Month: May 2018

The best iPhone 8 plans and prices in Australia compared

Although the iPhone X is all the rage, those that don't necessarily have a desire for a huge screen, a notch, or a glaring void in their wallets will likely be chasing the iPhone 8. Of course, there's always its bigger sibling, the iPhone 8 Plus if you happen to fall in the middle of those two categories.

On this page, we've dug deep into all the networks and carriers and compared them to shreds, providing you with the best possible value, the biggest data, and the cheapest plans you can get bundled with your new Apple handset.

If you're not too sure if this is indeed the handset for you, you can check out our iPhone 8 review for the full lowdown. Otherwise, read on for our top picks from all the carriers.

See also: iPhone X deals | iPhone 7 deals | iPhone 7 Plus deals | Samsung Galaxy S9 deals | Galaxy S9 Plus deals

The best iPhone 8 plans

Best iPhone 8 plan for each carrier

from TechRadar – All the latest technology news http://www.techradar.com/news/australian-iphone-8-plans-compared-what-price-should-you-expect-to-pay

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The best iPhone X plans and prices in Australia compared

To get your hands on Apple's latest handset, there's gonna need to be some serious wallet-prying going on. The iPhone X (pronounced iPhone 10) will set you back a solid  $1,579 at the least, and if you want to jack up the 64GB storage to 256GB, you'll need to drop $1,829 on the flagship.

If you're looking to see why it's so expensive, you can check out our iPhone X review for more details on its sleek specs, but if you're trying to save some dollars by scoring it in a plan, look no further. 

We've painstakingly compared all the plans from the major providers that'll net you the new Apple flagship. There's something for everyone, whether you're looking for massive data, a penny-pincher of a plan, or the best all-rounder, we've got it here for you.

See also: iPhone 8 deals | iPhone 8 Plus deals | Samsung Galaxy S9 deals | Galaxy S9 Plus deals

The best iPhone X plans

Given the $1,579 starting price of the handset, most people are going to want to pick it up as part of a plan. Like the outright prices, the plans are similarly steep, but here's the cheapest plans you can order the iPhone X on right now.

The best iPhone X plan for each carrier

from TechRadar – All the latest technology news http://www.techradar.com/news/australian-iphone-x-plans-compared-what-price-should-you-expect-to-pay

Así es Spyce, el restaurante semi automatizado donde los robots han sustituido a los chefs

Spyce

Los fundadores de Spyce lo definen como “el primer restaurante del mundo que ofrece una cocina robótica que cocina comidas complejas”. Y es que no quieren que se les relacione con los recientes proyectos de robots ayudantes de cocina, como el pobre Flippy, o con otros restaurantes que han decidido retirar a los humanos. Por ello el lema de Spyce es “excelencia culinaria impulsada por la tecnología”.

Lo que hace diferente a Spyce con respecto al resto de opciones automatizadas y robóticas que existen hoy día, es que aquí no hay chefs, ya que los platillos son preparados por una enorme máquina que está a la vista de los clientes, lo que podría considerarse una experiencia fascinante, pero a la vez extraña. (more…)

Lenovo set to debut notch-free, all-screen Z5 phone next week

Rumblings have made their way around the internet over the last week surrounding the announcement of Lenovo's all-screen, notch-free Z5 smartphone, and while a June 14 launch was rumored, we now have an official reveal date: June 5, 2018. 

Lenovo vice president Chan Cheng made the device's reveal date official by posting the smartphone’s launch invite on the company's Weibo page.

As of now, there are just two pictures that give us a hint at the phone's tantalizing design – each one showing an edge-to-edge display with no controversial notch in sight, which goes a long way to backing up previous rumors about the flagship device. 

Here’s what the 'big deal' is… 

Though little about the device has been confirmed at this point, an image doing the rounds on social media suggests that the Lenovo Z5 would boast a 95% screen-to-body ratio (presumably due to a slight chin). However, there's still some mystery surrounding the placement of its front-facing camera, sensors and earpiece. 

Another interesting revelation from the VP mentions a whopping 4TB of onboard storage, which would definitely set a smartphone storage record if true. 

