Posted on

Google launches new streaming tech

Monitoring Desk

CALIFORNIA: Back in February, Google was rumored to be seeking interest in the gaming market, with a brand new streaming service that would eventually be called Project Yeti, The project was apparently designed to allow for quality game streaming at 1080p and 60 frames per second with minimal technical hiccups in Chrome. Just eight months later, the giant tech company has now revealed its service to the world by showing off one of the biggest games to launch this year.

Google‘s new service, titled Project Stream, was on display today showing off the upcoming Assassin’s Creed Odyssey from Ubisoft, which launches this Friday (or tomorrow depending on what edition players have pre-ordered). The nearly four-minute video shows off a number of features in the game, from scanning across beautiful vistas, naval combat, and Alexios scaling the sides of large buildings.

Some may also be asking: why choose Assassin’s Creed Odyssey as the game to show off the new tech? Shortly after the announcement that it would be joining the video game ecosystem, Google signed a deal with Ubisoft to build servers dedicated for the company’s games, which is reason enough as to why the demo exists in the first place. Also, the timing of the reveal is likely due to Assassin’s Creed Odyssey reviews going live today.

This isn’t the first time the gaming community has heard of a future involving AAA game streaming. At E3 this year, Phil Spencer announced at the Microsoft conference that its next generation of consoles, code-named Project Scarlet, would release two different types of systems come 2020. One of those models would follow the traditional home console approach, while the other would be a more ambitious, new approach to console gaming with a cheaper option that would allow for games to be streamed onto the system via a cloud service.

The past few years, however, have shown people there is still some time before the future of full-fledged game streaming will be the primary means to play AAA titles. Looking at Sony, its PlayStation Now service hasn’t sat well with most players, which has led to them allowing for a select number of games to be downloadable to a person’s hard drive, which is not much different than Xbox Game Pass. If the technological powerhouse that is Google is hampered by the non-universal bandwidth of the gaming community in any capacity, then it will be a while until the gaming industry pulls the complete 180 that’s being expected down the line.



Posted on

Instagram appoints Facebook veteran as new CEO

SAN FRANCISCO (Xinhua): US photo-sharing site Instagram has named Facebook veteran designer Adam Mosseri as its new CEO to fill the vacancy left by a surprise announcement of Instagram’s two co-founders who are leaving the company, the social media network said.

Instagram co-founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger, who resigned abruptly last week as the firm’s CEO and CTO, respectively, said that they are pleased to announce Adam Mosseri, a long-time Facebook veteran and Instagram Vice President of Product, took over the reigns of the photo-sharing site starting.

The two co-founders said that despite their announced departure, they hope Instagram will continue to keep its community and customers “front and center” in all that it does, and believe that “Adam will hold true to these values and that Instagram will continue to thrive.”

Mosseri joined Facebook as a designer in 2008 and worked on its mobile product and news feed before moving over to Instagram. He became vice president of product at Instagram in May 2018.

Systrom and Krieger described Adam as a product leader with a strong design background and a focus on craft and simplicity, as well as a deep understanding of the importance of community.

While leading Instagram as the new leader, Adam will oversee all functions of the business and will recruit a new executive team including a head of engineering, head of product and head of operations, said the two co-founders of Instagram.




Posted on

Apple silent over iPhone ‘chargegate’ complaints

LONDON (BBC): Apple has remained silent amid complaints that its new iPhone XS and XS Max smartphones fail to charge consistently when plugged in.

Several users have reported that their device refuses to charge if it has been idle for a while. Some charge only if the display is “woken up”.

Video blogger Lewis Hilsenteger dubbed the issue “chargegate” in a video demonstrating the problem.

However, Apple has not yet commented on the issue.

Mr Hilsenteger presents the Unbox Therapy channel on YouTube, which has more than 12 million subscribers.

In a video published on Saturday, he tested nine iPhones by plugging them into an official Apple power supply.

While the 2017 iPhone X charged without problem, many of the new XS and XS Max phones refused to charge when plugged in.

Most of the phones would charge only when the display was activated to wake up the device. However, one of them would not charge at all.

