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Google Pixel 2 turns on ‘DND’ mode while driving

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San Francisco, Oct 7: The recently launched second-generation Google Pixel smartphones have an interesting sensor-based feature buried in the software which can automatically switch on “Do Not Disturb” (DND) mode when the user is driving, reports said on Saturday.

Google had also released a new application named “Pixel Ambient Services” along with the new Pixel phones.

The description for the app read: “Pixel Ambient Services provides features based on local context for Pixel devices”.

According to Android Police, Google provides screenshots for the app featuring an automatic setting when the phones detect a user driving.

The “DND” mode will activate when the user is driving based on the phone’s sensors.

Smartphone makers such as Apple and Samsung also introduced their own “DND” mode while driving features this year.

Both of their features send auto-replies to people who call or text. However, it is not clear whether Google’s solution does the same.

This year’s Pixel line-up bets big on artificial intelligence (AI), software and hardware.

Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL smartphones and Daydream View Virtual Reality (VR) headset will be available in India in November.

IANS

Business

Apple deploys new Nokia data centre products in Denmark

The new Nokia Service Router Linux (SR Linux) NOS and Nokia Fabric Service Platform (FSP) were co-developed with leading global companies, including Apple.

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Helsinki, July 11 : Apple is deploying a new line of Nokia data centre switching products at its Denmark facility to improve its efficiency, the Finnish equipment maker has said.

According to Nokia, it has redefined data centre fabrics with the launch of a new and modern Network Operating System (NOS) and a declarative, intent-based automation and operations toolkit.

This will allow Cloud and data centre builders to scale and adapt operations in the face of exponential traffic growth and constant change brought on from technology shifts like 5G and Industry 4.0.

The new Nokia Service Router Linux (SR Linux) NOS and Nokia Fabric Service Platform (FSP) were co-developed with leading global companies, including Apple.

“We regularly upgrade our data center equipment with technology to increase efficiency and reduce energy consumption. Using Nokia”s new system will enable better networking and routing capabilities in our Viborg, Denmark facility,” Adam Bechtel, Vice President and Networking lead at Apple, said in a statement.

Facing massive growth in demand for cloud-based applications and use of new technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality, today”s large and growing community of Cloud builders require new level of customisation and flexibility from networking components to operate and monitor sprawling data centers.

Nokia SR Linux is a genuine architectural step forward as it is the first fully modern microservices-based NOS, and the SR Linux NDK (NetOps development kit) exposes a complete and rich set of programming capabilities, Nokia said.

According to an estimate by market research company 650 Group, total spending on Data Center switching and routing products should exceed $17 billion a year by 2024, with telco service providers and enterprises benefiting from the innovation occurring in the Cloud for years to come.

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WhatsApp may lose its flavour as Zuckerberg integrates apps

More than the commercial benefits of the chat integration between the apps, he said he was concerned about data encryption.

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New Delhi, July 11 : WhatsApp has so far been a great experience for billions of users globally where there are no ads in-between chats, no distractions like promoted posts and in-app pop ups, but an integration with the rest of Facebook family of apps may mar the beauty of this end-to-end-encrypted mobile messaging platform.

The world of social media is soon going to change as Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg inches closer to fulfill its dream of integrating all his services into one cross-platform movement of personal data among Facebook, Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp.

Facebook acquired WhatsApp in 2014 for over $19 billion.

Both WhatsApp co-founders — Brian Acton and Jan Koum — have quit a couple of years back over alleged difference of opinion with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg over data privacy, encryption and issues line monetizing the platform, which they always wanted to remain free from distractions and work like a pure, independent chat experience.

In an interview with Forbes, Acton explained that a disagreement on monetising WhatsApp was the reason he quit Facebook and gave up $850 million on the table.

Acton alleged that Zuckerberg was in a rush to make money from the messaging service and undermine elements of its encryption technology.

“Targeted advertising is what makes me unhappy,” Acton said.

Both Acton and Koum never wanted WhatsApp to become a platform full of ads, tweak its encryption standards or merge it with other apps.

Now, few such hints are seen in an early-stage experiment in integrating Facebook Messenger with WhatsApp via a cross-chat feature.

WABetaInfo, a fan website that closely tracks WhatsApp Beta developer versions, has found a database in Facebook Messenger that will allow Messenger to understand whether WhatsApp contacts are blocked.

“It will contain details on the state of a chat and whether push notifications are active or not”.

Facebook is apparently collecting the code for a local database. It can find out if a WhatsApp contact is blocked, find a phone number, find whether or not a chat is archived.

Similarly, Instagram is also working on integrating Messenger.

Zuckerberg has revealed his plans to integrate its chat services to let billions of users message one another across platforms. Calling it a long-term project, Zuckerberg had said the cross-app functionality will happen in 2020 or beyond.

More than the commercial benefits of the chat integration between the apps, he said he was concerned about data encryption.

“The first reason that I”m excited about this is moving more to end-to-end encryption by default in more of our products. People really like this in WhatsApp. I think it”s the direction that we should be going in with more things in the future,” Zuckerberg told analysts during a conference call.

The move will let the social networking giant tout higher user engagement to advertisers, further ramping up its advertising division that has taken a hit in recent days as more and more brands leave the platform over its inaction to check harmful posts especially from the political leaders.

The cross-platform experience is still some time away but whether it will spare WhatsApp is doubtful as the monetization drive is a double-edged sword, strongly capable of killing simple, pure user experiences in an ear of digital advertising.

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Lifestyle

Job offers to emotional blackmail, cyber criminals’ lockdown tactics

Political commentator and policy analyst Sanjaya Baru was cheated of Rs 24,000 on the pretext of online delivery of liquor in June. Baru was also the media advisor to former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

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New Delhi, July 7 : A criminal is a fast learner. He keeps upgrading his skills in line with his changing surroundings, making it difficult for the law enforcing agencies to keep pace. Those involved in white collar crimes are even harder to trace and arrest as unlike other criminals they can commit a crime without being physically present near the victim. Now it seems that cyber criminals have fast adapted to the country”s state of lockdown and evolved new tactics to dupe people.

From impersonating an identity on social media platforms like Facebook or Instagram to luring people for jobs in the government sector; from emotional blackmail to pretending to be bank officials, they do it all. During the lockdown when many are working from home and spending more time on mobiles and computers, the cyber frauds seem to have taken this as an opportunity.

Recently, a man was arrested from Mathura in Uttar Pradesh for impersonating the identity of the victim”s senior on Facebook and asking him for Rs 60,000 for the treatment for his wife who he claimed was hospitalized. The victim, a Delhi resident, obliged and ended up transferring Rs 58,000 to the PayTm wallet of the accused. The matter came to light when the victim called his senior.

In another case, a woman was duped of Rs 34 lakhs as a man who developed a friendship with her on social media turned out to be a cheat. He not just emotionally blackmailed her on the promise of marriage but also went to Leh and Ladakh with her. The man was arrested from Vijayawada.

Political commentator and policy analyst Sanjaya Baru was cheated of Rs 24,000 on the pretext of online delivery of liquor in June. Baru was also the media advisor to former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

“The irony is people don”t divulge details to strangers in the real world but in the virtual world they trust easily and part with their personal details which are later misused by the cyber criminals. The key word is caution. One has to be cautious while interacting on social media, said Anyesh Roy, DCP Cyber crime.

During the lockdown, data released by Delhi police showed that 3,430 such complaints were received in May this year as compared to just 1,260 in January. This means the number of cases almost tripled during the lockdown.

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