posted 7 days ago on the verge
Photo by David McNew/Getty Images Bill Gates has revealed that he thinks everyone would be using Windows Mobile right now if Microsoft hadn’t have been caught up in a US Justice Department antitrust investigation. Speaking at The New York Times’ DealBook Conference earlier today, Gates revealed his thoughts on Microsoft’s mobile mistakes. “There’s no doubt that the antitrust lawsuit was bad for Microsoft, and we would have been more focused on creating the phone operating system and so instead of using Android today you would be using Windows Mobile,” claimed Gates. “If it hadn’t been for the antitrust case... we were so close, I was just too distracted. I screwed that up because of the distraction.” Photo by Tom Warren / The Verge Windows Phone... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Photo by Dan Seifert / The Verge Amazon has shared a long list of devices that will be discounted ahead of Black Friday. These deals will begin on Friday, November 22nd, with several waves of Amazon’s own products going on sale during the week that leads up to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Like the other major retailers, Amazon usually goes big for the shopping season, so you can probably expect even more deals once Black Friday arrives. But for now, this is the info we have to go on. If you’ve been looking for a deal on a tablet, Kindle e-reader, smart security camera, Echo speaker, or smart display, these might appeal to you. Amazon’s latest Fire HD 10 tablet charges via USB-C, a first for the company. Here’s the list straight from Amazon: S... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Photo credit should read MARK RALSTON/AFP via Getty Images Uber drivers in New York City are suing the company for allegedly failing to repay taxes it deducted from their earnings. The suit was filed by the New York Taxi Workers Alliance, which is a vocal critic of Uber and the ride-hail industry. The plaintiffs seek to represent a class of 96,000-plus Uber drivers in New York City who worked for the company from 2013-2017 and who did not opt out of arbitration. The lawsuit claims Uber deducted sales tax and the Black Car Fund surcharge from drivers during that time. The lawsuit is asking for all of that money back. “Uber bosses are raking in millions while drivers struggle to feed their families,” said Bhairavi Desai, executive director of the Taxi Workers Alliance, in a statement. “Uber’s... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Two former Twitter employees have been charged with spying on user accounts on behalf of the Saudi Arabian government, according to The Washington Post. One employee accessed more than 6,000 accounts The Justice Department announced the charges today after one of the former employees was reportedly arrested. That suspect, Ahmad Abouammo, was charged with spying on three Twitter accounts for the government, according to the Post. Another former employee was charged with accessing data on more than 6,000 Twitter accounts, including one tied to a confidant of murdered journalist and critic of the Saudi government, Jamal Khashoggi. A third man, who prosecutors said acted as an intermediary between the employees and the Saudi government,... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
An actual slide from SoftBank’s earnings presentation. | Image: SoftBank SoftBank leader Masayoshi Son admitted that it was a mistake to have invested in WeWork, the beleaguered office space rental company that’s been in chaos ever since an attempt to go public revealed systemic mismanagement and ludicrous behavior by its founder and CEO. During an earnings conference, Son said that WeWork’s troubles resulted in “quite a large impact” on SoftBank and its Vision Fund. “My judgement in investment was not right in many ways,” Son said, according to SoftBank’s translator, adding that he regretted the decision. “We believe that we will be able to have a big improvement in WeWork.” The remarks followed SoftBank posting a $6.5 billion loss during its second quarter, the company’s biggest ever quarterly loss a... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Facebook Prineville Data Center | Photo: Vjeran Pavic When you try to return an item at Best Buy or Sephora, before deciding whether to take back the item, those businesses have apparently been secretly looking at something called your consumer score — a hidden rating based on data you didn’t even give them that determines how they treat you, according to Kashmir Hill’s recent expose for The New York Times. Apparently, your consumer score determines how long you’re kept on the line when calling customer service. It turns out, a lot of apps and services you use are quietly passing on your data to companies tasked with judging you and coming up with a rating for what you’re like as a consumer. Surprisingly, some of these third-party companies are willing to show you what data they have on... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Photo by Chris Welch / The Verge The new Apple AirPods Pro came out last week, and Amazon has already given them a temporary price cut. They’re normally $250, but you can buy them right now for $235. Currently, Amazon predicts that it won’t be able to ship your order for one to two weeks, but if saving a bit of money trumps getting them immediately, this deal is worth jumping on. Of course, if you discover them cheaper elsewhere before your order ships, you can simply cancel your order to make sure you aren’t charged. My colleague Chris Welch reviewed the AirPods Pro, and according to him, they’re everything he wanted in a next-generation set of AirPods. They have better sound, noise cancellation, and thanks to the silicone ear tips, they’ll get a more snug,... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Valve might be working on a new cloud gaming service for Steam, as potentially revealed by code buried in the company’s own website. Steam Database, which actively tracks changes to Steam and to Valve’s games, noticed new code on Valve’s website for partners that asks them to agree to the “Steam Cloud Gaming Addendum.” If you want to see this for yourself, you can see the code on Steam Database’s GitHub or on Valve’s website (just search “Steam Cloud Gaming Addendum”). Valve is working on "Steam Cloud Gaming" according to partner site code update. Partners will need to sign an addendum to their terms.Could this be a competitor to @GoogleStadia?https://t.co/7AQ9YxCol8— Steam Database (@SteamDB) November 6, 2019 With only a name,... