Sony releases mysterious teaser for its next phone

Sony is apparently going to introduce something at Mobile World Congress next week, going off the fact that its Xperia account tweeted a teaser video for the annual phone event this morning. The video shows a hand and a bunch of ripples cascading down onto it from above. It also says whatever this video is hinting at will be announced on February 26th.

You can see the tweet below:

I don’t totally get what it’s alluding to. Something you’ll feel? From the sky? A tangible notification? Haptic feedback? Uh, a ripple… of air? I don’t know! It’s not easy to make sense of a purposely cryptic video. But presumably the teaser has something…

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Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8.0 devices will stop getting push notifications this week

Windows Phone 7.5 Mango review

It’s been awhile since Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8.0 were in the spotlight, but some folks out there may still be relying on a WP7.5 or WP8.0 device to stay connected. Unfortunately, that’s about to become more difficult.

Microsoft has confirmed that it’s ending push notifications for Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8.0. The push notifications services will be shut off tomorrow, February 20, 2018.

Once these services are switched off, Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8.0 devices will no longer receive notifications. Live tile updates will stop coming in, too, and the “Find my phone” feature will no longer be able to locate your device.

Microsoft does say that push notifications on Windows Phone 8.1 devices will continue to work for now, and Windows 10 Mobile devices are unaffected.

While turning off notifications and live tiles won’t render Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8.0 devices completely useless, their functionality will be significantly hobbled. The news is disappointing for anyone still using a WP7.5 or WP8.0 device, but Microsoft likely feels that it can’t keep these services going forever, especially since those devices were replaced by WP8.1 and W10M phones years ago.

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Chrome cleans up messy URLs when you share from your phone

Google keeps making the web easier to use with its Chrome browser, from filtering ads on the desktop to getting rid of pop-ups and redirects on Android. The company just made sharing messy URLs nicer, too, thanks to the latest version of Chrome on mo…
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An Algorithm Knows When Your Kid Is Using Your Phone

Next Level Parenting

Shiny screens have a way of appeasing wailing children far more effectively than the old jingling keys standby. However, 21st century parents have to weigh the benefits of near-instant placidity with the very real possibility that their toddler could unknowingly max out the AmEx buying gummy bears on Amazon. Thankfully, new software developed by researchers from the University of South Carolina and China’s Zhejiang University could help make render this particular parenting dilemma moot.

The researchers developed an algorithm that measures a user’s interaction with the mobile device and  can reliably tell if the user is an adult or a child. If the software detects a child, it can automatically block applications like retailers or email platforms, as well as inappropriate websites.

In order to construct the algorithm, the team developed an app that tracked users’ finger movements — recording metrics like the surface area of a tap, pressure applied by a finger, and length of swipes. The researchers gathered data from a group of children ages 3 to 11 and a group of adults between the ages of 22 and 60 as they unlocked the screen and played a numbers-based game on the phone.

Their new age-detection software proved to be 84 percent accurate in determining whether a user was an adult or a child with just a single swipe. That accuracy shot up to 97 percent after just eight swipes.

The algorithm hasn’t been integrated into an operating system yet, but the researchers will present their technology at HotMobile, a mobile tech conference, where it could gain some traction with developers.

While cybersecurity is an ever-present concern in the age of mobile devices, many make the mistake of only considering external threats. The reality is, an inquisitive three-year-old could be almost as damaging as the latest data hack.

The post An Algorithm Knows When Your Kid Is Using Your Phone appeared first on Futurism.

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