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Formjacking attacks target customers at checkout

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 14:50

Cybercriminals are increasingly hijacking online forms such as login pages and shopping carts as they hunt for personal financial information (PFI) according to new research from F5 Labs.

The firm's Application Report 2019 examined 760 breach reports to discover that formjacking, which collects data from a user's web browser and then moves it to an attacker-controlled location, remains one of the most common attack tactics on the web.

According to F5 Labs data, this attack method was responsible for 71 percent of all analyzed web-related data breaches throughout 2018.

Senior Threat Eveangelist at F5 Networks, David Warburton explained how outsourcing parts of web application code led to formjacking's rise in popularity among cybercriminals, saying:

“Formjacking has exploded in popularity over the last two years. Web applications are increasingly outsourcing critical components of their code, such as shopping carts and card payment systems, to third parties. Web developers are making use of imported code libraries or, in some cases, linking their app directly to third party scripts hosted on the web.  As a result, businesses find themselves in a vulnerable position as their code is compiled from dozens of different sources – almost all of which are beyond the boundary of normal enterprise security controls. Since many web sites make use of the same third-party resources, attackers know that they just need to compromise a single component to skim data from a huge pool of potential victims.”


By examining breach data, F5 Labs found that 83 incidents in 2019 were attributed to formjacking attacks on web payment forms which impacted close to 1.4m payment cards.

The firm also found that 49 percent of successful attacks occurred in the retail industry, 14 percent were related to business services and 11 percent were focused on manufacturing. 

However, the transport industry was the biggest victim of formjacking attacks that targeted personal financial information and during F5's window of analysis, 60 percent of all credit card related thefts happened in this sector.

Injection vulnerabilities have been around for some time but F5 Labs believes that they remain a growing and evolving problem as shifting industry trends have led to new risks and the widening of attack surfaces.

To prevent falling victim to formjacking, F5 Labs recommends that businesses create an inventory of web applications, patch their environment, scan for vulnerabilities, monitor for code changes, enable multifactor authentication and monitor for newly registered domains and certificates.

Categories: Tech News

China may be finally softening its VPN stance

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 13:07

As part of China's ongoing efforts to attract foreign investment, the city of Beijing has unveiled its plans to allow overseas firms to invest in VPN services within a trial zone by the end of the year.

Foreign investors will soon be allowed to invest in VPN services though foreign ownership in VPN providers will be capped at 50 percent according to the Beijing Municipal Bureau of Commerce.

The State Council approved the relaxation of its restrictions back in January in an effort “to attract foreign telecom operators to come and provided VPN services for foreign-invested companies in Beijing” according to Beijing Municipal Bureau of Commerce.

Senior emerging Asia economist at AXA Investment Managers, Aidan Yao provided further insight on the new policy to the South China Morning Post, saying:

“The long-term implications are China is open for business, and continuing to embrace globalisation and the multipolar world order by further integrating itself into the global system. These latest measures are also significant as they are targeting the services and consumption related industries, which are the engines of future growth.”

VPN services

The new policy is part of a three-year plan by the Beijing Municipal Government to open up the service sector after the city's economy slowed to 6.3 percent during the first half of 2019.

China's Great Firewall currently blocks access to 135 of the world's top 1,000 websites and foreign firms must rely on VPN services to get around the country's restrictions in order to do business.

According to the municipal government, online games as well as video and audio programs will also welcome foreign investment but they will be required to meet Chinese data security standards. However, foreign investment in online news, publishing, audio and video is still technically banned in China.

By opening up investment in VPN services to foreign firms, China may finally be softening its historically hard stance on VPN usage within its borders.

Via South China Morning Post

Categories: Tech News

Broadband deal of the week: free Amazon Echo Plus with Vodafone's fastest fibre

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 12:35

We have to say, this broadband deal has us somewhat stumped. Vodafone has taken both of its fibre broadband deals and priced them at the same monthly cost. Confusing? Yes. A great time to seize a bargain on some superfast fibre internet? An even bigger yes.

It means for just £23 a month (or only £20 for existing Vodafone phone customers) you can get Vodafone's Superfast fibre 2 package - the exact same price as its Superfast 1 package, can you imagine which one we would recommend? 

The Superfast fibre 2 package boasts speeds of 63Mb, which makes the £23 a month you're paying for it astounding and the £20 existing Vodafone customers pay almost unbelievable.

As if that affordable pricing wasn't enough, Vodafone doesn't even charge any upfront fees and even more importantly (sorry, we're really excited about this one) it's also throwing in a FREE Amazon Echo Plus with all of its broadband deals. It really is an astonishing offer.

It feels like nobody told Vodafone they only had to pip the competition by a little bit because no other broadband deals come close to this. Vodafone's sale will be coming to an end on 10 September so you still have plenty of time to grab it. 

Vodafone's cheap fibre broadband deal in full:  Want more with your broadband deal?

While this is one of the best, affordable fibre broadband deals around, you can get even cheaper bills. You may not have heard of the ISP, but Onestream's Jetstream Lite Fibre costs a mere £18.99 per month. You do have to pay a tenner upfront though, so it works out as roughly the same as Vodafone in the long run. Plus, this deal does also offer the lowest average fibre speeds on the market at 17Mb.

