[Update: It’s back] Free alert: Get $15 in Target credit via Google Express just by saying three words to Assistant

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Google Express sees discounts fairly often, but it’s pretty rare to see credit being given away for free.

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[Update: It’s back] Free alert: Get $ 15 in Target credit via Google Express just by saying three words to Assistant was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Everything Apple Announced at Today’s Educational Event in Under Three Minutes

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Apple held its first event of 2018 this morning in Chicago, Illinois, at the Lane Tech College Prep High School. The event’s unusual location was due to the fact that it focused on education, marking Apple’s first education-oriented event since 2012.

The main draw of the event was a new low-cost iPad with Apple Pencil support, but Apple also announced several other education-focused initiatives for teachers and students. The full event spanned over an hour, but we’ve recapped everything that’s worth knowing in the three minute video below.

Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos.

Apple didn’t live stream the event this morning, but after it was finished, the company shared a full video, so if you want to watch it from start to finish, you can do so on Apple’s Events website or through the Events app on the Apple TV.

There were also a few other unannounced surprises that popped up on Apple’s site after the event, like new iPhone and iPad cases, new Apple Watch bands, and a Space Gray Magic Keyboard, Trackpad, and Mouse, which were previously exclusive to the iMac Pro.

As with all Apple events, MacRumors provided a live blog and extensive coverage, all of which is listed below so you can catch up if you missed anything:



We’ll be sharing additional details on the new iPad with Apple Pencil support throughout this week and next, so make sure to stay tuned to MacRumors. For more details about the new iPad, make sure to check out our iPad roundup, which will be updated later today.
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This $13 power strip has three AC outlets and three USB ports

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Perfect for all situations.

Using coupon code CLEVER77 you can drop the price of this surge protector down to just $ 12.99, which is a $ 4 savings. The strip has three AC outlets and three USB plugs, making it easy to charge just about any gadget you may have laying around.

It offers a 3.1A output so your devices will charge on the quick side, and it will automatically turn off if it gets to hot to prevent any issues from affecting the gear plugged into it.

See at Amazon

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Location Intelligence On The Rise: Three Use Cases to Optimize Your UX

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In the age of Digital, there is still enough room for the physical.

It is clear that enterprises wish to bring the digital user experience into the branch or office. Today, the mobile and digital banking experience is already part of our visit to the branch. Banks are digitizing the customer experience in the branch by placing tablets, reducing the paperwork and therefore, also the time we are spending there (we all like an instant experience, right?). The need to ensure a perfect experience in this competitive reality is receiving prime location. In my journey to help digital enterprises with perfecting their user experience, I see a growing need from not only bankers and insurance agents that are now more dependent on their tablets but also from pilots, aircraft technicians and others who work in the field. They are using internal apps and services but with the criticality of these services, it does not leave room for mistakes or glitches.

Marketing forces have recently introduced a new model that combined the Digital & Physical aspects of targeted exposure: Cost-Per-Visit. This new business metric aiming to encourage in-store consumption of services/goods and for brands to pay publishers for ads only when a customer is being exposed to it while visiting a specific location. In other words, using the CPV model not only helps brands increase foot traffic and boost sales, but also helps foster a more trusting relationship between brands, agencies and vendors.

So now that it’s clear that digital enterprises that have physical branches are placing greater emphasis on location intelligence, the question is how do you ensure quality on all different locations?

Proximity advertising is a good example, but how about or more basic one: searching the right branch? Does your service have the right ingredients to allow location based search (e.g. find the close branches to my current location, etc.)? Let’s assume the answer is yes – how would you test that nationwide assuming you’re representing a bank with branches nationwide? Covering such use case, would be a trivial part of a standard daily/weekly regression cycle, right? The answer in most cases would be the ability to inject the location intelligence as part of the automation suite. I often encounter trivial use cases while working with Digital Enterprises to optimize their UX:

  1. Localization testing:
    1. Challenge: How do I test the level of service nationwide?
    2. Solution: Implementing sustainable automation process that includes:
      1. A Job triggered through CI (Jenkins) couple of times per day.
      2. Job runs a build of Parallel test executions using TestNG FW with 8 devices: 4 android & 4 iOS devices.
  • Environment conditions of the test includes emulation of 30 different locations where the service is being evaluated.
  1. Build include 4 basic cases:
    1. Initiate a Voice call
    2. Send & receive a text message
    3. Run a speedtest of the network up&down metrics
    4. Open a Youtube page and play a video

This is a real example where a customer is continuously testing the availability of services in critical locations and conditions.

