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  • Qualcomm joins Wireless Power Consortium board, sparks hope for A4WP and Qi unification

    Qualcomm joins Wireless Power Consortium board, sparks hope to unify A4WP and Qi

    Qualcomm, the founding member of Alliance for Wireless Power (or A4WP in short), made a surprise move today by joining the management board of the rival Wireless Power Consortium (or WPC), the group behind the already commercially available Qi standard. This is quite an interesting development considering how both alliances have been openly critical of each other, and yet now there’s a chance of seeing just one standard getting the best of both worlds. That is, of course, dependent on Qualcomm’s real intentions behind joining the WPC.

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    Source: Wireless Power Consortium

  • Verizon FiOS Mobile on Android and iOS can now stream live TV from anywhere
    Verizon FiOS Mobile on Android and iOS can now stream live TV from anywhere

    The shackles have been officially removed. If you’re one of the many folks using FiOS Mobile on Android or iOS, then you’re aware the app’s live TV streaming feature has only worked while being connected to one’s own home network. Beginning today, though, Verizon will allow FiOS TV subscribers to view real-time content even when away from their humble abode, via the FiOS Mobile Android and iOS applications. The number of networks supported is pretty short, with only nine being onboard at the moment — this includes the Travel Channel, BBC America, BBC World News, EPIX, HGTV, DIY, Tennis Channel and, on the iPad, the NFL Network. But, as they say, you’ve got to start somewhere, and chances are this channel lineup will become more robust in the weeks ahead.

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    Via: TechCrunch

    Source: Google Play, App Store, Amazon Appstore

  • MakerBot Digitizer eyes-on

    MakerBot Digitizer eyeson

    This ain’t the same Digitizer we saw back at South by Southwest. The prototype that was unveiled in Austin back in March looked an awful lot like those early generation MakerBot printers, borrowing heavily from the plywood aesthetic that seemed to imply that its creators had built the thing with their own hands. The version the company showed off at SXSW was in keeping with the company’s mission statement of building things themselves, featuring a laser-cut wood frame and 3D printed parts. But the Brooklyn company’s come a long way since those simpler RepRap days, growing into the leading light in the world of consumer-facing 3D printers.

    The Replicator 2 really drove the point home with a solidly constructed black frame that eschewed its predecessors’ wood finish, and the Digitizer can easily be viewed as part of a matching set. “The MakerBot Digitizer started because I really wanted a 3D scanner to go with our 3D printer,” said CEO Bre Pettis at today’s event at the company’s office in Brooklyn, “and they were all too expensive.” The 3D scanner joins the Replicator, MakerWare and the online community Thingiverse as the major missing piece of the MakerBot ecosystem puzzle, an attempt to create the most user-friendly 3D-printing ecosystem available. Now you can download, create and scan your way into the 3D-printing world, from the comfort of your own (admittedly sizable desktop).

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  • Bad news from BlackBerry: 4,500 jobs to be cut, expected Q2 net operating loss of over $950 million

    Things haven’t been going well at BlackBerry for awhile, what with lackluster adoption of BB10 and the hardware running it, and rumors that massive layoffs are coming before the end of the year. Today, the company confirmed the latter rumor, announcing that it will lay off around 4,500 employees as a part of a plan to reduce its operating expenditures by half over the next year. The plan’s necessitated by an expected Q2 2014 net operating loss of almost one billion (955-995 million) dollars, driven primarily by the lackluster sale of its BB10 phones — the company will take a pre-tax charge of $930-960 million which can be attributed mostly to the failure of the Z10 to sell. BlackBerry expects revenue for Q2 to be $1.6 billion, which is roughly half of the $3.1 billion it pulled in last quarter.

    Needless to say, the financial outlook for the company isn’t good, and some changes are in order. In the near term, the Z10 will be priced “ to make it available to a broader, entry-level audience,” leaving the Z30 as BlackBerry’s all-touch flagship. To try to turn things around in the long term, the company’s going to refocus on its enterprise offerings and will reduce its device portfolio from six devices to four, with two high end and two entry level phones. And, don’t get it twisted, the days of BlackBerry courting mainstream consumers is all but over — its future phones will be aimed at the “enterprise and prosumers.”

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