to enjoy their dinner, you can send that picture along to your friends with the new starstruck emoji.Finally, we come to the animals and the mythical creatures that are being added in this new round of emoji. There’s a new zombie emoji to look forward to, along with a female elf who looks like she hails from Middle-Earth. We’ve also got Zebra and Tyrannosaurus Rex emoji on the way, though it’s worth pointing out that the Tyrannosaurus should be standing with its tail and back parallel to the ground, not upright like it’s depicted. Paleontologists have known this for nearly 50 years, so get with the times, Apple!Toss in a Genie, Sandwich, and Coconut for good measure, and we’ve got a pretty solid bunch of emoji on the way. Though Apple doesn’t tell us specifically how many new emoji we can expect, this is probably just a portion of the new emoji that will arrive later this year. We’ll have more details when Apple shares them, so stay tuned.
Xchime bills itself as the first video doorbell without lag. How it will manage to accomplish that is its secret, proprietary sauce and we’ll have to take their word for it, at least for now. The promise does strike at the heart of the problems with most video doorbells: latency between when something happens and when u need to take action.Even just a few seconds of lag makes that doorbell little more than evidence after the fact, which doesn’t always help at times when culprits are nowhere to be found. Those precious few seconds are also critical when responding to deliveries, knowing when family members are back at home, or even just locking the garage door.The Xchime video doorbell does have some features that kick into action when you can’t. For example, it can turn on smart lights automatically when it detects light night movement when there should be none. It can also close your garage door at a tap of a smartphone screen. The catch is that the Xchime itself doesn’t come with those addons, which have to be purchased, or in this case pledged, separately. The Xchime is still in Indiegogo with less than 6 days left. The promise of a lag-free video doorbell seems to have resounded with many smart home owners and fans, enough to fund it four times over. The Xchime has an Indiegogo special price of $149 for the kit alone, with the Smart Lightbulb and Garage Door Opener costing $19 and $15, respectively.VIA: Indiegogo A smart home isn’t really very smart if it can’t protect itself or its masters. There have been a variety of smart locks in the market already, some simple and other quite sophisticated. Xchime is a new contender that has no qualms about adding yet another choice in the market. It is confident that it has something to offer that has never been offered before. That is, a video doorbell whose usefulness isn’t at the mercy of Internet lag.
SOURCE: @Roland Quandt, WinFuture The Xperia XZ1 Compact might actually be able to compete with something like a Galaxy S8 or better yet an LG G6, provided you can accept two compromises. One is that you will have very thick bezels above and below. The other is that you’re stuck with a 1920×1080 resolution.In almost all other aspects, like the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 or 4 GB of RAM, the Xperia XZ1 Compact might almost be on par with the bigger players. It’s smaller 4.6-inch screen might actually be a plus, depending on which way you swing. Not everyone wants a phone they need to use with both hands, bezel or no bezel.It’s alleged 499 GBP price tag, however, might still be a bit difficult to swallow. That’s roughly $645, almost the price of an LG G6 and only a bit lower than a Galaxy S8. But what Sony should be more concerned about is the OnePlus 5, which is easily almost $200 cheaper but with even more muscle to show. That is, if size really isn’t a big deal.Sony, however, seems to live on an island, without a care to what its competitors are doing. Those interested in this mini champ will have a variety of colors to choose from, including the usual Black, Silver, and Blue. There is also a Pink color that seems to lean on the red side more than the Xperia XZ1’s own version of pink. Has Sony finally seen the light in terms of pricing its smartphones? One can only hope so. It might still be asking a lot more than its competitors, but, given the Galaxy Note 8’s shocking price tag, Sony’s excess might seem almost modest. Last we heard, the Xperia XZ1, its next flagship, will cost a pretty 599 GBP, roughly $770, which is on par for a premium phone. From that same source, Xperia XZ1 Compact will supposedly also get a price tag worthy of a mini flagship, except there’s an even cheaper but fuller flagship to give it a run for its money.
Following public news of the security issue, LastPass has issued a statement explaining that its engineers have fixed the aforementioned vulnerability — LastPass users on Android who utilize the Authenticator app should be sure to update right away. According to the company, users who enable the fingerprint/PIN extra security feature will need to provide one of those to view the one-time authenticating code.The company goes on to explain that LastPass’s vulnerability wouldn’t have been easy to exploit since the hacker would need access to the device itself, as well as the user’s password and username. Still, the potential was there for a hacker to get access and now, assuming you’ve updated the Authenticator App, it isn’t.In addition to pushing out a fix, LastPass says it has “identified and resolved the procedural issue” that resulted in this issue not being quickly escalated and fixed. This should result in any future problems being dealt with more rapidly, according to the company.Finally, the company is encouraging its customers and users to practice what it calls “good cyber hygiene,” including staying on alert for phishing attacks, enabling 2FA (and anything else you use that offers it), plus never using or speaking of your LastPass master password, which would leave your data vulnerable. As well, the company says, always update your software when an update is available and use anti-virus software on your computer.SOURCE: Lastpass Blog Password manager LastPass offers an authenticator app simply called LastPass Authenticator, which was recently revealed to have poor security on Android. The authentication app is designed to add an element of security by offering an alternative to the traditional 2FA SMS method of authorizing access. Turns out, though, that Android users may be more vulnerable by using LastPass Authenticator, as it gives hackers a (convoluted) way to nab the codes.
