Latest Technology News

eBay and PayPal to split into separate businesses in 2015

eBay and PayPal to split into separate businesses in 2015

A giant of the modern web is to be cleft in twain. eBay Inc is set to split its online payment service PayPal into a separate, independent, publicly traded company; eBay and PayPal will be divided into two in the second half of 2015.

By keeping the auction and payment services at arm's length from each other, eBay will be hoping to breathe new life into the beleaguered selling site. The move comes after a review of the company’s structure and growth strategies by the board of directors, and is described as providing "shareholders with more targeted investment opportunities".

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Another data breach... Yeah, yeah, whatever

yawning

It seems like data breaches are seldom out of the news these days, but whilst that means we're more likely to be aware of their existence it also means there's a risk that individual threats begin to fade into the general day-to-day techy chatter and we don't give them the attention they deserve.

The growing number of breaches -- up 10 percent over last year according to a recent study by the Ponemon institute -- means they're less likely to catch our attention. Security training firm KnowBe4 refers to this phenomenon as "breach fatigue" and warns that it may be placing companies at risk.

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Windows 9 -- What to expect from the new OS

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Microsoft will be announcing its new OS later today, with things kicking off at 10am PT/6pm BST. Although we’ve already seen various leaked images and videos, this will be our first official look at Windows 9 (aka Threshold) and Microsoft will reveal what it has planned for the successor to the much maligned Windows 8.

There isn’t a live stream unfortunately, and although a technology preview will be released for the new OS, it isn’t expected to be made available today. So what can we expect from Windows 9?

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Google Glass adopted by Edinburgh Airport staff as wearables explode in popularity

Google Glass adopted by Edinburgh Airport staff as wearables explode in popularity

At the airport, it's normal to see customer service staff equipped with phones, walkie-talkies and perhaps a tablet. Passengers travelling to and from Scotland who pass through Edinburgh airport will soon find that they are greeted by staff adorned with Google Glass. Google's wearable specs are to be trialled in the Scottish airport in a bid to provide more help and information to travelers.

Customer support representatives will be able to call up flight details and answer queries using the head-mounted Android-powered hardware.

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Audacity refines user interface, improves selected effects

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Popular open-source, cross-platform sound recording, editing and mixing tool Audacity 2.0.6 has been released. The new build contains a number of minor improvements and various bug fixes.

Most of these changes affect the user interface. Both Cut and Delete options have been moved to the top of the Edit menu, for example. The Transport menu has also been altered to offer a single Play/Stop button as well as a "Play/Stop and Set Cursor" option for leaving the cursor set where playback has halted.

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Simpler, faster, more secure file transfers with Send Anywhere 2.0

files folders pc transfer move

Sending files to someone else has always been a bit of a problem. Often they’re too big for email, sharing via public cloud services raises security concerns and of course flash drives and DVDs can fall into the wrong hands.

Korea-based startup Send Anywhere has an answer to making file transfers easily and safely in the form of an updated version of its iOS app and a new app for Windows Phone.

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Grace Digital aptX Bluetooth Speakers (GDI-BTSP201) -- bringing music to life [Review]

metsgrace

Bluetooth speakers are a dime a dozen, nowadays. Quite frankly, it is hard to get excited about them. While they can be used with a desktop at a workstation, the true allure is portability with a smartphone or tablet. You see, there is typically a trade-off of quality for convenience, and the average audiophile would likely turn up their nose at using them.

While I have heard some great Bluetooth speakers like the UE BOOM and JBL Flip, they ultimately were not enough to replace my desktop speakers, the Logitech Z-2300. Those desktop speakers are quite phenomenal and hard to beat. I recently tested the Cambridge Audio Minx M5 and found them to be wonderful, but they do not offer a wireless connection. Today, I am looking at the Grace Digial aptX Bluetooth Speakers, which work as both wired and wireless.

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OnePlus will launch One successor around mid-2015, ponders smaller devices

OnePlus One

By now I am sure that everyone with an interest in smartphones has heard about One Plus and its One phablet. It is undoubtedly among the most interesting Android devices launched this year, and one of the most hyped also. How did OnePlus, basically a new player in the mobile space, achieve that? Well, One managed to make a splash in no small part thanks to its $299 entry-level price, which allows it to undercut virtually every known rival, paired with some of the best and most powerful hardware around. That's a recipe for success in the Android realm, and OnePlus knows it all too well.