While for those who want an added extra with their internet, BT could be the way to go. It costs £31.99 a month but comes with a £100 BT Reward Card on top of its faster 50Mb fibre speeds.

Read more:

Categories: Tech News

How to prevent employee burnout

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 12:35

The World Health Organisation now officially recognizes workplace ‘burnout’ as an occupational phenomenon, this is the first time it’s being directly linked in its classification of diseases as a work hazard. Why has it become such a prominent issue? 

If you look at the last ten years of the global economy, you’ll see it’s been a pretty wild ride. The economy had nearly collapsed by 2009, and since then it’s been rebuilt to new heights. That was the same year when smartphone and social media adoption began accelerating rapidly, and these technologies put enormous pressure on brands to move far more quickly than ever before. 

Brands were expected to deliver amazing customer experiences and drive revenue from new, digital channels. In fact, some people call our current era the “Post-Digital Era” because consumer expectations have reached a point where a rapid digital experience is a barrier to entry into any market, meaning brands that can’t deliver, likely one won’t survive. These new forces have put pressure on workers to stay connected to their employers via their devices from anywhere.

Unfortunately, technology has developed faster than etiquette. There’s still a perception that because we can connect with our work 24/7, that we must. Even when you’re not actively working, notifications and vibrations from phones are a constant reminder that there’s work to be done. After a decade, all this stress has proven to be unsustainable to the point that countries, like France and Japan, have instituted right-to-disconnect legislation and other reforms to help employees find balance. 

What role do you think business leaders should play in managing employee burnout?

There has been a proliferation of tools that were designed to improve employee flexibility, but they’ve since reached a point of diminishing returns where instead of consolidating communications, they are overwhelming us with messages and notifications. Business leaders need to think proactively about the role technology plays in the stress of their employees and try to streamline their stacks to make sure technology is supporting your team, and it’s not just another distraction or burden.

Rather than enabling your team to work 24/7, your technology should encourage flexibility and allow employees to disconnect. Leaders need to lead by example on this front as well, and support boundaries for their teams. In a survey we conducted about stress in the workplace, over a quarter (28 percent) of UK workers said receiving texts or emails from their boss outside of work hours has a high impact on their stress levels. Of course, this also means organizations need to adopt better practices for planning projects, so there’s less need for last-minute scrambling to hit goals. 

What role does enterprise technology play in relation to employee stress and happiness?

When information is structured and accessible to people who need it to do their jobs, enterprise technology can reduce stress and accelerate work at the same time. People like to be productive, and they get frustrated when they feel technology isn’t enabling it. But when technology gets in the way of productivity, it’s going to add to stress - and there are a few common ways that technology prevents productivity.

  • Communication overload: There’s so much communication going on within a system or across a stack of systems that it’s nearly impossible to separate the signal from the noise;
  • Fragmentation: You spend a good chunk of your day trying to find information that you’re pretty sure you’ve seen - you’re just not sure where. This slows down projects and causes teams to operate off different sources of information, meaning some may be outdated, incomplete, or irrelevant;
  • Usability: Technology that is difficult or slow to use, which leads to frustration for anyone trying to operate it. In today’s post-digital age, enterprise technology should be as intuitive as the personal apps we all use daily on our phones.

I can’t emphasize enough the importance of reducing stress and frustration around execution. We recently conducted a survey that found that Collaborative Work Management (CWM) software users in the UK were 61 percent more likely than non-users to say they have a “very good” relationship with their managers. They were also 152 percent more likely than non-users to say their company’s mission resonated with them “very strongly,” which goes to show that if you can enable people to work smoothly, they’re going to find happiness in the workplace.

How can companies declutter their tech stack to help address employee burnout?

A decade ago, bottom-up adoption of technology was a fast-growing trend, and as a result, companies went through a period with a vast array of overlapping and redundant technology that varied from team to team. It was a good trend at the time in that it re-engaged workers when enterprise technology was woefully outdated, but it led to problems with privacy, security, and information fragmentation. 

CIOs need to audit their systems and see how many apps are in use within their teams and examine the gaps created by those systems. It’s in those gaps that painful, manual processes exist for workers who need to ensure information is synced between them. 

In an ideal world, the various teams in a company will plan projects and collaborate in a single, unified solution. Realistically, it may take multiple systems, but they should be integrated in a way that effortlessly allows work and updates to move from team to team and from system to system to support cross-functional collaboration, and use automation to break down silos and eliminate routine tasks.

Collaborative work management helps companies provide flexible working. But how else  does it help to manage employee burnout?

There are some psychological forces behind burnout, and one of them is the concept of perceived control, which means people experience less stress when they feel they have some ability to control their situation. CWM software actually does give people control over their work, giving them the ability to intake work in the way that works for them, design workflows, and also view projects and assignments in a customized way. 

Another major cause of stress is the frustration of waiting for people to do what you need them to do to move projects forward. The challenge is that people often don’t know the priority of work, or have the context they need to get started. And CWM provides clarity to priorities and can keep all relevant conversations, documents, and schedules in one place. 

There’s the issue of what I call hidden work - or tasks that are work but aren’t necessarily tracked in a project plan. Scheduling meetings, responding to emails, versioning documents - these are all tasks that take up a lot of our work time, whether we realize it or not. CWM can automate or reduce a lot of these functions, giving people more time to focus on the work that drives results. 

