Tag: tech news

5G Is Coming This Year. Here’s What You Need to Know.

The transition to new fifth-generation cellular networks, known as 5G, will affect how you use smartphones and many other devices. Let’s talk about the essentials.

In 2019, a big technology shift will finally begin. It’s a once-in-a-decade upgrade to our wireless systems that will start reaching mobile phone users in a matter of months. 

But this is not just about faster smartphones. The transition to new fifth-generation cellular networks — known as 5G for short — will also affect many other kinds of devices, including industrial robots, security cameras, drones and cars that send traffic data to one another. This new era will leap ahead of current wireless technology, known as 4G, by offering mobile internet speeds that will let people download entire movies within seconds and most likely bring big changes to video games, sports and shopping.

Officials in the United States and China see 5G networks as a competitive edge. The faster networks could help spread the use of artificial intelligence and other cutting-edge technologies.

Expect to hear more about 5G soon at events like the big consumer electronics trade show CES in January in Las Vegas and MWC Barcelona (formerly the Mobile World Congress) in February in Spain. Wireless service providers including AT&T and Verizon are already talking up 5G. And device makers are previewing gadgets that will work with the technology.

Samsung recently demonstrated prototypes of 5G smartphones that are expected to operate on both Verizon and AT&T networks. Many other manufacturers are racing to follow suit, though Apple is not expected in the initial 5G wave. Analysts predict that iPhones with the new technology won’t arrive until 2020. An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment.

Here’s what you need to know.

Strictly speaking, 5G is a set of technical ground rules that define the workings of a cellular network, including the radio frequencies used and how various components like computer chips and antennas handle radio signals and exchange data.

Since the first cellphones were demonstrated in the 1970s, engineers from multiple companies have convened to agree on new sets of specifications for cellular networks, which are designated a new technology generation every decade or so. To get the benefits of 5G, users will have to buy new phones, while carriers will need to install new transmission equipment to offer the faster service. 

The answer depends on where you live, which wireless services you use and when you decide to take the 5G plunge.

Qualcomm, the wireless chip maker, said it had demonstrated peak 5G download speeds of 4.5 gigabits a second, but predicts initial median speeds of about 1.4 gigabits. That translates to roughly 20 times faster than the current 4G experience.

The 5G speeds will be particularly noticeable in higher-quality streaming video. And downloading a typical movie at the median speeds cited by Qualcomm would take 17 seconds with 5G, compared with six minutes for 4G.

Rather than remembering to download a season of a favorite TV show before heading to the airport, for example, you could do it while in line to board a plane, said Justin Denison, a Samsung senior vice president.

No. There’s another kind of speed, a lag known as latency, that may become even more important with 5G.

READ MORE: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/31/technology/personaltech/5g-what-you-need-to-know.html

New iPad Pro: 5 reasons not to upgrade

Commentary: Put away your credit card and step away from the Apple Pay.

Screen Shot 2018-09-16 at 9.24.10 AM

Any time a new gadget comes out like the new iPad Pro, it’s exciting. But let’s take a step back and analyze what we saw beyond the slick hardware and snazzy demos. Here’s why you should maybe hold off on getting the new iPad Pro.

(There are plenty of reasons to upgrade, of course, but we’ll double back here and revisit those once we’ve gotten a chance to spend some time with the device. It hits stores Nov. 7.)

Price creep

The iPad Pro starts at $799 (£769, AU$1,229) for the base configuration. If you want to use an iPad Pro more like a traditional laptop, enjoy shelling out up to $199 for the new Smart Keyboard Folio. (There’s a smaller, $179 model of the keyboard for the 11-inch iPad Pro.) If you want more storage than the base 64GB, you’ll pay.

If you max out all the specs on the iPad Pro, you’re looking at a price tag of $1,899 (£1,869, AU$2,869). With that kind of cash, you could pick up a MacBook Air or MacBook Pro.

The accessories divide

Did you buy into the dream of a pro-level iPad in the past and get a keyboard and Pencil? I’ve got bad news. The Smart Connector placement has changed, meaning you’ll need replace your old Smart Connector-compatible keyboard for the latest Smart Folio Keyboard if you want to touch type on your new iPad Pro.

The older Pencil accessory is also not compatible with the new iPad Pro. According to Apple, the original Pencil works only with the older Apple iPad Pro models. What’s more is the new, magnetic Apple Pencil is compatible only with the redesigned iPad Pros. (Here’s our FAQ on the Apple Pencil 2.)

