Retail giant Amazon has made its first drone delivery to an actual customer, dropping off a Fire TV device and a bag of popcorn to a house in the rural English countryside 13 minutes after receiving an online order, according to Bloomberg. The delivery occurred Dec. 7 near Cambridge in a zone that U.K. aviation authorities have authorized for drone test flights, according to a tweet by company Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos and a video documenting the flight.
Nowcast, a Japanese financial research and technology startup, has developed a product that estimates economic growth in real time by using satellite images of night-time lights, according to Bloomberg. Based on algorithms that examine changes in the intensity of illumination, as well as a range of published statistics including industrial production and trade, the company can accurately forecast changes in gross domestic product, Chief Executive Officer Ryota Hayashi said in an interview.
IDC Manufacturing Insights Worldwide Commercial Robotics program published its latest report titled “IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Robotics 2017 Predictions" and highlights the key drivers for robotics and how these are likely to shape the development of robotics in the planning horizon of 2017 through 2020.
Google, the world’s biggest corporate buyer of clean energy, expects to reach a major milestone next year: running the company entirely with wind and solar power, according to Bloomberg. The Alphabet unit has been pursuing the goal since at least 2012, “but I didn’t think it would happen so fast,” Gary Demasi, Google’s director of global infrastructure and energy, said in an interview.
Volkswagen plans to expand its new mobility-services division into a business with billions in revenue as the German carmaker seeks salvation in ride-hailing, autonomous driving and electric cars in the wake of the diesel-emissions scandal, according to Bloomberg. Moia, Volkswagen’s 13th brand, will initially focus on ride-hailing and car-sharing and will roll out its services in two European cities next year before possibly expanding to other regions.
Deutsche Telekom will start selling products designed to protect companies and authorities from drones linked to spying, smuggling or vandalism as the German carrier turns to security products and services to unlock fresh revenue, according to Bloomberg. The systems feature tools like video cameras, frequency scanners and microphones and have software that can distinguish drones from birds or helicopters.
Japan's obsession with keeping order and tech prowess has reached its natural conclusion with an intelligent megaphone that can issue commands in Chinese, English and Korean, according to Bloomberg. Panasonic recently unveiled the device, essentially a smartphone paired with a handheld loudspeaker, betting that police, event organizers and transport staff seeking to control crowds will be eager to get their hands on something that lets them bark orders to a large group of people at once.
According to figures published by International Data Corporation (IDC), 8.2 million tablets were shipped into Western Europe in 3Q16, for a 6.7% decline YoY. The main trends in the quarter were the ongoing expansion of detachables and the penetration of tablets in the commercial segment.
In 2005 there were less than one million industrial robots. Today there are 1.8 million and in three years’ time, this will soar to around 2.6 million. Technology already plays a major role in the manufacturing sector. But as robots become better and more sophisticated, PwC economists expect their impact to gradually permeate more industries, including the services sector, which accounts for most jobs in industrialised economies.
U.S. safety officials called on smartphone makers to add features that would keep motorists from using functions linked to a surge in deaths due to distracted driving, a proposal that drew immediate opposition from the electronics industry, according to Bloomberg. Proposed voluntary guidelines ask device makers to take steps such as blocking some video displays and preventing manual text entry while vehicles are under way.
Croatian Employers' Association has organized a big conference on digital economy. The idea of today's conference was to take a look at the state of development of the digital economy in the Republic of Croatia, at the opportunities and threats the digitalization brings to Croatian entrepreneurs.
Apple has disbanded its division that develops wireless routers, according to Bloomberg. The company began shutting down the wireless router team over the past year, dispersing engineers to other product development groups, including the one handling the Apple TV, said the people, who asked not to be named because the decision hasn’t been publicly announced.
Holiday season brings new gifts, and while 79 percent of consumers start using connected devices within the first day of receiving it, only 42 percent claim they take the proper security measures, concluded in new McAfee survey after survey reveals 84 percent of consumers will likely holiday shop online this year.
Confirming what had long been speculated, Qualcomm announced that it would be contracting Samsung to make Snapdragon processors at 10-nanometer geometry, according to Bloomberg. Those semiconductors will be in products early next year. That's bad news for the world's largest chip foundry TSMC but probably music to the ears of Apple.
