An Emotion-Detecting Echo Speaker: Helpful Or Going Too Far?

An Emotion-Detecting Echo Speaker: Helpful Or Going Too Far?

Alexa, the virtual assistant inside Amazon’s Echo speaker — and its smaller versions — can order you a pizza, but can she tell that you’re upset when she confuses pepperoni with ham? Not yet, but the e-commerce giant is apparently working on giving Alexa the ability to gauge users’ emotions.  [More]

André-Pierre du Plessis

PayPal Won’t Protect Your Payments To Crowdfunding Projects

If you’re using PayPal to help fund yet some friend’s hot sauce Kickstarter project, listen up. Starting next month, PayPal’s Purchase Protection won’t cover the transactions made on crowdfunding platforms.  [More]

Amazon Improves Developers’ Ability To Use Alexa In Their Own Devices

Amazon Improves Developers’ Ability To Use Alexa In Their Own Devices

While most of us only hear about Amazon’s personal assistant Alexa when it comes to the Echo speaker — and its new smaller versions — app developers have been able to tap into the tech via the Alexa Voice Services tool for their own devices, like alarm clocks or speaker systems. However, the capabilities available through the service weren’t as robust as those found in the Echo — until now.  [More]

Robrrt

Got An Older Kindle? Update Your Device By March 22 Or It Won’t Connect To The Internet

Unless you’re happy reading the material that’s on your older Kindle right now forever and ever, you’ll want to heed Amazon’s advice, and quick: some e-readers will need to be updated by March 22, or they’ll lose the ability to connect to the Internet. [More]

It’s Almost Too Easy To Install Windows 10 — Even If You Weren’t Planning On It

It’s Almost Too Easy To Install Windows 10 — Even If You Weren’t Planning On It

There are many reasons someone might choose to delay installing Microsoft’s Windows 10: maybe you just want to stick with Windows 7 or 8 a little longer, or you don’t feel like making space on your PC to accommodate the new OS. But if you aren’t paying attention, you could end up downloading the OS installer anyway.

[More]

Snapchat announced today that users can pay to replay messages.

Snapchat Now Lets Users Pay For The Ability To Replay Those Self-Destructing Messages

Snapchat, built on the premise that photos and videos sent between users would self-destruct in a matter of seconds, has allowed users the ability to replay one passage per day for nearly two years. Now, the social network is expanding that option, letting users replay as many messages as they want — so long as they’re willing to pay for it. [More]

(Steven Depolo)

New Spotify Privacy Policy Aims To Provide “Plain Language” Explanation For Collected Data

Just weeks after Spotify ticked off many of its 75 million active users with an updated, potentially invasive privacy policy, the music streaming service has once again revamped the terms, this time including an introduction that provides clear reasoning and examples of data collected. [More]

Uber Updates App To Show The Difference Between Hailing A Ride And Ordering Lunch

Following a bit of consumer confusion related to rolling its ride-hailing and food ordering options into the same app back in June, Uber has finally pushed out an update aiming to ensure people looking for a ride don’t order a sandwich instead. Along with now prominently displaying separate buttons for requesting a ride and ordering via UberEATS, the update includes an expansion of the food delivery service to San Francisco. [More]

Google, Samsung, And LG To Start Pushing Monthly Security Patches That You Still Won’t Get

Google, Samsung, And LG To Start Pushing Monthly Security Patches That You Still Won’t Get

There have been a number of very high-profile security flaws in Android phones this summer. The good news is, the makers of the hardware and software are now pledging to roll out updates to everyone more often. The bad news? “Everyone” doesn’t actually mean “everyone.”

[More]

Apple Confirms It’s Not Getting Rid Of The iPod, Finally Updates The Device

Apple Confirms It’s Not Getting Rid Of The iPod, Finally Updates The Device

Just a month ago, we flirted with the possibility that Apple’s recent removal of the iPod from the top of the company’s site – in favor of its new subscription music service – may have been the beginning of the end for the company’s music player. Alas, today, the tech giant revealed that, no, it’s not sending the iPod the way of the dodo bird, instead, it’s updated the device… for the first time in three years. [More]

No Charges For Fired TSA Screeners Accused Of Conspiring To Grope Attractive Male Passengers

No Charges For Fired TSA Screeners Accused Of Conspiring To Grope Attractive Male Passengers

You might recall the tale of two Transportation Security Administration screeners who were accused of conspiring to tweak the system so they could give very thorough patdowns to the good-looking male travelers who passed through their post at the Denver Airport. But months after the workers were fired amidst allegations of a groping scheme, prosecutors have declined to file charges.

[More]

(walkerspace)

AMC Remodels Movie Theaters To Have Big, Reclining Seats, But Fewer Of Them

Imagine that you’re a potential investor in movie theater chain AMC, which became a publicly traded company last year. Executives share their exciting new sales pitch: they’re going to make more money by selling fewer tickets to each show. Wait, what? How does that lead to higher earnings? Auditoriums that fit fewer patrons will have comfier, recliner-style seats. [More]

Good News: Best Buy Doesn’t Really Charge $70 To Deliver Dryer Power Cord

Good News: Best Buy Doesn’t Really Charge $70 To Deliver Dryer Power Cord

Good news from Best Buy! Remember reader Christopher? He was shopping for a dryer on the Best Buy web site when he saw that while the delivery on his dryer is free, but delivery on his $30 power cord cost $70. There’s good news: Best Buy contacted him through us, and he learned that this was all a terrible mistake. [More]

Security cameras show the the thief walking into the restaurant just as the customer realizes he is short $2,200.

Update: El Pollo Loco To Help Out Customer Whose $2,200 Was Stolen In Parking Lot

Last week, we told you about the unlucky El Pollo Loco customer who accidentally dropped $2,200 in the parking lot, only to have it stolen by another customer who then sat and ate his meal while his victim undertook a frantic search for the cash. Now we hear there is some good news, as the eatery plans to gift the money back to him. [More]

(mainfr4me)

UPDATE: Travel Insurer Decides To Listen To Customer’s Doctor After Public Shaming

Last month, we told you about a California woman whose travel insurance claim was denied because the insurance company posed her doctor a single yes/no question rather than let him explain his patient’s condition. After being shamed in public, the insurer is changing its tune — at least for this case. [More]

(otherstream)

Septuagenarian Sues Kroger After Being Attacked For Handing Out Food In Parking Lot

You may remember the story from last August about an Atlanta-area man who said he was physically assaulted by a Kroger manager when he attempted to help out another customer in need by giving her some food he’d just purchased. Now the victim has now sued that former manager, the grocery chain, and a private security firm over the incident. [More]

(pccoder)

Nook Customers Can Download Rentals: You Just Need A Working SD Card

Last week we shared with you the story of reader Brian, who was ready to chuck his Nook tablet and trade it in for an iPad, if he hadn’t been long past the return window. He wanted to rent some movies and watch them while traveling abroad and without Internet access. This seemed reasonable, and Nook documentation explains how to do this, but his tablet wouldn’t let him. A possibly well-meaning and definitely misinformed customer service representative told him that downloading a rental wasn’t possible. They were wrong. [More]

(meg)

Bank Of America Explains Why It Never Assumed Title To Squatter-Filled Foreclosure