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August 30, 2017

WhatsApp launches verified accounts

WhatsApp has launched verified business accounts, which let users talk to companies through its messaging app.

Business accounts which are verified by WhatsApp will receive a green badge next to their contact name, which means WhatsApp has confirmed the phone number belongs to the business.

“WhatsApp will also let you know when you start talking to a business via yellow messages inside a chat. There is no way to delete these messages from the chat,” it said.

“If you already have a business’s phone number saved, the name you will see is the name you have saved in your address book.”

If users want to stop a business from contacting them, the contact can be [...]

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August 2, 2017

Facebook is working on a video chat device

Facebook Inc. is working on a video chat device for the home – the first major hardware product from its experimental Building 8 lab.

Featuring a laptop-sized touchscreen, the device represents a new product category and could be announced as soon as next spring’s F8 developer conference, according to people familiar with the matter. They say the large screen and smart camera technology could help farflung people feel like they’re in the same room, which aligns with Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg’s mission of bringing Facebook users closer together. The device is in the prototype phase but is already being tested in people’s homes.

The social media giant is [...]

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July 27, 2017

Facebook TV episodes arriving Mid-August

Facebook’s version of television is coming online in mid-August after several false starts, according to people familiar with the matter. The company has been asking its partners to turn in the first episodes of their spotlight shows, the people said.

Some already have finished these short-form, inexpensive programs. Facebook is also funding higher-end TV-style shows, which will be launched later on the site, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the plans aren’t public.

Facebook originally expected the project to be ready about a month ago, but it has taken longer than anticipated and further delays could occur, the people said. The company is funding [...]

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July 19, 2017

50 billion connected devices by 2020

By 2020, as many as 50 billion devices will be connected, from watches and TVs to trucks, pipelines, and power meters says Software.org: the BSA Foundation.

Sensors, data, connectivity, encryption, the cloud, and the software that links all technology are poised to exponentially increase in the coming years, the group said in a new report.

The report, Sensor Sensibility: Getting the Most From the Internet of Things, argues that we have only scratched the surface of what IoT can achieve, and industry and government must be prepared to help this emerging technology succeed.

“The Internet of Things is a community of connected devices,” said Chris Hopfensperger, [...]

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