Unrealistic expectations are also a struggle, and the challenge is that management doesn’t have visibility into their team’s workload. CWM platforms can provide a clear picture of an employees capacity for delegating tasks, setting deadlines, and prioritizing work. Fifty-one percent of UK workers say that receiving assignments with unrealistic deadlines has a high impact on their stress, and resource management can help keep tasks balanced across a team. 

Since realistic deadlines are achievable deadlines, resource management can actually increase team capacity. They also track work further down the pike, so teams can begin planning further out and reduce last-minute panics about unseen deadlines - which should help reduce those late night emails and messages.  

How can companies make sure that they’re utilising all their tools properly to make sure they’re not wasting their employee’s time?

Most workers have lived through at least one failed technology deployment in their careers, so when you introduce a new tool, there’s going to be some eye-rolling. Change management is vital in any transformational program, and especially in one that requires a daily habit change from a large number of people. You can spend a lot of money on technology and have it fall flat because no one adopts it, so you need to have a plan. Context and clarity in communicating with your workforce about why you’re implementing a change are critical.

Start with “why” and look at it through the lens of “what’s in it for me,” to help sell the idea to your workforce. The better you can define the connection between the application and outcomes (business and personal), the more supportive and enthusiastic your users will be in adopting it. We always encourage our users to start with critical use-cases - solving an immediate need first and then build upon that success to broaden the use through other use-cases.

It’s also critical that a solution is flexible enough to accommodate the diverse preferences of your workforce. You probably aren’t going to have much luck forcing people to use a tool that makes people work the way it works, you need a tool that works the way they work, but with optimizations. 

Putting the work in upfront to select the right tool and deploy it effectively will pay dividends in the long term.


Andrew Filev is the founder and CEO of Wrike, a cloud-based work management platform.

Categories: Tech News

Bluetooth security flaw leaves millions of devices open to attack

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 12:10

A new Bluetooth vulnerability has been disclosed that would allow an attacker to more easily brute force the encryption key used by devices during pairing to monitor or even manipulate the data transferred between two paired devices.

The vulnerability has been given the name “Key Negotiation of Bluetooth attack” or “KNOB” for short and it affects Bluetooth BR/EDR devices using specification versions 1.0 to 5.1.

News of the KNOB vulnerability was revealed in a coordinated disclosure between the Center for IT-Security, Privacy and Accountability (CISPA), ICASI and ICASI members including Microsoft, Apple, Intel, Cisco and Amazon.

The flaw itself allows an attacker to reduce the length of the encryption key used for establishing a connection and in some cases, the length of the encryption key could be reduced to just a single octet making Bluetooth devices much easier to access.

KNOB vulnerability

A security advisory on Bluetooth.com, provided further insight on how the KNOB vulnerability functions, saying:

"The researchers identified that it is possible for an attacking device to interfere with the procedure used to set up encryption on a BR/EDR connection between two devices in such a way as to reduce the length of the encryption key used. In addition, since not all Bluetooth specifications mandate a minimum encryption key length, it is possible that some vendors may have developed Bluetooth products where the length of the encryption key used on a BR/EDR connection could be set by an attacking device down to a single octet." 

After figuring out the Bluetooth keys of two devices, attackers could then monitor and manipulate the data being sent between them. This would even allow them to inject commands, monitor key strokes and carry out other types of malicious behavior. Fortunately, ICASI has not yet seen this attack method used maliciously nor have any devices been created to initiate this type of attack.

Exploiting the KNOB vulnerability would also be difficult because both devices need to be Bluetooth BR/EDR, the attacker would need to be within range of the devices while they establish a connection and the attack would also need to be repeated every time the devices paired. The Bluetooth specification has also been updated to recommend a minimum encryption key length of seven octets for BR/EDR connections to resolve this vulnerability.

Via Bleeping Computer

Categories: Tech News

Get double data on a range of flagship devices with these O2 mobile phone deals

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 12:08

These days, a small data plan just doesn't hack it. You want to stream Netflix on the go and scroll through Twitter to your heart's content and you should be able to! Luckily, a recent promotion from retailer Mobiles.co.uk is offering double data on a range of flagship phones, taking away the worries of a tiny data cap.

With offers on the likes of the Huawei P30 Pro, Google Pixel 3a, Samsung Galaxy S10e and the iPhone XR, this promotion has offers for everyone. Heck, even brand new Samsung Galaxy Note 10 deals are included. And, with data caps ranging from 4GB all the way up to 70GB, you can rest assured in the knowledge you won't be running out of data anytime soon.

We've selected the best offers from this deal and listed them down below for you to compare. Or, if you can't see your dream phone contract in there, check our guide to best mobile phone deals for all of the options on the market.

These double data mobile phone deals in full:

With the exclusion of the Galaxy S10e, you can apply the code 10OFF at the checkout with any of these offers to save an additional £10 on the upfront spend:

Mobiles.co.uk - Best Online Retailer award winner

Not sure if Mobiles.co.uk is the right retailer to buy from? Having won Best Online Retailer at the Mobile Choice Awards last autumn, you can rest easy knowing Mobiles.co.uk is a safe bet.

With some of the market's best pricing, fast delivery and excellent reviews - you can see how they managed to bag that title.

