One Plus 2 Equals Malware?

Well, yes, sort of, before I am lambasted for inserting a clickbate headline, let me explain, OnePlus 2 Smartphone’s have been somewhat of a revelation since its launch, from a repairable part design to more than decent specs which place it handily within the price point market. This all sounds exciting, the problem lies with the Chinese companies marketing that rely on the same notion of an invite-based system which has been utilized within this incarnation.

This rather convoluted purchase agreement has led to the synonymous and wide-spread unavailability which has befallen many consumers. Consumers are an interesting bunch, if a particular TV series or gadget is difficult to obtain, the next best thing is to locate said device through alternative means, this is what many people did after hearing that KSP, Israel’s largest digital store, would be in fact selling the phone without an invite.

Great, many paying consumers thought, the only downside lay with the unfortunate realization that the phone also came bundled with malware. The annoying process masqueraded in the form which utilizes Google Chrome while using the device. “Using said browser would automatically redirect to other sites with the word tracking in them or a site called global.mytracker, before giving permission to access the website requested”.

After further investigation, it turns out there were four potential threats which were found after running, yes we want your data to sell AVG. Honestly, you don’t know which is worse considering an Anti Virus which purports to safeguard your digital identity is also caught offering your browsing history to ad companies, kudos John Williamson at eTeknix for analysing this story. It has also become apparent that users in the US are also being screwed after purchasing this phone through an online retailer by the name Gearbest.

The solution is to undertake an entire operating system reinstall with the aim of banishing the malware. There are suspicions of third-party outlets injecting dodgy operating processes and apps within the phone, rather than an outright deception by the manufacturer who have warned against purchasing the device through other means.

As a tech fan I am finding the relentless pursuit of nefarious attacks against consumers rather wearying, any individual should have confidence in the retailer and also the product without the fear of a virus or malware. If you’re interested in this smartphone, then only buy from official channels and be careful of any deals which sound too good to be true.

Thank you geektime for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of frandroid

AMD’s Carrizo APU Reduces Carbon Footprint by 46%

Earlier this year, AMD launched the A-series APUs under the “Carrizo” codename which strive for energy efficiency and lower wattage demands. In 2014, AMD outlined the 25×20 energy strategy to produce chips 25 times more efficient than current products by 2020. According to AMD’s research team, the extremely efficient Carrizo architecture has put the company on course to reach its 2020 target. More specifically, Carrizo chips alter the core voltage to gauge power demands and ensures the maximum frequency is only used when required.

In the enthusiast market, AMD has struggled to compete with Intel especially in single-threaded performance. However, this is a fairly niche sector and it’s sensible for AMD to work hard to manufacture low-cost, high-yield APUs which provide an excellent wattage to performance ratio. In the future, discrete graphics cards might become obsolete and replaced by APUs as computational demands are offset to a server. Whatever the case, AMD needs to make their products more energy efficient and that also applies to the Radeon brand. Thankfully, the Fiji architecture is a step in the right direction and illustrates AMD’s policy towards modern CPUs and GPUs.

Despite this, the majority of press coverage will surround AMD’s future high-end desktop CPUs and I hope they can produce something to shake up the market and make Intel feel less comfortable.

Thank you Venturebeat for providing us with this information.

Microsoft Found a Way to Improve the Battery Life of Wearables

A team of researchers over at Microsoft have finally found a way to improve the battery life of wearables. We all know that the latter don’t come with a big battery pack, so finding workarounds to extend their battery life has always been a priority for manufacturers.

The technique is said to involve pairing wearables with smartphones via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi in order to shift all heavy workloads to the smartphone, hence having your smartphone acting as an external processing unit. This means that your wearable will act mostly as a way of displaying data from your smartphone, having it draw just enough battery to sustain the pairing connection.

Researchers over at Microsoft are said to have tested the system, named WearDrive, on an Android phone. The results showed an improvement of over three times in energy consumption for the wearable and an acceptable energy consumption impact on the handset. In addition, the wearable had its execution performance increase eight times compared to it not being paired to the smartphone.

While wearables don’t have the performance nor battery life of a fully fledged smartphone, the technique seems to help quite a lot in performance as well as battery life. Also, WearDrive is said to automatically deactivate itself when not in range of a paired smartphone, so you don’t have to worry about it running in the background.

Thank you TechSpot for providing us with this information

Robot Butterflies Could Fool Anyone Into Thinking its The Real Thing

Festo appears to have created a robotic doppleganger that looks and acts as a real butterfly, but you won’t see these things in open spaces just yet.

The company is said to have revealed a small swarm of the robotic butterflies flying laps around its headquarters. When you think of robots moving around, you immediately think they are equipped with sensors to detect objects, but this is not the case for Festo’s design.

In order to keep the lightweight, small and airborne, the company used twelve cameras placed around the room, which kept track of each butterfly using a unique infrared mark on each one.

The cameras are said to have provided data to a central computer, where the information was processed and instructions given to each robot on where to go. While the complex system did showcase how the robotic butterflies could move and act as the real thing, they do not seem to be quite ready to tackle open spaces just yet. Still, it is a step forward.

Thank you Gizmodo for providing us with this information

Cisco Systems To Shift Focus On ‘Internet of Everything’

Cisco Systems is said to have focused on the Internet of Everything (IoE), which basically connects everything to everything. From people, to mobile devices, smart gadgets and homes, transportation networks, data, processes, a world where every device capable of connecting to the internet will be connected and synced with each other. The number of estimated connected devices is said to be 15 to 25 billion by 2015, and will drastically show an increase to 50 billion by 2020.

“Cisco has led customers through every Internet transition over the last 30 years,” said Blair Christie, Cisco Senior VP and chief marketing officer, in a statement. “The Internet of Everything is perhaps the most promising of these, creating unprecedented opportunities for organizations, individuals, communities and countries to realize dramatically greater value from networked connections between people, processes, data and things.”

The Internet of Everything has been implemented by Cisco to cope with employees’ needs, where everyone has been bringing their own devices to work, and all needed to work properly in the working environment. And this is a good thing, since IoE services offer long-form content, location-based and profile data, sensors-collected data, as well as home/control/automation features available at home and in the workplace.

Thank you Tweak Town for providing us with this information
Image courtesy of Tweak Town

Dell Find Source Of Urine Smell Coming From Laptops

So you’ve just bought a new laptop, but when you open it up for the first time, you’re hit with the smell of cat pee. Astonished huh? Well that is exactly what a number of people had to deal with for months whilst Dell tried to locate where the smell was coming from.

Thankfully, the smell was only lingering around one particular model, the Latitude 6430u. Following initial advice to blast the keyboard with compressed air, dell continued to scratch through the the components until they found the culprit. Believe it or not the smell was coming from nothing more than the palm rest. Whilst many people are going to be wondering what exactly has been added to this humble component, Dell are keeping quiet on what exactly they added to the product to make the awful smell.

Don’t be alarmed however as it’s not unheard of for urine to be used in a manufacturing process. There have been cases of car cylinder blocks been pee’d on by employees as they stood outside to harden them. Now the reason for this rather extreme process all comes down to the chemical composition of urine. Whilst it is a liquid, as we all know, it has a very high concentration of nitrogen to it and this can be used as an agent to strengthen plastics and metals during the manufacturing process.

Don’t be scared that s0meone has pee’d on your laptop though as it is an alternative substance that is high in nitrogen that has been added to get the same result, even if it does leave the part smelling of cat pee. If your Latitude 6430u is one of the affected units, then fear not as Dell are shortly going to be offering replacement parts soon.

Source: BBC News