Photoshop not coming till 2019

Apple had Adobe come on stage and show off what the software maker called “real Photoshop” on an iPad Pro. (In fact, Adobe had already revealed Photoshop for iPad earlier this month, at its own event.) That means lots of control, layers and Adobe’s wealth of tools. That could be really great. However, if you pick up an iPad Pro right now, you’re not going to get real Photoshop until next year. When next year? That is unclear. Meanwhile, real Photoshop is available for Macs and PCs right now.

What is USB-C for?

Apple made the move to USB-C with the new iPad Pros. This could conjure up dreams of using the port like you would on a computer or an Android phone.

But don’t get too excited. Apple did show the ability to charge other devices using the iPad Pro with its USB-C port and connecting to a camera. However, adding external storage may not be as simple as connecting a hard drive. If a developer chooses, it could build an app that could access external storage, like SanDisk did for its iXpand drives. When the iPad Pro launches, though, iOS will not be able to directly access external storage using the USB-C port like a regular computer would.

Courageous omissions: No headphone jack, no Lightning port, no OIS

For whatever reason, Apple ditched its proprietary Lightning port from the new, more powerful iPad Pros. If you’ve invested in Lightning adapters or Lightning cables to charge your previous iPad, neither are directly usable. USB-C is now the, er, apple of Apple’s eye. In the future, USB-C will be all that is left, but it’s still the present.

What about the headphone jack? Apple spent a great deal of time at the new iPad Pro’s introduction trying to blur the line between its tablet and more traditional PCs. That seems to be an odd choice seeing as how Apple has kept the headphone jack on its Mac line of laptops. If you want to quietly edit your creative masterpieces on the new iPad Pro, enjoy getting a dongle (you’ll need the new USB-C to 3.5mm one, since your iPhone’s Lightning to 3.5mm won’t work here). Or use a pair of wireless Bluetooth headphones — Apple will gladly sell your a pair starting at $120.

Oh, one more thing. The newest iPad Pros no longer feature optical image stabilization (OIS) on the rear camera, according to Apple’s spec page. The 10.5-inch version does have OIS. I don’t know who’s using their tablet as a camera, but stabilization is always welcome.

READ MORE: https://www.cnet.com/news/new-ipad-pro-5-reasons-not-to-upgrade/#ftag=CAD-09-10aai5b

The beginner’s guide to technology in 2018: All of the essential gadgets and services actually worth your money

It’s 2018, and you’re not very familiar with technology. Where do you start?

While there are tons of gadgets and services out there vying for your attention and your dollars, there are a handful of “essential” technologies that are absolutely worth investing in, as they make your life easier in significant ways.

Here’s your guide to all the essential technologies worth your money in 2018.

A quality smartphone


A quality smartphone is one of the best investments you can make. Smartphones are the most personal computing devices we own. You can use them for just about everything: They’re phones, obviously, but they’re also cameras, calculators, and full-blown computers that can fit in your pocket or bag. They’re the Swiss Army knives of the future.

The biggest choice you’ll make is actually pretty simple: Which operating system do you prefer? Most smartphones either run iOS — which is operated by Apple — or Android, which is designed by Google and tweaked (slightly or a lot) depending on the phone you buy.

If you like iOS, that means you’re getting an iPhone. You can’t go wrong with any of the new iPhones, including the $750 iPhone XR coming this month or $1,000 iPhone XS, but the older models like the iPhone 7, which starts at $450, are still an incredible deal.

If you like Android, you have a ton of options, but popular picks are the affordable OnePlus 6, which starts at $530, and the Galaxy S9 and Note 9 phones from Samsung, which start at $720 and $1,000, respectively. We’re also expecting new Pixel 3 phones from Google this month.

Streaming devices are a worthy investment for any TV owner in 2018. Streaming devices, in short, open up the possibilities for your TV. Most streaming devices support popular streaming apps like Netflix and Hulu, but depending on the company that makes your device, you’ll also typically have access to an online store, like Apple’s iTunes Store or Google’s Play Store. So, if you purchased movies, TV shows, or games through any of those stores, you’ll be able to access them on your TV.

READ MORE: https://www.businessinsider.com/technology-beginners-guide-essential-gadgets-services-2018-10#a-streaming-device-for-your-tv-2

Facebook Data Breach — What To Do Next

Screen Shot 2018-09-29 at 8.18.02 PM

Yesterday, Facebook notified users of a massive data breach affecting over 50 million people. The breach had taken place three days earlier, on the afternoon of 25 September.

The social media giant says it doesn’t know exactly what kind of information has been compromised. However, in an updated statement yesterday, it did admit the hack affected those who use Facebook to log into other accounts.