There’s no lack on smart home products that double as Alexa devices these days, but ecobee is taking a rather unique approach to AI integration today. The company has announced the ecobee Switch+, a new light switch with a built-in speaker and Alexa Voice Service. The Switch+ was announced this morning at South by Southwest and ecobee is gearing up for launch in just a couple of weeks. Of course, the idea here is to put Alexa in every room, something that ecobee’s line of thermostats can’t really accomplish. Outfitted with far-field microphones, the Switch+ should be able to pick up your voice commands even when you’re on the other side of the room. The Switch+ also comes with motion and daylight sensors that can be used to control your lights from room-to-room, though you can also do that by using ecobee’s app.Additional functionality is unlocked when you pair the Switch+ with one of ecobee’s thermostats, as it can then act as a room sensor. The Switch+ will track temperature throughout your house, allowing your thermostat to adjust based on that information. In addition to Alexa integration, the Switch+ will also be compatible with Apple HomeKit, Google Assistant, SmartThings, and IFTTT.That’s about it as far as functionality is concerned, but then again, the Switch+ isn’t really intended to be the center of your IoT set up, merely an extension to it. It’s certainly interesting to see ecobee outfit a light switch with Alexa, as it gives you the potential for Alexa in every room of your house without having to stock up on Echo speakers.AdChoices广告Putting a Switch+ in each room could very well end up costing a decent chunk of change, though. The Switch+ will set you back $99 here in the US, with a price tag of $119 set for Canadian customers. It’s up for pre-order over on ecobee’s site today, with a launch to follow later this month on March 26. Story TimelineAlexa tipped to come to smart thermostat ecobee4ecobee4 thermostat launches with Alexa support built-inEcobee adds Google Assistant to its long list of smart helpers
Story TimelineUber no longer allows restaurants to use UberRush for food deliveryUber sells Grab its Southeast Asia operationsNVIDIA halts autonomous car testing after fatal Uber crashUber won’t renew its California self-driving test permitUber pens settlement deal over self-driving accident death These days, Uber is most recognized for its ride-sharing service and self-driving car ambitions. But the company continues to operate several other services, such as the delivery-focused UberEats. On the chopping block, however, is UberRush, the company’s on-demand, same-day package delivery service that was available in the New York City area, San Francisco, and Chicago. The service launched in New York City in 2014, expanding to San Francisco and Chicago in 2015, and used both drivers and bike messengers to deliver items for merchants within an hour or two. Users could place orders for items up to 30 pounds, excluding alcohol or anything illegal, but it was mostly used for food deliveries, creating significant overlap with the UberEats service.Just over a year ago, Uber addressed this by making restaurants switch to using UberEats for food orders, noting at the time that UberRush was being scaled back and streamlined. Looking back, it’s easy to see that this was the first step towards UberRush getting shuttered. Users were notified by email that UberRush will end operations by June 30th. The service never expanded beyond its three initial locations, whereas UberEats is available throughout North America, as well as in a number of other countries.SOURCE Wall Street Journal
Back in 2015, Apple announced plans to build a new data center in Athenry, Ireland. The small town was an attractive destination for Apple because of West Ireland’s green energy resources, and the company planned to invest as much as $1 billion in its construction. It’s been a while since we last heard about this data center, but more news about the project is surfacing today and it isn’t good. According to Reuters, Apple has decided to can the project altogether. Development on the data center has been delayed by a number of planning appeals, with Ireland’s High Court finally awarding Apple the right to proceed with its plans back in October. When you consider that Apple has intended to build the data center since 2015, those appeals resulted in a long delay that forced the company to consider other options.“Despite our best efforts, delays in the approval process have forced us to make other plans and we will not be able to move forward with the data centre,” Apple said in a statement to Reuters. It seems that Apple will look to build its new data center elsewhere, but the company’s next international move is unclear at this point.Still, Apple is looking at other projects in Ireland. It says it plans to expand its European headquarters, which is located in County Cork, so it isn’t as if Apple is leaving Ireland altogether. It sounds like Ireland’s government is looking into making its planning approval process more streamlined in the future, so that other companies looking to build infrastructure in the country don’t face as many roadblocks as Apple did.AdChoices广告We’ll see if Apple decides to put up another data center elsewhere in Europe in the coming months and years. It already has one in the works in Denmark, which would have been the second data center in Europe after this one in Ireland. Maybe Apple will even decide to construct one in Ireland after these planning laws have had some changes? Time will tell, but for now, the project’s future is essentially non-existent. Story TimelineApple CEO Tim Cook talks business in Ireland, tours facilitiesIreland gave Apple $14.5 billion in illegal tax breaks says European CommissionApple responds to Ireland tax allegations (plus a few Brexit facts)
