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As Bitcoin sinks, industry startups are forced to cut back

As Bitcoin sinks, industry startups are forced to cut back

Around this time last year, the price of Bitcoin  hit an all-time high of nearly $20,000. Cryptocurrency enthusiasts everywhere boasted about the wealth 2018 would bring, initial coin offerings exploded and startups continued to pull in record amounts of venture capital. Fast-forward one year: Bitcoin is down 75 percent to a meager $3,700, sinking as quickly as its meteoric rise, and industry startups are paying the price.The latest victim is Bitmain,  a provider of bitcoin mining hardware that very recently submitted its IPO prospectus to the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong. The company confirmed to CoinDesk this week that cutbacks would begin imminently: “There has been some adjustment to our staff this year as we continue to build a long-term, sustainable and scalable business,” a spokesperson for Bitmain told CoinDesk . “A part of that is having to really focus on things that are core to that mission and not things that are auxiliary.”
Amazon announces a record-breaking holiday, ‘tens of millions’ of new Prime subscribers

Amazon announces a record-breaking holiday, ‘tens of millions’ of new Prime subscribers

Amazon  had another record-breaking holiday season, the retailer announcedthis morning. The company says it added “tens of millions” of people who signed up for Prime memberships, both paid and on a trial basis. Its worldwide customers also shopped and ordered more items than ever before, including “millions more Amazon devices” compared with this time last year. The device best-sellers, as on Black Friday, again included Amazon Echo speakers and Fire TV.Specifically, Amazon said its top devices sold over the holidays were the Echo Dot, Fire TV Stick 4K and the Echo.Millions of Fire TV devices, Fire tablets and Kindle devices were also sold. Smart home devices sold in record numbers as well, with best sellers including Amazon Smart Plug, Ring Video Doorbell 2, TP-Link Kasa Smart Plug Mini Outlet and the iRobot Roomba 690.
Titanic VR Developer VR Education Release Learning Platform ENGAGE

Titanic VR Developer VR Education Release Learning Platform ENGAGE

Thanks to its IPO in March which raised £6 million GBP, VR Education Holdings not only managed to fund projects like Titanic VR, but also further develop its proprietary VR education platform, ENGAGE. Today, the company has announced the launch of version 1.0 for commercial useThis initial release of ENGAGE supports HTC Vive, Oculus Rift and Windows Mixed Reality headsets with devices such as the Oculus Go, Vive Focus and Google DayDream to be added in the new year.In development since 2015, ENGAGE has been designed to overcome certain aspects of online courses and traditional learning methods. The platform allows for virtual face-to-face education and training in a variety of environments regardless of the geographical location of the user, with one of its key components being the ability for educators and trainers to use the software to create their own VR lessons and presentations.
We finally started taking screen time seriously in 2018

We finally started taking screen time seriously in 2018

The beginning of this year, I was using my iPhone to browse new titles on Amazon when I saw the cover of “How to Break Up With Your Phone” by Catherine Price. I downloaded it on Kindle because I genuinely wanted to reduce my smartphone use, but also because I thought it would be hilarious to read a book about breaking up with your smartphone on my smartphone (stupid, I know). Within a couple of chapters, however, I was motivated enough to download Moment, a screen time tracking app recommended by Price, and re-purchase the book in print.Early in “How to Break Up With Your Phone,” Price invites her readers to take the Smartphone Compulsion Test, developed by David Greenfield, a psychiatry professor at the University of Connecticut who also founded the Center for Internet and Technology Addiction. The test has 15 questions, but I knew I was in trouble after answering the first five. Humbled by my very high score, which I am too embarrassed to disclose, I decided it was time to get serious about curtailing my smartphone usage.
Here’s the Latest on the Gatwick Drone Disruption: Damaged Drone Being Tested for DNA Evidence

Here’s the Latest on the Gatwick Drone Disruption: Damaged Drone Being Tested for DNA Evidence