How do you know if you’ve been impacted?

If you’ve been affected by the breach, Facebook logged you out of your account yesterday. The social network said it would also notify these people in a message on top of their News Feed about what happened.

However, an important thing to note: If you were logged out, you weren’t necessarily breached. Facebook has also logged out everyone who used the ‘View As’ feature since the vulnerability was introduced as a “precautionary measure”. The social network says this will require another 40 million people or more to log back into their accounts, adding: “We do not currently have any evidence that suggests these accounts have been compromised.”

Has the issue been fixed?

According to Facebook, yes. It believes it has fixed the security vulnerability, which enabled hackers to exploit a weakness in Facebook’s code to access the ‘View As’ privacy tool that allows users to see how their profile looks to other people.

Attackers would then be able to steal the access tokens that allow people to stay logged into their accounts. Then, Facebook admits, they could use these to take over people’s profiles.

Facebook is also temporarily turning off the ‘View As’ feature while it conducts a “thorough security review”.

What should you do if you’ve used Facebook to log in to other accounts/apps?

Facebook has admitted this could be an issue, but it can be hard to know what you’ve logged into using your account. This information can be found in your settings. First, go to ‘apps and websites’, then ‘logged in using Facebook’.

There you will be able to find all the apps you have used Facebook to log in to. It’s a good idea to remove these, even if you think you haven’t been impacted by the breach. If you have been affected, you’ll also need to change the passwords for those accounts, to be safe.

What can you do to secure your Facebook account?

Facebook says there’s no need for people to change their passwords. However, there is no harm in doing so – ensuring that your new password is secure and that you do not use it to log into other accounts. You could also log yourself out of Facebook, even if you don’t think you’ve been impacted, using the ‘security and login’ section in ‘settings’. This lists the places people are logged into Facebook with a one-click option to log out of all of them. People who’ve forgotten their passwords can access Facebook’s Help Center.

If you haven’t already, you should also enable two-factor authentication, which again can be found in Facebook settings.

Of course, you could also delete your Facebook account altogether.

Does this breach come under GDPR?

Many of the 50 million customers breached will reside in Europe, so their data does fall under the EU general update to data protection regulation (GDPR). We don’t know exactly what information has been impacted – fines are applicable for sensitive and personal data such as credit card details, which Facebook initially said has not been affected. However, if attackers have accessed personal messages, all kinds of sensitive information could have been breached.

As Facebook investigates the breach, it will be interesting to see the regulatory impact. The number of accounts impacted dwarfs that of British Airways at 50 million versus 380,000 but the nature of the information accessed is important.

For now, users need to ensure their own security is tight. Breaches are happening every day and it’s important to use strong passwords and two-factor authentication at a bare minimum.

Your Smartphone Will Replace Your Car Keys by 2015


Your smartphone has the potential to replace nearly everything else in your pockets, so why not your car keys? Hyundai is working to do just that, with an embedded NFC tag that allows you to open your car, start the engine and link up to the touchscreen with a simple swipe. Hyundai outfitted its i30 compact hatch (aka the Elantra in the States) with NFC technology in its “Connectivity Concept” recently shown at its European headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany. The idea is simple: Nix the key fob and let your smartphone handle it all. According to the Korean automaker, the driver can swipe their phone across an embedded NFC chip to unlock the car, and once inside, the place the phone in the center console, allowing the car to start, while an inductive charging plate keeps the juice flowing without needing to plug in. “With this technology, Hyundai is able to harness the all-in-one functionality of existing smartphone technology and integrate it into everyday driving in a seamless fashion,” says Allan Rushforth, senior vice president and COO of Hyundai Motor Europe. But unlocking and starting the car is only part of a wider connectivity solution for Hyundai. Because the system can recognize different smartphones, it can customize the in-car experience to suit each driver’s seat, mirror and infotainment settings. Once the phone is in the console, it links up with the 7-inch touchscreen mounted in the dash, and Hyundai is employing the Car Connectivity Consortium’s MirrorLink standard to automatically import contacts, navigation destinations, streaming audio and apps. Despite forging dozens of automaker partnerships, MirrorLink hasn’t caught on with many manufacturers yet. That’s mainly due to concerns about driver distraction and how certain apps would be ported to the integrated screen, modifying the user interface to suit a more driver-focused experience. But that’s about to change as MirrorLink begins gaining momentum. Hyundai and its connectivity partners at Broadcom are working to get this NFC- and MirrorLink-driven technology to market in its next generation of products, with the automaker claiming to have many of these systems in place by 2015.

