Apple Pay gets more US, Canadian & French card issuers, new app- & Web-based promotions

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Apple on Thursday updated its roster of banks and credit unions with Apple Pay, adding more entries for Canada, France, and the U.S.
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Hangouts Meet can now call US and Canadian phone numbers for free

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Hangouts Meet is Google’s voice/video conferencing software for business use, and it comes as part of G Suite. There’s even purpose-built hardware for it that was updated last month. Like similar services, it allows you to create and share a code that can then be used by employees to connect to meetings. The dial-in feature is great for staff on the move, and now that’s being extended further.

Before it was only possible for team members to dial into a meeting from their phone number, but now it’s also possible to dial out from Hangouts Meet to any US or Canadian number.

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Hangouts Meet can now call US and Canadian phone numbers for free was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Canadian startups are attracting more international workers thanks to Trump’s immigration policies

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U.S. workers are flocking to Canada for other reasons.

More than half of Canadian startups have seen a rise in international tech applicants — most of whom are from the U.S.— since the beginning of 2017, according to a new survey. Some companies even saw international applications quadruple.

Toronto-based tech innovation hub MaRS conducted the survey among 55 high-growth Canadian startups with U.S. exposure and an annual revenue of more than $ 1 million. About 82 percent of companies that saw an increase in international interest had applicants from the U.S., followed by India and China.

These companies cited visa and immigration policies, which have become stricter (PDF) and less certain under Trump, as the main reason for growth in international hires. That means engineers from India and China are flocking to Canada in higher numbers than before. U.S. workers are applying as well but for different reasons, including political uncertainty in the U.S. Canada has also made it easier to work there by enacting a program, Global Skills Strategy visa, that expedites international visas.

Engineers were the most common job for which Canadian startups hired international applicants.

Tech job platform Hired found last year that U.S. tech companies are asking to interview fewer international candidates. It looks as though domestic candidates could soon become scarcer as well.

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Apple Testifies on iPhone Throttling Before Canadian Parliamentary Committee

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Apple’s Canada division and Geekbench maker John Poole today testified before a House of Commons committee on industry, science, and technology in Canada to address the power management features Apple introduced in older iPhones in iOS 10.2.1, reports iMore.

Poole was on hand because back in late December, he used his Geekbench platform to confirm the link between degraded iPhone batteries in older iPhones and processor slowdowns, which Apple had not, at the time, clearly explained.

Apple Canada was there to answer questions and share facts about why Apple implemented the feature in the first place, a topic that’s been previously covered in support documents and a letter to customers.

As part of Apple’s testimony, Jacqueline Famulak, Apple Canada’s Manager of Legal and Government Affairs, provided a lengthy statement that largely repeats prior statements Apple has offered in the United States.

Famulak reiterated that Apple would “never intentionally” shorten the life of an Apple product to drive customer upgrades, and she explained that Apple added power management features in iOS 10.2.1 to allow customers to continue to use iPhones with aging batteries. A portion of the statement shared by iMore:

First, Apple would never intentionally do anything to shorten the life of any Apple product or degrade the user experience in order to drive customer upgrades. Apple’s entire philosophy and ethic is built around the goal of delivering cutting-edge devices that our customers love. Our motivation is always the user.

Second, Apple’s actions related to performance of iPhones with older batteries were designed specifically to prevent some older models from unexpectedly shutting down under certain circumstances. And we communicated this publicly. Let me explain.

In order for a phone to function properly, the electronics must be able to draw power from the battery instantaneously. But, as lithium-ion batteries age, their ability to hold a charge diminishes, and their ability to provide power to the device decreases. Very cold temperatures can also negatively affect a battery’s performance. A battery with a low state of charge may also cause the device to behave differently. These things are characteristics of battery chemistry that are common to lithium-ion batteries used in all smartphones, not just Apple’s.

If power demands cannot be met, the iPhone is designed to shut down automatically in order to protect the device’s electronics from low voltage.