Categories: Tech News

Cheap TV deals at Best Buy: 4K TVs starting at just $199

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 12:04

If you're looking for a cheap TV deal you've come to the right place! Best Buy's three-day anniversary sale is going on right now, and includes massive savings on 4K TVs. Prices start as low as $199.99, with offers on a range of screen sizes from top brands including Samsung, TCL and Vizio.

Our top Best Buy TV deal is the Vizio 50-inch smart 4K TV, which is on sale for just $299.99. That's a $50 discount, and the lowest price we've found for the V-Series TV. It features Dolby Vision HDR for a life-like picture with bold, bright colors and sharp contrast.

The smart TV also has Chromecast built in, which allows you to stream thousands of movies and TV shows from the Chromecast app on your phone or tablet. There's also SmartCast, which works with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, so you can use your voice to browse movies, change the channel, adjust the volume and more.

Shop more of the best cheap TV deals from Best Buy below, and keep in mind the sale ends Sunday, so you should take advantage of these steep discounts before it's too late.

Best Buy TV deals:

Shop more of best cheap TV deals and sale prices that are currently going on.

You can also learn more about our top-rated TVs with our guide on the best TVs of 2019: the big-screen TVs worth buying this year.

Categories: Tech News

Apple AirPods get a redesign from original Macintosh team – and they look a bit silly

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 11:34

True wireless earbuds may seem like tech from the future, but have you ever imagined what they might look like in a few years?

Frog, the company that designed the iconic Apple Macintosh have, and its conceptual Apple AirPod alternatives are certainly out there, with a radical design that leaves your ears totally exposed. 

The open-hoop true wireless earbuds – which Frog have called Unum – are placed around your ears, so your ear canal is left completely uncovered, unlike traditional earbuds, which sit against your ear canal. 

When you wear in-ear headphones, they create a seal against your ear canal, preventing environmental noise from ruining your music, as creating better noise isolation. 

The future of true wireless?

Frog says that the conceptual wireless earbuds would use "advanced micro-drivers and acoustic design to precisely channel the sound into the ear", without completely blocking out the world around you. 

Why is this necessary? Well, Frog envisions a future where voice assistants like Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant are so ubiquitous, that "the constant connection to our personal headphones will be too isolating of a social experience". 

As such, the company believes that we will need headphones that "support long augmented audio experiences without disrupting their real world communications". 

It's an interesting concept, but it's hard to say whether people will adopt such a striking design for their in-ear headphones; that being said, the Apple AirPods were widely mocked for their long stems when they were released in 2016, and are now among the most popular true wireless earbuds ever. 

Could the upcoming Apple AirPods 2 look anything like this? We'll have to wait until the imminent iPhone 11 launch at the very earliest to find out. 

  • Looking for more future tech news? We'll be at IFA 2019, where we're expecting to see lots of cool new audio devices
Categories: Tech News

Oppo Reno 2 launch date teased, as well as details of the phone's camera

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 11:31

If you were tempted to buy the Oppo Reno or Oppo Reno 10x Zoom, two of the most intriguing phones to come out so far in 2019, you may want to wait a second – as it looks like they're just about to receive a successor.

On Twitter, Oppo India shared a photo showing off the Oppo Reno 2, with some important pieces of information regarding the upcoming phone, as well as a date that the phone series will drop.

That date is August 28, although the photo states that the phone will be out first in India, so we'll likely have to wait a little longer before seeing the phone elsewhere. IFA 2019 is just around the corner, so we could see the handset drop in Europe then.

We've contacted Oppo to see what else we can find out about the device, as well as when (or if) we'll see it elsewhere, and will update this article when we find out.

What do we know about the Oppo Reno 2?

All we know about the Oppo Reno 2 is in the image the company shared – but Oppo has been showing off its new tech for a few months now, so there are some other new features that we may see in the device too.

Firstly, what the image shows – a rough outline of the Oppo Reno 2 confirms it has the trademark 'shark-fin' pop-up segment, as well as four rear cameras. The original Oppo Reno only had two snappers, although the Oppo Reno 10x Zoom had three, so it's most likely that this outline shows the Oppo Reno 20x Zoom – that's what we're expecting the 'plus-sized' Oppo Reno 2 to be called.

The reason for this is that the image boasts "Quadcam with 20x Zoom". All in all, we're expecting this quad-camera smartphone to be the newer plus model, and perhaps the base Oppo Reno 2 will have three cameras.

Another cryptic tweet says "new angles have new possibilities". This could either refer to a lens like the Motorola One Action's 'Action Cam', which flips the image 90 degrees so you can hold the phone vertically but film in landscape, or perhaps an ultra-wide angle lens with a significantly increased field of view.

It's worth noting this latter Tweet was from Oppo's global Twitter account, so it's likely we'll see the phones outside of India before too long.

We'll find out for sure on August 28, when Oppo drops its new line of devices.

What else can we guess about the Oppo Reno 2?

Over the last few months, Oppo has shown off two new pieces of smartphone tech. One of these we could see in the Oppo Reno 2, the other we don't imagine so.

The first of these is Oppo's under-display camera tech. This hides the front-facing selfie camera literally under the smartphone's screen, so it's not in a notch that takes up space, or a potentially fragile pop-up section.

