Endel app creator on the power of endless ambient music



May is Mental Health Awareness Month here in the US. What role do you believe sound plays in maintaining a positive cognitive state?

Oleg Stavitsky: I like to say that because the world is so crazy right now, people are now almost self-medicating with sound. With all of these playlists out there, people are literally searching for ways to get through the day and protect their cognitive state, hence all of these playlists and YouTube videos. And here’s Endel. This is a project built specifically for that kind of use: It is scientifically engineered to help you achieve a certain cognitive state.

Talk a little bit about the science. You recently partnered with the neuroscience data company Arctop to commission a study that uses its technology to measure and analyze brain wave data in real time. What were some of the findings and what do they reveal about the way people consume sound today?

OS: The result of the study was this interactive graph where you could zoom in on a second-by-second basis and see where a portion of the soundscape or playlist starts and how the user’s brain reacts to it. We were able to track one’s brain wave activity, and when they were listening to a static playlist, a certain song would kick in and it would work for them, but then another one would start and it just doesn’t. Then there’s this transition between that song and the previous song, and when the new one starts, there is this natural drop in concentration. If you think about sounds for concentration, what needs to happen is you need to slowly bring people up into the zone, and a lot of music works for that, but then it’s about keeping them there. And that’s the most important part. And for that, you need consistency. You need to be following the person and looking at their biometric data in real time to constantly keep them in the zone. So for Endel, it’s not that the concentration peaks are so high; it’s that the consistency of concentration is so much higher than what someone would get with a static playlist.

Endel has had artist collaborations with electronic musicians Grimes and Richie Hawtin (aka Plastikman), but you’re shifting course for your next one: philosopher Alan Watts. Why?

OS: Even though Alan Watts is technically dead, since the ’70s, we have contacted his son, who now runs the Alan Watts Foundation. This is a passion project of mine. We licensed two of his biggest talks, “World as Play” and “Pursuit of Pleasure.” These talks are so relevant for our times. Alan talks about the importance of dancing through life, of being wiggly, fluid, and flexible. He talks about relativity: How you can’t know good if you’ve not experienced bad, why it’s crucial for one side to always respect the other, how the whole world is not black and white. I find these notions very relevant for our intense, overstimulated, and polarized world.

How did you become so obsessed with sound?

OS: We’re all obsessed with music — specifically ambient music — because as Brian Eno rightfully put it, it’s as ignorable as it is interesting. You don’t even notice that it’s there. It just creates this comfortable ambiance for you to be in, but it doesn’t take your attention, you don’t lose mental energy on processing it. I now have almost like a professional disorder. Everything is a soundscape. You sit somewhere and you hear whatever: A train starts, a door creaks, a child cries. Everything immediately merges into a soundscape for me. Sometimes I want to shake that off, but it’s impossible. Everything is music to me now.

What is the value of providing an experience that crosses multiple devices in a user’s life?

OS: It can follow you everywhere during the day across all of these devices, and sometimes you can barely hear it. What I often do is put on Endel on relax mode. I would turn on Transparency mode on my AirPods Pro, and I would just go about my day. I would talk to people, I would buy coffee, I would interact with people. But there would be this, what I call, microdosing on Endel, essentially. Sound is the easiest way to control your environment. It’s so powerful, and it’s so easy to change your context. It was a no-brainer for us. So the idea is you start Endel on your iPhone and go for a run, and then you have it on your Apple Watch. Then you go to your office and you turn on noise-cancelling mode, and then you want to be in that deep work session on your Mac. This is when Endel is front and center, and it shields you from everything else around you. And then you come back home and say “Hey Siri, I want to relax,” and it pops up on your Apple TV. That’s my ultimate vision for Endel: an always-on soundscape.



Fantastic winners images from the Sony World Photography Awards


(Pocket-lint) – We’ve written before about the marvellous images submitted to the Sony World Photography Awards 2021.

Now, the judges have whittled the list down and announced the overall winners for this year’s competition.  

With Craig Easton from the UK being revealed as the overall winner receiving a $25,000 prize and a range of Sony’s digital imaging kit too. 

Below are some of the winners, we’d also highly recommend taking a look at some of the other photos in the fantastic galleries from this year

© Craig Easton, United Kingdom, Overall Winner Professional, Portraiture, Sony World Photography Awards 2021Fantastic winners and shortlisted images from the Sony World Photography Awards 2021 photo 16

Overall Winner (Craig Easton)

Craig Easton was chosen as the overall winner for this year’s photography awards for his series of images known as Bank Top. 

Bank Top was part of a project that came about as a response to reports that the town of Blackburn was seen as “the most segregated in Britain”. Creatives were challenged to use their work to “create a robust and authentic representation of their communities.” 

Craig Easton then set about working with the local community to tell their stories through portraits. 

“Bank Top, a collaboration with writer and academic Abdul Aziz Hafiz, examines the representation and misrepresentation of communities in northern England, and focuses on a tight-knit neighbourhood in Blackburn. Craig Easton notes that Blackburn has become synonymous with the use of words such as segregation (BBC Panorama) and integration (The Casey Review) by the media and policy makers – terms which he believes are too simplistic to explain the challenges faced by such neighbourhoods and towns. His aim with Bank Top is to confront what he sees as dominant discourses in the media which fail to acknowledge the historical legacy and social costs of industrial expansion and colonialism. This long-form collaboration uses the stories and experiences in Bank Top to address wider issues around social deprivation, housing, unemployment, immigration and representation, as well as the impact of past and present foreign policy.”