News Headlines 10.31.12

Vast storm packs wallop for millions
The awesome scale of Sandy meant an extraordinary number of people received close to a direct hit.
( by Joel Achenbach and Colum Lynch , The Washington Post)
Euthanasia should be a right
Readers respond to an article about the end-of-life decisions and to one about the call of mockingbirds.
(, The Washington Post)
Philadelphia prepares for storm
From laundromats to shelters, officials, residents ready for the arrival of Hurricane Sandy.
( by Lisa Rein , The Washington Post)
The cost of Romney’s larger military?
Walter Pincus examines the candidate’s proposal for boosting troop numbers.
(, The Washington Post)
Exercise may protect the aging brain
A new study suggests that physical activity may mitigate cognitive decline in older adults.
(, The Washington Post)
More National: Breaking National News & Headlines – Washington Post

New York, New Jersey devastated by Sandy
One of the largest and fiercest storms to menace the East Coast in years caused widespread flooding, power outages and damage. At least 16 have died, AP reports.
( by Fredrick Kunkle, Laura Vozzella and Jeremy Borden , The Washington Post)
Hurricane Sandy: District tips and information
( by Washington Post staff , The Washington Post)
Hurricane Sandy pummels East Coast
Storm comes ashore in N.J. but swamps New York city, flooding much of the financial district.
( by Ashley Halsey III, Lori Aratani and Laura Vozzella , The Washington Post)
Hurricane Sandy: Anne Arundel County tips and information
( by Washington Post Staff , The Washington Post)
Hurricane Sandy: Manassas tips and information
( by Washington Post Staff , The Washington Post)
More Post Local: Washington, DC Area News, Traffic, Weather, Sports & More – The Washington Post

Working to reduce food waste and protect the environment
At just 26 years-old, Laura Moreno is a tireless crusader for reducing and recycling food waste.
( by The Partnership for Public Service , The Washington Post)
Rep. Donna Edwards, an outsider again
The Maryland congresswoman is breaking with fellow Democrats by opposing Question 7, which would expand gambling in the state.
( by Miranda S. Spivack , The Washington Post)
Election lawyers at the ready
Thousands of attorneys are poised to challenge election results that may be called into question by machine failures, voter suppression or other allegations of illegal activity.
( by Bill Turque , The Washington Post)
Storm throws a wrench into the works of Va. campaigns, voting efforts
As Sandy approached, it became clear the biggest political impact was likely to be in hotly contested Virginia.
( by Amy Gardner , The Washington Post)
Challenge to surveillance act divides Supreme Court
The justices debate whether anyone can contest the law if they’re not sure they’re being monitored.
( by Robert Barnes , The Washington Post)
More Post Politics: Breaking Politics News, Political Analysis & More – The Washington Post

Carolyn Hax: Travel turbulence
It is reasonable to ask a husband to give his wife and child a two-hour ride to the airport for a three-hour flight? Or is there a larger question here?
(, The Washington Post)
We all agree: Sandy is more than hot air
Hard evidence of a real threat is more convincing than reporters in rain gear.
( by Ann Gerhart , The Washington Post)
Residents pack up, prep for flooding
Low-lying areas braced for flooding, as workers cleared sewer grates and residents prepared to flee.
( by Carol Morello and Corinne Reilly , The Washington Post)
Decoding our ‘Frankenstorm’
Storm cliches and neologisms are a way of trying to assert control when we’re vulnerable to nature’s wrath.
( by Emily Wax , The Washington Post)
Traveling after Sandy
Advice for travelers stuck while Hurricane Sandy storms up the Eastern Seaboard.
( by Andrea Sachs , The Washington Post) More Style: Culture, Arts, Ideas & More – The Washington Post

Businesses adjust to Sandy
Some closed early, but others received a bonanza as the storm bore down.
( by Jonathan O’Connelland Abha Bhattarai Capital Business Staff Writers , The Washington Post)
Microsoft adds features to Windows Phone 8
Microsoft officially unveiled Windows Phone 8 on Monday.
( by Hayley Tsukayama , The Washington Post)
Apple IPad Mini Shipping Delay Suggests That Tablet Sold Out
Apple Inc.’s iPad mini will now take about two weeks to ship to customers who order it from the company’s online store, suggesting the product may be temporarily sold out.
( by Adam Satariano Bloomberg News , Bloomberg)
Chrysler Group Quarterly Net Income Rises to $381 Million
Chrysler Group LLC said its third- quarter net income rose to $381 million from $212 million a year earlier on increased revenue.
( by Bill Koenig Bloomberg News , Bloomberg)
Superstorm Sandy may test limits of homeowners’ insurance
Standard homeowners’ insurance likely won’t cover the damage to flooded basements.
( by Steven Mufson , The Washington Post)
More Business News, Financial News, Business Headlines & Analysis – The Washington Post