2. Network condition testing:

  1. Challenge: Can I make sure that my service is rendering properly across different levels of networks?
  2. Solution: Define the right set of network engagement your customers are using:
    1. Run your regression cycle suite across the set of these network conditions, for example:
      1. 5G
      2. 3G
      3. 4G
      4. Airplane mode (as I may have sales reps traveling and they need to be able to consume services offline from the app).

3. Location testing on steroids:

  • Challenge: Can I tests advanced location-based use cases like driving, walking etc.?
  • Solution: Implementing sustainable automation process that includes one or more of the following:
    1. Inject GPS location intelligence as a capability in your script for static changes
    2. Inject mocked motion data to simulate driving/walking session that includes data from one or more of the smartphone sensors (GPS, accelerometer, gyroscope data). A great example of this is Usage Based Insurance (UBI) in the insurance industry.


As described in a previous blog – patterns are becoming more and more important.

The future of location based testing will likely include the implementation of smart intelligence and interactions with IoT (including BLE devices, other smart terminals and POS).

The market is already heading in this direction: by analyzing historical location data and detailed behavioral patterns, digital enterprises can gain comprehensive insights into consumer preferences and habits which can be used for hyper-targeted campaigns and other engagement models.

Remember, the key for perfecting the experience is to BE IN THE RIGHT PLACE AT THE RIGHT TIME.

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Three Reasons People Are Calling Trivia App HQ the Future of TV

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If you’ve successfully avoided HQ Trivia up until now, congratulations on finding an incredibly secure rock to live under.

Let me catch you up real quick. HQ Trivia is an app-based trivia game that streams live twice per day (once a day on weekends). It’s free to play, and players that make it through all 12 questions or so earn a share of the prize money — at least $ 2,000.

Since its launch in August 2017, HQ has been steadily growing its audience. HQ is sometimes likened to Jeopardy! for millennials, though others think that’s giving HQ a bit too much credit while others are convinced that it’s already jumped the shark. But the numbers say otherwise  on March 4, more than 2 million players logged on in an effort to win a cut of $ 50,000 (only 6 players did).

Investment followed. On March 6, Axios reported that the app secured an additional $ 15 million in funding, with venture capital firm Founders Fund leading the investment round (many players then boycotted the app to protest the funding, which came from Peter Thiel, the venture capitalist and founder of PayPal controversial for his support of Donald Trump, homophobia, and possibly harvesting the blood of the young for his own immortality).

Controversy aside, lots of people think HQ is onto something unique. Here’s why the game might be a sign of what’s to come in the world of entertainment.

It Makes the Familiar Feel New

In essence, HQ Trivia isn’t too far removed from a television show like Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? or Jeopardy! What’s new is that just about anybody can participate — and potentially win. The only barrier to entry is access to a smartphone.

HQ Trivia takes advantage of that human instinct to scream at the television when someone gets an obvious question wrong, only now, you can test your wits against other competitors in a setting with stakes.

Even if you don’t win, though, the experience is still fun. HQ Trivia is more interactive that the average televised quiz show, and its usual host, Scott Rogowsky, seems like that know-it-all friend of yours, just trapped in your phone.

It Gets People to Tune in at a Set Time

The popularity of Netflix and its ilk mean you get to watch old reruns of Seinfeld whenever you want, not just when the networks decide. But the same is increasingly true for new shows — there isn’t as much incentive to watch fresh episodes when they first air. That’s why deals for live programming, such as sports events, are more lucrative than ever — because networks can be sure that people will actually tune in. So networks pay big money for these programs, because they can make big money from advertising.

Players have to show up at a certain time to participate in HQ Trivia, and the variability of the jackpots makes it easy for the show’s creators to encourage viewership on specific nights.

It’s Already Popular

HQ Trivia’s 2.1 million players on March 4 might not seem impressive compared to the Oscars’ reported viewership of 32.9 million. Here’s the thing, though: the Oscars celebrated its 90th anniversary this year, whereas HQ Trivia just launched seven months ago.

Now, the question is how the company plans to make money from this popularity. The trivia game still has no ads, though that may soon change.

HQ CEO Rus Yusupov told Axios fans shouldn’t expect typical ads. Instead, advertising will take the form of “native content.” Perhaps they’ll add mentions of advertisers to the host’s script or incorporate branding into the set.

