Trump keeps bashing Amazon for its Postal Service pact — but he’s overlooking a different controversial deal that gives Chinese merchants an advantage in the U.S.

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos (r) speaks with Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and President Donald Trump.

The reason might rhyme with “Beff Jezos.”

Another day, another tweet by President Donald Trump aimed at Amazon and its delivery deal with the United States Postal Service. Amazon’s stock is down 9 percent in the week since a report from Axios about Trump’s obsession with Amazon kicked off a series of tweets by the president.

But while Trump continues to harp on this relationship — with questionable claims that we’ll get to in a bit — he continues to overlook a different delivery partnership that can put U.S. merchants at a disadvantage right here in their own country: It’s called ePacket.

The program, designed to boost cross-border trade in the age of online commerce, allows merchants in countries including China to ship small, lightweight goods to the U.S. at very low rates in partnership with the U.S. Postal Service. These sellers also get other perks like delivery tracking at no extra cost.

The program has been a boon to these Chinese businesses as well as the online shopping marketplaces where they hawk their wares, like Wish, eBay and, to a lesser extent, Amazon.

But it has rankled U.S. merchants who have found themselves sometimes paying higher rates to ship items to customers right here in their own country than Chinese merchants are paying to send goods to shoppers on the other side of the globe.

So why is Trump obsessed about one delivery partnership that he says is bad for the U.S. but not the other? One could reasonably speculate it has something to do with Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and his ownership of one of Trump’s least-favorite media outlets: The Washington Post.

So about that Amazon deal. By law, the Postal Service is not permitted to lose money on delivery deals like Amazon’s. And the regulator who oversees the USPS has determined each year that it does not.

But a separate 2017 study by Citi analysts suggested that the commission that oversees the USPS may be using an outdated method to account for costs and that fees on each Amazon delivery would need to be $ 1.41 higher in 2018 to make the USPS whole.

That one report has given Trump all he needs to pounce. What it’ll take to get him to turn his attention to the ePacket deal instead is anyone’s guess.

Update: Maybe just a tweet from his 2020 campaign manager, Brad Parscale?

Recode – All

Cash For Apps: Make money with android app

The Chinese Space Station Has Crashed in the Pacific. Why Was It So Hard to Track?

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND

If a massive space station falls out of the atmosphere into the Pacific Ocean, with no one there to witness it, does it make a sound?

That’s no hypothetical question. We’re asking about Tiangong-1, the Chinese space station that finally “de-orbited” from space and into the Pacific around 8 PM Eastern time on April 1.

Let’s be honest — “de-orbited” is a polite way of saying “free-fall.” Scientists could neither alter nor even really track Tiangong-1’s descent. That could be a problem in a future — an atmosphere more packed with spacecraft presents a (slightly) higher risk for humans on the ground.

We’ve anticipated Tiangong-1’s homecoming since 2016, when abnormalities in the space station’s orbit suggested that the Chinese space agency had lost control of it. It took a few months for authorities to admit that the craft was out of their reach. Normally, a space agency will retire a satellite by purposely guiding it into the atmosphere, at an angle and speed such that it burns up completely or re-enters Earth’s atmosphere far from human populations.

That makes Tiangong-1’s spinning, erratic descent less than ideal.

Scientists weren’t exactly sure when and where the craft would land until the moment it did so. Indeed, the space station’s case highlights the fact that scientists still don’t have the capacity to wrangle the significant number of variables that factor into tracking and modeling such situations.

Around noon Eastern time on April 1, seven hours before the craft actually fell, the European Space Agency (ESA) had reached the limit of what it could forecast. And there still a pretty big window for when and where the station would re-enter.

“With our current understanding of the dynamics of the upper atmosphere and Europe’s limited sensors, we are not able to make very precise predictions,” said Holger Krag, head of ESA’s Space Debris Office, in an agency blog about Tiangong-1.

Note: we do not want to overstate the odds of being hit by falling spacecraft. Space junk falls out of the atmosphere all the time, and only one person has ever been hit by it. For the Tiangong-1, the odds that the falling space station would have hit any single human on Earth were still 1 in 1 trillion, lower than your yearly odds of being struck by lightning.

But that may change in the coming years. The growing space industry has promised to put a number of new spacecraft into orbit around Earth in the next decade, including thousands of new satellites. As we increase the number of objects in space, the overall probability of something falling out of the sky into a populated area will increase. At the moment, nobody has a way to zap space junk (or incoming meteors, for that matter) that might pose a threat, and it doesn’t seem likely that we’ll get one anytime soon.

