Here are today's top stories from Tech News Today for August 26, 2014:
- VentureBeat’s lead mobile writer, Devindra Hardawar, says “There’s no hope for Amazon’s Fire Phone.” The reason is new evidence that hardly anyone’s buying it. Read more at venturebeat.com.
- Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill Monday that will make California require opt-out "kill switches" on smartphones. Read more at sfgate.com.
- Amazon, not Google, is buying Twitch, and for $970 million. Twitch is a popular video game streaming site that everybody thought Google was going to buy. But Google’s deal fell through, and Amazon snatched it up. Read more at wsj.com.
- The buzz at Disney World involves Disney Drones in the sky and wearable computers throughout theme parks. Read more at orlandosentinel.com.
- Facebook is cracking down on click-bait. The company announced yesterday that its changing its news feed algorithm to keep shared click-bait headlines and links from showing up in people’s news feeds. The change has serious implications for publishers like Buzzfeed and Upworthy who rely on manipulative headlines to get traffic. Read more at fb.com.
- The Washington Post reported yesterday that location data from wireless carriers is broadly misused. No matter what your smartphone privacy settings are, wireless carriers always know where you are because they know which cell towers you’re using. New surveillance technology for sale on the open market enables anyone to track where you are at all times, according to the report -- even without the knowledge or permission of the carriers themselves. Some of these products allow the following of someone live on a map, and are designed to be undetectable. They can even tell how fast you’re driving. One product is called SkyLock, which is sold by a company called Verint. That company says they have more than 10,000 customers. Dozens of national governments may have purchased the technology, according to the Post’s sources. When the newspaper queried the FCC, they replied that they would investigate. Read more at washingtonpost.com.
For insight, analysis, and discussion of these topics and more, check out Tech News Today for August 26, 2014.