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Adobe is previewing a bunch of experimental features that could one day come to its apps, including several that use AI to manipulate images and audio. The features were revealed during Adobe’s Sneaks event last night at the company’s annual Max creativity conference, and this year, the features made heavy use of the Adobe’s Sensei AI platform. Sneaks is where apps like Adobe Fresco and features like content-aware fill were first previewed, so there’s a good chance that some of these tools may appear in a Creative Cloud app near you in the future. Comedian John Mulaney hosted the event this year and served as a guinea pig for Adobe’s researchers to demonstrate the new features. Among the experiments was a feature called Go Figure, which... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Drinking! It’s something a lot of people do, and it’s also something a lot of people don’t do. If you like to enjoy a drink now and again, chances are you’ve been living through what’s probably best known as the “Cocktail Revival”: the global movement that’s put mixed drinks of various provenance into the hands of imbibers across the globe. (I’d locate its beginning around 2010, because, according to Food & Wine, that’s when the casual cocktail bar got its start.) The next wave, naturally, is making those sometimes-complicated drinks yourself, at home. Because even if cocktails are readily accessible, the price of admission — read: ingredients and what good service costs — can sometimes feel a little high. That’s where the Barsys... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
On Wednesday, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said that Facebook has refused to comply with its subpoenas to provide more information regarding its investigation into the company’s alleged privacy violations, according to CNBC. In a press conference scheduled to take place later this afternoon, Becerra will address Facebook’s failure to comply with the subpoenas and ask for the San Francisco County Superior Court to order the company to hand over any documents related to its Cambridge Analytica scandal. Prosecutors for the Northern District of California, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Securities and Exchange Commission opened investigations into Facebook’s privacy practices in the aftermath of Cambridge... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge We’re tracking the latest deals from all of the major retailers below Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Image: Blizzard Game developer Blizzard found itself faced with a seemingly impossible task: how do you develop a sequel to something that’s never supposed to end? It’s a predicament that’s becoming increasingly common in the game industry. Some of the most popular titles today are created to be living entities that exist for months or years and change over time, but hardly ever into something resembling a brand-new product. That’s the predicament the studio found itself in with Overwatch, the competitive team shooter with more than 50 million players worldwide and a successful e-sports league heading into its third year. Yet last week, Blizzard took the wraps off Overwatch 2, a sort of hybrid between your standard online game expansion and a... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Photo by Julian Stratenschulte / Picture Alliance via Getty Images Electrifying transportation is one of the biggest keys to solving the looming climate crisis. With more electric vehicles on the road and fewer gas-guzzlers, drivers burn less fossil fuels and put out fewer planet-heating gases into the atmosphere. But as electric vehicles become more popular, they’re posing another environmental challenge: what to do with their batteries once they’re off the road. batteries are starting to pile up into a problem Those batteries are starting to pile up into a problem, according to a new paper published in the journal Nature today. We’ll inevitably need to recycle many of the batteries, but harvesting useful materials from used lithium-ion batteries from electric vehicles remains tedious and risky.... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Airbnb intends to verify every single listing on its platform by the end of next year, a major policy shift meant to increase trust and safety following a shooting at a rental that killed five and a report about scammers taking advantage of renters. Brian Chesky, Airbnb’s CEO, said the company is making plans to be “100 percent verified” by the end of 2020. All hosts and listings will be reviewed as part of the process, with the goal of making sure that hosts are who they say they are, photos and information are accurate, and the locations meet safety standards. “We’re going to make sure that we can stand behind every single listing, every single host,” Chesky said. He called the plans the “most significant” change to Airbnb to date. The... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Target has released its Black Friday ad, and there are plenty of deals on 4K TVs, headphones, gaming consoles, smart speakers, and more. The most notable offer, so far at least, is an $80 discount on the seventh-generation iPad. It’s also offering the best price we’ve seen on the Xbox One X, and it’s including a gift card with the purchase. There are a bunch of other great deals to check out, too. As far as when you’ll be able to get in on these deals, Target will open its doors for its doorbuster sale on Thursday, November 28th, at 5PM local time. It will close at 1AM on Friday, then open again at 7AM to welcome shoppers to get in on all of the Black Friday deals. It says that its deals, including the ones below, will last until Sunday,... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Photo: Film Frame / Marvel Studios Avengers: Endgame will land on Disney+ one month earlier than expected, moving from December 11th to November 12th in the United States. The date change makes Endgame a launch title. During a call with investors in May, Disney CEO Bob Iger announced that Endgame would be available on Disney+ on December 11th. Iger noted that Endgame’s placement would come “just a month after we launch the service.” That date was later reiterated by Marvel Studios head honcho Kevin Feige at D23, Disney’s biennial fan convention, in August. An announcement tweet from the official Disney+ account didn’t indicate why the change was made. It’s become increasingly clear that having splashy titles available at launch is important for Disney when it comes to... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge San Francisco will ban the sale of e-cigarettes entirely starting in 2020, after the resounding defeat of a proposition designed to thwart the restrictions. The ballot measure was the last hurdle for the proposed ban, which was passed into law in June. Early results from the city’s Department of Elections show that slightly more than 80 percent of voters opposed Proposition C, which would have overturned the ban and paved the way for looser regulations. Initially, Proposition C was heavily supported by Juul Labs, which poured an estimated $18 million into promoting the measure. Efforts to defeat the proposition were spearheaded by former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, who spent about $6.6 million to oppose the proposition. Juul... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