However since the outline of the Oppo Reno 2 in the shared image has the distinctive shark fin, it's clear that Oppo has opted to use this to house the front-facing camera again, so there would be no need for an under-screen camera just yet.

The other piece of tech is Oppo's 'Waterfall Screen'. This is a form of curved screen that bends round the front of the device at a steeper angle than other curved screens, like in the Huawei P30 Pro, to create a premium-looking display.

We could see the Oppo Reno 2 boast a Waterfall Screen, and it would certainly be a distinct feature compared to the original Oppo Reno, but there's no way of knowing for sure whether these tech improvements will be used in the Reno series at all.

Categories: Tech News

Motorola One Action announced with a never-before-seen camera feature

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 07:08

Motorola's smartphones tend to be budget champions, but lots of them also come with weird and wacky features, and now the company has topped itself with the launch of the Motorola One Action.

The Motorola One Action, the latest phone in the One line after the Motorola One Vision, comes with some of the features from this predecessor, like a 21:9 6.3-inch display, and a 'punch-hole' front-facing camera, but there are new features too – and one huge new addition which provides the phone's name.

This feature is the 'Action Cam', one of the One Action's three cameras. It's a camera that lets you record in 4K quality with a 117-degree field-of-view and, most intriguingly, it can twist video 90 degrees around, so you can hold your phone vertically while filming horizontally.

Recording video in this way sounds like a novel experience, and we'll make sure to test it out fully when we get our hands on the device.

The other two cameras are a 12MP main snapper and a 5MP depth sensor. Since the Action Cam has an ultra-wide-angle lens, it's likely you'll be able to use it in lieu of a dedicated wide-angle rear camera.

Motorola One Action: other features

The Motorola One Action runs on an Exynos 9609 chipset, and while Exynos processors are designed by Samsung and usually reserved for Galaxy smartphones, previous Motorola One phones have used them.

The battery size is 3,500mAh, and the device supports 10W fast charging – those specs aren't exactly mind-blowing, but they're appropriate for a budget smartphone. There's also a 3.5mm headphone jack, which is indicative of the phone's affordable status.

In terms of memory, the One Action has 4GB of RAM, and you'll be able to fit 128GB of your files and media on it, although there's expandable storage if that's not enough.

You can pick up the handset immediately in the UK, and it will set you back £219 (roughly $265, AU$390), so it's definitely an affordable phone, but it's just slightly too expensive to fall into our grouping of the best cheap phones. There's no word on a US or Australian release date or price, but we'll update you if we find anything out.

If you're interested in the phone, we've briefly tested it out, so check out our Motorola One Action hands-on review to see how we found it.

Categories: Tech News

Motorola One Action announced, with a never-before-seen camera feature

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 07:05

Motorola's smartphones tend to be budget champions, but lots of them also come with weird and wacky features, and now the company has topped itself with the launch of the Motorola One Action.

The Motorola One Action, the latest phone in the One line after the Motorola One Vision, comes with some of the features from this predecessor, like a 21:9 6.3-inch display, and a 'punch-hole' front-facing camera, but there are new features too – and one huge new addition which provides the phone's name.

This feature is the 'Action Cam', one of the One Action's three cameras. It's a camera that lets you record in 4K quality with a 117-degree field-of-view and, most intriguingly, it can twist video 90 degrees around, so you can hold your phone vertically while filming horizontally.

Recording video in this way sounds like a novel experience, and we'll make sure to test it out fully when we get our hands on the device.

The other two cameras are a 12MP main snapper and a 5MP depth sensor. Since the Action Cam has an ultra-wide-angle lens, it's likely you'll be able to use it in lieu of a dedicated wide-angle rear camera.

Motorola One Action: other features

The Motorola One Action runs on an Exynos 9609 chipset, and while Exynos processors are designed by Samsung and usually reserved for Galaxy smartphones, previous Motorola One phones have used them.

The battery size is 3,500mAh, and the device supports 10W fast charging – those specs aren't exactly mind-blowing, but they're appropriate for a budget smartphone. There's also a 3.5mm headphone jack, which is indicative of the phone's affordable status.

In terms of memory, the One Action has 4GB of RAM, and you'll be able to fit 128GB of your files and media on it, although there's expandable storage if that's not enough.

You can pick up the handset immediately in the UK, and it will set you back £219 (roughly $265, AU$390), so it's definitely an affordable phone, but it's just slightly too expensive to fall into our grouping of the best cheap phones. There's no word on a US or Australian release date or price, but we'll update you if we find anything out.

If you're interested in the phone, we've briefly tested it out, so check out our Motorola One Action hands-on review to see how we found it.

Categories: Tech News

Nvidia’s revenues still hit by death of cryptocurrency

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 06:31

Nvidia has announced its earnings for the second quarter of the 2020 financial year, and it appears that the graphics giant is still feeling the effects of the death of cryptocurrency, with revenue falling by 17%.

A few years ago, the cryptocurrency craze was in full swing, with people able to make a decent amount of money using their graphics cards to ‘mine’ for cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum.

This led to a surge in graphics card sales, with Nvidia (and particularly AMD) enjoying spectacular results (despite shortages in stock).

The huge popularity of cryptocurrency couldn’t go on forever, and when it became harder to make money, sales for graphics cards dropped off sharply.

