Bank Support Expands for Apple Pay in U.S., Canada, and France

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Earlier this week, Apple Pay officially launched in Brazil, adding yet another region’s support for the mobile payment option. Continue reading
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Mark Zuckerberg will testify before U.S. lawmakers in two separate hearings next week

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He’ll testify before two Senate committees on Tuesday, and a House committee on Wednesday.

Mark Zuckerberg is officially headed to Washington.

The Facebook CEO has accepted an invitation to testify before lawmakers from the House Committee on Energy and Commerce on the company’s recent Cambridge Analytica privacy scandal, in which personal data from some 50 million users ended up in the hands of an outside research firm that worked with the Trump campaign, all without those users’ permission.

Zuckerberg will testify on Wednesday, April 11, at 10 am ET, according to a release, “regarding the company’s use and protection of user data.”

“This hearing will be an important opportunity to shed light on critical consumer data privacy issues and help all Americans better understand what happens to their personal information online. We appreciate Mr. Zuckerberg’s willingness to testify before the committee, and we look forward to him answering our questions on April 11th,” committee chairman Greg Walden, R-Ore., and ranking member Frank Pallone, Jr., D-NJ, said in a canned quote.

Update: Zuckerberg will also testify before two Senate committees in a joint hearing that was announced late Wednesday. The hearing, which will take place at 2:15 pm ET next Tuesday, April 10, is titled, “Facebook, Social Media Privacy, and the Use and Abuse of Data.” Zuckerberg will answer questions from the Senate Judiciary Committee and the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee.

Zuckerberg was invited to testify before three separate congressional committees to discuss the company’s privacy policies, including the Senate Judiciary Committee and the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee. Facebook has been working behind the scenes to schedule his appearance for almost two weeks, though would not commit to anything publicly until today.

Back in mid-March, Zuckerberg told Recode in an interview that he was open to testifying “if I’m the right [person].”

“You know, I’m open to doing that,” he said when asked if he would testify. “I think that the way that we look at testifying in front of Congress is that … We actually do this fairly regularly, right? There are high-profile ones like the Russian investigation, but there are lots of different topics that Congress needs and wants to know about. And the way that we approach it is that our responsibility is to make sure that they have access to all the information that they need to have. So I’m open to doing it.”

Zuckerberg’s appearance will be a big deal — in part because Zuckerberg has never testified before, and in part because the company’s Cambridge Analytica fiasco has become a symbol of sorts for how big tech companies like Facebook are not doing enough to protect user privacy.

The concern, if you are a Facebook investor, is that lawmakers will walk away from a Zuckerberg testimony with the belief the company needs to be regulated. Facebook’s entire business relies on collecting personal information from people and using that information to show those people targeted advertising.

When Facebook testified in front of Congress last fall about Russian groups using the service to try and influence the 2016 presidential election, Facebook sent its top lawyer, Colin Stretch, instead of Zuckerberg.

Recode – All

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At $27 billion, Spotify is the seventh-most-valuable internet company to go public in the U.S.

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It’s up there with Google, if you don’t adjust for inflation.

Spotify’s public offering is not only notable because of its uncommon choice to list its shares directly on the stock market. The stock, which began trading today, also ranks among the most valuable internet companies to list in the U.S.

Its closing market value today was about $ 27 billion, according to Dealogic, putting it ahead of Twitter and Groupon, but behind Alibaba, Facebook, Snap and Google following their first trading days. That’s despite a stock price decline of about 11 percent today.

Spotify is also the most valuable tech IPO since Snap went public last year, closing its first day at nearly $ 29 billion. Spotify had the 25th-biggest first-day closing market cap out of companies in all sectors, according to Dealogic’s data, which goes back to 1995 and is not adjusted for inflation.


Recode – All

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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.

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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

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Verizon comes out on top in latest report on U.S. carrier speeds

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We regularly see different groups test the four major U.S. carriers to compare what speeds they can put up. Today another such report has come out.