Open Photographer of the Year (Tamary Kudita)

This image by Tamary Kudita unsurprisingly won the title of Open Photographer of the Year 2021. 

The photo shows an unusual portrait of an African woman in a Victorian-style dress backdropped by wild surroundings. 

“With this image, I wanted to portray a hybrid African-Victorian: my way of probing the stereotypical contextualisation of the black female body. I provide an alternative version of reality, where dualities fuse to create a new visual language. Taking a Victorian dress and merging it with traditional shona cooking utensils was my way of showing a multifaceted identity.”

Architecture category winner (Tomas Vocelka)

This unusual image is the winner of 2021’s Architecture & Design category. Tomas Vocelka’s photo was originally selected as a finalist and now has been announced as the winner.

Like many of the other images in this article it shows just part of a thoroughly interesting story:

“The former Drnov military complex has been abandoned for 17 years when two friends, Martin Chlum and Michal Seba, bought the dilapidated facility in order to realise their dream of building a final resting place for pets. Explaining the reason for pursuing this project one of the owners reflects: ‘When my dog died, I found that there weren’t any places where I could take him for cremation or burial’. With the help of Czech minimalist architect Petr Hajek they established what is now known as the Eternal Hunting Grounds, a space comprising a mourning hall, a crematorium and approximately 40 hectares of surrounding land where wildlife can thrive.”

Creative category winner (Mark Hamilton Gruchy)

This image by Mark Hamilton Gruchy shows that not all the photos from the Sony World Photography Awards are utterly serious. The creative category is naturally full of intriguing images. but this one helped this photographer win this category. 

Here NASA’s images have been edited to fit into the creative category and tell an interesting story of how the Moon has barely changed since the first Moon landing. 

“This body of work is made up of previously unprocessed images from NASA and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. I have made my own images to express not only contemporary issues but also some that were relevant at the time of the Apollo missions. These are sourced from copyright-free materials that I have repurposed, processed and composited to create a conversation about the unchanging aspect of the Moon contrasted with the Earth, which continues to be a dynamic place where change cannot be prevented. With thanks to NASA and the JPL.”

© Luis Tato, Spain, Finalist, Professional, Wildlife & Nature, 2021 Sony World Photography AwardsFantastic winners and shortlisted images from the Sony World Photography Awards 2021 photo 15

The winner of Wildlife & Nature category seems to show the battle of man vs beast as a man is surrounded by hundreds of locusts. The collection of images taken by Luis Tato show the sheer scale of the locust invasion and the havoc they wreak. 

“Desert locusts are the most destructive migratory pests in the world. Thriving in moist conditions in semi-arid to arid environments, billions of locusts have been feeding throughout East Africa, devouring everything in their path, and posing a huge threat to the food supply and livelihoods of millions of people. Farmers stand by as armies of ravenous insects eat their crops; meanwhile, herders watch the rangelands stripped bare before their livestock can get to them. Extreme rainfall events and severe weather anomalies have created ideal conditions for locust breeding and feeding. Swarms of desert locusts from the Arabian Peninsula began rampaging across East Africa in early 2020, devouring crop and vegetation where they landed. The crisis reached historic proportions, with 10 countries in the Greater Horn of Africa and Yemen experiencing infestations. Some areas of East Africa, such as Kenya, had not seen such severe desert locust outbreaks in more than 70 years. Covid-19 restrictions have significantly slowed efforts to fight the infestation, as crossing borders has become more difficult, creating delays and disrupting the supply chains of pesticides and products needed to prevent these pests from wiping out vegetation across the region and exposing millions of people to high levels of food insecurity.”

Youth competition winner (Pubarun Basu)

Pubarun Basu’s series of photos entitled No Escape From Reality, were selected as the winners for the Youth competition.  

“I created this picture with the idea of representing the feeling of being trapped in a moment, or in one’s own reality. I saw the curtains as the fabrics of the space-time continuum, which those two hands fail to break out of. The shadow cast by the parallel railings on to the fabric also gives the impression of a cage, in which the entity is trapped for eternity.”

Student competition winner (Coenraad Heinz Torlag)

Coenraad Heinz Torlage won the student competition with this series of images called Young Farmers. The photos show young people striving for a better future, working a job they believe in because of a sense of responsibility. 

“I was born on a farm in South Africa, and grew up with cattle, horses, donkeys and chickens, many of which I still own and love to this day. Farming is an intense occupation that requires passion and unwavering dedication. I set out to photograph young people who choose this life because, like me, they believe they have a responsibility. This sits heavily on all of our shoulders. South Africa is an unpredictable land with severe droughts, safety concerns and debates around land ownership. Despite these challenges, young farmers are working toward a fairer and more equitable future of sustainable food security. They are my peers, my friends and my family, and this is our time to feed the nation.”

Professional competition Documentary Projects winner (Vito Fusco)

Striking images by Vito Fusco won the Professional competition, Documentary Projects category. 