Going by the watermark on recently shared camera samples by Cheng, it’s quite evident that the phone will have a dual camera and will feature portrait mode. Moreover, a huge battery is expected on the phone as Cheng has mentioned a 45-days standby time on single charge. 

Of all the commercially sold bezel-less phones, the original Mi Mix is still the benchmark when it comes to having a truly edge-to-edge display. Whether Lenovo's Z5 will have what it takes to top that trend-setting design is anybody's guess. 

from TechRadar – All the latest technology news http://www.techradar.com/news/truly-bezel-free-lenovo-z5-confirmed-to-be-launched-on-june-5

Here’s why current smart home device owners are appealing to tech companies

This is a preview of a research report from Business Insider Intelligence, Business Insider’s premium research service. To learn more about Business Insider Intelligence, click here.

Not that long ago, many home-appliance and consumer-electronics makers were gearing up for what they thought would soon be a rapidly growing market for smart home devices.

The instant popularity of the Nest thermostat, introduced in 2011, seemed to confirm their hopes. But those expectations were dashed in the coming years as the market for connected home devices later stagnated. 

Even with these challenges, many of the biggest consumer technology companies are now moving into the smart home market. For example, Apple, which recently released its self-installed smart home ecosystem, called the Apple Home, traditionally doesn’t move into a market until it’s very mature and only when it can release a perfected product. Further, Google this fall launched the Google Home and its companion ecosystem, hoping to jump into the voice-activated smart home speaker market, which Amazon currently dominates with its Echo product line. 

In a new report, Business Insider Intelligence examines the demographics of the average smart home device owner and discuss why current smart home device owners are appealing to tech companies. The report also examines the plans of various tech giants in the smart home market and discuss their monetization strategies, and makes suggestions for how these companies can position themselves to make their products and devices more appealing to the mass market.

Here are some key takeaways from the report:

  • Tech companies primarily enter the market to enhance a core revenue stream or service, while device makers desire to collect data to improve their products and prevent costly recalls.
  • We forecast there will be $4.8 trillion in aggregate IoT investment between 2016 and 2021.
  • These companies are also seeking to create an early-mover advantage for themselves, where they gain an advantage by this head start on adoption.
  • Major barriers to mass market adoption that still must overcome include technological fragmentation and persistently high device prices.

In full, the report:

  • Details the market strategy of prominent tech companies and device makers, and analyzes why which ones are best poised to succeed once adoption ticks up.
  • Offers insight into current ownership through an exclusive survey from Business Insider Intelligence and analyzes what demographics will drive adoption moving forward.
  • Explains in detail which companies are poised to succeed in the market in the coming years as adoption increases and mass market consumers begin to purchase smart home devices.

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NOW WATCH: How to know which MacBook you should buy

Samsung won’t have to patch your old phones, court rules

The fight to get better phone security seems to be a losing battle, quite literally, with a Dutch court ruling that Samsung isn’t obliged to patch its older phones.

While Google dishes out software updates for Android on a regular basis, it passes them on to the phone manufacturers for distribution to users. Samsung – like most other manufacturers – chooses if and when it wants to roll out those patches.

The South Korean electronics giant was taken to court by Dutch consumer rights group Consumentenbond, which argued that the company should update its phones for at least four years after they go on sale, or for at least two years after they are sold. It even wanted the company to provide the patches within three months of them becoming available.

Losing (court) battle

Consumentenbond alleged that Samsung was leaving users unprotected from security risks by not providing patches for its phones in a “timely” fashion, with some of its older models not receiving any updates at all.

The Hague administrative court, however, disagreed with Consumentenbond and ruled that the case was inadmissible because it relates to the company’s future activities. According to the court ruling, “nothing can be decided regarding the nature and severity of any future security risks and Samsung's future actions" as it’s hard to determine “specific circumstance” today.

That means that if a risk is discovered in future, Samsung could choose to distribute updates to all its phones, or may not patch the software at all, depending on the nature of the bug and the limitations of the phone hardware.

