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Tech News Today for October 3, 2016

Tech News for October 3, 2016

Facebook just launched Marketplace, a way to let users buy and sell their stuff on Facebook. It's coming immediately to the US, the UK, Australia, and New Zealand and you'll be able to access it on iOS pretty easily. It's taking up the prime real estate where the Messenger icon used to live. Facebook will operate like Craigslist, helping buyers and sellers find each other, but not dealing with payment or delivery. Facebook says they're just giving us more of what we're asking for since more than 450 million people visit buy and sell groups each month. And for sure they'll use this information to sell us more stuff. Read more at newsroom.fb.com.

We’ve all witnessed the reviews on Amazon that go something like “This is my honest review of the (insert sub-brand product you’ve never-heard-of-before) after being offered this product at no cost to me by the manufacturer.” It’s been a strangely open policy that Amazon has allowed for some time: That people can review products given to them by the manufacturer as long as they state it in the review and promise to be honest and objective. Of course, 99 out of a hundred times, those reviews are glowingly positive. Amazon is finally sealing this shut by updating its Community Guidelines to remove incentivized reviews. The one exception will be Amazon’s Vine program, where Amazon itself will identify who is a trusted reviewer. Read more at techcrunch.com.

Fast Company says a new Google backed startup will use computer based cognitive therapy, advanced data mapping and more to help diagnose and offer affordable care for anxiety, depression and other mental health issues. Quartet has already formed two partnerships with Blue Cross and other insurance companies to equip primary care providers with behavioral health resources and to simplify tech-enabled behavioral health support, including telepsychiatry. Read more at fastcompany.com.

Thanks a lot Apple. You too Motorola. Now we live in a world where phones may or may not feature a 3.5mm headphone jack, replaced by a sepcial connector or dongle. And to further illustrate that this new world order is in fact about to get a lot more support, the USB Implementers Forum published its USB Audio Device Class 3.0 spec, standardizing the transmission of audio over USB-C, so even more hardware makers can jetison the headphone jack in place of the data port. Within the spec is listed a number of features that going all in on digital for audio brings to a device. Read more at anandtech.com.

Microsoft is officially getting out of the fitness tracker business. The company confirmed to Paul Thurrott today that there will be no more versions of the Microsoft Band. So, no Band 3 and the Band 2 has officially been removed from stores. Read more at thurrott.com.

Tomorrow morning at 10am pacific, Google will begin it’s livestream of a hardware announcement that Android head Hiroshi Lockheimer says on Twitter will be as significant if not more significant than the launch of Android 8 years ago. Read more at theverge.com.

Check out TWiT's live coverage of the Google announcement tomorrow October 4th at 9AM Pacific, 12PM Eastern at twit.tv/live. Join Megan Morrone and Jason Howell for Tech News Today weekdays at 4PM Pacific, 7PM Eastern, also at twit.tv/live. You can subscribe to the show and get it on-demand at twit.tv/tnt.

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