This professional photographer uses stunning photography skills to tell an interesting story about an otherwise innocent-looking flower:

“The pyrethrum is known as the ‘flower of death’ – a nickname that neatly describes this delicate daisy imbued with murderous power. The pyrethrum is cultivated mainly in the hills of Nakuru in Kenya and is the arch foe of the insect world. When insects encounter the substance they are stunned into paralysis and then die. Used for centuries as a natural insecticide, it was only in the mid-20th century that pyrethrum made an impact on the global pesticides market, earning an eminent position among natural insecticides. During the 1980s, the pyrethrum crisis began, instigated by the chemical synthesis of pyrethroids that led to the manufacturing of cheaper but non-organic products. Today, however, this special daisy is being grown once again on the clay hills of Nakuru at an altitude of over 1,500m. The Kenyan government has decided to liberalise the production of pyrethrum, opening it to private companies in an ambitious attempt to revive the sector and help local farmers meet the growing global demand for organic products. Once sown, the plant provides a yield approximately every 15 days, all year round.”

In one of the photos a young woman is seen happily picking some flowers and no doubt Vito Fusco was equally pleased to be selected as a finalist for the documentary category

Professional competition, Environment winner (Simone Tramonte)

Simone Tramonte’s striking photos about the environment not only highlight sustainable changes that Iceland has made in the last year, but also the human effort and intrigue that has gone into it. 

These images also won the award for the Professional competition, Environment in this year’s Sony World Photography Awards.

“The coronavirus pandemic has led to the most severe economic downturn the world has seen in recent years. However, this crisis also presented countries with an unprecedented opportunity to shift towards sustainable living. Iceland is isolated and challenged by a harsh climate and following the financial crisis in 2008 has successfully transformed its economy through the use of renewable energy. In a few decades, the country moved away from fossil fuels to producing 100% of its electricity from renewable sources. This transition nurtured an ecosystem of innovation and entrepreneurship that grew profitable businesses aiming to make minimal impact on the environment. Thus Iceland has become a global leader in technologies that foster clean energy and emission reduction. This small nation presents many ways in which the global climate crisis can be tackled and is leading the transition to a net-zero sustainable future.”

Professional competition, Landscape winner (Majid Hojjati)

This interesting photo of a lone tent in an empty desert helped Majid Hojjati win the award for the Professional competition, Landscape category.  

Majid Hojjati took a collection of images named Silent Neighborhoods. These images saw this professional photographer selected as one of the finalists in the landscape category. The photos also tell a story of human life, gone but not forgotten:

“Everything in life is made up of impressions from the past and whatever befalls us today. The fabric which took one form yesterday takes on a new form now. All creatures still fight for their survival. Nature is the battlefield. The forces of the world are as they have ever been; the waves of the sea, storms, the earth itself. But ultimately it is humanity, marching everywhere, claiming everything, proving to the world that it will endure. We strove to live, to take and to control, before even knowing what to call ourselves. We think we will last forever so we hunt, build, wear clothes and consume, changing our ideas and our tools over the years but never changing our ways. We chased after more and more and something was always left behind. Homes were abandoned, chairs left empty and clothes unworn, even the buttons of a shirt were lost. We have raced to eternity, knowing life is fleeting, leaving the lights on behind us as if to say that once upon a time we were alive. Here are the silent neighbourhoods: those places free of the presence of humanity. The noise of their silence can be heard everywhere – but here in these places we are condemned to hear nothing.”

Professional competition, Portfolio, Winner (Laura Pannack)

Laura Pannack won the portfolio category of the Professional competition with these striking images from her personal portfolio. The photographer’s images are certainly interesting and varied too.  

“These images are from a variety of personal projects. All of my work is driven by research and building a connection with those I photograph, while vulnerability and honesty are at the forefront of my process. Such collaborations enable my imagery to be playful and push the boundaries of portraiture, while ensuring a foundation of trust is consistent. I believe images need to captivate and evoke emotion, and so, with every frame I shoot, I consider the elements within the frame and outside it. Symbolism is an important reference for my choices of composition and content.”

Professional competition, Sport, Winner (Anas Alkharboutli)

The winner of the sport category of the professional competition, this year was Anas Alkharboutli. This photographer’s images tell an interesting story where in a war-torn country children are seen having fun with sport and taking a break from living in fear. 

“In the Syrian village of Aljiina, near the city of Aleppo, Wasim Satot has opened a karate school for children. What makes it special is that girls and boys with and without disabilities are taught together. They’re aged between six and 15 years old. With his school, Satot wants to create a sense of community and overcome any traumas of war in the minds of the children.”

Professional competition, Still Life winner (Peter Eleveld)

With a series of visually pleasing images, Peter Eleveld won this year’s Still Life category. Simple objects photographed in magnificent ways:

“For this project I used ordinary objects, like glassware, fruits and flowers and applied the wet plate collodion technique to turn them into something extraordinary. Once I found my subject I started imagining how it will look printed. This particular process requires a lot of patience and careful planning of composition, lighting and exposure times. The hard work pays off when finally it all comes together in one unique, magical moment as you watch the photograph slowly develop in front of your eyes. This moment doesn’t happen all the time but when it does you’re left with one of a kind image (plate).”

Drying Fish

The rest of the images included here are from the open category and show the work of other superb photographers from around the world. 

Khanh Phan from Vietnam won the award for the travel category of the Open competition of the Sony World Photography Awards 2021, with this aerial image of a fish worker. 

Hundreds of trays of fish can be seen drying in crates creating wonderful lines for the eye to enjoy. 