TV and radio listings, October 30
(, The Washington Post)
OPINION | Same old Wizards? Maybe not.
Coach Randy Wittman is upbeat about a new attitude on the team as the NBA season begins.
( by Mike Wise , The Washington Post)
For Beal, it’s all in the family
Wizards rookie has the support of parents and brothers as he makes the transition to life in the NBA.
( story by Michael Lee  photo by Katherine Frey , The Washington Post)
Giants built to succeed for the future
After two World Series wins in three years, the San Francisco Giants appear built for even more success.
( by Barry Svrluga , The Washington Post)
Ready for an encore?
After finally getting the championship monkey off his back, the Heat’s LeBron James preps for his next act.
( by Michael Lee , The Washington Post)
More Sports: Sports News, Scores, Analysis, Schedules & More – The Washington Post

Microsoft adds features to Windows Phone 8
Microsoft officially unveiled Windows Phone 8 on Monday.
( by Hayley Tsukayama , The Washington Post)
Google officially announces Nexus 4, Nexus 7 and Nexus 10
Google added a smartphone and two tablets to its gadget lineup.
( by Hayley Tsukayama , The Washington Post)
In Washington he’s a wonk rock star, but he’s Comcast’s secret weapon
David Cohen, the cable giant’s chief lobbyist and a veteran of Philadelphia politics, is critical to its dominance.
( by Cecilia Kang , The Washington Post)
The big market Facebook is missing out on
While the service is still unrivaled as a means of staying connected with friends, its offerings are hobbled by a surprising gap.
( by Brian McConnell, entrepreneur, publisher Translation Reports | GigaOM.com , gigaom.com)
Nokia announces $99 Lumia 822
If Nokia wants to save its skin, it’s going to need Verizon’s help.
( by VentureBeat.com , VentureBeat.com)
More Technology News – The Washington Post

The cost of Romney’s larger military?
Walter Pincus examines the candidate’s proposal for boosting troop numbers.
(, The Washington Post)
Ningbo protest, response both typical of China’s environmental debate
Chinese are more and more willing to take their grievances to the street, particularly for pollution-related issues.
( by Patti Waldmeir, Leslie Hook and Jamil Anderlini | Financial Times , The Washington Post)
Observers criticize election in Ukraine
In parliament vote, ruling party tightens grip while opposition parties cry foul over campaign, results.
( by Will Englund , The Washington Post)
Education proves difficult amid Pakistan’s conflicts
Teaching continues at middle school in North Waziristan, despite fighting.
( by Michele Langevine Leiby and Saleem Mehsud , The Washington Post)
Hillary Clinton in Algeria to urge military help for Mali
The Algerian government is leery of an international coalition to push militants out of Mali.
( by Anne Gearan , The Washington Post)
More World: World News, International News, Foreign Reporting – The Washington Post

Oil and capitalism
The Rosneft deal casts a cloud over Russia’s economy.
(, The Washington Post)
California’s green life cycle
A challenge to the state’s push to reduce its carbon footprint.
(, The Washington Post)
Romney passes the buck for Sandy
His plan for disasters: Make the states pay.
(, The Washington Post)
Obama’s ‘victory’ failure
One choice may bring the president down.
(, The Washington Post)
The president who doesn’t care
Obama has never espoused a cause bigger than his own political survival.
(, The Washington Post)
More Opinions: Washington Post Opinion, Editorial, Op Ed, Politics Editorials – The Washington Post

Talk about Travel
The Post’s travel writers and editors discuss your travel stories, questions, gripes and more.
(, vForum)
Talk about Travel
The Post’s travel writers and editors discuss your travel stories, questions, gripes and more.
(, vForum)
Dr. Gridlock
The Washington Post’s Dr. Gridlock, Robert Thomson, will be online to take all your questions about Metro, traffic throughout the region and other transportation issues.
(, vForum)
Ask Boswell: Redskins, Caps, Nationals and more
Sports Columnist Tom Boswell answered reader questions about the Redskins, the Capitals, the Nationals, baseball, the NFL and more.
(, vForum)
Colorism in the black community
Author Marita Golden discusses color discrimination within the black community.
(, vForum)