FCC Shake-up Could Kill Net Neutrality

Federal Communications Commission chairman Tom Wheeler has confirmed he’ll leave the commission on January 20. It guarantees a Republican-leaning majority on the commission and could spell doom for net neutrality rules. The political make-up of the FCC’s board of commissioners has been a significant issue during Wheeler’s time in office, with many votes being a […]

Government Wants Mandatory Safety Tech In New Cars

A government agency wants all new cars made from 2021 to be able to talk to one another. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration plan is designed to improve road safety. After two years of consultation, the agency has now issued a notice of proposed rulemaking, the last step before introducing a new rule. The […]

Skype To Translate Phone Calls

Skype can now let you talk to people who speak another language, even if you call them on their telephone. Its automated voice translation will, from an upcoming edition of Windows 10, work even if one party isn’t using the Skype software. The voice translation works on nine languages: Arabic, Brazilian Portuguese, English, French, German, […]

Bluetooth Gets Faster, Goes Further

The next generation of Bluetooth has been confirmed. Boosts to speed, range and capacity could mean improvements to both smartwatches and home gadgets. The Bluetooth Special Interest Group, an industry body, has now officially adopted the Bluetooth 5 specification. The first devices to use the technology are expected early next year. It’s the first completely […]

Apple Sparks Conversation After Revealing Its Interest in Self-Driving Cars

apple self-driving car

Apple is usually a name that we associate with sleek phones, trendy computers, and poor design choices (rest in peace, headphone jack…) but most of us don’t associate it with cars. That might change in the near future, and Tesla might find some serious competition as Apple die-hards set their sights on an Apple-brand autonomous […]

Amazon Ships Data By The Truckload With New Snowmobile Service

Amazon now lets you quite literally “upload” a truckload of data to its servers. Its new service Snowmobile transfers your data via the physical highways rather than the Internet. The service is aimed at companies with spectacularly huge amounts of data to upload, to the point that even a fiber connection isn’t practical. Amazon already […]

Amazon Ditches Cashiers & Checkouts In Automated Grocery Store

Amazon plans to build physical grocery stores with no cashiers and no checkouts. Customers at the  Amazon Go store will simply load up their bags and walk out the door. The first store, in Seattle, is already being used by Amazon staff as an experiment, with a public opening planned for early next year. Customers […]

Internet Archive Gets Canadian Back-Up Thanks To Political Fears

The Internet Archive is to build a back-up copy in Canada. The site’s staff said it was a response to fears of greater online restrictions in the US following the election result. While the announcement did not specifically name president-elect Donald Trump, it said: On November 9th in America, we woke up to a new administration […]

Google Translate Solves Own Problem

Google’s translate tool has created its own solution to greatly expand its automated capabilities. It can now translate between two languages even without a specific “dictionary” to do so. The company recently switched Google Translate away from its “traditional” method of consulting a known list of phrases and their equivalent in different languages. Instead it’s […]

Safety Chiefs Propose New Smartphone ‘Driver Mode’

The US government wants smartphone manufacturers to adopt a common ‘driver mode’ that would stop the most distractive apps from running. The voluntary guidelines would be a one-stop mode along the lines of the common airplane mode on phones. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is making the proposals for handsets as a follow-up to […]

Virtual Reality Film Aims To Deter Drunk Drivers [360° Video]

An alcoholic drinks company has produced a virtual reality video that lets users experience a car crash from a 360 degree perspective. It’s designed to highlight the dangers of drunk driving. The video from Diageo is compatible with most of the major VR headsets on the market. It also works on the Facebook and YouTube […]

Tesla’s Cheap Solar Roof Plans: Tiles, Not Panels

Elon Musk claims Tesla can make solar-panel roofs cheaper than an ordinary shingle roof, even before taking into effect the energy costs. But there’s a big catch to his claim. The company recently unveiled a design for glass solar tiles that are transparent when viewed directly, but have a special coating that, when seen from […]