“A woman dries trays of fish at Long Hai fish market in the Vung Tau province of Vietnam. Thousands of trays of scad are dried on rooftops and in yards by hundreds of workers. I came to Long Hai on a photo trip and was overwhelmed by the scale of the fishing village.”

Disinfection

This image by F.Dilek Uyar sees a lone worker disinfecting an otherwise unoccupied train station. It was selected as the category winner for the street photography category. A simple, yet poignant image of someone doing some important work in these troubling times. 

“During the coronavirus pandemic, the Health Affairs unit of Ankara Municipality sprays all public transportation, day and night.”

Son

Sometimes it’s the simplest photos that deserve the most praise.

This one by Lyudmila Sabanina from the Russian Federation shows a young child sitting on a table while gazing into the distance, seemingly lost in contemplation. This image won the portraiture category.

“Another side of childhood: contemplation and calm.”

Memento

The winner of the object category comes courtesy of Kata Zih and once again shows another photographer using imagery as a commentary about the pandemic. 

A simple lone tailor’s mannequin speaks of stillness and loneliness. A familiar feeling for people in lockdown over the last few months. 

Little Kiss

A nicely simple yet satisfying view of a rabbit has been crowned the winner of the Natural World & Wildlife category. Cristo Pihlamäe from Estonia shared this amusing picture of a hare looking out into the field with its tongue sticking out and it was enough for the judges to deem a winner. 

Girl Power

A wonderfully composed photo shows a lone woman jumping off a cliff as her friends watch. This photo by Marijo Maduna from Croatia was chosen as the winner for the motion category and it’s easy to see why. Great framing, a sense of danger and a brilliant atmosphere too. 

“A young girl shows off her skills, diving from a cliff on the island of Lokrum in Croatia. “

Dias de playa

The winner of the lifestyle category, this image by Mariano Belmar Torrecilla shows a place we’d probably all like to be now – at the beach in the summertime. 

“Summer, Mediterranean Sea, Spain, Alicante, beach and morning walk: a way of life.”

The Blue Window

Klaus Lenzen’s photo called The Blue Window was chosen as the architecture winner. A weirdly framed image that seems to show stairs attached to nothing and stretching off to another world.

“The Blue Window, depicting a ramp of stairs at the Hyatt hotel in Düsseldorf ascending towards a window from which a view of clear blue skies is reflected. Seemingly floating in space, the stairs and window are framed in dark shadows that highlight the design while also adding an element of surrealism.”

Writing by Adrian Willings.





Charter charges more money for slower Internet on streets with no competition


A Charter Spectrum service truck on a snowy street.
Enlarge / A Charter Spectrum service truck in McKinney, Texas, on Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021.

It’s no surprise that cable companies charge lower prices for broadband when they face competition from fiber-to-the-home services. But an article yesterday by Stop the Cap provides a good example of how dramatically promotional prices for Charter’s Spectrum Internet service can vary from one street to the next.

In this example, Charter charges $20 more per month for slower speeds on the street where it faces no serious competition. When customers in two areas purchase the same speeds, the customer on the street without competition could have to pay $40 more per month and would have their promotional rates expire after only one year instead of two.

Stop the Cap said it examined promotional offers to new customers in the metro Rochester, New York, market, “where Spectrum faces token competition from Frontier’s slow speed DSL service” and more robust competition in limited areas from Greenlight Networks’ fiber service. Greenlight fiber is available in 23 percent of Rochester, while Charter cable is available to homes throughout the city, according to BroadbandNow. Greenlight prices start at $50 per month for 500Mbps.

“Charter’s offers are address-sensitive,” Stop the Cap founder Phillip Dampier wrote. “The cable company knows its competition and almost exactly where those competitors offer service. That is why the company asks for your service address before it quotes you pricing.”

Dampier found that Charter offers 200Mbps service for $50 a month “[i]n neighborhoods where Spectrum enjoys a broadband monopoly.” Charter charges $70 for 400Mbps service in those same competition-free neighborhoods.

But “[j]ust one street away, where Greenlight offers customers the option of gigabit speed over a fiber-to-the-home network, Spectrum’s promotional prices are quite different,” Dampier wrote. On the competitive street, Charter charges only $30 a month for the same 400Mbps service that costs $70 nearby. As previously noted, customers on the noncompetitive street have to pay $50 for 200Mbps.

“Spectrum does not even bother offering new customers its entry-level 200Mbps plan in areas where it has significant fiber competition,” Dampier noted, referring to the promotional offers that pop up when you type in an address. “For $20 less per month, you get double that speed.”

For gigabit-download service, Charter charges $90 a month on the competitive street versus $110 on the noncompetitive street. These are the base prices without fees and taxes. Stop the Cap’s article included these screenshots from Charter’s promotional offers:

Longer price guarantee on competitive street

Charter also offers to lock in the monthly rate for two years in the competitive area, compared to just one year in the noncompetitive area. Prices can rise dramatically once promotional deals expire, so locking in a price for 24 instead of 12 months ensures that customers on competitive streets save even more money in the long run.

And that’s not all. Charter “charges a hefty $199.99 compulsory installation fee for gigabit service in noncompetitive neighborhoods. Where fiber competition exists, sometimes just a street away, that installation fee plummets to just $49.99,” Dampier wrote.

