Vaccine misinformation is still rife across the internet. And according to tech companies, given their struggles to address its spread, it’s a complicated web to untangle. But maybe it’s not. A joint report from the Center for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH) and Anti-Vax Watch found that up to 73 percent of vaccine misinformation on Facebook and 17 percent of vaccine misinformation on Twitter can be sourced to 12 individuals. Just twelve!
The accounts have seemingly avoided bans regardless of escalation from Facebook and Twitter. Statements on the report from both platforms point to huge figures of tweets removed or profiles blocked, but the reality is that disinformation continues to swirl, especially around these particular disinformation superspreaders. Later today, the CEOs of Twitter, Facebook and Google will testify before Congress regarding the spread of disinformation.
— Mat Smith
There are three new models.
Dyson is very aware we’ve all spent more time indoors, and a lot more time in our own homes. At the (rather revolting) microscopic level, that means we’re all shedding more skin cells and hair on our floors, carpets and rugs. Dyson’s new stick vacuum models, at various sizes and prices, claim to offer a level of clean you can demonstrably see — and some use lasers to do so.
The Dyson V15 Detect, which is the $699 showcase model for the company’s tech upgrades, includes a green laser diode that shoots a ‘blade’ of green light, which is apparently the best color for being detected by the human eye.
The green laser on the V15’s cleaner head has a 1.5-degree angle, trailing 7.2mm off the ground. This specific distance helps to create “the best contrast between dust and floor” according to the company’s spokesperson. It should also make vacuuming hardwood floors a little more thrilling, through the dumb, inexplicable appeal of laser beams.
The Metl tires are slated for release early next year.
NASA has been channeling its advanced tech into everyday products for decades. Now its tire tech has spun off into a startup called Smart, which uses the airless shape memory alloy (SMA) tire technology — originally built for lunar and Mars rovers — for an airless bicycle tire.
Composed of interconnected springs that don’t require inflation, the superelastic tires, Smart claims, are built like titanium to withstand rugged terrains without going flat. The pitch is a puncture-free ride, and if it’s good enough for Mars, surely it’s good enough for that Sunday jaunt.
A 55-inch G1 with new ‘OLED evo’ tech starts at $2,199.
While MiniLED technology is pulling 4K LCDs forward in the TV battle, LG’s OLED screens have been at the top of the quality heap for several years. Now the company has released pricing for most of its 2021 4K OLEDs, including a new A1 line that ditches features like 120Hz refresh rate and HDMI 2.1 features for a lower price.
The A1 models start at $1,299 for a 48-inch version that will ship in June, then rise to $1,599 for a 55-inch and $2,199 for a 65-inch. Most fans of the tech will be looking for the mid-tier C1 series, with prices that start at $1,499 for a 48-inch, $1,799 for a 55-inch and $2,499 for a 65-inch, which will all be available this spring.
If you’re willing to spend a bit more, sizes go up to 77-inches, and there’s also the impressive G1 series, which for 2021 features “OLED evo” panel technology that promises better brightness than we’re used to from this type of TV. Read on for all the current pricing and release windows.
Boosting supply and providing jobs will be great — if it can execute on the new strategy.
What’s so important about Intel’s fab news? Aaron Souppouris explains why the chipmaker’s new “pathway to parity” and plans to make chips for others could rebalance things in the computing industry. He also outlines why previous failed efforts provide reasons to be skeptical it will all work out as promised.
It’s the first fitness tracker to combine optical and electrical heart-rate monitoring.
MyZone’s chest-strap heart-rate monitors usually track intense fitness types during their HIIT classes or while using connected treadmills and the rest. But MyZone’s new model doesn’t have to wrap around your torso to track your workouts. The company says the MZ-Switch is the first device in the world that monitors both PPG (photoplethysmography) and ECG (electrocardiography) readings for more accurate activity monitoring with fewer “blind spots.”
