Earlier this month, a Brazilian judge passed an order to suspend WhatsApp across the country after the instant messaging service allegedly failed to cooperate in an ongoing investigation into “sexually graphic photos of children” that were circulated using the app. The Facebook-owned company appealed the decision, and now it is being reported that the suspension order has been halted.
“The suspension measure of WhatsApp services does not meet the requirement of proportionality,” the court said, while also maintaining that the company was legally obliged to help police with their enquiries. Read more »
Facebook, which already offers 58 gender identity options, has now given users control over the words describing their gender. “Now, if you do not identify with the pre-populated list of gender identities, you are able to add your own,” the world’s largest social network said.
If you choose a custom gender, you can also choose the pronoun you prefer: he/his, she/her or they/their. As before, you can also control the audience with whom you would like to share your custom gender. Read more »
When WhatsApp launched a desktop version of its messaging service last month, it worked only with Google Chrome. But that’s not the case anymore, as the company has announced that the client is now also compatible with Firefox and Opera.
The sign up process remains the same, which means Firefox and Opera users will also have to scan a QR code from within WhatsApp on their handset, something which can be done through a new Menu option, labeled WhatsApp Web. Read more »
Apple has added nine new cities to the list of locations that are covered under the 3D Flyover feature offered by its iOS and OS X Maps applications. The new cities include Baton Rouge, LA; Boise, ID; Edinburgh, Scotland; Cáceres, Spain; Guadalajara, Mexico; Ponce, Puerto Rico; Venice, Italy; Linz, Austria; and Rennes, France.
If you aren’t already aware, the Flyover feature, which first debuted in iOS 6 and OS X Yosemite, lets you take a high-resolution 3-dimensional tour of locations, allowing you to zoom in on important buildings, landmarks, and other areas of interest. Read more »
Chinese smartphone manufacturer Huawei has unveiled what it is calling the world’s first LTE-M wearable. Dubbed 4.5G Smartband, the wearable, as the name suggests, will support the company’s 4.5G network, which is said to deliver up to 1Gbps bandwidth and set for a commercial rollout next year.
You would be able to use the wearable to track your fitness levels and heart rate, as well as pair it with other IoT devices, for example, thermostats and energy readers. The device will include an LTE-M chip made by Neul, which Huawei acquired back in September last year. Read more »
Google has announced that it is banning sexually explicit content on Blogger. According to the blogging platform’s updated adult content policy, starting March 23, the company won’t allow Blogger users to publicly share images and video that are sexually explicit or show graphic nudity. Previously, such content was allowed if the blog was marked as “adult.”
Google won’t actually delete any blogs featuring such content, they’d instead be made private after that date – private content can only be seen by the owner or admins of the blog and those who the owner has shared the blog with. “For any blogs created after March 23, 2015, we may remove the blog or take other action if it includes content that is sexually explicit or shows graphic nudity as explained in our content policy,” the search giant said. Read more »
Last month, when Twitter rolled out its While you were away feature on iOS, it said that the functionality will arrive on Android (as well as the Web) soon. Now, the company has made good on that promise by making the feature available for users of Google’s mobile operating system.
For those who are not in the know, the way it works is: if you haven’t checked in on Twitter for a while, the feature gives you a recap of some of the top Tweets (determined by engagement and other factors) that you might have missed from the accounts you follow. Read more »
Microsoft’s Windows operating system, which is often criticized for its security issues, is no longer the number one as far as security vulnerabilities are concerned. According to latest data from the National Vulnerability Database (NVD), the OS is less vulnerable than Apple’s OS X, iOS, as well as Linux.
A quick look at the top operating systems by vulnerabilities reported in 2014 (see image above) reveals that Apple Mac OS X is the most vulnerable operating system, followed by Apple iOS (#2), and Linux (#3). Microsoft’s Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 are at position 7 and 8, respectively. Read more »
Sesame Enable has developed a smartphone that’s completely touch free, allowing users with disabilities to use and control the device simply by moving their head. Dubbed Sesame Phone, the Android handset is basically a modified Nexus 5 that features proprietary head-tracking technology.
The idea originated when Giora Livne, who himself is disabled, saw a computer game that could be controlled with head movement. He along with Oded Ben Dov, the game’s developer, then founded Sesame Enable to bring the idea to life. They had also started an Indiegogo campaign to help raise funds for the project, and they reached their goal last month. Read more »
Just days after Lenovo admitted that the Superfish software, which comes pre-installed on some of its consumer laptops, could leave systems vulnerable to a man-in-the-middle (MITM) attack, it has been slapped with a class-action lawsuit.
Filed by Jessica Bennett, whose laptop was damaged due to what she termed a “spyware”, the lawsuit charges both Lenovo and Superfish with fraudulent business practices, breaching users’ privacy, and tracking their Internet browsing habits. Read more »
Nearly a week after there were reports that Apple is secretly working on an electric vehicle, Bloomberg is reporting that the Cupertino-based company is planning to begin production of the vehicle by the year 2020. That’s an aggressive timeframe given that experienced automobile companies typically spend 5-7 years developing a car.
As per the report, Apple’s car team consists of 200+ people, which is inline with an earlier report that said hundreds of employees are working on the project. In the past couple of months, the iPhone maker has been hiring experts in technologies for batteries and robotics – recently, electric-car battery maker A123 Systems sued Apple for poaching its top engineers. Read more »
Dropbox has updated its official Windows Phone app to version 1.1. The update brings along the ability to create and manage Shared Folders within the app, as well as some bug fixes.
The update is relatively minor, although the ability to manage Shared Folders, which are ideal for groups of people who would like to collaborate on the same files together, is definitely useful. Read more »
According to a USA Today report, YouTube is launching a new app for kids. Appropriately dubbed YouTube Kids, the free app will initially be available for Android devices only, and will be released on February 23.
As one would expect, the app contains kids-friendly interface with big, bulbous icons and minimal scrolling. Its home screen features eight large tiles, each focusing on a popular kid-friendly video series, as well as five icons at the top that’ll take kids to TV shows, music, educational programming, and top-ranking videos. Read more »
Uber has announced that it’s launching an on-demand food-delivery service in the Spanish city of Barcelona. Dubbed UberEATS, the service will get you the best meals from the best local restaurants in under 10 minutes, the company claims.
The announcement marks the first time that the San Francisco-based company has launched a meal delivery service outside of its home country – the service is already available in Los Angeles, but under the name UberFRESH. Read more »
Last week, after it was discovered that Samsung’s smart TVs are potentially listening to everything that users say and sharing the collected information, a company spokesperson said, “In all of our Smart TVs we employ industry-standard security safeguards and practices, including data encryption, to secure consumers’ personal information and prevent unauthorized collection or use.” However, apparently that’s not correct, as it has now been discovered that the voice data these TVs send over the internet is not encrypted.
Update: Samsung is aware of the issue and is working on a fix. The company says that new models include encryption, while older devices will get it as an update. Read more »