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Marvel axes two of its Hulu animated shows

The shift comes as Marvel unifies work on its movie and TV projects under one larger Marvel Studios team headed up by Kevin Feige.

Whatever the exact reasons, the move suggests that Marvel (and really, Disney at large) is adjusting its broader streaming strategy. It's putting most of its energy into Disney+ shows, to the point where it recently bumped up WandaVision's debut. Hulu is still serving as the home for more mature Marvel shows, but it looks like it might not play as large a role as first thought.

Article source: https://www.engadget.com/2020/01/25/marvel-axes-two-hulu-animated-shows/

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Jeff Bezos’ leaked text messages may have come from his girlfriend

Enquirer owner American Media maintained in a statement that Michael Sanchez provided "all materials," and rejected longstanding assertions that Saudi Arabia was involved. Michael himself wouldn't answer questions and instead accused the WSJ of "spoon-fed lies and half-truths," while Saudi Arabia has repeatedly denied involvement.

While exposing the alleged blackmail, Bezos provided emails showing that American Media had threatened to release his lewd selfies if he didn't publicly state that the Enquirer's exposé was not politically motivated. The Amazon exec has raised concerns that Saudi Arabia wants to punish him and the Washington Post for linking the kingdom to the murder of Jamal Khashoggi.

This doesn't rule out the possibility that Saudi Arabia hacked Bezos' phone, as a Bezos-commissioned audit suggested. There may have been a multi-pronged effort to get Bezos' data and provide details of his affair with Lauren Sanchez. However, it does raise the possibility that at least some of the information was obtained without hacks, and that Bezos' findings don't tell the whole story.

Article source: https://www.engadget.com/2020/01/25/jeff-bezos-leaked-text-messages-origin/

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India is now a larger smartphone market than the US

This isn't to say non-Chinese brands fared poorly, but the results were mixed. Apple grew quickly at the end of 2019 thanks to iPhone XR price cuts and the debut of the iPhone 11. Samsung, however, saw flat results at the same period and ultimately declined five percent in 2019.

It's not shocking that India would overtake the US given its population and an emerging market where more people can afford smartphones in the first place. However, this could still have a significant impact on how phone makers sell devices beyond what you've seen so far. They may be more likely to design phones with India in mind, for instance. Don't be surprised if your favorite brand shifts its focus, whether or not there are benefits in other corners of the world.

Article source: https://www.engadget.com/2020/01/25/india-now-second-largest-smartphone-market/

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Galaxy S20 and Galaxy Buds+ leak together in official-looking shots

Apart from the cameras (including a 108-megapixel shooter on the Ultra), the Galaxy S20 range is expected to be a more evolutionary upgrade with speedier Snapdragon 865 processors in some countries, up to 16GB of RAM and 120Hz displays. The Galaxy Buds+, meanwhile, would have much-improved battery life and call quality without changing the core formula of the true wireless earpieces. That's important when the S20 family is expected to ditch the headphone jack -- even if there's a headphone adapter in the box, Bluetooth audio will be that much more important.

Article source: https://www.engadget.com/2020/01/26/galaxy-s20-and-galaxy-buds-leak-together/

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Recommended Reading: Facial recognition, police and privacy

The secretive company that might end privacy as we know it
Kashmir Hill,
The New York Times

Clearview is a startup that developed a facial recognition system that matches a photo of a person to publicly available images. Those can be from Facebook, YouTube or even Venmo. It's powerful technology, and law enforcement is using it to solve crimes like shoplifting, murder and child sexual exploitation. The code in Clearview's app references the ability to pair the software with AR glasses, giving the person wearing them the ability to identify whoever they see. And the company is monitoring who law enforcement is looking for, which makes an already massive privacy issue sound like something out of a dystopian novel.

Article source: https://www.engadget.com/2020/01/25/recommended-reading-the-facial-recognition-startup-helping-poli/

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The Morning After: Vine is back, but now it’s Byte

The SUV and sedan are about due for a hardware update.Tesla update leaks some upcoming changes for Model S, Model X

The first new Tesla software update of 2020 just started rolling out, and @Greentheonly has taken a look at the files to get a peek at features that are on the way. According to his analysis, the Model S and Model X could be due for changes soon that include a built-in wireless phone charging setup, new battery configurations and more. We're already expecting a triple-motor "Plaid" Model S later this year with a larger battery, so maybe this is a hint of a broader redesign for the sedan.

Mesh might be an answer.My quest to fix my terrible home WiFi

Chris Velazco's duplex has a problem that some of you might be able to relate to: bad WiFi signal. He swapped out his cable company-provided setup for a few different routers and mesh setups to find a fix, and now has some suggestions for anyone else in a similar situation.

