Facebook will not use anymore Photo Syncing

Facebook has declared that it will stop using its photo syncing support. But, in exchange, the company will require users to back up their images by downloading the separate Moments app. This looks like a pretty intelligent move, especially after Facebook has closed its Creative Labs. 

So, this way, users will have to use Facebook’s private photo-sharing service, Moments. The photo syncing feature has been launched sometime in 2012 and allowed users to automatically sync photos from their phones to a separate Facebook album. In that album, users had the ability to edit or share their photos on their Facebook page.

Now, it seems that Facebook has decided to stop this feature, but instead make people use the Moments app. This new app has been released in June and helps users store or share photos and albums privately with selected friends. Is this a good thing? Probably yes. So, this means that all the selected friends will have the ability to view photos from a particular event, from a party or a child’s birthday. The best part is that they will have the chance to even see photos that they didn’t take. Moreover, after downloading these photos, they can share them on Facebook. 

So, when one of these photos has been shared using the Moments app, a message appears as a notification on the Messenger app, as well as on Facebook. This probably means that people who are using the Moments app must have the Messenger app downloaded, as well. “People that use photo syncing will have the option to move the photos they’ve previously synced to our new app Moments, where they will be able to view, download, or delete them,” Facebook said in a statement.

Facebook has also declared that they are planning to shut down the photo syncing feature and move to Moments app on January 10, 2016. Moreover, users who will install Moments will have access to the photos they already synced to Facebook, so they no longer have to worry about losing them. 

“The Moments app lets you organize and privately share photos from your phone, and download or delete photos you’ve synced to Facebook,” the app’s site says.

Pebble has introduced real fitness tracking

Pebble is one of the most respected and successful brands when it comes to smartwatches. Even if its devices are not as advanced and good-looking as Apple, Samsung or Motorola’s watches, Pebble watches are a huge attraction on the market. 

When it first came out on the market, the Pebble watch had a not so good-looking design and an open software platform, but now, this company has decided to start trying to appeal more to the masses, meaning that it changed to design and has updated its software. This is definitely a huge step forward, but today, Pebble has also introduced another feature, called Pebble Health. 

Pebble Health is a free health-tracking system. With this new feature, Pebble added sleep tracking and step counting to newer Pebble smartwatches, except Pebble Classic Steel and Pebble Classic. With Pebble Health, the company clearly wants to attract more clients and wants to offer the experience of fitness tracking. 

This new app will share data to Google Fit and Apple Health app, where owners will have the possibility to get a more granular view of their health data. However, Pebble is not the only company which has such kind of feature. The questions are: why should clients trust Pebble’s feature and why should they choose Pebble instead of many other options that are on the market?

Well, Pebble has declared that with the purpose to come up with the algorithms for activity tracking, it worked with Stanford University’s relatively new wearable health lab. Moreover, they have declared that the lab will publish the algorithm, so that scientists will have access to it for research purposes. This is a huge plus for Pebble, because many commercial wearable companies don’t share information about how they calculate user’s activity levels.

Working with a research lab will probably raise a lot of questions around the privacy of health data. But, Pebble has declared that Stanford’s lab won’t have access to user data, and just the algorithm will be public. To be added that Pebble Health app adjusts daily goals based on how active the user is.

Jeff Williams is the new COO of Apple

Well, it looks like the end of the year doesn’t come in peace at Apple. This company has decided to make several changes when it comes to its internal possitions. One of these big changes is naming Jeff Williams on the vacant role that Tim Cook left after being named CEO, back in 2011. 

This means that Mr. Williams is now No.2 at Apple. But who is Jeff Williams? Well, it seems that Tim Cook has called him in 1998, when he joined Apple, to come to work together. It has been revealed that the two were colleagues at International Business Machines Corp.

“I stopped by here out of courtesy to him but I had no interest in joining Apple,” Jeff Williams declared last year. He had many attributions at the famous company, including overseeing the development of the Apple Watch. But, now it seems Tim Cook has named his colleague to be Apple’s first chief operations officer, a post that has been vacant since 2011, as already mentioned, when Tim Cook has been named CEO. Jeff Williams has been one of most trusted deputies for Cook, but he was not well known outside the company’s circles. 

