About the Author

Ben Lovejoy

@benlovejoy

Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer who started his career on PC World and has written for dozens of computer and technology magazines, as well as numerous national newspapers, business and in-flight magazines. He has also written two novels.

He thinks wires are evil and had a custom desk made to hide them, known as the OC Desk for obvious reasons.

He considers 1000 miles a good distance for a cycle ride, and Chernobyl a suitable tourist destination. What can we say, he’s that kind of chap.

He speaks fluent English but only broken American, so please forgive any Anglicised spelling in his posts.

July 19

GOOG: 970.89

5.49

American owners of Samsung’s Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus phones will at long last get access to the Bixby assistant, first announced alongside the two phones. The company says that Bixby will be made available in the U.S. in an update happening sometime tonight…

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July 18

GOOG: 965.40

11.98
Google Glass Enterprise Edition in use at Boeing
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Google may have long since abandoned its ambitions to sell Glass as a consumer product, but a focus on enterprise applications has apparently been more successful as the Enterprise Edition finally gets its official launch today…

That day has been a long time coming. We exclusively revealed the plan to reboot Glass as an enterprise device in a series of posts back in early 2015. Since then, we’ve seen FCC images and a patent, and even an eBay listing before we confirmed the name more than a year ago …

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Everyone can use an Echo Dot: Just $50!

July 17

GOOG: 953.42

-2.57

Google has won at least an interim victory in its dispute with the U.S. Department of Labor over a planned anti-discrimination audit of the company.

An administrative judge has ruled that Google was justified in its refusal to hand over pay data for 21,000 employees to allow the Dept of Labor to check whether the company was paying men more than women …

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9to5mac 

July 14

GOOG: 955.99

8.83

Google Street View is great for exploring an area from the comfort of your sofa, but if you want some more inspirational images to see how great a place can look, you probably seek out some better-quality photos. You may not have to do that for long thanks to a machine-learning project Google is running.

Google fed an experimental deep learning system a supply of professional photos from which to learn, then had it try its hand at emulating these from a set of around 40,000 plain old Street View snaps …

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U.S. Border Protection can search devices but not cloud accounts, as searches climb dramatically

U.S. Customs and Border Protection has advised a Senator that while it has the power to search electronic devices and examine all data stored on them, these powers do not extend to searching data stored in the cloud …

July 13

GOOG: 947.16

3.33

A French court has ruled against the country’s own tax authority, and decided that Google need not pay a €1.11B ($1.27B) tax bill. Although the ruling so far applies only to Google and only in France, it sets a precedent that could influence other cases in Europe.

The French government took the view that when Google sold ads to French companies, that revenue was earned in France, and was subjected to taxes there. Accordingly, it sent the company a bill for almost $1.3B, covering ads sold in the country between 2005 and 2010, down from an earlier demand for €1.6B …

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9to5toys 

July 12

GOOG: 943.83

13.74

It’s not often that a huge list of tech giants get together to speak with one voice, and it’s even more remarkable when they are protesting legislation which could actually benefit them, but that’s what’s happening today. A Day of Action has been called to ask the FCC to retain net neutrality rules.

Amazon, Dropbox, eBay, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Netflix, Reddit, Snap, Spotify and Twitter are just 11 of the 40 tech companies encouraging you to have your say …

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July 11

GOOG: 930.09

1.29

Brokerage analysts are estimating that the first two months sales of the Samsung Galaxy S8 were significantly lower than those of last year’s S7 in the same period.

Estimated sales in the first 60 days were 9.8M for the S8, against 12M for the first two months of S7 sales last year …

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July 10

GOOG: 928.80

10.21

Most of a key Project Loon patent has been cancelled by the US Patent and Trademark Office after another company succeeded in convincing the agency that it came up with the idea first.

Project Loon uses free-floating balloons to provide Internet access to remote areas, beaming down Wi-Fi from overhead. The patent which has been cancelled relates to how Alphabet steers the balloons …

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electrek 

July 7

GOOG: 918.59

11.90

Hilton says smartphone door unlocking used 11 million times without being hacked

A growing number of hotels are now allowing people to use their smartphone to unlock their doors. The Hilton hotel group, which first started experimenting with the technology three years ago, says that the security of the system is now firmly proven …

Samsung has forecast that its Q2 profits will easily set an all-time record for the company. While sales of its flagship S8 smartphone will play some role, the bulk of these profits are expected to come from chip and display panels …

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July 6

GOOG: 906.69

-5.02

Cabin baggage ban on laptops & tablets over in all but name after latest exemption

The ban on laptops and tablets in cabin baggage on certain flights into the USA is over in all but name as a fourth airline is exempted. It’s clear by this stage that the ban was simply an aggressive way to force airports and airlines to adopt tougher security screening measures.

9to5mac 

July 5

GOOG: 911.71

13.01

Xiaomi and Nokia have today announced a partnership designed to revive the flagging fortunes of both companies.

The two companies have signed an agreement for cross-licensing of patents, while promising to work together on the Internet of Things, virtual reality and augmented reality …

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July 4

GOOG: 898.70

-10.03

Samsung may be struggling to get its Bixby voice assistant to understand English on its flagship smartphone, but it seems that isn’t preventing it from planning a standalone speaker based on the same technology.

The company is today reported to be working on a Bixby speaker …

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Nasdaq glitch sets Alphabet & other shares to $123.47 in non-existent stock crash

A Nasdaq glitch caused a number of major trading platforms to display Alphabet’s share value as $123.47, some 86% below its true value at the time. The incorrect price for Google’s parent company was shown on Bloomberg, Google Finance, Yahoo Finance and others.

9to5toys 

July 3

GOOG: 898.70

-10.03

The UK’s privacy body, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), has ruled that a research partnership arrangement between Google DeepMind and the National Health Service (NHS) was illegal …

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June 30

GOOG: 908.73

-9.06

Twitter testing tool for reporting fake news, but no plans yet to launch

Twitter is said to be testing a tool that allows users to report tweets containing fake news and other forms of bogus or misleading information …

Google has published its latest diversity report, saying that it is ‘making progress’ on a more diverse workforce but recognizes that there is ‘much more to do.’ It has announced a new hire to help it do so.

To push our work forward, we’re thrilled that Danielle Brown will be joining Google as our new Vice President of Diversity. She’ll start in July, and comes with the deep conviction that Google provides a platform where she and the team can make a real impact internally and across the tech industry.

Its latest numbers show that the company is still predominantly male and either white or Asian …

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electrek 

June 28

GOOG: 940.49

13.16

OnePlus 5 first Android phone to beat the iPhone in speed test … kind of [Video]

David Rahimi has been conducting speed-test battles between iPhones and Android phones for quite some time now, and his latest test is the first time anything has beaten an iPhone. The OnePlus 5 – which is a blatant copy of the iPhone 7 Plus design – proved faster than the phone it mimicks …

June 27

GOOG: 927.33

-24.94
Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, head of competition policy
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The European Commission has levied its highest ever fine in an antitrust case, ruling that Google must pay €2.42B ($2.72B) for favoring its own shopping comparison service in search results. This is far higher than the €1B fine expected.

Further fines – equivalent to 5% of parent company Alphabet’s daily worldwide turnover – will apply unless Google resolves the issue within 90 days …

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