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Reuters: 69% of American consumers not in big rush to buy Apple Watch

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Wearable Computing | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

The Apple Watch may have garnered significant attention ahead of launch, but 69 percent of Americans don't have an interest in actually buying one, according to a recent Reuters/Ipsos survey. Consumers will be able to purchase an Apple Watch starting on April 24.




Not surprisingly, the Apple Watch requires an iPhone to utilize all functionality, and 13 percent of survey respondents said they would think about purchasing the smartphone so they can use the watch. The product's launch is a major test for Apple CEO Tim Cook, as this is the first new product from Apple in more than five years.


Even if the majority of American consumers don't have a high interest in the Apple Watch, investors are expecting the long-awaited wearable to be a financial success. Unfortunately for Apple, 52 percent of consumers believe smartwatches are just a "passing fad."

Federal authorities one step closer to busting JPMorgan Chase hackers

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

The US federal government believes a criminal case could begin against those responsible for breaching JPMorgan Chase, after 83 million customers were impacted. The breach last October led to customer names, addresses, phone numbers and email addresses being stolen - and investigations began immediately after the breach was revealed.




A few of the suspects live in countries which have extradition treaties with the United States, according to the New York Times, which means authorities could open criminal cases. Following a more thorough investigation, it was found that the breach wasn't nearly as sophisticated as originally believed.


"The bad news is that many of these folks are located overseas, and they are using encryption and servers all over the world," said Leslie Caldwell, assistant attorney general for the criminal division of the Justice Department, in a statement published by the New York Times. "But the good news is if we are able to jump on the breach early enough, we have an electronic trail and can get that evidence."

Leaked: AMD Radeon R9 390X performance, 60% faster than Radeon R9 290X

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Video Cards | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

Hours before NVIDIA takes the veil off of its GM200-based GeForce GTX Titan X at GTC 2015, there are leaked details on specifications and performance for AMD's upcoming Fiji-based Radeon R9 390X.




According to the latest leaks, the new Radeon R9 390X with HBM memory will be up to 60% faster than the Radeon R9 290X with its 4GB of GDDR5 RAM. The leaked specs see the Fiji XT model featuring 4096 stream processors, a 4096-bit memory bus with up to 8GB of HBM memory, something that will provide 600GB/sec+ of memory bandwidth.




Comparing this to the R9 290X, we have 8.6 TFlops of performance on the R9 390X, which is a huge leap on the 5.6 TFlops that the R9 290X is capable of. HBM is said to be "leaps ahead" when it comes to video memory technology, where we have "drastically increased power efficiency" compared to GDDR5, and so much more. The R9 390X has full support for DirectX 12 and Mantle, with "new dual-GPU modes with upcoming drivers" being teased, as well as an "immersive VR experience with AMD LiquidVR".


Then we have the interesting model: the Radeon R9 390X WCE, which will come with watercooling by default, something that reviewers like us will receive. We don't know if this model will make it to the public, but the R9 390X WCE is "designed for 4K & VR gaming" according to the leaked slides.

Continue reading 'Leaked: AMD Radeon R9 390X performance, 60% faster than Radeon R9 290X' (full post)

Yahoo expected to roll out 'end to end' encryption by end of 2015

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

Yahoo plans to offer end to end encryption security protocols for its email service by the end of 2015, in an attempt to win over Internet users trying to prevent government snooping and surveillance. The new security features were demonstrated during the South by Southwest festival over the weekend, with a beta offering for developers expected soon.




Even though encryption has received praise from privacy advocates, it is often too difficult for many Internet users - trying to create encryption keys for the sender and receiver. However, Yahoo wants to provide a streamlined offering for its users, though it still will be designed for sensitive emails.


"Our goal is to have this available by the end of the year," said Alex Stamos, chief information security officer of Yahoo, in a statement to the AFP. "Anybody who has the ability to write an email should have no problem using our email encryption."

Valve promises changes after 'F' customer service rating on BBB site

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

Valve has a discouraging "F" grade from the Better Business Bureau (BBB), a score that the gaming company plans to improve in the future. In comparison, companies such as Activision Blizzard and Electronic Arts have A+ ratings on the BBB website.




The company's rating is generated because of 717 complaints filed against it, Valve has failed to respond to 503 complaints, 17 complaints were not resolved, and Valve has "failed to resolve underlying cause(s) of a pattern of complaints."


"The BBB is a far less useful proxy for customer issues than Reddit," said Erik Johnson, business development lead of Valve, in a statement to Kotaku. "We don't use them for much. They don't provide us as useful of data as customers emailing us, posting on Reddit, posting on Twitter, and so on."

