Google Assistant Actions up 2.5x in 2018 to reach 4,253 within the U.S.

In addition to competing for smart speaker market share, Google and Amazon are also competing for developer mindshare in the voice app ecosystem. On this front, Amazon has soared ahead — the number of available voice skills for Alexa devices has grown to top 80,000 the company recently announced. According to a new third-party analysis…

SoftBank and Mubadala develop closer

The Japanese conglomerate SoftBank and Mubadala, the Abu Dhabi state investment company, have a closely intertwined relationship, and it’s one that the two are further cementing. According to the Financial Times, SoftBank has just committed half the capital for a new $400 million fund from Mubadala that aims to back European startups. Industry observers might…

VPN protocol WireGuard now has an decent macOS app

WireGuard could be the most promising VPN protocol in years. It lets you establish a connection with a VPN server that is supposed to be faster, more secure and more flexible at the same time. The developers launched a brand new app in the Mac App Store today. WireGuard isn’t a VPN service, it’s a…

YouTube below fire for recommending movies of children with spoiled comments

More than a year on from a child safety content moderation scandal on YouTube and it takes just a few clicks for the platform’s recommendation algorithms to redirect a search for “bikini haul” videos of adult women towards clips of scantily clad minors engaged in body contorting gymnastics or taking an ice bath or ice lolly…

Apple will likely be shopping for its subsequent colossal revenue mannequin

Apple has always been an evolving company. While it never really invented any product categories, it always seemed to make those product categories work better and smarter. It also found a way to make us want them, even when they were more expensive. Today, the WSJ reports, Apple is trying to find its way to…

Ancient Wizards center Brendan Haywood reflects on his time spent with MJ in D.C. –

Former longtime Washington Wizard Brendan Haywood sat down with Chris Miller in Charlotte for one all-encompassing Wizards Talk podcast interview you'll want to hear.  After a four-year career in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, Haywood declared for the NBA Draft and was selected by the Cavaliers with the 20th overall pick before being traded to the Orlando Magic, who…

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Dance can’t be copyrighted, executive tells Carlton

Bad news, Carlton. Your namesake dance can’t be copyrighted. That is according to the U.S. Copyright Office. The ruling was filed in one of two lawsuits the actor Alfonso Ribeiro has brought against video game makers whose characters and avatars perform “The Carlton” — a dance he popularized on the sitcom The Fresh Prince of…

Razer Sport Store says adios after 10 months

Razer gave two weeks’ notice today that its Razer Game Store is shutting down on Feb. 28. Razer, in the note to customers, attributed the shutdown to “the company’s realignment plans.” That realignment comes not even a year after the storefront’s April 2018 launch. The Razer Game Store sold keys for Steam and Uplay games,…

Pokémon Slump settlement would unravel class-action trespassing claims against Niantic

Pokémon Go creator Niantic reached a settlement with a class action of pissed-off homeowners that, assuming a judge approves, will resolve the trespassing and nuisance lawsuits that sprung up shortly after the game’s white-hot 2016 release. In the settlement, filed on Thursday and first reported by The Hollywood Reporter, Niantic agrees to deliver courtesy reminders…

Ubisoft publicizes twelve months four tell plans for Rainbow Six Siege

Operation: Burnt Horizon is set to kick off year four of Rainbow Six Siege, and Ubisoft intends to ramp up post-launch support and continue to grow the game. The first, and perhaps most fundamental change, will be splitting the development team into dedicated cells that will tackle each major part of the game: events, balance,…

Apex Legends mods ban 16,000 cheaters since start

Apex Legends moderators banned more than 16,000 cheaters since the game’s Feb. 5 launch, and promise more punishment for anyone not getting the message. It may be a little tricky, for now, as the battle royale does not have a reporting feature directly in the game. A community manager said yesterday that developers “have heard…