He added:

Note similar pricing variability exists in Spectrum service areas around the country, with the most aggressively priced offers reserved for addresses also served by a fiber-to-the-home provider or multiple competitors (e.g., cable company, phone company, Google Fiber or other [competitor]). Current customers typically have to cancel existing service and sign up as a new customer to get these prices.

Cable-company pricing varies widely, so the price difference between competitive and noncompetitive areas may be lower elsewhere. But the price differences show how valuable competition is to broadband subscribers.

Greenlight charges $50 per month for 500Mbps service, $75 for 750Mbps, $100 for 1Gbps, and $200 for 2Gbps. The company charges a $100 installation fee. It doesn’t offer promotional prices, so there isn’t a big automatic price hike after a set period like there is with many major ISPs.

Charter says it uses a “common” pricing strategy

When contacted by Ars, Charter said that “Spectrum Internet retail prices, speeds, and features are consistent in each market—regardless of the competitive environment.” But “retail prices” are the standard rates customers pay after promotional rates expire. Stop the Cap showed that Charter’s promotional rates vary between competitive and noncompetitive areas.

Charter told Ars that its promotional offers are affected by several factors, including “location.”

“Any promotional offers available to new customers are time-limited and vary based on a number of factors, such as time of year, location and programming, or device opportunities, and testing different promotional offers concurrently is common in a subscription business,” Charter said.

This isn’t the first time we’ve written about major Internet providers offering lower prices in competitive areas. In 2015, we noted that AT&T was charging $40 more per month for gigabit service in cities without Google Fiber.

Charter has over 27 million residential Internet subscribers in 41 states, making it the second-largest home-Internet provider in the US after Comcast.

Charter far behind Greenlight on upload speed

Price isn’t the only factor that a customer might consider when choosing between Greenlight and Charter. As a fiber provider, Greenlight offers far higher upload speeds than Charter’s cable network.

Charter’s upload speeds max out at 35Mbps, while Greenlight’s start at 50Mbps. Greenlight currently lists upload speeds as being 10 percent of download speeds, so the 500Mbps-download plan has 50Mbps uploads, and the 2Gbps plan has 200Mbps uploads. But Greenlight plans to make its speeds symmetrical like other fiber providers do.

“In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are upgrading upload speeds for orders in Serviceable Greenlight Districts at no additional charge. Your upload speed will match your download speed (500/500, 750/750, 1000/1000, 2000/2000.),” the company’s website says.

Charter’s upload speeds start at only 4Mbps. Its 200Mbps download plan comes with 10Mbps upload speeds, and the 400Mbps download plan comes with 20Mbps upload speeds. You have to buy Charter’s gigabit-download plan to get its highest upload speeds of 35Mbps, slower than Greenlight’s lowest upload rate. Despite years of promising higher upload speeds through upgrades to cable’s DOCSIS standard, Charter and other cable companies still lag far behind fiber in upload capabilities.

Disclosure: The Advance/Newhouse Partnership, which owns 13 percent of Charter, is part of Advance Publications. Advance Publications owns Condé Nast, which owns Ars Technica.



$999 MacBook Pro Deal Is Here, Save Up to $450


B&H is discounting two Intel MacBook Pros exclusively for AppleInsider readers, knocking up to $450 off the laptops. Offers end today.

Intel MacBook Pro on sale from $999

The exclusive MacBook Pro deals are courtesy of B&H Photo, offering AppleInsider readers $300 to $450 off on two Intel configurations in your choice of finish.

The first deal knocks $300 off the standard model with a quad-core 1.4GHz Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD. Now $999 using the pricing links below or the links in our Intel 13-inch Price Guide, this exclusive offer delivers the lowest price on record for the 256GB config.

MacBook Pro $300 off button

The second option has the same 1.4GHz Core i5 processor and 8GB of memory, but with double the amount of storage compared to the standard model at 512GB. Save $450 on this upgraded model in your choice of Silver or Space Gray, bringing the cost down to $1,049.

512GB MacBook Pro $450 off button

Both deals match or beat the lowest prices on record for the Intel MacBooks, making them a great gift idea for a graduating student or Dad for Father’s Day. Business professionals and those requiring additional screen real estate can enjoy support for two external 4K displays, along with a screen that offers 500 nits of brightness, which is 100 nits brighter than the current M1 MacBook Air.

To secure the discounted prices, you must shop through the special pricing links in this post or in our Price Guide using the activation instructions below. Offers end at 11:59 p.m. ET on May 31.

2020 MacBook Pro blowout deals

(*) Activation instructions

To activate the discounts on the Intel MacBook Pros, you must shop through the pricing links above using a laptop, desktop or iPad. We apologize, but the offers cannot be redeemed in mobile apps at this time. Need help? Send us a note at [email protected] and we’ll be happy to assist.

Additional Apple deals

Cheap Apple Prices

AppleInsider and Apple Authorized Resellers are also running additional deals on Apple hardware that will not only deliver the lowest prices on many of the items, but also throw in bonus savings on accessories, software and more. Here are just a few of the specials running this week:



Saham Assurance: Changes for Mobile Applications


Saham Assurance has announced a new version of its mobile application. The new version provides a variety of services. This allows policyholders to perform most of their processes remotely.

Sahm Assurance continues its momentum in terms of innovation. The company has announced to launch a new version of its mobile application. The latter provides customers with free and secure access to personal, first-class information (contracts, monitoring the progress of claims files, etc.).