It’s easy to imagine that a major company could sponsor a special episode of the show, providing a huge jackpot in exchange for direct access to all these viewers at once. Perhaps networks could sponsor episodes as well, broadcasting them live on television as a lead-in to other programming in an effort to increase viewership.

Of course, there’s also the possibility of expanding HQ Trivia’s current 15-minute format into a 30- or 60-minute television show itself with a regular time slot. Cyan Banister, a partner at Founders Fund, told Axios that HQ has plans to expand beyond trivia into other kinds of interactive content (what kind is not yet clear). Maybe those programs could fill out the extra time.

Only time will tell if HQ can capitalize on its early success, or if its recent funding will end up doing more harm than good.

The post Three Reasons People Are Calling Trivia App HQ the Future of TV appeared first on Futurism.


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Three new Samsung Galaxy J phones spotted ahead of launch

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A month after patenting Galaxy J3 Star and Galaxy J7 Star, Samsung expands its celestial patent portfolio with two new entries. The Korean giant received a patent from the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for the names Galaxy J3 Orbit and Galaxy J7 Crown. In the same time, the highly rumored Galaxy J8 2018 is closer to a launch after a device with product number SM-J800FN was just certified by Wi-Fi Alliance. The phone will use a/b/g/n band connectivity, while earlier specs suggested Exynos 7870 chipset with an octa-core CPU. Samsung’s own understanding of the…

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Xiaomi launches three new travel backpacks in India

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Xiaomi has launched three new travel backpacks in India. Called the Mi Casual Backpack, Mi City Backpack, and the Mi Travel Backpack, these join the previously launched Mi Business Backpack in Xiaomi’s accessory lineup. The Mi Casual Backpack has a checkered pattern design that comes in black, gray and blue. The material is 600D polyester and waterproof. The bag has two main compartments and a side pocket for bottles or umbrellas. It can accomodate a 15.6-inch laptop along with some books and other accessories for everyday use. It’s priced at INR 899 ($ 13). The Mi City…

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Apple Pay’s New Promo Offers Up to Three Free Deliveries From Grubhub, Seamless, and Eat24

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The latest Apple Pay promo has launched today, offering users the chance to get up to three free restaurant deliveries in select apps.

To take advantage of the March Madness-themed promotion, customers can enter the code “HOOPS” at checkout in Grubhub, Seamless, and Eat24 (in apps or on websites), and pay for their orders via Apple Pay to get a free delivery.

The offer is limited to three redemptions per diner and three per device during the promo period, and does not cover the cost of the meal in the order. The new promo will end on April 2, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. CT.

Apple is also encouraging customers to checkout faster using Apple Pay within food apps like Pizza Hut, Subway, and BevMo!, as well as clothing and ticketing apps including Nike, SeatGeek, and GOAT.

The last Apple Pay promo was for TouchTunes and gave anyone on Spring Break the chance to add three free song credits to their account in the jukebox-like iOS app. Prior to that, promos have launched for Fandango and Instacart multiple times, Postmates, and more.

Related Roundup: Apple Pay

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Lenovo releases three new phones in China after more than a year of silence

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After over a year of not releasing any new phones, Lenovo has launched three phones in China today. There’s the main flagship S5 model, and two lower-end budget phones: the K5 and the K5 Play, presumably meant for children.

From a glance, the new phones resemble so many other Android phones, and have more than a slight likeness to the iPhone 6.

The Lenovo S5 has a 5.7-inch screen with an 18:9 aspect ratio and a 2160 x 1080 resolution. The back is made of metal. It’s powered by a Snapdragon 625 chip and a 3,000mAh battery. You can choose between 3GB or 4GB of RAM, and 32GB, 64GB, or 128GB of storage.

The S5 has dual 13-megapixel rear cameras and a 16-megapixel front-facing selfie cam. The device runs Android 8.0 Oreo out of the box with…

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Comment: The three reasons I think Apple has created its microLED manufacturing facility

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OLED superseded LCD because it’s brighter, has better color saturation, and is more power-efficient. microLED is expected to replace OLED within the next few years for the same reasons – it improves on all three of those factors.

I don’t believe that Apple’s ‘secret manufacturing facility‘ for microLED screens indicates any desire or plan on Apple’s part to move into large-scale component manufacturing, but I do think it’s a very smart move.

I suspect there are three reasons Apple has established the facility …



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