Jeff Williams has also managed Apple’s vast supply chain, which involved thousands of people and he also helped create the Apple Watch, by dealing with partners like Foxconn. So, Mr. Williams is one of Apple’s best employees, being involved in every business that Apple had. “Jeff is hands-down the best operations executive I’ve ever worked with,” has declared Tim Cook.

Tim Cook and Jeff Williams have approximately the same characters, because both have vivid memories for operational details and they are soft-spoken. However, besides naming Jeff Williams as COO, Apple has made three other personnel announcements. In addition to these changes, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing, Phill Schiller, will have his role expanded to include leadership of the App Store.

“We are fortunate to have incredible depth and breadth of talent across Apple’s executive team. As we come to the end of the year, we’re recognizing the contributions already being made by two key executives,” declared Tim Cook.

Google, Facebook and Twitter are blocking hate speech in Germany

Now, this is probably one of the most surprising news that have been released in the past few weeks. It seems that the German government has reached an agreement with Google, Facebook and Twitter, to block and delete hate speech from their platforms within 24 hours. 

This action has come after the three companies have been under increased pressure to curb racism online. It is well known the fact that Germany continues to have big problems with refugees and they are expecting to have approximately 1 million migrants from war-torn countries like Afghanistan and Syria. This critical situation has born a lot of hate from nationalist groups on social media platforms, so German officials have decided to stop the hateful speech.

“When the limits of free speech are trespassed, when it is about criminal expressions, sedition, incitement to carry out criminal offenses that threaten people, such content has to be deleted from the net,” declared German Justice Minister Heiko Maas. “And we agree that as a rule, this should be possible within 24 hours,” he continued. 

So, this means that criminal expressions, offences that threaten people or any kind of expression that had crossed the boundaries of free speech, will be immediately deleted from social medial platforms, like Facebook, Twitter and Google.

Facebook has agreed to work with the German government and they started to combat hate speech on the popular platform. “There’s no place for content such as hate speech, incitement or glorification of violence on Facebook. We urge people to use our reporting tools if they find content that they believe violates our standards so we can investigate and take swift action. We complete the review of the vast majority of reports within 24 hours,” a Facebook spokesperson declared. 

“We’re committed to working with Governments on this issue and work to review the majority of flagged content within 24 hours. YouTube’s policies have long prohibited hate speech and extremism, and we comply quickly with valid law enforcement requests,” a Google spokesperson stated. 

Without a doubt, this a good move from the German government, because this way they will stop racism and probably other violent behaviors. 

Facebook has changed the real name policy enforcement process

After much criticism, Facebook has decided to make some major changes to the way it enforces its real name policy. Without a doubt, December was the month when the social network has made big changes. 

But, it seems that they will not stop here, because starting today Facebook users will receive a new system for reporting fake names, plus a new system for responding to those reports. The question is if this is a good thing or a bad thing? Of course, it is a good thing, especially for public people or stars who are having several pages that are using their name. 

This new change is not coming from nowhere because Facebook has promised ever since last October that they will make huge changes to their real name policy. The change is coming after a huge number of false account flagging incidents. It is not a secret that the famous social network requires people to use their real name or the names their friends and family know them by. So, what changes have been made to the real name policy? 

Well, for starters, people had the chance to report the fake name, but now, they will have to provide more context and information around why they are reporting that particular name. To be added that in the past people just had to press one button to report the name.

The second new thing it that Facebook is testing a new feature for people to verify their name if someone else flags it. This way, people who use that name have the chance to defend it. How? Well, after they get flagged, they have approximately a week to describe their situation before the social network suspends the account.

“However, after hearing feedback from our community, we recognise that it’s also important that this policy works for everyone, especially for communities who are marginalized or face discrimination. That’s why we’re continuing to make improvements in this area,” Facebook declared. However, they will not stop here, because they have declared that they will always look for new ways to improve their policy.  

Is Kitchenaid Precision Press Coffee Maker worth the money?

Now, for starters, we must mention that Kitchenaid Precision Press Coffee Maker is not actually a coffee maker machine. This new device is more like a French press coffee, which has been appreciated for several years. With a French press coffee, people have the possibility to prepare one of the most tasteful and delicious coffee cups. 