We do not want our customers to experience interruptions in the use of their iPhones, whether that is making an emergency phone call, taking a picture, sharing a post, or watching the final minutes of a movie. To address the issue of unexpected shutdowns, we developed software that dynamically manages power usage when, and only when, an iPhone is facing the risk of an unexpected shutdown. This power management software helps keep iPhones on when they otherwise might turn off – it does this by balancing the demand for power with the available supply of power.

The sole purpose of the software update in this case was to help customers to continue to use older iPhones with aging batteries without shutdowns – not to drive them to buy newer devices.

Third, Apple regularly provides software updates for iPhone and our other devices. These software updates can include everything from new features, to bug fixes, to security updates. Whenever we issue a software update, we include a ReadMe note which has a description of the contents of the update for the customer to review prior to the software installation. In the case of iOS 10.2.1, we stated that it “improves power management during peak workloads to avoid unexpected shutdowns on iPhone.”

Famulak went on to explain that Apple is offering $35 battery replacements in Canada, down from $99 ($29 in the U.S., down from $79) and that iOS 11.3, coming this spring, will offer customers more information about the health of their iPhone’s battery and allow the power management features to be turned off.

The House of Commons is aiming to make sure Canadian consumers are being treated fairly by Apple, and it’s possible that the Competition Bureau in Canada, also at today’s committee meeting, will launch an investigation. Apple will also be facing government inquiries in other countries, including the United States.

The full text of the statement Apple provided to the House of Commons committee can be read over at iMore.

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Apple Testifies Before Canadian Parliamentary Committee to Explain iPhone Battery Controversy

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Apple was forced to testify in front of the Canadian parliamentary committee earlier today about its role in the iPhone battery controversy. Continue reading
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Apple explains iPhone battery throttling to Canadian parliament, says not planned obsolescence

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Apple appeared in front of the House of Commons of Canada on Thursday to explain its handling of iPhone battery issues through a software update that in some cases throttles CPU performance, maintaining the feature is designed to benefit customers, not push them to upgrade to new hardware.
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Adveez and Eleven-X partner on cargo tracking for Canadian airport

Adveez and Eleven-X partner on cargo tracking for Canadian airports

Eleven-X and Adveez partner on IoT-based asset tracking solution for air cargo handling equipment.

A major Canadian airport is apparently set to pilot IoT technology to track cargo, using technology from homegrown low-power network operator Eleven-X, based in Waterloo, Ontario, and French asset tracking hardware vendor Adveez.

The LoRaWAN-based solution will enable GPS tracking of cargo handling assets, providing rapid and easy location of in-motion equipment used to transport cargo and enabling faster loading and unloading times, the companies claim.

While the Canadian airport has not been named, Adveez claims its technology has been deployed at airports across the world, “enabling enhanced location management of in-motion assets.” That said, the technology also lends itself to other kinds of deployments, from construction sites to smart city asset management programmes.

Read more: Cargotec picks Cloudera to give data-driven services a lift

Boom time for air cargo

Air cargo is experiencing high growth right now. In the nine months to September 2017, world air freight traffic (measured in freight tonne kilometres) increased by 10.1 percent year on year, according to data from IATA [the International Air Transport Association]. The increase for the month of September, meanwhile, was 9.2 percent year on year, and it seems probable that full-year growth for 2017 will exceed IATA’s forecast of 7.5 percent.

Karim Ben Dhia, CEO at Adveez, claimed that deployment of its asset tracking solution on the Eleven-x network “will enable airlines to achieve faster turnaround times resulting in reduced delays, providing cost savings related to many aspects of cargo management.”

The company’s goal now, he added, is to provide the best asset tracking solution for airports and other major industry sectors across Canada.

Eleven-X, meanwhile, claims to operate Canada’s “first and only” coast-to-coast public low-power network and has provided the network infrastructure and coverage for Adveez’s LoRaWAN IoT Asset Tracking Module rollout in Canada.