Samsung support

Most phone manufacturers support their handsets for two full years after launch, with some companies, including Google, adding another year to the support cycle for security updates. Samsung says that its two-year support tenure and update frequency are “reasonable” enough. After all, phones have a two-year warranty in many countries, including the EU, and one year everywhere else.

While this may not sound very reassuring from a consumer perspective, it must be noted that when it comes to security patches, they aren’t feature updates (i.e. an OS overhaul), so companies aren’t necessarily legally obliged to distribute them, especially given those security exploits don’t arrive with the phone at launch.

From a business perspective, patching old devices isn’t a particularly profitable practice — unless the company can show that not doing so affects sales. And so far, neglecting old devices doesn’t seem to have hurt anyone’s bottom line.

We’re not saying that Samsung, or the court ruling for that matter, is in the right, but extending the support cycle sounds reasonable enough when Android is a highly targeted operating system.

from TechRadar – All the latest technology news http://www.techradar.com/news/samsung-wont-have-to-patch-your-old-phones-court-rules

GM Cruise just getting a huge investment to accelerate driverless car development

SoftBank, the company behind Boston Dynamics’ door-opening robots and a real-life Transformer, is investing billions into a more mainstream AI industry: driverless cars

Specifically, SoftBank Vision Fund, Softbank’s investment fund group, will bankroll $2.2 billion into GM Cruise, General Motors’ self-driving department, in return for a 20% stake, GM announced today in a statement

SoftBank will withhold $1.35 billion of its promised investment until GM’s autonomous vehicles are “ready for commercial deployment.” GM is hoping to launch its fleet of self-driving cars sometime next year. 

GM will also invest $1.1 billion of its own assets into GM Cruise. 

“Our Cruise and GM teams together have made tremendous progress over the last two years,” GM CEO Mary Barra said. “Teaming up with SoftBank adds an additional strong partner as we pursue our vision of zero crashes, zero emissions and zero congestion.”

GM’s Chevy Volt is its first choice for adding self-driving tech | Credit: Chevrolet

SoftBank’s investment will likely help GM in launching a pilot test program of self-driving cars in Manhattan sometime this year

Each of GM’s electric, self-driving Chevy Volts will be insured for $5 million for any potential accidents caused by GM’s AI. 

Forbes reports that GM and SoftBank’s partnership will span seven years. Michael Ronen, a managing partner at SoftBank Investment Advisers, told Forbes that seven years, “is a good benchmark for what we think is the runway for this technology to get at least close to maturity.”

SoftBank also spent $7 billion on a 15% stake in Uber, CNN Tech reported last year. Uber has its own self-driving ambitions, but after a high-profile, fatal accident in Arizona earlier this year, the company has suspended most of its self-driving testing on public roads. 

Another major player in the self-driving race

GM has the second-best safety record of self-driving disengagements after Waymo, Google’s self-driving division, and SoftBank’s major investment could help the Detroit-based manufacturer compete with its Silicon Valley rival. 

Just after GM’s announcement, Waymo revealed its plans to buy 62,000 Fiat Chrysler minivans with self-driving tech built-in, as part of the company’s plan to launch its self-driving ride-hailing service in Arizona later this year. 

Coincidentally, Waymo has also entered into discussions with Uber to lease out some of its cars to Uber’s self-driving taxi service. It’s unclear whether SoftBank could look to torpedo these talks, or encourage Uber to try out GM’s cars instead. 

Waymo’s Pacifica Hybrid minivan | Credit: Waymo

What we really want to know is whether GM plans to sell self-driving Chevy Volts from its fleet to consumers directly, or if it will look to start its own driverless ride-sharing or rental service instead. 

Uber released a joint statement with other ride-sharing companies earlier this year stating that consumers shouldn’t be able to buy their own autonomous vehicles. 

If GM chooses to sell self-driving cars and Uber lobbies against it, SoftBank could end up awkwardly backing both sides of the feud. But, until GM announces more concrete plans, much of this is mere speculation. 

from TechRadar – All the latest technology news http://www.techradar.com/news/gm-cruise-just-getting-a-huge-investment-to-accelerate-driverless-car-development