A New York man allegedly ran a fraudulent cryptocurrency scheme by claiming it was tied to a United Nations affiliate promoting international development through sports, according to an indictment released this week by the Department of Justice. A digital coin called IGOBIT According to the department, 47-year-old Asa Saint Clair sold investors on a digital coin called IGOBIT, offering them guaranteed returns and a stake in the cryptocurrency. The funding, he allegedly told investors, would go toward the World Sports Alliance, a group that claimed to be tied to the UN and to work on global development projects. But the coin never existed, and World Sports Alliance didn’t work on any international projects, prosecutors say. Instead,... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Photo by Dan Seifert / The Verge Google’s new Nest Mini and Nest Wifi have ultrasonic sensing so they can light up when you’re nearby. Now, Google is rolling out ultrasonic sensing to its Nest Hub and Nest Hub Max smart displays, letting them show you information depending on how close you are (via Android Police). Engadget got an early look at the feature in October. Apparently, when the smart displays detect that you’re nearby, they’ll pull up information like timers, your commute, or weather forecasts, and when you move a little farther away, the device’s UI will change to show bigger fonts that are easier to read from a distance. This feature could be especially useful for the smaller Nest Hub because it doesn’t have a camera, so it can now use ultrasonic sensing... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Image: Mondadori via Getty Images James Dean is making his return to the big screen more than 60 years after dying in a car crash, thanks to two VFX companies. Finding Jack is a movie set within the Vietnam-era that is “based on the existence and abandonment of more than 10,000 military dogs at the end of the Vietnam War,” according to The Hollywood Reporter. Dean isn’t the leading role, but his performance as “Rogan” is “considered a secondary lead role,” according to the Reporter. Finding Jack marks the first movie that Dean will star in since Giant in 1956, just one year after his iconic role as Jim Stark in Rebel Without a Cause. Magic City Films, the company producing the movie, obtained the rights to Dean’s image from his family. The goal is to re-create “a... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Image: Tumblr Tumblr is launching a new group messaging feature that will allow different fandoms on the site to chat more easily with each other instead of replying on re-blogs. The “group chats” are public spaces, meaning that anyone can find and read them, though only approved members can send messages. People should notice a new group chat icon in the upper right-hand corner of Tumblr’s app starting today. Group chats aren’t meant for private DM sessions with Tumblr pals. The idea is to give people in niche communities a chance to create dedicated spaces to talk about their interests that are more immediate and interactive than simply re-blogging someone else’s post. Whether it’s memes or therapy or BoJack Horseman, this allows a larger body of... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Image: ABC 15 Uber did not have a formal safety plan in place at the time when one of its self-driving cars killed a woman in Tempe, Arizona, last year, according to a trove of new documents released by the National Traffic Safety Board on Tuesday. Its autonomous vehicles were not programmed to react to people who were jaywalking, and the company had been involved in over three dozen crashes prior to the one that killed 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg in March 2018. These new details cast a harsh light on Uber’s self-driving vehicle program, which has tentatively restarted testing after shutting down in the wake of the March 18th crash. And they set the stage for a potentially contentious hearing later this month when NTSB will decide the probable causes... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Tesla will finally unveil its long-awaited electric pickup truck on November 21st, Elon Musk tweeted on Wednesday. The truck, which Musk has dubbed “Cybertruck,” is supposed to look like something straight out of Blade Runner, the CEO has said. The truck will be unveiled at Tesla’s design studio in Los Angeles, California, which sits on the same lot as SpaceX’s headquarters. Musk originally planned on revealing the pickup truck earlier this year, but he announced in September that he was pushing the event back to November. Musk has said the forthcoming pickup truck has a “heart-stopping” design, with better utility than a Ford F-150 and superior performance to a basic Porsche 911. The idea of a Tesla pickup truck has been kicked around... Continue reading…

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posted 7 days ago on the verge
Recently, a friend told me he wanted to spend more time using Twitter, but he didn’t quite know how. His primary interest is comedy, he told me, and he hoped to find a way to see comedians’ best jokes on Twitter as they were posted. But when he followed comedians, he mostly saw a lot of self-promotion — tour dates, late-night appearances, and that sort of thing. No matter your personal interests, there are countless good and relevant tweets on Twitter. But where are they? Topics, a new feature from Twitter that is starting to roll out this week, represents a significant effort to answer that question. You will be able to follow more than 300 “topics” across sports, entertainment, and gaming, just as you are currently able to follow... Continue reading…

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