Wrist-based heart-rate monitors (i.e. most wearables) can be affected when you grip an object, affecting blood flow in a way that isn’t truly connected to your effort. That said, MyZone says the wrist-based monitor should still be 95% accurate “for any non-gripping activity with repeatable movements,” which includes swimming alongside more typical activities like running and HIIT. You can still get the faster, more accurate heart-rate read-outs by strapping it to your chest. The MZ-Switch is available to buy direct from MyZone starting today, priced at $160.
But wait, there’s more…
Britain in talks with 6 firms about building gigafactories for EV batteries
Britain is in talks with six companies about building gigafactories to produce batteries for electric vehicles (EV), the Financial Times reported on Wednesday, citing people briefed on the discussions.
Car makers Ford Motor Co and Nissan Motor Co Ltd, conglomerates LG Corp and Samsung, and start-ups Britishvolt and InoBat Auto are in talks with the British government or local authorities about locations for potential factories and financial support, the report added .
(Reporting by Kanishka Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Himani Sarkar)
EBay to sell South Korean unit for about $3.6 billion to Shinsegae, Naver
EBay Korea is the country’s third-largest e-commerce firm with market share of about 12.8% in 2020, according to Euromonitor. It operates the platforms Gmarket, Auction and G9.
Shinsegae, Naver and eBay Korea declined to comment.
Lotte Shopping had also been in the running, the Korea Economic Daily and other newspapers said, citing unnamed investment banking sources.
South Korea represents the world’s fourth largest e-commerce market. Driven by the coronavirus pandemic, e-commerce has soared to account for 35.8% of the retail market in 2020 compared with 28.6% in 2019, according to Euromonitor data.
Shinsegae and Naver formed a retail and e-commerce partnership in March by taking stakes worth 250 billion won in each other’s affiliates.
($1 = 1,117.7000 won)
(Reporting by Joyce Lee; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)
Canada launches long-awaited auction of 5G spectrum
The 3,500 MHz is a spectrum companies need to provide 5G, which requires more bandwidth to expand internet capabilities.The auction, initially scheduled for June 2020, is expected to take several weeks with Canadian government selling off 1,504 licenses in 172 service areas.
Smaller operators are going into the auction complaining that recent regulatory rulings have further tilted the scales in the favour of the country’s three biggest telecoms companies – BCE, Telus and Rogers Communications Inc – which together control around 90% of the market as a share of revenue.
Canadian mobile and internet consumers, meanwhile, have complained for years that their bills are among the world’s steepest. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government has threatened to take action if the providers did not cut bills by 25%.
The last auction of the 600 MHz spectrum raised C$3.5 billion ($2.87 billion) for the government.
The companies have defended themselves, saying the prices they charge are falling.
Some 23 bidders including regional players such as Cogeco and Quebec’s Videotron are participating in the process. Shaw Communications did not apply to participate due to a $16 billion takeover bid from Rogers. Lawmakers and analysts have warned that market concentration will intensify if that acquisition proceeds.
In May, after Canada‘s telecoms regulator issued a ruling largely in favour of the big three on pricing for smaller companies’ access to broadband networks, internet service provider TekSavvy Inc withdrew from the auction, citing the decision.
Some experts say the government has been trying to level the playing field with its decision to set aside a proportion of spectrum in certain areas for smaller companies.
Gregory Taylor, a spectrum expert and associate professor at the University of Calgary, said he was pleased the government was auctioning off smaller geographic areas of coverage.
In previous auctions where the license covered whole provinces, “small providers could not participate because they could not hope to cover the range that was required in the license,” Taylor said.
Smaller geographic areas mean they have a better chance of fulfilling the requirements for the license, such as providing service to 90% of the population within five years of the issuance date.
The auction has no scheduled end date, although the federal ministry in charge of the spectrum auction has said winners would be announced within five days of bidding completion.
($1 = 1.2181 Canadian dollars)
(Reporting by Moira Warburton in Vancouver; Editing by David Gregorio)