Instead, as ESA’s Krag implies, research could help a lot. If we could better understand how the upper atmosphere behaves, we could better model where a falling object would land, and potentially warn people in the area if needed.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem likely. The sort of basic research that would improve scientists’ understanding of the atmosphere is chronically under-funded, and in the U.S., happens in agencies to which the White House doesn’t allocate many resources.

Basic research into the upper atmosphere isn’t nearly as sexy as as falling space junk, but it could one day save a lot of people some logistical — and potentially physical — headaches.

The post The Chinese Space Station Has Crashed in the Pacific. Why Was It So Hard to Track? appeared first on Futurism.

Futurism

Cash For Apps: Make money with android app

Chinese authorities catch suspects who used drones to smuggle $80M worth of iPhones from Hong Kong

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND

iPhones are significantly cheaper in Hong Kong than mainland China, and it’s not unusual to find people smuggling them across the border. But while the record for smuggling them under clothing is around $ 150k, that’s nothing compared to the $ 79.8M worth transported with the help of drones …

more…

9to5Mac

Cash For Apps: Make money with android app

Chinese smugglers use drones to deliver iPhones

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND

Criminals in China have discovered a brilliant new use for drones: smuggling valuable iPhones. Authorities in China arrested 26 suspects that were found using drones to smuggle $80 million worth of iPhones between Hong Kong and the mainland in what is reportedly the first case of drones being used in cross-border smuggling crimes in China. […]

(via Cult of Mac – Tech and culture through an Apple lens)

Cult of Mac

Cash For Apps: Make money with android app

Chinese Customs busted 26 suspects who used drones to smuggle iPhones into China

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND

A group of 26 suspects were arrested in China for smuggling almost USD $ 80 million worth of smartphones into Southern China from Hong Kong. Suspects were able to transport upwards of 15,000 devices in a single night, which were mostly refurbished iPhones, (according to the Chinese Customs’ report) across the border that divides Hong Kong from mainland China. Drones confiscated by authorities in Shenzhen on March 29 – Via Reuters Drones were used to run 200-meter (660-foot) lines across the border and small bags, which held up to 10 smartphones each, were quickly carried through…

GSMArena.com – Latest articles

Cash For Apps: Make money with android app

Chinese customs officials bust $80M drone-based iPhone smuggling ring

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND

Article Image

A smartphone smuggling ring has been broken up by Chinese customs officials, one where a gang used a fleet of drones to transport approximately 500 million yuan ($ 79.8 million) worth of refurbished iPhones across the border from Hong Kong to Shenzhen.
AppleInsider – Frontpage News

Cash For Apps: Make money with android app

Amazon may spend $1 billion to adapt hit Chinese sci-fi novels

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND

Amazon's bid to create worldwide blockbuster shows may extend well beyond very familiar Western stories like Lord of the Rings. Investors speaking to the Financial Times claimed that Amazon is in talks that would let it spend up to $ 1 billion for th…
Engadget RSS Feed
Cash For Apps: Make money with android app

Group Claims Apple Is Betraying Its Chinese iCloud Customers

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND

Amnesty International has launched a bitter attack on Apple, claiming that the tech giant is betraying its Chinese customers over privacy rights. The non-governmental organisation has accused Apple of “recklessly making their personal data vulnerable to the arbitrary scrutiny of the Chinese government.” On Wednesday, Amnesty announced that it’s to launch a new social media […]
Read More…
iDrop News
Cash For Apps: Make money with android app

Amnesty International presses Apple to warn Chinese iCloud users of government snooping risk

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND

Article Image

Amnesty International is calling on Apple to inform Chinese iCloud users that their data might be at risk of government prying after the company migrated regional accounts to China-based servers, a move designed to conform with local laws.
AppleInsider – Frontpage News

Cash For Apps: Make money with android app

Trump’s Chinese tariffs could have a big impact on the tech industry

How Complete Beginners are using an ‘Untapped’ Google Network to create Passive Income ON DEMAND

Trump has shouted about weaponizing trade since the campaign trail, but this year he's put it to action, committing to solar tariffs back in January that endangered US jobs. This afternoon, Donald Trump signed an executive memorandum to enact tariffs…
Engadget RSS Feed
Cash For Apps: Make money with android app