Meet your new high-tech sous chef.How Weber used decades of expertise to improve smart grilling

The addition of WiFi means you don't have to physically walk to your grill to check the status of your 12-hour brisket cook. And during the winter months, that's a huge perk. Billy Steele went in-depth with Weber about some of its new designs.

Hmm...This is the logo for 'Space Force'

Wait, doesn't that look like the Starfleet icon? Yes. It also looks like the old Air Force Space Command logo.

One app creates a printable envelope to put your phone in.Google's experimental apps shame you into taming phone addiction

Activity Bubbles, Screen Stopwatch and Envelope are all part of the latest push from Google to get you to put your phone down (after you finish reading this, of course). The first two add on-screen reminders of how much time you've spent staring at a screen, while Envelope creates some physical separation. Do the apps go too far? Do they not go far enough? I can't stay off my phone for long enough to check.

But wait, there's more...

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Article source: https://www.engadget.com/2020/01/25/byte-app-morning-after/

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Senator calls on Tesla to make Autopilot safety changes

The senator also wanted Tesla to implement "backup monitoring systems" beyond the steering wheel torque monitor that checks for hands on the wheel. That would keep at least one system checking for driver attentiveness, and might reduce the chances of someone tricking Autopilot into staying active. At present, Autopilot will warn you if your hands are off the wheel for too long, and will force you to drive manually for the rest of the trip if you ignore the warning for long enough.

We've asked Tesla if it can comment on Markey's recommendations. In its earlier response letter, it pointed out steps taken to improve Autopilot's safety. The company added warnings for red lights and stop signs in 2019, and updates to its steering wheel checks theoretically prevent sleepy or drunk drivers from using Autopilot as a crutch. Videos of people abusing Autopilot represented only a "very small percentage" of Tesla's customer base, according to the letter.

Markey's requests aren't binding. They do put further pressure on Tesla to tweak Autopilot, however, and suggest there could be legislation or regulation in the future if misuse remains a problem.

Article source: https://www.engadget.com/2020/01/25/senator-recommends-tesla-autopilot-changes/

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Apple gets its WiLan patent payout reduced to $85.2 million

We've asked Apple for comment.

WiLan had argued that many Apple products, including iPhones ranging from the 6 to the 7 Plus, had been using voice over LTE technology covered by two patents.

It's a rare instance of WiLan declaring victory over Apple. The Canadian "patent monetization" company (read: patent troll) has largely been unsuccessful in getting Apple to pay for claimed patent violations. However, we wouldn't be surprised if there was more in the future. WiLan's business depends on these kinds of lawsuits, and Apple is a particularly large target.

Article source: https://www.engadget.com/2020/01/25/apple-to-pay-wilan-85-million-in-patent-lawsuit/

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‘Uncharted’ movie delayed to March 5th, 2021

There are signs of progress. Zombieland's Ruben Fleischer is the top pick to replace Knight, according to Deadline, while the cast (led by Tom Holland and Mark Wahlberg) appears to be settling. And the screenplay comes from fairly safe sources, including Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Rafe Judkins and the Iron Man duo of Art Marcum and Matt Holloway. Still, we won't blame you if you're frustrated. There have been years of setbacks, and at this point it could be a relief when (and if) filming finally starts.

Article source: https://www.engadget.com/2020/01/25/uncharted-movie-delayed-to-march-5-2021/

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Porsche’s first Super Bowl ad in 23 years is for the electric Taycan

The ad isn't terribly complicated. It starts with what appears to be a thief stealing the Taycan from Porsche's museum in Stuttgart, and quickly evolves into a Hollywood-style chase with several more conventional cars (plus one tractor) in pursuit. While Porsche doesn't talk much about the Taycan, there's no question it's the star. The driver even makes use of the Taycan's virtually silent EV powerplant to escape, although the machine probably wouldn't get far in real life given the EU's artificial noise requirement... not to mention that 192-mile EPA range.

A minute-long version of the commercial will air in the first quarter of the football game, but you can watch an extended version now.

The clip is meant to do more than just boost Taycan sales, of course. This is also Porsche's (and really, VW's) attempt at "heralding the era of electric mobility," and that includes reaching out to customers who might never have considered one of the brand's cars before. We doubt many people will rush out to buy a Taycan after this, especially not the maxed-out Turbo S variant in the ad. It might, however, give EVs some extra cachet while reminding people that there are alternatives to Tesla.

Article source: https://www.engadget.com/2020/01/25/porsche-taycan-super-bowl-ad/

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