How does Google Fi’s coverage compare to AT&T and Verizon?

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Google surprised virtually no one when it formally announced its new cellular service plan called Project Fi today. Project Fi is currently very limited — it’s an invite-only program and only works with Google’s own Nexus 6 smartphone — but it offers some very interesting things when it comes to service plan pricing and network coverage. Like Republic Wireless, Google Fi is heavily reliant on Wi-Fi networks for both calls and data. But it has a unique trick up its sleeve when you don’t have access to Wi-Fi: it will automatically switch between Sprint or T-Mobile’s networks based on whichever service is stronger where you are.

But as many people already know, Sprint and T-Mobile don’t quite have the same level of coverage as Verizon and…

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Yahoo reportedly prepping a new app to compete with Google Now

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Yahoo may be behind in the search game, but it could be looking to compete with the likes of Google and Microsoft when it comes to creating a personalized search tool. On an earnings call yesterday, CEO (and former Google executive) Marissa Mayer said that Yahoo was “particularly interested in search in the mobile sector, what happens when you involve context,” and it’s apparently focusing attention on “what happens when you involve personal information, from things like email.” Today, Business Insider reports that a source has provided more details about the project, which is supposedly known as Index.

Index is supposed to be a smartphone app, following up on Yahoo’s current Aviate launcher for Android. Aviate acts as a personal…

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The oldest medical journal in the US just backed same-sex marriage

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Same-sex marriage in the US just received the backing of one of the world’s most well-respected medical journals. The New England Journal of Medicine published an editorial today outlining its position — a position that is, unsurprisingly, tied to the many health obstacles faced by LGBTQ folks, as well as their families.

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This Earth Day, let’s remember what we stand to lose

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Climate change is real, and we’re getting closer to the point where we won’t be able to do anything about the warming of our planet. But everywhere you look, climate change deniers keep popping up.

You can almost understand why that is —  trying to care about something that you think might affect us in a few hundred years or more is so hard, right? And it still snows a lot every year, so that obviously doesn’t mean the Earth is warming, right?

The problem is that the effects of climate change are a lot closer than many people realize. Many landscapes, plants, and animals are in danger of not existing in the next 100 years. So in an effort to keep reminding people of the very real, impending threats that climate change poses, here…

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eBay is about to lose its growth engine PayPal

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eBay and PayPal are getting ready to split apart into two separate companies — and it may hurt eBay’s bottom line. The company just announced its Q1 2015 earnings, and while the overall business was healthy (net revenue was up 4 percent year over year), there are signs that the spinoff of PayPal later this year might be painful.

PayPal today is one of the strongest parts of eBay. eBay Payments revenue, of which PayPal is the key component, grew 14 percent year over year, by far the healthiest of eBay’s three current business divisions. But revenue from eBay Marketplaces, the traditional eBay storefront we’ve all come to know and tolerate over the last few decades, declined 4 percent year over year. That’s a relatively small decline —…

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What the hell is an MVNO, and why is Google building one with Fi?

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Google announced its own wireless network today. That sounds pretty ambitious and expensive. Plus you get what arguably the best, or least the most flexible, data plan offered by anyone, even trumping T-Mobile’s “Uncarrier” approach. But building a mobile network is a massive expense. Is Google betting everything on this new project?

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Google Fi: all the news on the search giant’s plan to remake the wireless industry

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Google is now a mobile carrier. Today the company has made official its plan to offer wireless service to owners of its Nexus 6 smartphone. It’s called Project Fi, and Google is launching an early invite program beginning today. “Similar to our Nexus hardware program, Project Fi enables us to work in close partnership with leading carriers, hardware makers, and all of you to push the boundaries of what’s possible,” the company wrote in a blog post.

The service is only available for the Nexus 6 and requires a special SIM card for Project FI — it will work with both existing Nexus 6 devices and new ones. Google says that right now the service is only available as an “early access program,” and during that program it won’t work on other…

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Facebook Messenger Accounts For 10% Of Global VOIP Calls, Sends 45B Messages Daily

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messenger-developer Facebook Messenger wants to replace the telephone, not just SMS, and its on its way. Messenger now makes up 10% of global Voice Over IP calls, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said during today’s Q1 2015 earnings call. And Zuckerberg said that because VOIP can actually provide higher audio quality for calls than traditional phone calls, he expects that growth “is going to continue very… Read More

Former HP CEO Carly Fiorina is running for president

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In two weeks, the 2016 campaign will get its first candidate from the tech industry. The Wall Street Journal is reporting that on May 4th, Carly Fiorina will launch her presidential campaign under the Republican ticket. Fiorina first entered politics in 2010 with a failed Senate campaign, although she served as an advisor and central fundraiser for John McCain’s presidential campaign in 2008. Fiorina served as CEO of Hewlett-Packard from 1999 to 2005, a tumultuous period during which the company merged with Compaq and struggled with the collapse of the dot-com bubble.