Some news outlets still identify the drone operators as “Eco-terrorists.”  Others mention organized crime.  One poice chief suggested that the flying object causing complete chaos at Gatwick Airport last week might not even have been a drone.  The U.K. government and military, airport authorities and law enforcement have all committed major resources to the crime: but so far, we have very few answers about who was responsible for last week’s disruptions.England’s second busiest airport was closed down last Wednesday, December 19, when pilots and airport officials spotted drones “buzzing” over the runways.  In order to avoid a collision, flights were canceled.   The drones were identified by airport officials as “industrial” drones – larger than most recreational or commercial drones, and potentially more damaging to aircraft.   The drones in questions also appear to have a long range – making it more difficult for authorities to identify the operators.
Security guides for protecting your privacy

Security guides for protecting your privacy

With hundreds of millions of people going home for the holidays, now is a better time than ever to spread good tidings and cheer, and — well, some much needed security advice for all the family.Security sounds complicated but it doesn’t have to be. Privacy is more important than ever. With an ever-changing and evolving landscape of threats and hacks, breaches and vulnerabilities, there’s no better time of the year to help your family navigate some of the most basic but effective security tips. (Let’s face it, you were bound to end up being called on for tech support at some point anyway.)
Apple StudioPods release date, price and specs rumours

Apple StudioPods release date, price and specs rumours

Apple is planning to launch its own brand of over-the-ear headphones to join the in-ear AirPods. In this article we look at the rumours and clarifications of Apple's plans below, including the expected price, release date and name for the new headgear. We've also got some brilliant-looking concept illustrations.The rumour first came from KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who issued a research note in February 2018 saying: "Apple to have own-brand, high-end over-ear headphones with all-new design; to be as convenient as AirPods with better sound quality; shipments to begin 4Q18F at earliest."Then Apple's interest in developing the product was confirmed by Bloomberg sources in March 2018. The 'people familiar with the product's development' claimed that Apple "plans to launch the headphones as early as the end of this year [2018], but has faced development challenges that might push back the release."
Amazon is making it more expensive to fulfill 'dangerous' items in its warehouses weeks after a can of bear spray exploded and injured dozens of workers

Amazon is making it more expensive to fulfill 'dangerous' items in its warehouses weeks after a can of bear spray exploded and injured dozens of workers

Amazon appears to be discouraging its sellers who use the Fulfillment by Amazon program from sending more dangerous items into its warehouses.FBA is a program in which third-party sellers send their goods to be stored in Amazon warehouses before they are sold on Amazon.com. Items are then shipped out like a normal order by the e-commerce giant.Amazon announced on its seller forum last Wednesday that it will be introducing a new fee for "dangerous" items like aerosol cans and lithium-ion batteries that sellers send to Amazon warehouses. The fees are higher than the regular fees Amazon charges for using Fulfillment by Amazon.For example: a normal item with a shipping weight of between 10 and 16 ounces and is considered small would qualify for a fee of $2.48, while a "dangerous" item the same size would carry a charge of $3.45.
UK police release airport drone suspects and admit there may not have been any drones after all

UK police release airport drone suspects and admit there may not have been any drones after all

Less than a week after mystery drones grounded flights at the U.K.’s second largest airport, wreaking havoc on as many as 140,000 people’s travel plans for the Christmas period, police have admitted that there may in fact not have been any drones at all.Gatwick airport reopened on Friday after a one-day shutdown but it appears that investigators are no closer to knowing what actually took place.The Guardian reports that police released and exonerated a couple who had been detained as suspects, while a senior police spokesperson said there is “always a possibility that there may not have been any genuine drone activity in the first place.”
Apple confirms some iPad Pros ship slightly bent, but says it’s normal

Apple confirms some iPad Pros ship slightly bent, but says it’s normal

Apple has confirmed to The Verge that some of its 2018 iPad Pros are shipping with a very slight bend in the aluminum chassis. But according to the company, this is a side effect of the device’s manufacturing process and shouldn’t worsen over time or negatively affect the flagship iPad’s performance in any practical way. Apple does not consider it to be a defect.The bend is the result of a cooling process involving the iPad Pro’s metal and plastic components during manufacturing, according to Apple. Both sizes of the new iPad Pro can exhibit it. The iPad Pro ranges in price from $799 for the base 11-inch model up to $1,899 for a fully-loaded 12.9-inch device with 1TB of storage and LTE connectivity.


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