Mr Hilsenteger said he had been alerted to the problem when a viewer had emailed him describing their troubles.

He had not noticed the issue himself because he used wireless charging rather than the power cable on his device.

“Responding to those people on a platform like this should bring light to it and hopefully some sort of software fix, if possible,” he said in the video.

“This is my job. I have to call this stuff out. I have to hold these companies accountable.”

Several complaints about the XS and XS Max failing to charge have also been posted on Apple’s discussion forum on its website.

Complaints can also be found on social media, where some people have described being unable to charge their phone at all once the battery is exhausted.

Some users have speculated that the problem is related to a recent change in Apple’s security settings.

Since iOS 11.4.1 was released, the lightning port on iPhones can be disabled when the phone has been idle for a while. That could stop thieves, cyber-attackers or law enforcement officers accessing it.

“In some cases, it might not charge,” the company advises on its website.

However, that does not explain why more iPhone XS and XS Max users are facing the issue.

Apple has not yet responded to the BBC’s request for comment.

Posted on

Mobile banking transactions witnesses growth

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: With a significant growth of some 195 percent, mobile phone banking transactions crossed Rs 410 billion mark during the last fiscal year (FY18).

According to State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Mobile Phone/App based banking is being offered by 21 Banks/MFBs to 3.4 million registered users at the end of June, 2018.

Intra-bank and Inter-bank fund transfer were the main contributors in total Mobile Phone Banking transactions. Intra-bank fund transfers contributed 5.8(26.6%) million transactions by volume and Rs. 186.2(45.4%) billion by value. Inter-bank fund transfers contributed 5.0 (22.9%) million transactions by volume and Rs. 196.4 (47.9%) million by value.

Utility Bills Payments has the share of 10.1 (46.3%)million by volume and Rs.10.5 billion (2.6%) by value within overall Mobile Banking volume and value transactions respectively and insignificant residual share is contributed by miscellaneous payment using mobile phone app.

Call Center/ IVR Banking Transactions During the year FY18, Call enters/IVR Banking Channel processed 0.3 million transactions amounting to Rs. 8.7 million. This channel facilitates Intra and Inter-Bank Funds transfers, Utilities Bill Payments.

As on end June 2018, there were 26.5 million Call Centers/IVR Banking Channel registered users with Banks. It also facilitates16 million non-financial transactions during the year.

The e-Banking channels, i.e, real time online branches (RTOB), ATMs, e-Commerce, Internet, Mobile Phone and Call Centers/IVR Banking collectively processed 756.4 million transactions of value Rs 47.4 trillion during the last fiscal year. These transactions showed significant growth of 21 percent and 28 percent in both volume and value of transactions compared to previous year FY17.

During the year under review, Real Time Online Branches (RTOB) processed 165.7 million transactions of Rs 39.9 trillion.

These transactions depicted YoY growth of 15 percent and 28 percent in volume and value of transactions respectively compared to previous year.



Posted on

Facebook confirms 50 million accounts affected by security breach

NEW YORK (AFP): Facebook Inc said Friday hackers stole digital login codes allowing them to take over nearly 50 million user accounts in its worst security breach ever given the unprecedented level of potential access, adding to what has been a difficult year for the company’s reputation.

Facebook, which has more than 2.2 billion monthly users, said it has yet to determine whether the attacker misused any accounts or stole private information. It also has not identified the attacker’s location or whether specific victims were targeted. Its initial review suggests the attack was broad in nature.

Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg described the incident as “really serious” in a conference call with reporters. His account was affected along with that of Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, a spokeswoman said.

Shares in Facebook fell 2.6 percent on Friday, weighing on major Wall Street stock indexes.

Facebook made headlines earlier this year after profile details from 87 million users were improperly accessed by political data firm Cambridge Analytica. The disclosure has prompted government inquiries into the company’s privacy practices across the world and fueled a “#deleteFacebook” social movement among consumers.

US lawmakers said on Friday that the hack may boost calls for data privacy legislation.

“This is another sobering indicator that Congress needs to step up and take action to protect the privacy and security of social media users,” Democratic US Senator Mark Warner said in a statement.