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More than 70 percent of Facebook’s $3.54 billion revenue is now mobile

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We’ve learned a couple of things about Facebook over its first three years as a public company. It knows how to mint money, is increasingly mobile, and somehow keeps adding users despite having what feels like every internet-connected human being on the planet already signed up for its service. The company, which reported its first quarter earnings today, now has 1.44 billion monthly active users, and 1.25 billion on mobile, an increase of 13 and 24 percent, respectively.

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Comcast can’t answer the only important question about the TWC merger: why not compete?

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Today, Comcast Executive Vice President David Cohen published a 2,900 word essay called “Setting the record straight on criticisms of the Comcast-TWC transaction.” Naturally, this noble effort in corporate spin required making inappropriate references to great leaders. “While it may be easy for critics to do this from the sidelines,” Cohen wrote, “we would rather try, in the spirit of President Kennedy, to light a candle than to curse the darkness.”

So let’s do that, Mr. Cohen. Let’s light a candle on the only relevant question in the Comcast / Time Warner merger that Comcast has refused to answer.

Are you chicken?

If competition is so vibrant and healthy in the broadband market — enough to make net neutrality regulation a bad idea,…

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Facebook Has Mixed Q1 Earnings With Miss On $3.54B Revenue, Beat On $0.42 EPS, User Growth Up To Hit 1.44B

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facebook-earnings Facebook failed to beat earnings estimates in Q1 2015, coming in with mixed results after 10 straight quarters of beating them. Its revenue of $3.54 billion fell short of its $3.56 billion estimate, though it exceeded the 40 cents EPS estimate with 42 cents. In the release, Facebook blames fluctuating foreign exchange figures, including the weakening euro versus the dollar, for the missed… Read More

eBay Pops 4% After Reporting Q1 Revenue Of $4.45B And Better-Than-Expected $0.77 In Per-Share Profit

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ebay-earnings Following the cessation of regular trading, eBay reported its first quarter financial performance, including revenue of $4.45 billion and earnings per share of $0.77 using adjusted metrics. The street had expected a per-share profit of $0.70 on revenue of $4.42 billion. Up a fraction in a down market during regular trading, eBay is up just under 5 percent following its earnings beat. While… Read More

Flextronics Wants More Manufacturing on US Soil

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Flextronics (Photo via Stanford UniversityThe world of hardware startups is filled with long trips and longer stays in nations with large manufacturing infrastructures. Electronics manufacturing giant Flextronics, though, wants to bring the process home with a facility just north of San Jose, reports Engadget, that will manufacture your device or even work with you to bring a […]

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Tidal Discovery will give independent artists more control over their music

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Even though Tidal is backed by some of the biggest and richest artists in the world, it hasn’t forgotten about independent artists. Speaking to Smashd, Tidal CIO Vania Schlogel detailed an upcoming service called Discovery that will make it much easier for independent artists to get their music on Tidal. Discovery will allow independent artists to upload their music directly instead of the current model which requires them to go through a third-party service.

Tidal will share user listening habits with artists

“When it comes to the distribution of music, I want to get to a point where there are no blockades for artists in order to be able to easily do that for themselves,” Schlogel told Smashd. Artists using Tidal Discovery will also…

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New Google Cultural Institute exhibit focuses on the island where Nelson Mandela was held prisoner

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The Google Cultural Institute is a sort of only museum, cataloging and sharing various online artistic and historical exhibits, and that collection expanded today with a new exhibit focusing on South Africa’s Robben Island. The island is most well-known for being the site of Nelson Mandela’s imprisonment for 18 of the 27 years he was behind bars before his release in 1990.

Google’s new exhibit was produced in partnership with the Nelson Mandela Foundation as well as the Robben Island Museum and consists of seven interactive exhibits focusing on the trial that led to Mandela’s imprisonment, Mandela’s life at Robben Island, quotes from various political prisoners held there, a prison tour, and more. There are also 25 different street view…

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Google’s Encryption Efforts Are Paying Off In Wake Of Snowden Leaks

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Fireworks in Oakley, July 3, 2010 Google’s Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt said the company has evidence that its efforts to improve encryption in the wake of Edward Snowden leaks have worked. His remarks at BoxDev, Box’s yearly developer conference, come as law enforcement officials are criticizing encryption efforts for slowing down investigations. In response to a question about encryption from Box CEO Aaron… Read More

Box Breaks Out Of Application Box With New Developer Edition

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Graphic explaining Box Developer Edition Box announced ‘Box Developer Edition‘ at its yearly BoxDev event today. The new approach allows developers to run their own Box “instance” inside of their application — their very own Box, in other words. This turns Box on its head in a sense because instead of running the Box application, and building apps on top of it, you are building something and embedding… Read More

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