From Amazon to Domino’s Pizza, technology giants and retailers have dreamed of drone deliveries for years, according to Bloomberg. One Chinese e-commerce giant intends to make it a full-fledged reality by 2017. JD.com has drawn up plans for drones to ply 100 regular routes by the end of next year. Taking advantage of less-restrictive regulations, it’s spent months testing its drones and from Friday it intends to start operating four routes delivering packages to rural residents on a trial basis.
AT&T and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) are researching traffic management solutions for Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS). The goal is an Unmanned Aircraft System Traffic Management (UTM) solution that supports the safe and highly secure operation of drones in the national airspace.
Schneider Electric and Panasonic announced an integrated HVAC equipment and building management solution that brings new levels of HVAC control and energy efficiency to today’s commercial buildings. Both companies have developed a new interface wireless solution which enables direct serial communication between Schneider’s building management system and room controllers with Panasonic’s variable refrigerant flow (VRF)-based HVAC systems via the ZigBee wireless communication standard.
Google’s DeepMind AI unit, which earlier this year achieved a breakthrough in computer intelligence by creating software that beat the world’s best human player at the strategy game Go, is turning its attention to the sci-fi video game Starcraft II, according to Bloomberg. The company said it had reached a deal with Blizzard Entertainment, California-based division of Activision Blizzard, which makes the Starcraft game series, to create an interface to let artificial intelligence researchers connect machine-learning software to the game.
Bellabeat announced a new member of their product family, Shell, Baby’s Heartbeat Listener. Shell enables expectant parents to hear their baby’s heartbeat in a natural and non-invasive manner, similar to placing your ear on the belly and turning the volume up.
Elon Musk showcased his ambitions to make Tesla Motors a clean-energy behemoth, unveiling a new “solar-roof” product, according to Bloomberg. As the sun set, Musk told hundreds of guests that Tesla and SolarCity, the company that he chairs and which he aims to acquire, will make solar roofs that look better than normal roofs. He then showcased several houses with solar tiles gracefully embedded. Because the tiles are fully integrated into the roofs, many guests in attendance could not tell that they were solar.
Apple unveiled new Mac computers as it seeks to revitalize a product line that co-founder Steve Jobs once said would be rendered redundant by the iPad, according to Bloomberg. Overhauled MacBook Pro laptops and a new computer monitor were presented in a press conference at Apple’s Cupertino, California, headquarters.
Vulnerable internet-connected devices such as cameras and digital video recorders may be to blame for the attack that took down some of the world’s most popular websites on Friday, according to Bloomberg. Malware that targets the “internet of things” may have powered the global attack, according to Brian Krebs, a well-known journalist covering computer security.
Heading toward Election Day in the U.S., hackers may target your inbox instead of the ballot box, according to Bloomberg. It’s difficult to alter overall ballot counts in the U.S., which doesn’t have a centralized voting system, but hackers could take advantage of the Nov. 8 election to dupe people and gain access to their personal information, according to Oren Falkowitz, chief executive officer of Redwood City, California-based Area 1 Security.
ZTE USA, the fourth largest smartphone manufacturer in the U.S. and second largest in the no-contract market, announced the grand prize winner of Project CSX is the Eye-Tracking, Self-Adhesive Phone. Thousands of consumers from 176 countries participated in voting throughout the competition, from ideation through conceptualization, and in addition to the winner joining ZTE at the 2017 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nevada, consumers will see this device go to market in 2017.
During Combis conference, at the panel discussion "Digital era in the financial industry", Ivan Maglić from Gartner Adriatic/Calisto, also the moderator of the panel discussion, pointed out at the very beginning that the digital transformation of banks went through three evolutionary phases.
Apple plans to adopt organic LED display technology for the next major upgrade to its flagship product, according to Bloomberg. To do so, they will have to get its hands on millions of OLED screens. As a result, Japanese suppliers are under pressure to build up manufacturing operations.
When the PlayStation VR goes on sale, it won’t just be a test for Sony, according to Bloomberg. As the first high-end virtual-reality headset aimed at the mass market, the gadget will also offer the first hint as to whether the technology can become a mainstream product.