As part of the dynamics of continuous improvement, the company states that “a complete overhaul of the mobile application is taking place in the context of Kovid-19 to allow policyholders to get the most wherever they are, and 24 hours a day.” Their approach is remotely, in full autonomy, while remaining connected to their agent and insurance company ”.

It is also designed by the insurance company’s digital factory and provides convenient usage, guarantees transparency and access to services that are as useful as they are innovative. By extension, it allows for secure and fast authentication with the possibility of logging by fingerprint. Navigation is also ergonomic and intuitive, allowing quick access to essentials. In addition, simple and clear explanations are provided by the application, and instructional videos are also available on the mobile application, allowing customers to better understand the products and the guarantees available to them.

In addition, in the event of a disaster, educational guides provide information about the process to be followed and useful contacts are provided to guide them. In addition, users of the new version of the Saham Assurance mobile application can consult the details of their automobile, home, health and life insurance contracts.

Another advantage is that “customers can follow, in real-time, the progress of their automobile claims files as well as reimbursement of their medical files. Their savings and access to life insurance status statements were also just integrated Is, ”the company said in a press release.

Sahm Assurance also specifies that this overhaul has made it possible to integrate another service. Thus, thanks to a partnership with Dubdock (a platform that digitizes access to health in Africa), users of the new version of the Saham Assurance mobile application have geo-locating nearby doctors and make their medical appointments with singles There is also a possibility. Click.

“This initiative reaffirms the company’s strong commitment to serving its customers, but also its environmental responsibility, as it reduces paper printing (eg: status reports) and policyholders’ carbon footprint (less than displacement) “, We state. It should be noted that the Saham Assurance Maroc application is available on the Google Play and App Store stores.

Sami Nemlik / Ecology inspiration

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Apple previews powerful software updates designed for people with disabilities



Cupertino, California Apple today announced powerful software features designed for people with mobility, vision, hearing, and cognitive disabilities. These next-generation technologies showcase Apple’s belief that accessibility is a human right and advance the company’s long history of delivering industry-leading features that make Apple products customizable for all users.

Later this year, with software updates across all of Apple’s operating systems, people with limb differences will be able to navigate Apple Watch using AssistiveTouch; iPad will support third-party eye-tracking hardware for easier control; and for blind and low vision communities, Apple’s industry-leading VoiceOver screen reader will get even smarter using on-device intelligence to explore objects within images. In support of neurodiversity, Apple is introducing new background sounds to help minimize distractions, and for those who are deaf or hard of hearing, Made for iPhone (MFi) will soon support new bi-directional hearing aids.

Apple is also launching a new service on Thursday, May 20, called SignTime. This enables customers to communicate with AppleCare and Retail Customer Care by using American Sign Language (ASL) in the US, British Sign Language (BSL) in the UK, or French Sign Language (LSF) in France, right in their web browsers. Customers visiting Apple Store locations can also use SignTime to remotely access a sign language interpreter without booking ahead of time. SignTime will initially launch in the US, UK, and France, with plans to expand to additional countries in the future. For more information, visit apple.com/contact.

“At Apple, we’ve long felt that the world’s best technology should respond to everyone’s needs, and our teams work relentlessly to build accessibility into everything we make,” said Sarah Herrlinger, Apple’s senior director of Global Accessibility Policy and Initiatives. “With these new features, we’re pushing the boundaries of innovation with next-generation technologies that bring the fun and function of Apple technology to even more people — and we can’t wait to share them with our users.”



Eufy says a ‘server bug’ let users see other homes’ cameras


(Pocket-lint) – Eufy home security camera owners have reportedly found a way to access EufyCam camera feeds and saved videos from other users in an apparent security flaw. The brand is owned by Anker and is well-known in the US for its security cameras, video doorbells, and even its robot vacuums. 

As reported by 9to5Mac, Eufy’s security glitch first surfaced in a Reddit thread over the weekend, where users from around the globe explained in detail what happened to them. They described the issue as a breach and said they were worried now about their devices being insecure.

One user wrote:

“Anyone else have this? I checked my app today (from New Zealand) and noticed none of the videos were of my own. They are from someone in another country (nice Mustang) – ‘Kangaroo Cam’ alludes to being in Australia somewhere. I can also see their contact details (as added accounts). Is this a normal thing to be able to access anyone else’s cameras?”

Another user said:

“Basically I could see every camera, their front door and backdoor bells, master bedroom, living room, garage, kitchen, their motion recordings, everything. . . I was wondering what was going on as it still had my email and name as signed in and noticed that some unknown email, I’m guessing of the Hawaii owner, was in my shared guest account.”

Users also said on Reddit that they received a message from Eufy claiming the issue was part of a server error:

“Dear user,

The issue was due to a bug in one of our servers. This was quickly resolved by our engineering team and our customer service team will continue to assist those affected. We recommend all users to:
1.Please unplug and then reconnect the home base.
2.Log out of the eufy security app and log in again.
Contact [email protected] for enquiries.”

Pocket-lint has contacted Eufy for comment, but it already told Android Police the problem lasted an hour and did not affect baby monitor products.

Writing by Maggie Tillman.





Amazon devices will soon automatically share your Internet with neighbors


Cartoonish promotional image for Amazon product.