Federal Trade Commission Commissioner Rohit Chopra on Twitter said “I want answers” with a link to a Reuters story on the breach.

‘Complex’ flaw

Facebook’s latest vulnerability had existed since July 2017, but the company first identified it on Tuesday after spotting a “fairly large” increase in the use of its “view as” privacy feature on September 16, executives said.

“View as” allows users to verify their privacy settings by seeing what their own profile looks like to someone else. The flaw inadvertently gave the devices of “view as” users the wrong digital code, which, like a browser cookie, keeps users signed in to a service across multiple visits.

That code could allow the person using “view as” to post and browse from someone else’s Facebook account, potentially exposing private messages, photos and posts. The attacker also could have gained full access to victims’ accounts on any third-party app or website where they had logged in with Facebook credentials.

“The implications of this are huge,” Justin Fier, director of cyber intelligence at security company Darktrace, told Reuters.

Guy Rosen, the Facebook vice president overseeing security, said the flaw was “complex” in that it resulted from three failings.

A video upload feature should not have displayed on a user’s profile page when accessed through “view as,” Rosen told reporters on a conference call. That alone would not have been problematic except that the video feature wrongly triggered the placement of the powerful login code. And it placed the code not for the “view as” user, but for who they were pretending to be.

Facebook fixed the issue on Thursday. It also notified the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Department of Homeland Security, Congressional aides, and the Data Protection Commission in Ireland, where the company has European headquarters.

The Irish authority expressed concern in a statement that Facebook has been “unable to clarify the nature of the breach and risk to users” and said it was pressing Facebook for answers.

Facebook reset the digital keys of the 50 million affected accounts and as a precaution temporarily disabled “view as” and reset those keys for another 40 million that have been looked up through “view as” over the last year.

About 90 million people will have to log back into Facebook or any of their apps that use a Facebook login, the company said.

Two Facebook users sued the company over the breach in federal court in California on Friday.

More than 6,000 users complained about the breach on Zuckerberg’s Facebook page.

“I’m so scared now. All my activities are on Facebook,” Mohammad ZR Zia, a 25-year-old college student in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, who has been using the social media platform since 2009, told Reuters. His account was logged out earlier on Friday.

The level of concern expressed on Facebook was enough that the company’s automated system temporarily blocked sharing of some articles about the breach.

“Our security systems have detected that a lot of people are posting the same content, which could mean that it’s spam,” a message told users. Facebook later apologized for the misfire.

Facebook has suffered narrower breaches before.

In 2013, Facebook disclosed a software flaw that exposed 6 million users’ phone numbers and email addresses to unauthorized viewers for a year, while a technical glitch in 2008 revealed confidential birth-dates on 80 million Facebook users’ profiles.

Posted on

Facebook New Feature allows users to Add Music to Photos

Monitoring Desk

LAHORE: Facebook keeps on launching new features to make it users stuck hard to the social media giant. Just recently Facebook announced stories have around 300 million daily users. Now Facebook revealed that its user’s will now be able to add songs to photos and videos. The Facebook new feature was the most awaited.

For me, this was the most awaited features as I had to use another app for the sole purpose and later post it to Facebook. Mata Patterson, Facebook Stories, product manager said that:

The options to attach songs to photos and videos is now being tested and will soon be made available to everyone.

Adding music to your stories gives an overall wonderful experience, beyond just sharing to what you’re listening to. By adding a choice of your song is the best way to express yourself. Finally, Facebook has started to test music on Facebook Stories and Newsfeed.

How to Use this feature:

Upload a photo or video on Facebook

Tap on the sticker icon to choose a music sticker

Now you can select list of songs and a portion of it that you want to use in Post

Now publish the post

Upon publishing the post, your friends will be able to see the names of the song and artist.

The company said that this feature is being tested globally, so in some time it will be pushed out to everyone.

Posted on

Google celebrates 20th birthday

Monitoring Desk

NEW YORK: Google, the world’s most popular search engine, turns 20 this month and it’s celebrating with a special doodle.

The internet’s rabbit hole that gives access to everything from academic research to retail therapy and hours of online gaming has got most internet users relying on it.