This was a big blow to Nvidia’s revenues, and as its recent results show, it’s still being impacted. However, while on paper these results don’t look that great, they actually beat analyst expectations, with $2.58 billion (compared to $2.54 billion). This news helped Nvidia’s stock rise by 7%.

Strength in gaming

According to the results, Nvidia’s gaming products remain its biggest revenue driver, bringing in $1.31 billion, compared to $1 billion last quarter, and still accounts for over 50% of Nvidia’s total revenue.

While it was up compared to the last quarter, gaming revenue was actually down from $1.8 billion a year ago, again highlighting how much the end of the cryptocurrency craze is impacting Nvidia.

So while things look bad, it at least seems like Nvidia has turned a corner, once again thanks to its gaming division.

“Essentially our business is normalized,” Nvidia’s chief financial officer Colette Kress said. An increase in sales for gaming laptops using Nvidia tech, as well as the success of Nintendo’s Switch console (which uses Nvidia graphics) and the announcement of the Switch Lite, all point to a rosier future.

While ‘returning to normal’ isn’t the most exciting of results, in these uncertain times – and with a possible US/China trade war looming – that seems to be good enough for Nvidia.

Via Reuters

Categories: Tech News

AMD Ryzen 3000 processors could disappoint overclockers

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 06:28

AMD Ryzen 3000 processors have little available headroom for overclocking, as we’ve previously heard from Silicon Lottery, a company which sells pre-selected CPUs with guaranteed overclock speeds – known as pre-binned – but now that outfit has released the full details of how these new Ryzen chips performed.

And the fresh statistics are quite an eye-opener. When it came to AMD’s flagship 12-core chip, Silicon Lottery found that the Ryzen 9 3900X could be pushed to 4.2GHz (on 1.25V) across all cores on only 6% of the CPUs the company was reselling.

The top 35% of processors managed 4.15GHz (1.237V), whereas 68% could successfully reach 4.1GHz (1.225V). 87% of the flagship CPUs hit 4.05GHz, and every chip that passed through Silicon Lottery’s overclocking mitts was capable of being cranked to 4GHz (1.2V).

So as you can see that’s a pretty narrow range, and little room for overclocking maneuvering. The majority of 3900X chips could be pushed to 4.1GHz, with a third of these processors able to go past that a little to 4.15GHz – but only one in 20 could get further to 4.2GHz.

In other words, there’s very little evidence of the usual CPU ‘lottery’ (which this company is named after), whereby chips of the same model can vary quite a lot in their overclocking potential. There’s little variance here, with every processor created more equally than is the norm with CPU production.

That story continues down the Ryzen 3000 range: the top 20% of 8-core Ryzen 7 3800X CPUs could push to 4.3GHz (on 1.3V), and 53% could reach 4.25GHz (1.287V), with all chips able to hit 4.2GHz (1.275V).

And with the Ryzen 7 3700X, Silicon Lottery found 21% of chips managed 4.15GHz (1.26V), 74% reached 4.10GHz (1.25V), and all the processors could be pushed up to 4.05GHz (1.237V). Again, that’s a very tight range – the vast majority could hit 4.1GHz, with only a fifth able to crank that just a touch more to 4.15GHz.

So, at least going by these figures, it would seem that if you want to get that ‘golden’ processor which has loads of room to push for overclocking with a beefy cooling solution, Ryzen 3000 doesn’t hold a great deal of promise in that respect.

Fairer shout

However, the alternative way to view Ryzen 3rd-gen models having less overclocking headroom is that it means the average consumer is getting a fairer shout.

Certainly it would seem if you’re buying a higher-end Ryzen CPU like the models highlighted here, you’re likely getting pretty close to the maximum performance out of the box, without having to bother with any overclocking. And of course most people don’t want to think about overclocking, fancy cooling solutions and so forth – that’s enthusiast territory.

That said, there’s clearly still a market for pre-binned processors sold by the likes of Silicon Lottery, as the company has sold out of its Ryzen 3000 offerings – the whole lot of them.

And other firms are now getting in on the pre-binned act, with German retailer Caseking selling pre-tested Ryzen 3rd-gen processors offering guaranteed overclock speeds, in conjunction with well-known expert overclocker Der8auer.

Note that Caseking has pushed further than Silicon Lottery, having stock of a Ryzen 7 3700X processor cranked up to 4.3GHz at the time of writing – although the retailer doesn’t specify the voltage used, other than noting that it doesn’t exceed the safe limit of 1.4V.

However, the retailer further observes that due to the big overclock here, you will need a powerful cooling system, with at least a “240 AiO water cooling system” recommended.

  • Here are the details you need to know about AMD's Zen 2

Via Wccftech

Categories: Tech News

Apple says it supports 2.4m jobs in the US

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 05:51

Apple as released new findings that claim it supports as many as 2.4 million jobs in the US and is on pace to directly contribute £350 billion to the American economy by 2023.

Across its supply chain, Apple says it deals with 9,000 supplier in the US, spending $60 billion and supporting 450,000 jobs.

In addition to its financial contribution, the firm claims it pushes innovation and quality standards across the board because of its high demands.

Apple US jobs

The Cupertino-based company itself employs 90,000 people across all 50 states, a figure that covers roles in management, retail and engineering. Apple plans to create another 20,000 jobs in the next four years, including through expansions of its campuses in San Diego and Seattle.

