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San Francisco, Dec 4: In a bid to help families connect better, Facebook on Monday introduced Messenger Kids that will make it easier for children to safely video chat and message with family and friends when they can’t be together in person.

Rolled out in the US for the moment, Messenger Kids is a stand-alone app that will be available on kids’ tablets or smartphones but can be controlled from a parent’s Facebook account.

“Whether it’s using video chat to talk to grandparents, staying in touch with cousins who live far away, or sending mom a decorated photo while she’s working late to say hi, Messenger Kids opens up a new world of online communication to families. This preview is available on the App Store for iPad, iPod touch, and iPhone,” Loren Cheng, Product Management Director at Facebook, wrote in a blog post.

After talking to thousands of parents, associations like National PTA and parenting experts, Facebook found that there’s a need for a messaging app that lets kids connect with people they love but also has the level of control parents want.

“In addition to our research with thousands of parents, we’ve engaged with over a dozen expert advisors in the areas of child development, online safety, and children’s media and technology who’ve helped inform our approach to building our first app for kids,” Cheng added.

Facebook also had thought-provoking conversations around topics of responsible online communication, parental controls and much more where the social media giant heard first-hand how parents and caregivers approach raising children in today’s digitally connected world.

Once the account is set up by a parent, kids can start a one-on-one or group video chat with parent-approved contacts.

In addition to video chat, kids can send photos, videos or text messages to their parent-approved friends and adult relatives, who will receive the messages via their regular Messenger app.

Parents can set up Messenger Kids account in four steps.

First, download the Messenger Kids app on your child’s iPad, iPod touch or iPhone from the App Store.

Then, authenticate your child’s device using your own Facebook username and password. This will not create a Facebook account for your child or give them access to your Facebook account.

NOw finish the setup process by creating an account for your child, where all you’ll need to do is provide their name. Then the device can be handed over to the child so they can start chatting with the family and friends you approve.

At the end, to add people to your child’s approved contact list, go to the Messenger Kids parental controls panel in your main Facebook app.

“There are no ads in Messenger Kids and your child’s information isn’t used for ads. It is free to download and there are no in-app purchases. Messenger Kids is also designed to be compliant with the Children’s Online Privacy and Protection Act (COPPA),” Facebook said.

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Tech

YouTube Premiere adds new tools for more interactive experience

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New Delhi, Dec 3 : YouTube has announced new features namely Live Redirect, Trailers, and Countdown Themes specifically designed to make its Premieres service more exciting.

“Since March 1, 2020, we have seen over 85 per cent growth in daily Premieres from over 8 million channels. And over 80 per cent of these channels had never before used Premieres. We want to continue enabling these real-time, communal experiences now more than ever. That’s why we are launching three new features to help creators,” the company said in a statement on Wednesday.

The first, Live Redirect, allows creators to livestream a pre-show before they release a new video and then automatically redirect viewers to their Premiere right before it starts. YouTube has been testing this feature for a couple of months.

Next, Trailers will allow users to upload a pre-recorded hype video that will be played on the watch page in advance of the Premiere. With the option to range from 15 seconds to 3 minutes in duration, it will help create an even more compelling experience and encourage viewers to set a reminder to tune into the Premiere.

Lastly, YouTube also announced the ability to set Countdown themes as a way to build excitement among the viewers. YouTube will offer a wide range of themes, vibes, and moods to choose from, such as calm, playful, dramatic and sporty, etc.

Live Redirect and Trailers have started rolling out to eligible creators starting today, and Countdown Themes will be available in the coming months.

“We can’t wait to see the new ways these features bring us together, giving your audience a front-row seat to your next Premiere. Give them a try and let us know what you think,” the company added.

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Some iPhone 12 series units losing LTE, 5G service: Report

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iPhone 8
CUPERTINO (U.S.), Sept. 12, 2017 (Xinhua) -- Security personnel are seen inside Apple Park as a special event is CUPERTINO (U.S.), Sept. 12, 2017 (Xinhua) -- Phil Schiller, Apple's Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing, introduces new iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus during a special event in Cupertino, California, the United States on Sept. 12, 2017. Apple Inc. released a series of new products and services in Cupertino on Tuesday. (Xinhua/IANS)

Since the end of October, a few hundred users have taken yo Apple’s forums to report that their iPhone 12 (with reports seemingly covering all fourmodels) drops the cellular connection on 5G and 4G networks. This seems to be happening more often with Verizon and AT&T users but T-Mobile clients experience the issue too.

Multiple reports arise of iPhone 12-series losing LTE and 5G service

A separate Reddit thread has been created just for this and owners of iPhone 12 say that this happens mostly while they are traveling by car. The workaround, for now, is to turn on the airplane mode on and off again. One of the commenters said that he was able to reach one of the PR execs and he confirmed that Apple is aware of the issue and is currently investigating. Perhaps a fix is on its way.

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UK bans installation of Huawei 5G telecom gear from Sep 2021

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) designated Chinese telecom companies, Huawei and ZTE, as national security risks to America’s communications networks.

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Huawei Technologies

London: The UK government announced on Monday that the Chinese telecom giant Huawei will not be able to install its 5G equipments in the country from September 2021.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport said that as per its earlier decision, the UK carriers will no longer be able to install Huawei equipment beginning September 2021.

The UK government has laid out a roadmap for removing all telecoms equipment made by “high risk vendors,” including Huawei, from the country’s 5G network by 2027, reports CNET.

In July this year, the UK government had announced a ban on the purchase of new Huawei kits for 5G from next year and said that the Chinese telecom giant’s equipment will be completely removed from 5G networks by the end of 2027.

The telecoms operators have seven years to remove its existing technology from their 5G infrastructure at an expected cost of 2 billion pounds.

The decision came following new advice produced by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) on the impact of US sanctions against the telecommunications vendor.

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) designated Chinese telecom companies, Huawei and ZTE, as national security risks to America’s communications networks.

In a U-turn, the UK government that earlier allowed Huawei to sell its 5G technology in the country, signalled a tougher stand against the Chinese telecom giant.

Huawei called the decision “bad news for anyone in the UK with a mobile phone”.

Struggling to keep its consumer business afloat in the wake of the US sanctions, Huawei this month announced to sell off its Honor smartphone business assets to China-based Shenzhen Zhixin New Information Technology Co Ltd.

The company said that the sale — which could be around $15 billion according to multiple reports — will help Honor’s channel sellers and suppliers make it through this difficult time.

Honor smartphones have been hit by US sanctions that prevent Huawei from doing business with the US companies.

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