Story TimelineHere’s how Volkswagen plans to redeem itselfVW dieselgate worsens as EPA adds Porsche and Audi 3.0LVW, Porsche, Audi dieselgate vehicle owners: what you should doNo quick VW dieselgate answer; 40 said under investigationVW accused of killing car to cover emissions crisisVW set to borrow $21bn to pay for dieselgateThe FTC is suing Volkswagen over its diesel ads Volkswagen will offer to buy back every diesel car in the US that cheated emissions standards, a vast and expensive undertaking covering nearly half a million vehicles. The decision is part of a settlement in principle with the US Department of Justice (DoJ), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and California Air Resources Board (CARB), announced today, as part of the German automaker’s grand “Dieselgate” mea-culpa for fitting several of its models with cunning bypass devices that helped fake the results during government testing. The so-called “defeat device” was intended to kick in when the car’s systems observed likely testing behaviors, and change the performance settings dramatically to reduce the output of gases like nitrogen oxide (NOx). It worked, too, and to dramatic effect. Testing carried out by independent researchers discovered that the cars actually output as much as 35 times the US emissions limits, when the software wasn’t running to rein in the pollutants. The cheat brought the combined wrath of the US government and various independent lawsuits down on Volkswagen AG, the parent of Volkswagen of America, and today there’s another step closer to reparations. Previously, VW had attempted to placate owners of cars with the 2.0-liter “Clean Diesel” TDI engines with a “Goodwill” program of gift cards and dealership discounts, but that gesture wasn’t enough to satisfy regulators. AdChoices广告Instead, U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer confirmed today in the San Francisco District Court, VW will offer to buy back every implicated 2.0 liter car from owners in the country. Those who want to keep their vehicles will be offered a fix instead, and there’s the promise of “substantial compensation” involved too.Exactly what that compensation will be, how much VW will offer for each car, and what the fix will be remains to be seen, with Justice Breyer yet to reveal those details. Some reports pegged a $5,000 payout to each owner as part of the deal, though the judge criticized those responsible for the leaks. If true, it could total an extra $1bn in expenses for Volkswagen. The automaker will also fund efforts that “promote” environmentally-friendly driving and transportation, though again, no details have been shared as to what that will actually involve. Tesla CEO Elon Musk was among a number of activists and clean-energy CEOs that petitioned the CARB in December last year to make Volkswagen’s punishment one that would invest in green initiatives rather than something strictly punitive. One significant concern among owners of dieselgate vehicles is that the driving dynamics of their cars will change significantly – and detrimentally – with fixes applied. That’s because such retroactive repairs will likely limit power and other factors in an attempt to curtail emissions. “Volkswagen is committed to earning back the trust of its customers, dealers, regulators and the American public,” the company said after the hearing had concluded, suggesting that “these agreements in principle are an important step on the road to making things right.” “Volkswagen intends to compensate its customers fully and to remediate any impact on the environment from excess diesel emissions,” the automaker continued. “As noted today in court, customers in the United States do not need to take any action at this time.”Still, that’s not to say the ongoing legal saga is anywhere near over. “The arrangements in the making in the United States will have no legal bearing on proceedings outside of the United States,” Volkswagen AG pointed out today.That means owners of VW and Audi diesels affected by the TDI issue who aren’t based in the US are still yet to hear exactly what will happen to their cars. With an estimated eleven million vehicles using the defeat device, that’s a lot of people still waiting to hear what Volkswagen plans to do. Similarly, “ongoing investigations by the Department of Justice, Criminal Division, and the State Attorneys General are not prejudiced by these agreements in principle,” Volkswagen AG has clarified. The FTC said in March that it would sue Volkswagen for “misleading” advertising in the US. Owners of 3.0 liter TDI cars are also awaiting news of what will happen with their vehicles, since they’re not covered by today’s announcement. Volkswagen submitted a draft proposal covering that engine – which has appeared in select VW, Audi, and Porsche cars – back in February.There’s fallout in the broader auto industry, too, with the EPA having confirmed earlier that it will now be putting diesel cars through more stringent testing. Previously, the organization accepted manufacturer testing and conducted spot-tests to ensure that results were being fairly reported. Earlier estimates suggested Volkswagen AG was preparing a $21bn fund to cover its dieselgate expenses, though there’s no way to know at this stage whether that’s anywhere close to covering the actual costs – nor, whether this newest settlement proposal will be enough to turn around goodwill with customers.