If you use Alexa, Echo, or any other Amazon device, you have only 10 days to opt out of an experiment that leaves your personal privacy and security hanging in the balance.

On June 8, the merchant, Web host, and entertainment behemoth will automatically enroll the devices in Amazon Sidewalk. The new wireless mesh service will share a small slice of your Internet bandwidth with nearby neighbors who don’t have connectivity and help you to their bandwidth when you don’t have a connection.

By default, Amazon devices including Alexa, Echo, Ring, security cams, outdoor lights, motion sensors, and Tile trackers will enroll in the system. And since only a tiny fraction of people take the time to change default settings, that means millions of people will be co-opted into the program whether they know anything about it or not. The Amazon webpage linked above says Sidewalk “is currently only available in the US.”

The webpage also states:

What is Amazon Sidewalk?

Amazon Sidewalk is a shared network that helps devices work better. Operated by Amazon at no charge to customers, Sidewalk can help simplify new device setup, extend the low-bandwidth working range of devices to help find pets or valuables with Tile trackers, and help devices stay online even if they are outside the range of their home wifi. In the future, Sidewalk will support a range of experiences from using Sidewalk-enabled devices, such as smart security and lighting and diagnostics for appliances and tools.

How will Amazon Sidewalk impact my personal wireless bandwidth and data usage?

The maximum bandwidth of a Sidewalk Bridge to the Sidewalk server is 80Kbps, which is about 1/40th of the bandwidth used to stream a typical high definition video. Today, when you share your Bridge’s connection with Sidewalk, total monthly data used by Sidewalk, per account, is capped at 500MB, which is equivalent to streaming about 10 minutes of high definition video.

Why should I participate in Amazon Sidewalk?

Amazon Sidewalk helps your devices get connected and stay connected. For example, if your Echo device loses its wifi connection, Sidewalk can simplify reconnecting to your router. For select Ring devices, you can continue to receive motion alerts from your Ring Security Cams and customer support can still troubleshoot problems even if your devices lose their wifi connection. Sidewalk can also extend the working range for your Sidewalk-enabled devices, such as Ring smart lights, pet locators or smart locks, so they can stay connected and continue to work over longer distances. Amazon does not charge any fees to join Sidewalk.

Amazon has published a white paper detailing the technical underpinnings and service terms that it says will protect the privacy and security of this bold undertaking. To be fair, the paper is fairly comprehensive, and so far no one has pointed out specific flaws that undermine the encryption or other safeguards being put in place. But there are enough theoretical risks to give users pause.

Wireless technologies like Wi-Fi and Bluetooth have a history of being insecure. Remember WEP, the encryption scheme that protected Wi-Fi traffic from being monitored by nearby parties? It was widely used for four years before researchers exposed flaws that made decrypting data relatively easy for attackers. WPA, the technology that replaced WEP, is much more robust, but it also has a checkered history.
Bluetooth has had its share of similar vulnerabilities over the years, too, either in the Bluetooth standard or in the way it’s implemented in various products.

If industry-standard wireless technologies have such a poor track record, why are we to believe a proprietary wireless scheme will have one that’s any better?

The omnipotent juggernaut

Next, consider the wealth of intimate details Amazon devices are privy to. They see who knocks on our doors, and in some homes they peer into our living rooms. They hear the conversations we’re having with friends and family. They control locks and other security systems in our home.

Extending the reach of all this encrypted data to the sidewalk and living rooms of neighbors requires a level of confidence that’s not warranted for a technology that’s never seen widespread testing.

Last, let’s not forget who’s providing this new way for everyone to share and share alike. As independent privacy researcher Ashkan Soltani puts it: “In addition to capturing everyone’s shopping habits (from amazon.com) and their internet activity (as AWS is one of the most dominant web hosting services)… now they are also effectively becoming a global ISP with a flick of a switch, all without even having to lay a single foot of fiber.”

Amazon’s decision to make Sidewalk an opt-out service rather than an opt-in one is also telling. The company knows the only chance of the service gaining critical mass is to turn it on by default, so that’s what it’s doing. Fortunately, turning Sidewalk off is relatively painless. It involves:

  1. Opening the Alexa app
  2. Opening More and selecting Settings
  3. Selecting Account Settings
  4. Selecting Amazon Sidewalk
  5. Turning Amazon Sidewalk Off

No doubt, the benefits of Sidewalk for some people will outweigh the risks. But for the many, if not the vast majority of users, there’s little upside and plenty of downside. Amazon representatives didn’t respond to a request for comment.



‘iPhone 13’ 120Hz ProMotion display production started by Samsung


Samsung Display and LG Display have reportedly started producing OLED panels for the “iPhone 13,” with Samsung said to be creating 120Hz ProMotion displays for the Pro models.

Ahead of the fall launch of new iPhone models, members of Apple’s supply chain are ramping up production in order to meet the expected high levels of orders within the next few months. In the case of displays, it seems that ramping up has started earlier than first thought.

Samsung Display and LG Display are returning as display panel producers for the “iPhone 13,” and have started production of the needed OLED panels, according to The Elec. The timing is approximately one month earlier than Apple’s production schedules for the iPhone 12, though schedules at that time were delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sources of the report claim Samsung commenced production halfway through May, while LG started its manufacturing of the components later in the month. It is thought Samsung is about a week earlier than LG for the organic material deposition process, while for the finishing module process, Samsung’s apparently 10 days ahead of LG.