The remainder of the jobs cited are in the app economy, which Apple believes is 1.9 million jobs – an increase of 325,000 over the past two and a half years.

The statistics are not just good PR for apple, but also a timely reminder to the US government of the potential economic impact of tariffs on Chinese manufactured goods.

Devices such as the iPhone famously have ‘Designed by Apple in California, Assembled in China’ on the back, meaning the cost of the Cupertino-based company’s products would be affected if the tariffs were introduced.

Trump introduced several tariffs last September, with Apple breathing a sigh of relief after its most important products – iPhone, Mac, Apple Watch and accessories – were excluded.

Apple has voiced its opposition to further tariffs. In its submission to the government, Apple said that as the largest corporate taxpayer in the US, any tariffs would reduce the company’s contribution to the US treasury and give its rivals – most of whom are not US-based – an advantage in the global market.

In any case, Apple is reportedly looking to move some production away from China. It feels the ongoing risks of depending so heavily on a single country is too great and wants to diversify its supply chain.

Apple’s presence in China is believed to have created more than five million jobs.

Categories: Tech News

New Samsung phone leak points to whopping 108MP camera – but is it real?

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 05:46

After Samsung showed off its 64MP and 108MP camera sensors the race was on for a smartphone to actually release with the super-powered sensors, and according to a new leak, we could know the names of each.

This leaks come from Sudhanshu Ambhore, who posted on Twitter a graph showing the camera specs of all the 2020 Samsung Galaxy A series phones. The names line up with rumors we've already heard, so that's not exactly news, but the camera specs are all new.

There are a few highlights from this list. Firstly, it seems that the Galaxy A51 and upwards (A61, A71, A81 and A91) could all be quad-camera devices, and with fairly powerful specs to boot (compared to current affordable quad-camera phones like the Honor 20).

Secondly, it seems even the most affordable Galaxy A phones will have three cameras. Since the Samsung Galaxy A10 currently only has one, that would be quite the jump.

Most interestingly, Samsung's 64MP and 108MP sensors are listed, for the Galaxy A81 and A91 respectively. Since this is Samsung's more affordable line of phones, those are some seriously impressive specs.

But are they correct?

The Galaxy A camera specs are in doubt

No sooner had Ambhore posted the specs, several other known phones leakers posted their takes – and they unanimously shot down the specs.

@UniverseIce, one of the most prolific leakers, said they'd asked their insiders, who'd called the list fake, and in the replies other known leakers backed this up.

Ambhore has a fairly solid track record of leaks, but has also leaked some inaccurate information, like renders of the OnePlus 7 with a pop-up camera, which eventually became the OnePlus 7 Pro instead.

That doesn't mean he's an inaccurate leaker, but with several prolific voices in the phones community suggesting the specs are wrong, we're taking the side of caution.

As such, it's best to take the leaked specs with a massive pinch of salt – as some of the debunking leakers say, it seems too good to be true.

The 2019 Samsung Galaxy A series of phones has taken phones fans by storm though, as solid mid-range and budget phones, so we could see Samsung try to bring some pizzazz to the 2020 Galaxy A devices.

Categories: Tech News

Huawei Mate 30 Pro caught on camera with a very curvy screen

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 05:30

We may have just had our first look at the Huawei Mate 30 Pro in the flesh, as two photos seemingly show the phone from the front and back.

The images were shared to Weibo (a Chinese social network) and show a phone that looks a lot like the rumored Huawei Mate 30 Pro. A case obscures many of the details, but we can see that the screen is steeply curved, as has been rumored, and there’s also a large notch.

Another notable detail is the presence of what looks to be a large flash unit, which the source claims is a xenon flash. This is likely to be more powerful than a typical smartphone flash unit.

The rear cameras themselves are hidden by the case. There is an odd black oblong near the top on the rear of the handset, but it’s unclear what purpose that serves. It’s possibly also part of the case.

Other things that we can see include what looks to be power and volume buttons on the right edge, while a hole on the top edge could be for an infrared blaster. That’s speculation, but it’s too small to be a headphone port.

What we can see of the phone largely lines up with leaks, though that big flash unit isn’t shown in most, so we’d take this with a pinch of salt.

With the Huawei Mate 30 range likely to land in September or October we should have all the official details before long, but stay tuned to TechRadar for all the leaks in the meantime – and for the announcement when it happens.

Categories: Tech News

The next Star Wars TV show? Disney Plus looks ahead to Obi-Wan TV series

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 05:22

Worried you weren't getting enough Star Wars TV shows and films in the next few years? Well, it looks like Disney Plus has you covered, with a TV show focusing on iconic mentor and Jedi Obi-Wan Kenobi (that's 'Ben' to you) set to come to the Disney Plus streaming service.

The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed that not only is an Obi-Wan TV show being planned for Disney Plus, but that Trainspotting and Christopher Robin actor Ewan McGregor is in talks to reprise his role as the classic character. McGregor played Obi-Wan in the second trilogy of Star Wars films – The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith.

Of course, as long as the actor is in negotiations, the fate of the TV show isn't certain; Disney may require McGregor to be attached to the project for it to go ahead at all, although it could also consider casting a different actor if his schedule or pay expectations don't align with theirs.