To celebrate Google’s two decades of existence, we’ve compiled a list of twenty facts you may not know about the company:

⯈Google often brings in goats to “mow” the lawns of its offices.

⯈Google is a misspelling of the word “googol” – a large number that you can write as the digit one followed by 100 zeroes.

⯈“Don’t be evil” was one of the company’s original mantras.

⯈Google is meant to denote the masses of information that the company delivers.

⯈If you search for the word “askew” in Google, the results will appear slightly tilted to the right. Try it!

⯈If you type a ridiculously long number into Google, followed by the search term “=english”, it’ll tell you that number in words.

Google began in the garage of eventual employee Susan Wojcicki’s Menlo Park home. Photo: AFP file

⯈Google began in the garage of eventual employee Susan Wojcicki’s Menlo Park home.

⯈Wojcicki went on to become the CEO of Google-owned YouTube.

⯈Google offices must be no further than 200 feet away from food, upon Sergey Brin’s instruction, according to Forbes.

⯈Founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin offered to sell Google for $1 million (£760,000) back in 1999. The offer was rejected.

⯈A venture capitalist got the above offer down to $750,000 (£570,000). Still, the buyer refused. Talk about a missed opportunity.

⯈Google is the most visited website in the world.

⯈The first Google Doodle was a stickman, as a homage to Burning Man 1998, which Larry Page attended (and evidently enjoyed).

⯈Members of deceased Google employees in the US will receive 50% of their salaries for a decade after their death.

⯈Jeff Bezos was an early investor in Google.

⯈“Google” has been a verb in the Oxford English Dictionary since 2006.

⯈Every minute, 2.4 million searches happen on Google.

⯈Google went down for a few minutes on 16 August 2013, and global web traffic dropped 40%.

⯈Google works out traffic density via the speed at which Android devices on the road are moving.

Posted on

Nokia reveals images of X7

Monitoring Desk

ISLAMABAD: We all know that Nokia 7 Plus has won the award of “Consumer Smartphone of the Year” at EISA Awards 2018. Now many rumors have been swirling about the upcoming Nokia 7.1 Plus model that will be most probably called Nokia X7. A few days back, Nokia X7 appeared in 360 Degree Rumor-Based Renders which unveiled that the smartphone will come with minimal side bezels and a small notch. Recently, Nokia X7 Live Images showed up revealing some details about its back.

The live images showed up at the Chinese social network Baidu. The first live image of the upcoming smartphone gives us a look at the protruding camera setup. It will have two sensors. Furthermore, there will be a LED flash on the left side. It will sport a circular fingerprint scanner positioned below the camera setup. There will also be the obligatory Nokia logo below the scanner.

The live images revealed two color options for the upcoming phone. Nokia X7 color options include a Copper Gradient as well as a Silver one. Let’s have a look at them.




Posted on

1b gigabytes data generated daily: Expert

Monitoring Desk

ISTANBUL: An estimated 1.2 exabyte – more than 1 billion gigabytes — data are produced daily all around the world, Gungor Kaymak, general manager of Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) Turkey, said on Tuesday.

“Technology works are getting hard due to the voluminous data,” he said while speaking at the HPE’s technology event “Reimagine 2018” held in Istanbul.

“Control of 94 percent of the generated data loses without being recorded. We need greater processor power to use this data,” he added.

Stressing the need of processing the data, he said if the companies collect data from consumers and process them for their works, they will be successful.

The one-day event, Reimagine 2018, focuses on big data, the blockchain, artificial intelligence, internet of things (IoT) and future technology.


Posted on

Users complain slower speeds in new iPhones

Monitoring Desk

ISLAMABAD: Apple’s newly released iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max customers have recently been seeing reporting issues with the phone’s poor cell and Wi-Fi reception.

Users upgrading from their older models to Apple’s new iPhones have complained about the phone’s poor cell and Wi-Fi signal strength along with significantly slower speeds as compared to their older phones like iPhone 7 or the iPhone X.

As per reports seen on Apple’s support forum, Mac Rumors forums and Reddit, the issue is widespread across the country and not just limited to any specific carrier, reported The Verge.