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Tech News Today for April 12, 2017

Tech News for Wednesday April 12, 2017

The hits keep coming for Qualcomm. Yesterday we talked about how Apple is going for the jugular with Qualcomm in four lawsuits involving overpaying for patents and designs. It turns out that back on March 3, an arbitration battle between Qualcomm and Blackberry ruled in Blackberry’s favor. As a result, Qualcomm owes Blacberry $815 million in an agreement that is binding and non-appealable. Blackberry charged that Qualcomm put a cap on some royalty payments, but didn’t apply them to other larger payments, resulting in a overpayment of royalties by Blackberry. Read more at theverge.com.

Former lifestreamer Justin Kan from Justin TV wants to disrupt the legal industry. TechCrunch reports that Kan's Atrium LTS is on the hunt for $10 million of initial round of funding. According to a Medium post, Kan, who also started game streaming company TWITCH is looking for a team of engineers to create web applications to help law firms run more efficiently. Details on what exactly the startup will do are currently spotty. Read more at techcrunch.com.

A key part of Samsung’s announcement of its next flagship device, the Galaxy S8, was the new digital assistant built by Samsung called Bixby. Limited hands-on time was given to those in attendees at the event, with many saying the functionality barely worked, and now we may understand part of the reason why. Samsung confirmed to Axios that the Bixby Voice component of Bixby will not be available on the S8 at launch, though other parts including Bixby Vision, Home, and Reminders is expected to be in tact. Read more at axios.com.

Microsoft has announced a hardware event in NYC on May 2nd with a focus on creativity and education. Peter Bright at Ars Technica says to expect hardware and software news, but no new Surface Pro 5 and no Surface phone, according to people familiar with the matter. The announcement comes along with the news that Joe Belfiore, Corporate VP in Microsoft’s Operating Systems Group, has returned from his sabattical which he spent with his family on an education semester at Sea. Belfiore is now an education sponsor and advocate so expect the event to focus on Microsoft's EDU business, which might include new low-cost notebooks that could compete with Google's Chromebooks in the classroom. Read more at arstechnica.com.

Amazon’s kid-focused FreeTime subscription service has brought a catalogue of books, videos, apps and games to Amazon’s tablets for a while now. Amazon is adding a new feature to FreeTime as part of its Parent Dashboard called Discussion Cards. After reading a children’s book called Splat the Cat, a parent could be shown a question that relates to the content to ask their child like “Why do you think Splat is nervous?” and “When have you been nervous for school?” Read more at techcrunch.com.

Megan Morrone and Jason Howell are joined today by Alex Kantrowitz to talk about a bot that Twitter is testing that will take your suggestions and complaints. Tech News Today streams live weekdays at 4PM Pacific, 7PM Eastern at twit.tv/live. You can subscribe to the show and get it on-demand at twit.tv/tnt.

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