July 29: 42 tabs

Bits and Bytes

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02  Airbnb: They now have a section of their website dedicated to business travelers. More importantly, they've partnered "with Concur, whose Triplink system is used by 70% of Fortune 100 companies to manage travel expensing and management."

03  Apple: They've refreshed their MacBook Pro pricing, including updating the CPUs. The most expensive SKU has dropped down to $2,500. For that you get a 2.5 GHz Intel i7, 16 GB of RAM, and 512 GB of SSD.

04  BlackBerry: "BlackBerry is buying a privately held German firm that specializes in voice and data encryption, it said on Tuesday, in a bid to burnish its credentials with highly security-conscious clients like government ‎agencies."

05  DigiTimes: Remember Windows RT? There's supposedly going to be a new 10.6 inch Surface coming out this year that runs it.

06  Facebook: The writing has been on the wall for a while, but now it's official: If you want to send a message to someone on Facebook using your phone, you need to install Facebook Messenger.

07  Flipkart: India's Amazon just raised $1 billion.

08  Google: The Information (paywall) has corroborated a rumor previously published by Android Police: There will be a new Nexus phone this year, made by Motorola, with a large (potentially 5.9 inch) screen. The Information also says the Android Silver program (flagship phones running stock Android) may have been killed since the guy who was in charge of the project, Nikesh Arora, left Google.

09  Google: They've begun shipping developers Android TV dev kits.

10  HBO: They know young people are broke and don't want to pay $100+ per month for television, which is why they're trying to get America's monopolistic operators to offer $50 packages that bundle HBO with internet and a handful of basic channels. Comcast is already trialling such a package, as is AT&T. The rumor is that Comcast's trial will go live nationwide at some undetermined point in the future.

11  Hilton: This hotel chain is going to spend $550 million to make sure that by the end of 2016, you'll be able to just walk straight to your hotel room, hit a button on your phone, and open the door. No need to visit the front desk.

12  HTC: In about three weeks, rumor has it that HTC will announce the "One (M8) for Windows". It's the One M8 that's already available, but with Android ripped out and Windows Phone slapped in.

13  Huawei: Smartphone shipments for H1 2014 are up 60% year over year, totaling 34.27 million units. "We recorded faster growth in areas such as Middle East and Africa and Latin America, with 275% and 550% year-on-year growth in the second quarter, respectively."

14  iRoko TV: This company is the "Netflix of Africa". They charge $8 per month, which I'm assuming is a lot for most people in Nigeria. Also, what's the broadband situation like? More questions than answers in this article, which is mostly about how content producers get paid.

15  Journalism: The U.S. newspaper industry lost 1,300 jobs in 2013 according to a census that's been running every year since 1978. When did newspaper jobs peak? 1989.

16  Kantar: These analysts say Xiaomi is now selling more devices than Apple in China. The exact market share figures, which represent January to May of this year: Samsung (23%), Xiaomi (21%), Apple (16%), Huawei (10%), Lenovo and Coolpad (both have 6%). Please remember that an iPhone costs $700, whereas Xiaomi phones go for less than a third of that.

17  LG: For some strange reason, they announced an 11.0 inch Intel powered Android tablet that has a slide-out keyboard. Korea only, at least for now. No price.

18  Microsoft: Reuters: "A Chinese regulator said on Tuesday it is conducting an anti-monopoly investigation into Microsoft over its Windows operating system."

19  Microsoft: The Verge says Microsoft will launch two Windows Phones very soon. One will have a 4.7 inch screen and a 5 megapixel front facing camera. The other will be an "affordable high-end phone" that features Nokia's signature PureView camera technology.

20  Microsoft: Their Siri clone, Cortana, now uses Foursquare data. Makes sense, Microsoft gave Foursquare $15 million in February.

21  Microsoft: They've announced a $300 Intel powered version of the $25 ARM powered Raspberry Pi.

22  Microsoft: Yesterday's big Windows Phone news was that FitBit finally made an app for the platform. Yikes, right? In order to keep that publicity on the front page for longer than 12 hours, Microsoft is selling a $150 bundle: Lumia 635 + FitBix Flex.

23  Mozilla: Their interim CEO is now their actual CEO.

24  NVIDIA: Want to have your mind blown? NVIDIA developed a high resolution display by stacking two low resolution displays on top of each other. Yes, it's a little more complicated than that, but this Extreme Tech article does a fantastic job at explaining how it works. Note: This will be useful for head mounted displays, not phones or tablets, at least not yet.

25  Piracy: London's Police Department is buying ads on piracy websites that tell people downloading movies is illegal. Do they know that their ads are funding said sites? And do they know that most pirates run ad blocking software?

26  Rhapsody: This Spotify clone now has two million paying customers. Note that includes Napster.

27  Sarah Palin: She now has her own (web only) "television" channel. $10 per month.

28  SEO: Gary McKinnon hacked into U.S. government computers over a decade ago to search for evidence of Unidentified Flying Objects (UFOs). He was caught. Fortunately, Britain refuses to extradite him to the U.S., because they know he'd probably be put in solitary confinement until the day he dies. So what's Gary doing now? He's an SEO Expert making $68 an hour.

29  Sony: According to three anonymous Sony "senior officials" who spoke to Reuters, the company plans to make $1 billion a year off online services in fiscal 2016. The PlayStation will be at the heart of that strategy. Note: iTunes has 800 million users. Sony's PlayStation network has 52 million users.

30  Uber: Like Airbnb, they too have announced Uber for Businesses. Also like Airbnb, they've announced a partnership with Concur, the expense management tool everyone loves to hate.

31  Yelp: When rating a restaurant using your iPhone, you can now attach a three to twelve second video. When will Android users be able to do this? Some day. And Windows Phone? Don't make me laugh.

32  Zillow: They bought their biggest competitor, Trulia, for $0 in cash and $3.5 billion in stock.

The Real World

33  Algeria: The black boxes from Air Algerie AH5017 have revealed that the pilots requested permission to turn around. That's how bad the weather was. Then, all of a sudden, she fell out of the sky.

34  China: They're still "treating" homosexuality with electroshock therapy over there.

35  Space: The Opportunity rover has set a new record for distance traveled by a vehicle on a planet other than Earth: 25.01 miles (40.25 kilometers).

36  UK: After studying 23 patients, scientists say they've located the part of the brain that makes you feel like something bad is about to happen. It's called the "habenula", and it's about the size of a pea. Coincidentally, people who are depressed have far too much activity in that region.

37  UK: Researchers say they now know why certain bird eggs have spots on them while others do not: Ultraviolet Light Protection. They specifically use the word "sunblock" when mentioning the blemishes, saying that they help protect the embryo from overheating.

38  UK: Some scientists are trying to quantify attractiveness, dominance, and approachability based on how your face looks. While I totally think their work is hogwash, scroll down and watch the video to see what they think key facial features are. Hint: Your ears and chin play a massive role.

39  UK: They're using robots in North Wales to clean hospitals because humans apparently aren't good enough. Seriously, there was a massive clostridium difficile outbreak in 2013.

40  Ukraine: "Security officials in Ukraine say the downed Malaysia Airlines jet in eastern Ukraine suffered an explosive loss of pressure after it was punctured by shrapnel from a missile. They say the information came from the plane's flight data recorders, which are being analyzed by British experts."

41  USA: "Russia has violated a key arms control treaty by testing a nuclear cruise missile, the US government says. Russia tested a ground-launched cruise missile, breaking the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty signed in 1987 during the Cold War, the U.S. said." Great. Putin's playing with nukes now.

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