Xiaomi to sell smartphones in UK through Three

‘China’s Apple’ turns focus to west and is set to raise $10bn on Hong Kong stock exchangeThe Smartphone maker Xiaomi will begin selling its smartphones in the UK under a partnership with Hutchinson’s Three as “China’s Apple” turns its attention to the west.The news came as the firm announced its IPO on the Hong Kong stock exchange seeking to raise at least $10bn (£7.3bn), in what could be the largest offering since Chinese e-commerce conglomerate Alibaba’s $25bn listing in New York in 2014

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Amazon now delivers packages straight to car boots

Latest in Amazon Key programme sees newer Volvos and General Motors vehicles become lockboxes for Prime membersAmazon has begun offering deliveries direct to car boots for members of its Prime subscription service.The new Amazon Key In-Car service is available in 37 US cities for owners of 2015 or newer Volvo or General Motors vehicles, including Chevrolet, Buick, GMC or Cadillac brands. The cars require GM’s OnStar or Volvo’s On Call connectivity services

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Ring: Amazon aids smart home push by closing video-doorbell firm deal

Retailer celebrates by slashing prices on smart doorbells, while deal includes transfer of customer data to companyAmazon’s reported $1bn acquisition of video-doorbell maker Ring has closed, giving the company a significant lead over rival Google in the potentially lucrative home security market.The deal, announced in February and closed today, means Amazon now owns a leader in DIY video security systems. Ring makes popular wireless doorbells with cameras and a range of home security cameras, recently launching a wireless home security system with keypads, contact sensors and motion detectors

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We need to build a new social contract for the digital age | Kevin Keith

We are conditioned to view data as a threat, but it can be the opposite, if all parties understand the deal into which they are entering “Raise your hands if you trust Facebook, if you trust Google, if you trust government.” It was spring 2017, and I was leading a debate with young people in Canberra. “Has anybody heard of Cambridge Analytica?” Heads shook

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Beware the smart toaster: 18 tips for surviving the surveillance age

We’ve come a long way since the web was just a fun place to share cat gifs – now it’s a place mostly dedicated to finding and selling your personal info. Here’s what you need to know in this new eraOn the internet, the adage goes, nobody knows you’re a dog. That joke is only 15 years old, but seems as if it is from an entirely different era

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Amazon working to fix Alexa after users report random burst of 'creepy' laughter

The company acknowledged the issue after some reported their devices had developed an unsettling new skillThe robot wars are coming, and Alexa will have the last laugh.Amazon acknowledged on Wednesday that some of its Alexa-enabled devices have developed a new skill: creeping out their owners with unexpected and unwarranted bursts of robotic laughter.So Alexa decided to laugh randomly while I was in the kitchen

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Phones should be 'slaves, not masters', says Samsung UK mobile chief

Firm says shift to more connected and ‘concierge-like’ experience needed to combat smartphone-obsessed societyWe need to return to being the masters of our technology and stop being slaves to our phones, says Samsung’s head of mobile for the UK.Following increasing unease from technology insiders and development experts that young and old alike are becoming increasingly addicted to smartphones, social media and the constant need for messaging, Samsung’s head of mobile in the UK says that something needs to change to stop the constant heads-down relationship we have with our devices. Continue reading

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'Much work needed' to make digital economy environmentally sustainable

MPs cast doubt on whether energy efficiency gains can keep offsetting rising power demandA cross-party group of MPs has raised doubts over whether the growing energy demand from digital technology and the proliferation of internet-connected gadgets can continue to be offset by energy efficiency improvements.More efficient smartphones, networking gear and data centres have so far largely staved off increased power demand from the internet and computing – which now accounts for about 6% of global electricity use. Continue reading

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Ring Video Doorbell 2 review: deal with doorsteppers from your sofa

This smart doorbell connects to your phone – but you might want to disable notifications when at workThe Ring Video Doorbell 2 adds the convenience of a front-door intercom to pretty much any home, and with minimal DIY skills required, meaning it’s never been easier to get rid of doorsteppers.There have long been wifi-connected doorbells, for those envious of flat-dwelling friends with video intercoms adding that extra barrier between them and the outside world, but most of them require some sort of wiring to install.Pros: easy to install and set up, solid app, great as basic doorbell, great as a camera from your door, attractive, no wiring required, lots of accessories and optionsCons: battery needs charging once a month, can’t use local storage for video, quite large for some door frames, expensive for a doorbell Continue reading

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