Other airlines and airports are trying other approaches. Earlier this month, Air New Zealand Cargo announced it was also rolling out tracking technology to keep a check on cargo shipments and equipment worldwide. In partnership with Core Transport Technology, another New Zealand-based company, Air New Zealand is currently installing more than 5,500 Bluetooth tags on its containers, pallets and unit load devices, as well as on more than 100 readers at 29 airports worldwide at which it provides cargo services.

Read more: Transport companies lack skills to get the most out of IoT data

The post Adveez and Eleven-X partner on cargo tracking for Canadian airport appeared first on Internet of Business.

Internet of Business

Adam Helps is a kinder, ridiculously Canadian version of TaskRabbit

Adam Helps is an app that lets anyone living in the Toronto area hire others in their local communities to help them with odd jobs, much like TaskRabbit does (and to a lesser extent, classifieds services like Craigslist, Gumtree, and Kijiji). If you’ve burdened with some fiendishly tricky IKEA flat-packed furniture that needs assembling, or a lawn that needs mowing, you can put out the feelers into your local community and find someone available. You can even use it to find a babysitter, if you want to take the night off. But there are a few key differences between Adam…

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Bell uses IoT to boost production at Canadian winery

Bell uses IoT to boost production at Canadian winery

Canadian telecommunications giant Bell has teamed up with BeWhere Technologies and Huawei to kit out a winery with connected technology.

Bell, BeWhere and Huawei are currently implementing an automated IoT system at the Henry of Pelham vineyard in St Catherines, Ontario in a bid to transform planning and sustainability. The partners announced the news with the support of Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne.

Bell has provided the winery with a range of wireless environmental sensors, connected to its LTE-M network. These sensors monitor temperature and water levels, prevent vine disease and improve the health of plants, the firm said.

With this project, the winery will be able to lower its operating costs and make use of years of data gathering and insights.

Read more: Verizon teams with ITK to bring IoT to three California vineyards

IoT to the rescue

Kathleen Wynne, premier of Ontario, commended the project. “Ontario’s technology sector is leading the way when it comes to developing solutions that can promote sustainability, grow our economy and create opportunities for our people,” she said.

“This new IoT pilot shows the innovation that can be achieved when internationally recognised companies like Huawei partner with world-class Ontario businesses like Bell Mobility, BeWhere and Henry of Pelham and leverage the incredible talent of our province’s highly skilled workers.”

Matthew Speck, owner of Henry of Pelham Family Estate Winery, said that there are a number of challenges faced by vineyard owners, but that IoT technology can help them overcome them.

“Unexpected adverse weather conditions can impact quality, yield and mortality of our crops. Bell’s solution will increase the density of our environmental monitoring,” he said.

“We’ll be able to automatically act on temperature inversions by turning on fans when temperatures change, ensuring the health of our grapes and an optimal product for our customers.

“The solution is not only economical and scalable, it gives growers a good view of the vines’ temperature needs to improve quality and drive sustainability.”

Read more: Winemaker uses drones and IoT to boost crop production

Big possibilities

Claire Gillies, vice president of Bell Mobility, said: “Bell’s leadership in LTE-M wireless technology and in the IoT space is a result of our continued investment and innovation in broadband communications networks and services.

“The LTE-M network enables smart sensors to collect and send data over a wider range and with much better battery life – a perfect fit for Henry of Pelham, wineries and growers across the country and many other industries.”

Connected technology is a big focus for Bell. In June, it unveiled plans to launch an LTE-M wireless network to cater for the growing amount of devices being connected to the internet.

LTE-M can support IoT technologies such as smart city services, smart metering, home automation, weather and environmental monitoring, asset tracking, supply chain management and security monitoring. It offers low power consumption and better coverage.

Read more: Chilean winery PengWine adds IoT marketing to the blend

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Apple reportedly acquires Canadian AR headset startup Vrvana for $30M

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Amid rumors claiming Apple is working on a branded augmented reality headset, a report on Tuesday claims the tech giant has bolstered its AR hardware team with the purchase Canadian startup Vrvana.
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