Continue reading 'Valve promises changes after 'F' customer service rating on BBB site' (full post)

Kaspersky Lab launches Phound!, free mobile anti-theft Android app

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

The Kaspersky Lab cybersecurity firm has launched Phound!, a new free Google Android anti-theft app, designed to help keep devices and personal information secure. The app can locate a lost or stolen device, ensuring data on the compromised smartphone or tablet is secure.




Users are able to block and prevent unauthorized access using GPS, Wi-Fi networks or GSM - and a message can be displayed on the device's screen, or a photo can be taken using the front camera. Furthermore, Phound! can be used to locate a misplaced device by sounding an alarm until the forgetful user identifies its location.


"For many consumers, mobile devices serve as storage for their most valuable and important data - contacts of friends and colleagues, personal messages, private photos and many other things," said Alexey Chikov, Senior Product Manager of Kaspersky Lab. "This means that today's smartphones and tablets need the same security as a bank vault. However, unlike bank vaults, smartphones are small, portable and easily misplaced. That is why we created a solution for our users to prevent their mobile 'vault' from falling into the wrong hands."

ASRock to debut world first USB Type-C compatible motherboard at CeBIT

By: Chris Smith | More News: Motherboards | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

ASRock has recently issued out a press release stating their intentions to debut their new Z97 chipset motherboards featuring both USB 3.1 Type-A and Type-C ports alongside some new X99 Extreme 6 offerings.




One of the strange things on the new ASRock motherboard is that it may feature an X99 chipset, but it has just two DIMMs. This means we're only looking at dual-channel DDR4 RAM compared to what the X99 excels at: quad-channel DDR4. This omission is quite large, something that doesn't seem to be getting much notice.


USB 3.1 not only offers a much faster charging speed of 3A compared to the 0.9A of USB 3.0, but 10GB/s data rates can also be expected alongside USB Type-C offering an easier-to-connect reversible plug. All of ASRock's new X99 and Z97 motherboards will be shown off at their CeBIT 2015 booth in Hannover, Germany at hall 2, C54.

NSW, Australia is looking into digital drivers licences

By: Chris Smith | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

The premier of Australian state New South Wales (NSW), Mike Baird, has promised a change to digital drivers licenses over the next four years if his Liberal government sees a re-election come voting time.




According to Baird this move will save the state tens of thousands of dollars whilst thrusting NSW into the forefront of digital license technology - allowing users to display their credentials on their smartphones.


Baird has also stated that physical plastic licenses will still be made available to consumers who wish to carry one.


As you're legally obliged to carry a license on you at all times whilst operating a vehicle in Australia, here's hoping that you've got a backup phone battery or portable charger with you - otherwise we could see people gathering fines for having flat phones. Thankfully there is a choice, so as the famous meme says - Why not both?

Airliner Qantas also targeted by Facebook scammers

By: Chris Smith | More News: Social Networking | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

We've just reported on the Bunnings Warehouse $2,000 voucher scam plaguing unexpected users as new information has come to light on a Qantas Airline scam hitting the tech radar also.




Reportedly over 100,000 people have already fallen victim to this scam, seeing first-class air travel promised to users in return for liking and sharing image on their wall, gathering an additional 80,000 likes on the Facebook page itself.


In reality your reward is absolutely nothing - we've seen these 'like and share' competitions happen quite often in the past, promising prizes ranging from holidays to iPhone's.


Qantas has refuted this competition, claiming "we're aware of this fake Facebook account. It is a scam and has nothing to do with Qantas. Facebook has been advised and are currently investigating," adding that "our campaigns are always run from our authenticated Facebook page (identified by its authorized blue tick) or through the official Qantas website."

Continue reading 'Airliner Qantas also targeted by Facebook scammers' (full post)

Have you seen the fake Bunnings voucher Facebook scam recently?

By: Chris Smith | More News: Social Networking | Posted: 1 week, 5 days ago

We've seen this plenty of times before - excited people looking to cash in on a quick buck through social media promotions and ending up participating in a large scale scam.




Navigating through the Facebook link as seen above will see you fill out an information form in what you think is an exchange for a $2,000 Bunnings hardware store voucher - but what you're actually doing is giving away your precious personal information, your IP address and quite possibly your computers' virus-free integrity.


There is no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow and after you've already shared the event to your friends you come out empty handed and confused.


Bunnings has officially stated that they are not involved with this competition - "Bunnings is in no way associated with any of the above activities and does not use social media for any offers or promotions. Bunnings will also never ask for personal or banking details in unsolicited communications."

Continue reading 'Have you seen the fake Bunnings voucher Facebook scam recently?' (full post)

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