But, what tops its lovely hardware and the low asking price is that One has never actually been available to the general public, per se. Sure, people have been able to buy One, but they have been able to do so only through invites. As a way to sell smartphones -- commodities, really -- that is crazy. But, what is even crazier is that, even as One is still not generally available, OnePlus reveals a launch date for its successor.

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You can now mute audio in Chrome with a single click

chrome mute audio

Have you encountered situations before where audio suddenly starts to play in your web browser of choice without you clicking on a play button? This can be extremely frustrating, especially if you have opened multiple sites in rapid succession.

It happens because websites start to autoplay audio, either in the form of an embedded video or audio file, when a site gets loaded in the browser -- even if it is not the active tab.

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Weak passwords are still a major problem for business security

Obvious password

According to data released by security company Trustwave which has analyzed evidence from almost 700 security breaches that took place in 2013, retail is the most compromised industry, accounting for 35 percent of attacks investigated.

The food and drink industry ranks second on 18 percent followed by hospitality on 11 percent. Perhaps not surprisingly e-commerce is most at risk, making up 54 percent of assets targeted whilst data centers account for only 10 percent. Point of sale breaches made up 33 percent of Trustwave’s investigations.

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Why is Dell crippling its low end server RAID cards?

Speed Bump Sky Warning Sign

When scoping out new servers for customers, we usually look towards Dell, as their boxes have the right mix of price, performance, expandability, and quality that we strive for. RAID card options these days are fairly plentiful, with our sweet spot usually ending up on the PERC H700 series cards that Dell preinstalls with its midrange to higher end PowerEdge server offerings.

But recently we were forced into using one of its lower end RAID cards, the H200 PCIe offering. This internal card was one of the few dedicated RAID options certified to work in a refurbished server we had to put back into production, a Dell R210 1u rack unit. The specs looked fine and dandy in nearly all respects, except for one area that I like to avoid: the lack of dedicated battery backed flash cache.

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Microsoft rolls out the new MSN, rebrands Bing apps for Windows, Windows Phone

New MSN

Microsoft did something rather unexpected earlier this month. The software giant unveiled a revamped MSN, saving the online portal from oblivion -- its biggest merit lately is being the default website for Internet Explorer. The new MSN looks great, connects users to Microsoft's consumer-facing cloud services, and can be tailored to suit their preference. It also makes it easy to trigger a search across the InterWebs. Heck, I have even said it might work as the Bing landing page.

Fast forward to today and Microsoft announces that more than 10 million users have tested the new MSN, with more than 80,000 of them also submitting feedback. Those numbers look really good. And they should, considering the online portal's Microsoft-focused audience. The feedback it has received must have been good also, as Microsoft announces it is rolling out the new MSN in the next three days.

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HTC One (M8) bends just as much as the iPhone 6 -- and the 6 Plus is stronger than both

HTC One bend

When reports first surfaced that the new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus were susceptible to bending after just a few days of everyday use, it looked as if Apple had a major problem on its hands. Tech blogs and Apple haters were quick to seize on the flaw, coining the term BendGate.

Apple downplayed the problem, saying it had only received nine complaints relating to bent phones -- out of ten million sales -- and now independent testing by Consumer Reports shows not only does it take a lot of force to bend an iPhone 6, but the HTC One (M8) also deforms when the exact same amount of pressure is applied.

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iPhone 6 and 6 Plus available in China next month

Apple iPhone 6 Plus

In case you did not know, China is the largest smartphone market worldwide, bigger even than the good old US of A. For the major players in the mobile industry, it is hugely important to be leading there, as being successful in China leads to a healthy market share growth overall, but, more importantly, a healthy increase in the bottom line also.

You can imagine then just how important it is for Apple to have its new iPhones on sale in China as soon as possible. Due to regulatory approvals, it has not happened yet, but luckily for the company, that will soon change.

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Say hello to Amelia -- the 'cognitive knowledge worker' set to transform business

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As 2014 races into the home straight, a new artificially intelligent computer system has been unveiled with the promise of transforming the global workforce. She's called Amelia.

Named after the American aviator and pioneer Amelia Earhart, the intelligent system is designed around the idea that it can shoulder tedious and labor-intensive tasks, freeing up its human co-workers to focus on more creative opportunities.

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