Wirefly has released the results of its latest Speed Test, which compares the download and uploads speeds of AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon. These tests cover Q4 2017 and Q1 2018.

The carrier with the fastest overall speeds in the U.S. in Wirefly’s Speed Test is Verizon, which posted an average overall speed of 19.92Mbps. AT&T came in second with 18.26Mbps, T-Mobile in third with 17.29Mbps, and Sprint in fourth with 14.77Mbps. This differs from the 1H 2017 report, which saw T-Mo in first, Verizon in second, AT&T in third, and Sprint in fourth.

Wirefly U.S. carrier speed test Q1 2018

Those speeds are based on Wirefly’s Overall Speed Capability, which gives a carrier’s download speed a 90 percent weight while the upload speed gets a 10 percent weight. 

Looking specifically at download speeds, Verizon came out on top with an average download speed of 20.44Mbps, AT&T in second at 19.11Mbps, T-Mobile in third at 18.08Mbps, and Sprint in fourth at 15.60Mbps. Verizon also posted the fastest upload speed, with an average of 15.26Mbps.

Which carrier are you on? What are your download and upload speeds like?

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Samsung will add FM radio support to the unlocked Galaxy S9 in the U.S.

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Samsung Galaxy S9+ front

Earlier this year, Samsung committed to enabling the FM radio chips in its upcoming smartphones in the U.S. and Canada. But while the carrier versions of the Galaxy S9 do indeed have FM radio support, it turns out that the unlocked models don’t.

According to NextRadio, makers of an FM radio app for Android and iOS, Samsung forgot to add the NAM FM API to its unlocked devices. The good news is that Samsung will add it in with the first update that it releases for the unlocked S9, according to the statement NextRadio gave to Android Police:

“Samsung mistakenly did not add the NAB FM API to the unlocked devices. Our team confirmed this with them a couple of days after release upon receiving reports the app did not work. Samsung has said it will be in the first update they do, but have not yet settled on a date.

The model numbers are SM-G960UI and SM-G965UI that do not currently work for FM. SM-G960U and SM-G965U are sold through carriers and do work for FM.”

FM radio is handy because it lets you tune in to music or talk radio without you having to worry about your cellular connection or data usage. It’s free, too, so you can use it whenever you want without having to pony up $ 10 per month like you do with popular music streaming services. Owners of the unlocked Galaxy S9 in the U.S. may be frustrated that their expensive new flagship phone doesn’t have these features because it lacks FM radio support, but thankfully a fix is comoing.

Do you ever listen to FM radio on your smartphone?

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ZTE Tempo Go with Android Go is now available in the U.S. for $80

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

ZTE Tempo Go Android Go official

The first Android Go phone is now available for purchase.

The ZTE Tempo Go is now in stock on ZTE’s web store. Pricing is set at $ 79.99, and the device includs free standard shipping.

ZTE’s Tempo Go runs Android Go, a version of Android Oreo that’s optimized for devices with 1GB of RAM or less. Android Go comes Google apps that are designed to used less memory and storage, including special versions of Google Maps and Gmail.

When it comes to hardware specs, the ZTE Tempo Go is packing a 5-inch 854×480 display, 5MP rear and 2MP front cameras, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of storage, and a microSD card slot. Also included is a quad-core Snapdragon 210 processor, a 3.5mm headphone jack, and a 2,200mAh battery.

The ZTE Tempo Go is designed to be an affordable Android device for customers on a budget. Its features aren’t going to blow anyone’s hair back with raw performance, but for shoppers on a budget, the Tempo Go and its optimized Android Go software should be worth a look.

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Huawei committed to competing in U.S. despite government security concerns

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Huawei Mate 10 Pro hands-on video

Huawei has had a pretty rough few months, with AT&T and Verizon reportedly deciding not to sell the Mate 10 Pro due to pressure from the U.S. government and then Best Buy allegedly opting to stop offering all Huawei products. Despite all of this, though, the company isn’t giving up its U.S. ambitions.