Of the displays, Samsung is said to be the only supplier of low-temperature polycrystalline oxide (LTPO) thin-film transistor (TFT) OLED panels to Apple. Rumored to be used in the Pro models, the LPTO displays will support 120Hz refresh rates, enabling the long-rumored ProMotion feature.

For the non-Pro models, Apple will continue to use low-temperature polycrystalline silicon (LTPS) TFT OLED panels, supplied by LG Display.

In terms of shipment numbers, Samsung is thought to be producing 80 million units of the display for the new iPhone, with between 120 million and 130 million total OLED panels anticipated to ship to Apple in 2021. For LG, it is apparently aiming for 30 million units for the “iPhone 13,” and a total of 50 million overall for the year.

On May 26, supply chain reports claimed Apple chip partner TSMC had started its own production for the System-on-Chip that will be used in the next iPhone range, tentatively titled the “A15.”

Stay on top of all Apple news right from your HomePod. Say, “Hey, Siri, play AppleInsider,” and you’ll get latest AppleInsider Podcast. Or ask your HomePod mini for “AppleInsider Daily” instead and you’ll hear a fast update direct from our news team. And, if you’re interested in Apple-centric home automation, say “Hey, Siri, play HomeKit Insider,” and you’ll be listening to our newest specialized podcast in moments.



Mobile Application and Testing Solutions Market Global Production, Growth, Share, Demand and Applications Forecast to 2025


Mobile Application and Testing Solutions Market Global Production, Growth, Share, Demand and Applications Forecast to 2025
Category: #technology |  
By Admin |  
Published: 2 hours ago

 |  Product ID: 2715769 | 


Mobile Application and Testing Solutions  Market Global Production, Growth, Share, Demand and Applications Forecast to 2025

The business intelligence report of Mobile Application and Testing Solutions market provides conclusive data on the business dynamics over the forecast timeframe with respect to key growth drivers, opportunities, threats and challenges.

According to seasoned forecasters, Mobile Application and Testing Solutions market size is anticipated to expand at an annual rate of xx% during 2020-2025.

Pivotal insights pertaining to competitive dynamics, regional landscape, and factors affecting various market segmentations are given the study. Moreover, the report examines the impact of the covid-19 pandemic on this domain to help businesses formulate effective growth strategies for the upcoming years.

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Market Rundown:

Regional outlook:

  • The Mobile Application and Testing Solutions market is fragmented into Americas, APAC, Europe and Middle East & Africa.
  • Economic indicators of the major countries and their impact on the overall industry growth are examined thoroughly in the report.
  • Consumption growth rate and market share of each region over the analysis timeframe are given as well.

Product gamut outline:

  • According to the research document, the product range of the Mobile Application and Testing Solutions market is bifurcated into Android , iOS and Others.
  • Consumption market share captured by each product type is provided in the report.
  • Statistical data pertaining to sales price, revenue garnered, and market share of each product segment is presented systematically.

Application spectrum overview:

  • The application scope of the Mobile Application and Testing Solutions market is divided into Smartphones , Tablets , PDAs and Others.
  • Market share held by every single application segment is documented as well.
  • Predictions about consumption share and value of each application type over the analysis duration are given in the report.

Competitive landscape review:

  • The competitive arena of the Mobile Application and Testing Solutions market is defined by key players like Microsoft , Amazon Web Services , Oracle , SAP , Qualitest , IBM , Testlio , ScienceSoft USA Corporation , ThinkSys and TestingXperts.
  • Basic company information and business overview are provided.
  • Particulars like sales, pricing model, gross margins, revenue share and growth rate of each company are incorporated in the research document.
  • Operational areas and distribution channels of leading companies are analyzed.
  • Specifics about investments, mergers & acquisitions, development trends, market concentration rate and new players are documented in the report.

This Mobile Application and Testing Solutions market Analysis Report Contains Answers to your following Questions

  • Which Manufacturing Technology is used for Mobile Application and Testing Solutions ? What Developments Are Going on In That Technology? Which Trends Are Causing These Developments?
  • Who Are the Global Key Players in This Mobile Application and Testing Solutions market? What are Their Company Profile, Their Product Information?
  • What Was Global Market Status of Mobile Application and Testing Solutions market? What Was Capacity, Production Value, Cost and Profit of Mobile Application and Testing Solutions market?
  • What Is Current Market Status of Mobile Application and Testing Solutions Industry? What’s Market Competition in This Industry, Both Company, and Country Wise?
  • What Are Projections of Global Mobile Application and Testing Solutions Industry Considering Capacity, Production and Production Value?
  • What Is Mobile Application and Testing Solutions market Chain Analysis by Upstream Raw Materials and Downstream Industry?
  • What are Market Dynamics of Mobile Application and Testing Solutions market? What Are Challenges and Opportunities?

Major Points from Table of Contents:

1) Scope of the Report

1.1) Market Introduction

1.2) Years Considered

1.3) Research Objectives

1.4) Market Research Methodology

1.5) Research Process and Data Source

2) Executive Summary

3) Mobile Application and Testing Solutions Market Size by Players

4) Mobile Application and Testing Solutions by Regions

5) Market Drivers, Challenges and Trends

6) Global Mobile Application and Testing Solutions Market size Forecast

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