However, for a method like this, people can also buy a traditional French press, which is actually less expensive. The new Kitchenaid Precision Press Coffee Maker is available at the price of 150 dollars, being a little bit pricy. But, is this the only feature it has?

Well, the Kitchenaid Precision Press Coffee Maker also comes with a so called Precision Press, which is equipped with a timer that counts down the exact brew time.

This sounds pretty good actually. However, users must supply it with properly ground coffee beans and fill it with hot water. This means that this machine doesn’t have the ability to boil the water. In the end this is a French press, it doesn’t have some special features and it cannot be compared with an actual coffee machine. This will probably be the main reason who customers might opt for a cheap 20 dollars basic steel French press.

As for design, Kitchenaid Precision Press Coffee Maker looks pretty good. It looks like many other stainless-steel French press coffee makers, including Frieling or Bodum. However, it has an attractive design, being sculpted in a traditional jug shape and it was designed to preserve coffee heat longer than any other glass-walled French press coffee maker. Customers who will buy this device are probably familiar with a French press and how this device works. 

So, owners will now know how the new Kitchenaid Precision Press Coffee Maker works, but there are key parts of this machine that can’t tackle. For example, this French Press Coffee Maker doesn’t have a bean grinder, meaning that users will have to use their own or buy one from the store. Moreover, it doesn’t have the ability to heat water, so users will have to supply it with.

Electrolux has released the new Ergorapido Lithium Ion Brushroll Clean Xtra

The vacuum cleaner market has started to be really crowded in the last couple of years. Each brand has updated its best vacuum cleaner or it has released a new model that has a couple of new features. 

These days, Electrolux has come with something and it promises to be very interesting. We are talking about the new Electrolux Ergorapido Lithium Ion Brushroll Clean Xtra. This new vacuum cleaner comes more like an update to the Ergorapido series, which is a line that had huge success in the past. 

So, the new Electrolux Ergorapido comes with a mix of features that probably will be very catchy for customers. This vacuum cleaner comes with a more powerful lithium ion battery which is a good thing, because there will be no cables in the house and will add more power to the number one feature: the brushroll cleaner. 

However, this feature is not as good as it should be, because if there is a lot of hair on the carpet, there will be higher chances to get stuck. But, there is a blade positioned on the brushroll cavity, so if there is a lot of hair tangled on the bristles, users should press a lever and the blade will slice the hair away.

The new Electrolux Ergorapido comes at the price of 150 dollars, which is an affordable price. To be added that the parent company of Electrolux also has an incredible vacuum cleaner, called Eureka Brushroll Clean with SuctionSeal.

Now, that vacuum cleaner will probably have more success on the market, because it cleans better and has a solid build. As for the Electrolux stick, this new vacuum cleaner functions well and has an attractive design, but it doesn’t get the floor as clean as it should be. So, despite the 150 dollars price and the beautiful design, the new Electrolux Ergorapido is not as good as it should be. 

One of the main attractions on this vacuum cleaner are the four LEDs situated in the front that keep track of the device’s remaining charge while it works.

Keurig Kold has the ability to make Coca-Cola

Keurig Kold is an interesting machine that has the ability to make home-carbonation drinks. Now, probably all customers will ask if it isn’t much easier to buy a can of soda instead of buying a machine that can prepare this soda. 

Not to mention that Keurig Kold costs approximately 370 dollars, which is a lot. According to its creators, this machine has been made in partnership between Coca-Cola and Keurig, a pod-coffee-brewing giant. Now, is this new machine able to revolutionize the way in which people enjoy soft drinks at home? This is a tricky question.

Who doesn’t want pods that will make cold Coke or other famous drinks in a minute? Not to mention that Pepsi also has a machine that is called SodaStream which can also make cold drinks. It appears that the battle between Coca-Cola and Pepsi has moved to another level.

However, despite its 370 dollars price, which seems to be expensive, this soda machine doesn’t sound bad at all, especially for soda drinkers. As for the design, Keurig Kold is a little bit bulky and very loud. Moreover, it takes approximately 90 seconds to make 8-ounce glass of soda. Another minus is that Kold-produced Coke doesn’t seems to taste the same as the original Coke, the bottled version. 

