Spotify quibbles with Apple Music over The Weeknd streaming numbers

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Spotify and Apple are in a battle over rival streaming music services, and sometimes such conflicts can turn a bit petty. After it was reported that The Weeknd’s latest album and lead single performed better on Apple Music than it did on Spotify, Spotify hit back by reporting that the numbers it initially gave were, […]

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

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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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Apple’s ‘Field Trip’ education iPad event by the numbers

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Well, that was underwhelming. At its "Let's Take a Field Trip" education event in Chicago on Tuesday, Apple only had a nominal upgrade to its 9.7-inch iPad and some minor software updates to announce. But hey, at least Crayola's new digital crayon lo…
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GDC 2018 by the numbers

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It was a wet and wild week at the 2018 Game Developers Conference in San Francisco. The Engadget team spent our days wandering the show floor, meeting with developers and, of course, playing every game we could get our hands on. Here are a few highli…
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Apple’s Sales Have Grown So Much That It’s Running Out of 10-Digit Invoice Numbers

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Currently, when Apple sends an invoice to its customers and business partners, the recipient gets an invoice number that is entirely numeric and spans 10 digits.

According to a post on Reddit citing a letter from Apple called “Change in Invoice number format,” the company has drafted so many invoices that it’s close to going through all possible permutations for these 10-digit numeric codes, necessitating a switch to an alphanumeric system.

This means that instead of a basic 10-digit number, Apple’s system will now include two alphabet characters followed by eight numbers, for example: “AB12345678.” These changes will begin applying to all invoices issued “approximately after the third week of February 2019.”

Image via jwildman16 on Reddit

As explained in the Reddit thread on the topic, there are a total of 10 billion possible invoice numbers available to Apple through its current 10-digit all-numeric system, suggesting Apple is nearing 10 billion invoices sent worldwide for as long as it’s used this system. Apple sends an invoice every time an order is made on the Apple Store app, website, or in-store, with each order receiving a unique invoice code.

When adding in two letters to the beginning, Apple’s invoice code possibilities increase to around 67.6 billion. Redditor nalexander50 explained the math in greater detail:

Wow, that’s a lot of orders! If I am remembering my college combinatorics course properly, a 10 digit numeric only code would cover 10 Billion orders. Each position in the number has 10 possible values (0-9) and there are 10 values total. Multiplying it out, 1010 = 10 Billion.

Changing the first two positions to letters vastly increases the possibilities. For the first two positions, there are 26 possible choices (a-z), and the remaining 8 positions have the same 10 (0-9) choices. Multiplying it out, 262 * 108 = 67.6 Billion invoices. Since it has taken this long to creep up on 10 Billion, I figure that an additional 67 Billion will last a while.

With yesterday’s update to the Apple Store iOS app, the company also made it possible to get to your order invoices from within the app. To do so follow these instructions: open the app, tap the circular profile symbol at the top right of the Discover tab, scroll down to My Orders, tap on one, tap Print Invoice, then sign in to your Apple ID. On the invoice, the invoice number is located in the Additional Information section at the very bottom of the page.

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Apple’s iPhone may be creating misleading numbers for US trade deficit with China

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As a result of outdated calculation methods, Apple’s iPhone may be contributing to a skewed view of the U.S. trade deficit with China.
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Analysts: Q1 production of iPhone X as expected, but Q2 numbers slashed

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Another group of analysts has chimed in on the iPhone X production numbers. A note from Cowen and Company estimates that 53 million units were produced in Q1 this year, in line with the previous estimate of 52.5 million. However, the next three months will see lower quantities – Cowen reduced the estimate to 9 million iPhone X units (a month ago the prediction was for 13-16 million). Estimates by J.P. Morgan also suggest a slump in Q2. Note that the Q1 numbers differ quite a bit from JPM, which estimates 20 million iPhone X units as does KGI. The analysts predict at least three new…

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A former Walmart executive’s lawsuit claims the retailer has been inflating e-commerce growth numbers

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Tri Huynh, a former business development executive, says he was fired for raising concerns over the company’s practices.

Is Walmart cheating in its race to close the gap between Amazon and its own online business?

A new lawsuit from a former Walmart business development executive claims it is.

The suit, filed this week in Northern California federal court by Tri Huynh, alleges that Walmart has been lowering its standards to boost the size of its online catalogue; mis-categorizing some items listed for sale, which can result in overcharging some merchants who sell through Walmart.com; and failing to process $ 7 million in returned items.

Huynh says that he was terminated from his job in 2017 as retaliation for being a whistleblower by repeatedly bringing his concerns to e-commerce division leaders, and is suing for unspecified damages.

“This litigation is based on allegations by a disgruntled former associate, who was let go as part of an overall restructuring,” a Walmart rep tells Recode. “We take allegations like this seriously and looked into them when they were brought to our attention. The investigation found nothing to suggest that the company acted improperly. We intend to vigorously defend the company against these claims.”

The suit comes as Walmart has pumped billions of dollars into its e-commerce business over the last few years, including the acquisition of Jet.com, to improve its websites and narrow Amazon’s lead in the space.

Huynh, who worked for Amazon previously, joined Walmart in 2014 as a director of business development for its online marketplace, which allows outside sellers to hawk their wares on Walmart.com alongside Walmart’s own products.

Huynh said lax internal controls allowed for frequent miscategorization of items sold by marketplace sellers, resulting in Walmart charging them a higher commission on sales than it should have. The suit also claimed that Walmart boasts about the size of its online catalogue but counts items that aren’t actually available for customers to purchase.

He also alleged that the giant retailer lowered its standards by allowing low-rated sellers to flood the Walmart.com marketplace with overpriced goods to artificially boost the number of items Walmart publicly claims are available through its marketplace.

Huynh said the lowering of standards resulted in an influx of inappropriate items, such as mugs labeled with phrases like “got Hitler?” and “got retard?”

Bloomberg first reported news of the lawsuit.

This post has been updated with a comment from Walmart.


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Apple shares annual Supplier Responsibility report with new suppliers causing elevated numbers of “core infractions”

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Apple’s 12th Supplier Responsibility Progress Report, which details the working conditions at its various supplier facilities, has been released today. At first glance, it appears violations are on the rise, but there is also a simple explanation…. Read the rest of this post here


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