More Star Wars shows, please

The Obi-Wan show is just one of a raft of shows and films planned for the Star Wars universe. We first started getting excited about Disney Plus with news about The Mandalorian, an upcoming Star Wars TV show, while a prequel TV series focusing on Cassian Andor is also in the works.

With Star Wars IX hitting cinemas this December, and an EA-made Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order video game coming to consoles and PC a few weeks before, there's no shortage of Star Wars content to keep fans happy. 

The scope of the cinematic universe so far means Disney could expand on the lives of any number of characters and planets, too – why not an Ewok documentary, or The Office-style sitcom set on the Death Star? Call us back when you can, Disney.

Categories: Tech News

Plex has revamped its desktop app – and is killing off a fan-favorite feature

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 05:06

Plex has fully revamped its desktop software, and it's available to download now for your streaming pleasure. However, there's one major drawback: it no longer supports Home Theater PC (HTPC).

The new app, which is simply called 'Plex', will replace all of the company's existing desktop software. The Microsoft Store app has already been decommissioned, and Plex Media Player will be following suit soon.

The new Plex software features a simplified interface (the section known as 'Sync' is now 'Downloads' to minimize confusion), and the company says that you'll now get more information about downloads while they're in progress.

"It’s a bit of a sneak peek at the direction we’re headed with offline media across the board (including the mobile apps)," said the company, "so check it out and let us know how it works for you!"

No more HTPC

Plex admits that its Microsoft Store app has been "a little broken for a while now", and says it's decided to tie all its various apps closer together.

The new, cleaner look is a welcome change, but the loss of HTPC will be a real blow for Plex users who've relied on it since the software's early days. If that includes you, you might want to check out a different option like Kodi, which shows no signs of giving up HTPC for now.

Via Windows Central

Categories: Tech News

Playboy debuts its first wireless headphones (bunny ears not included)

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 05:00

If you think of Playboy, you might not immediately think of wireless headphones; however, the risqué entertainment (ahem) magazine has just launched its own audio brand, called Playboy Audio. 

The brand's first foray into the world of personal audio are the ICON 1 Wireless Headphones, which are available to buy from the Playboy Audio website for $149.99. This works out at around £120 / AU$220, although there's no word on when these over-ear headphones will become available globally. 

Playboy says that the new wireless headphones offer "a premium distortion-free, high-fidelity sound experience using rich, powerful bass", and that ICON 1's "advanced microphone and hands-free technology provides a crystal clear and comfortable listening experience for phone calls". 

A long musical heritage

In terms of battery life, you get up to 22 hours per charge, and you can listen via Bluetooth or with the included auxiliary cable.

Playboy says that the listening experience will "come to life with the Playboy Sound Instagram page, where users can tap into a Pleasures Playlist" – a stories series where artists share some of their favorite songs.  

Playboy says that the headphones are designed to be "ultra-portable", with a lightweight, ergonomic design. The ICON 1 Wireless Headphones certainly don't shy away from the Playboy branding, sporting the infamous Playboy bunny logo on the headband.

While it may come as a surprise that the brand best known for its magazine's nude centerfolds (which include household names like Pamela Anderson and Marylin Monroe) has branched out into the world of audio, Playboy thinks it makes perfect sense. 

In a press release sent to TechRadar, the company cites its long musical heritage, "from the first Playboy interview featuring Miles Davis... to interviews from some of music's most legendary names including Elton John, The Beatles, Stevie Nicks, Justin Timberlake, Lizzo, and Gary Clarke Jr".

Whether the Playboy Audio ICON 1 Wireless Headphones can live up to that in terms of audio quality remains to be seen.  

  • Not impressed? Check out our favorite wireless headphones, the Sony WH-1000XM3
Categories: Tech News

iPhone 11 could have the same screen as the Samsung Galaxy S10

Latest Tech News - Fri, 08/16/2019 - 04:56

It’s no secret that Samsung makes screens for Apple, but in the iPhone XS and iPhone X generations the company crafted a type of OLED specifically for Apple’s handsets, whereas the iPhone 11 might simply use the same screen as the Samsung Galaxy S10.

That’s according to TheElec, which cites "the industry" as saying that the iPhone 11’s OLED panel will be made from a material set called 'M9', which Samsung also uses for the Galaxy S10 and Samsung Galaxy Note 10 ranges.

While this is just a rumor for now, it’s a believable move for Samsung to make, as it would likely reduce costs (because a new material set wouldn’t need to be created for Apple’s screens). This move has reportedly also reduced the list of suppliers needed to craft the screens.

Not new but still top

So what does this mean for the new iPhone 11 (and the iPhone 11 Max, or whatever it launches as)? Samsung’s flagships are typically higher resolution than Apple’s, but that’s not a requirement for this screen – you only have to look at the standard Samsung Galaxy Note 10 with its 1080 x 2280 resolution to see that.

Samsung’s latest crop of flagships also have some of the very best screens around. In our review, we stated that the Galaxy S10 has a screen that’s "better than anything Samsung sells its rivals", so you don’t need to worry about the quality, even though it’s not a brand-new design.

It might be that the iPhone 11 doesn’t top the Galaxy S and Note range for screen tech this year, but it’s certainly still likely to be near the top of the heap, assuming this rumor is true. Other rumors suggest the iPhone 11 range will launch on September 10, so we might find out soon.

Via Apple Insider

Categories: Tech News