Why it doesn’t taste the same? It seems that Keurig’s carbonation technique doesn’t seem to be as strong as the original bottled version. To be added that a pack of four pods of sodas cost somewhere around 5 dollars. So, probably that a machine like this is more efficient if it makes coffee, instead of soda. However, the puck-shaped plastic container is similar with the coffee pod and it contains everything it needs to create a cold soda, users just need to add water in the container. So, once the container is filled with water, users just simply need to open the device, drop the pod and hit the button.

In approximately 90 seconds, users will have a nice and cold glass of soda. Probably, they need under 90 seconds to pull out a can of soda from the fridge that can also taste better. This choice will come from the customer: a pod of soda or a can of soda from the fridge. 

Minecraft will be available on Wii

Great news for Minecraft fans. The company has announced that its game will be available on Wii U. During these days, Nintendo has been teasing its users on making a big announcement, and now here it is: Minecraft is available on their gaming console. 

Of course, Minecraft fans can also play this game on other platforms, like Windows, Linux, OS X, Android, iOS, Xbox 360, Windows Phone, Xbox One, PS3, PS4, Raspberry Pi and PS Vita. Minecraft will be launched on Wii U on December 17th.  So, for people who are not interested in Star Wars, they will be able to play Minecraft on Wii U. 

As the proverb says “better late than never,” Mojang and Nintendo came to an agreement and released Minecraft: Wii U Edition at the price of 29.99 dollars. This edition version will include a few of the game’s popular content add-on packs that were also released on other platforms. But, the question still remains. What took Nintendo so long? 

This is a good question, because Minecraft has been popular since the spring of 2012. During that year, Mojang and Microsoft also came to an agreement to release the game on the Xbox 360’s download store. At that moment, Nintendo should have probably done the same thing, even work aside Mojang to craft a unique Minecraft GamePad controller, to make the experience more interesting.

At this moment, customers can buy disc-based versions of Minecraft for Playstation 3 and 4 and Xbox 360, which together have been awarded the 10th best-selling retail title in the US in September. So, now, Nintendo has joined the club and customers will probably wait for a unique gamepad control to play the building block-based Minecraft.

“With so many included add-on content packs, Minecraft: Wii U Edition brings an exciting collection of Minecraft content and experiences to Nintendo fans,” has declared Nintendo of America President and COO Reggie Fils-Aime. “Wii U players will have plenty of reasons to keep coming back to this iconic gaming experience,” he continued. 

To be added, also, that there is a high number of themed packs available on sale for Wii U, including The Simpsons, Star Wars, Doctor Who and Mass Effect.

Mozilla shuts down its Firefox OS

On the smartphone market, there is a fight that never seems to end. All these smartphones are running a particular operating system. Of course, there is a fight, too. However, this fight seems to be taken by Android and iOS, which are probably the best OS at the moment. 

These two operating systems are not alone, because there are other OS on the market, like Windows 10 or Firefox OS. These days, Mozilla has made an interesting announcement, declaring that they will stop selling its Firefox OS to carriers and even cease development of the operating system for smartphones. This is a surprising announcement, because Mozilla has declared that Firefox OS is one of its major projects. 

“The current Firefox OS team will stay intact and continue to work on the new experiments across connected devices,” has declared Ari Jaaksi, Mozilla senior vice president of connected devices. “Firefox OS proved the flexibility of the Web, scaling from low-end smartphones all the way up to HD TVs,” the statement added. “However, we weren’t able to offer the best user experience possible, and so we will stop offering Firefox OS smartphones through carrier channels,” he continued. 

This is a bad announcement, making developers realize how hard is to compete with giants like Android and Apple’s iPhone. Without a doubt that these two companies are dominating smartphone sales. This is the second announcement made by Mozilla this week, after the famous company declared that they will intend to shut down email client Thunderbird, a project that was not updated since 2012. Firefox OS was a huge opportunity for this company to find relevance in the mobile world, but it looks like they did not manage to find the right way to survive on the market. 

Firefox OS was first called Boot to Gecko in 2011, but the first version was released in 2013. This was a change for Mozilla to get Firefox in front of mobile phones, considering the fact that Google and Apple bundle their own web browser by default in the user’s mobile operating system. Unfortunately, there wasn’t so much interest from customers to buy their smartphones. However, probably Mozilla will have more luck improving the web experience for users that are already using other platforms.