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Tech News Today for June 7, 2017

Tech News for Wednesday June 7, 2017

Apple's foray into original programming is now upon us. Now you too can head on over to planetoftheapps.com to watch the first episode for free. It’s basically a reality show built with the Shark Tank model in mind, where developers bring their apps in front of a celebrity panel to gain their support as they pursue funding. The 50 minute episode is the first of 10 episodes being released by Apple to Apple Music subscribers. Read more at reuters.com.

IBM just announced that the company will expand partnerships with community colleges for what it calls "new collar jobs." These are the tech jobs that IBM says are well-paying despite not requiring a four year degree. The partnership will include internships, apprenticeships and direct hiring from over a dozen community colleges in Missouri, West Virginia, Iowa, Colorado, New York, North Carolina, and Texas. IBM says the focus will be on areas that have been primarily underserved by the high-tech community. Read more at axios.com.

Amazon is launching a low priced tier of its Prime service for people enrolled in government assistance programs like food stamps. If someone qualifies, it brings the monthly cost of Prime membership down from $10.99 to $5.99 per month. Depending on the sale price of items on Amazon, lower income households could potentially save money throughout the month even with the monthly fee. Read more at techcrunch.com.

Facebook says it will share anonymized disaster data with relief organizations. The company says the data will help communities recover and rebuild, but privacy experts are naturally wondering what else this location data might be used for. For the initiative, Facebook says they worked with UNICEF, the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the World Food Programme, and other organizations. The service, called Disaster Maps, uses data from Safety Check, a tool launched in 2014 that allows Facebook users to check in to show friends and relatives that they're safe in the event of an emergency. Read more at newsroom.fb.com.

A new report from Akamai shares some bad news about US broadband: basically, that it’s not as good as you may expect. The State of the Internet report for Q1 2017 says that Americans experience an average of 10.7 megabits per second, coming in 32nd place out of 74 countries. Mind you, the global average is around 7.2 megabits per second, so the US is slightly ahead of that average. But compared to the leader, the UK, which sits at 26 Megabits per second as its average, we have a ways to go. Read more at dslreports.com.

Megan Morrone and Jason Howell are joined today by Mike Murphy from Quartz to talk about what's been happening at Apple's World Wide Developer's Conference this week. Tech News Today streams live weekdays at 4PM Pacific, 7PM Eastern at twit.tv/live. You can subscribe to the show and watch it on-demand at twit.tv/tnt.

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