Richard Yu, CEO of Huawei’s consumer business group, says that Huawei will continue working to establish itself in the U.S. and earn consumers’ trust. Yu’s statement to CNET:

“We are committed to the US market and to earning the trust of US consumers by staying focused on delivering world-class products and innovation. We would never compromise that trust.”

Yu went on to say that the security concerns that the U.S. government has about Huawei are “based on groundless suspicions and are quite frankly unfair.” He added that Huawei is open having a discussion with the heads of the CIA, FBI, and NSA so long as it is based on facts.

While Huawei has a significant international presence, the company hasn’t been able to gain much traction in the U.S. That’s because to date, it’s only ever sold it’s best phones unlocked, while most U.S. consumers buy their phones through their carrier. It’s good to hear that Huawei is going to keep plugging along in the U.S. because products like the Mate 10 Pro and P20 Pro look like solid smartphones, but it’s going to be difficult for the company to gain a significant foothold in the U.S. unless it can convince carriers to sell those products.

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Huawei says it’s still committed to the U.S., in spite of, well, everything

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A funny thing happened the last couple of times I was briefed on a Huawei flagship product: news was breaking about some major roadblock for the company’s U.S. distribution plans. First it was AT&T backing out in the midst of CES and then it was Best Buy’s decision to drop the company just ahead of the big P20 launch (though a rep for the company told me the States were never part of its plans for that handset). 

It’s been one thing after another as the Chinese hardware maker has worked to establish a meaningful presence here in the States. In spite of all of this fallout from government pushback, however, the company insists that it’s not going anywhere.

In an email to CNET, the company’s consumer CEO reaffirmed that commitment. “We are committed to the U.S. market and to earning the trust of U.S. consumers by staying focused on delivering world-class products and innovation,” Yu writes. “We would never compromise that trust.”

The sentiment echoes statements Yu made on-stage at CES in the wake of the AT&T deal implosion — albeit much more measured this time around. Most of Yu’s followup reinforced his earlier assertions that, in spite of multiple warning from various US security departments, this whole thing is blow entirely out of proportion.

“The security risk concerns are based on groundless suspicions and are quite frankly unfair,” Yu adds. ”We welcome an open and transparent discussion if it is based on facts.”

Even if the company’s intentions are as stated, Huawei’s got an epic uphill climb if it’s going to make any sort of dent in the world’s third-largest mobile market. The company’s carrier play is non-existent in a country where most phones are purchased through telecoms. And abandonment by the biggest big box store in the States was insult to injury.

And if the company does manage to reverse those trends, it will still be a hard sell for U.S. consumers after several warnings from the country’s defense departments. 

Mobile – TechCrunch

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ZTE Tempo Go is now available in the U.S. for $80

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

ZTE Tempo Go Android Go official

The first Android Go phone is now available for purchase.

The ZTE Tempo Go is now in stock on ZTE’s web store. Pricing is set at $ 79.99, and the device includs free standard shipping.

ZTE’s Tempo Go runs Android Go, a version of Android Oreo that’s optimized for devices with 1GB of RAM or less. Android Go comes Google apps that are designed to used less memory and storage, including special versions of Google Maps and Gmail.

When it comes to hardware specs, the ZTE Tempo Go is packing a 5-inch 854×480 display, 5MP rear and 2MP front cameras, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of storage, and a microSD card slot. Also included is a quad-core Snapdragon 210 processor, a 3.5mm headphone jack, and a 2,200mAh battery.

The ZTE Tempo Go is designed to be an affordable Android device for customers on a budget. Its features aren’t going to blow anyone’s hair back with raw performance, but for shoppers on a budget, the Tempo Go and its optimized Android Go software should be worth a look.

PhoneDog.com – Latest videos, reviews, articles, news and posts

Cash For Apps: Make money with android app