Eminem’s publisher accuses Spotify of copyright infringement in new lawsuit

Eminem’s music publisher Eight Mile Style has filed a lawsuit against Spotify, accusing the service of “blatant copyright infringement” in streaming “Lose Yourself” and other Eminem songs. As explained by The Hollywood Reporter, the suit is tied Spotify’s implementation the Music Modernization Act, which was signed into law last year. Under the MMA, Spotify can […]

T-Mobile customers report outage, can’t make calls or send text messages

T-Mobile customers across the U.S. say they can’t make calls or send text messages following an apparent outage — although mobile data appears to be unaffected. We tested with a T-Mobile phone in the office. Both calls to and from the T-Mobile phone failed. When we tried to send a text message, it said the […]

T-Mobile customers report outage, can’t make calls or send text messages

T-Mobile customers across the U.S. say they can’t make calls or send text messages following an apparent outage — although mobile data appears to be unaffected. We tested with a T-Mobile phone in the office. Both calls to and from the T-Mobile phone failed. When we tried to send a text message, it said the […]

Microsoft contractors listened to conversations from Xbox One users

In a story that shouldn’t surprise anyone at this point, Vice is reporting that contractors working for Microsoft were able to listen to voice commands and full-on conversations spoken by Xbox One users. Similar to stories we’ve seen involving Siri and other virtual assistants, audio of conversations was sometimes recorded by the Xbox when certain trigger words were registered by mistake.

Naturally, the reason contractors were listening to audio in the first place was to improve the overall reliability of the software. Still, the notion of contractors listening to user audio — especially when children are involved — is bound to raise a few eyebrows.

“We’ve long been clear that we collect voice data to improve voice-enabled services and that this data is sometimes reviewed by vendors,” Microsoft said in a statement. “We’ve recently updated our privacy statement to add greater clarity that people sometimes review this data as part of the product improvement process.”

It’s worth noting that Microsoft, in contrast to what we saw with Apple, gets customer permission before enabling audio recording. Additionally, the company takes steps to “de-identify voice snippets being reviewed to protect people’s privacy, and we require that handling of this data be held to the highest privacy standards in the law.”

Now if all this sounds familiar, it’s because a number of companies have been chastised for not being transparent about similar programs designed to improve performance of their own intelligent assistants. Earlier this month, for example, word surfaced that contractors working for Apple were able to listen in on private conversations when Siri was inadvertently called into action.

“There have been countless instances of recordings featuring private discussions between doctors and patients, business deals, seemingly criminal dealings, sexual encounters and so on,” one contractor for Apple explained. “These recordings are accompanied by user data showing location, contact details, and app data.”

In the wake of that expose, Apple opted to suspend its Siri review program pending a deeper investigation.

Facebook also endured a similar mini-scandal earlier this month for the same type of activity. And much like Apple, Facebook decided to stop using contractors as a means to record user audio recordings.

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Report claims iPhone exceeds safe radiofrequency radiation limits

Apple devices weren’t the only smartphones to fail in the Tribune’s testing.

What you need to know

A report from The Chicago Tribune claims many popular smartphones exceed safe radiofrequency radiation limits.
Apple responded to the report, saying its devices are in compliance with regulations.
The FCC confirmed it will investigate the Tribune’s findings.
A new report from The Chicago Tribune claims many popular iPhone models exceed safe radiofrequency radiation limits. In fact, the report implies that Apple lied to federal regulators about the radiofrequency radiation emitted from a device like the iPhone 7.

According to the Tribune, which commissioned the testing at an accredited lab, the iPhone 7 measured double over the legal safety limit, with some data showing more than double what Apple reported to federal regulators.

The Tribune was transparent about how it conducted it tests, although it admitted that the testing was limited in scope:

Standard test: The phones were t…

Samsung’s foldable phone ideas keep coming, even though the Galaxy Fold still isn’t out

For those of you waiting for Samsung to finally make good on its promise as of a few weeks ago that its embarrassing Galaxy Fold design flubs have been fixed and that the phone will finally be released in September — well, keep waiting. We still don’t have a hard date for that release, and yet Samsung has nevertheless stayed busy behind the scenes cranking out designs for all kinds of new foldable phones that may or may not actually ever see the light of day.

On the heels of getting word that Motorola’s foldable Razr — based on the phone maker’s iconic series of clamshell phones — should be out by the end of this year, a newly published Samsung patent for a foldable phone with a clamshell design has just been spotted.

The patent was published on August 8 in the World Intellectual Property Office database (h/t LetsGoDigital) and we should note right off the bat that we’ve known for a few months now Samsung has been toiling away on a few foldable designs separate from the ill-fated Galaxy Fold. We mentioned that in an earlier post here, going so far as to wonder whether the clamshell foldable we’d heard was in the works might eventually be positioned as the Galaxy Fold 2.

Now, thanks to Dutch tech news site LetsGoDigital, we can not only get a look at Samsung’s design via the patent documentation below — the site also prepared color renderings that you can check out above.

Designs presented in patent applications like this one are often more aspirational than practical, so who knows if Samsung will ever put this particular design into production. Remember, the Galaxy Fold initial launch turned into an utter mess, and Samsung’s second attempt at the release still hasn’t happened yet (it’s supposedly coming in September, exact date TBD), but it is important to remember that foldable phones do seem to be a definite part of the company’s long-term product roadmap.

In terms of this new design, the handset sports an elongated screen — necessary, of course, to allow the device to be folded along an extra-wide hinge that can be bent in more than one place. Check out the sketches above to see what we mean. You can close the phone so that both ends touch equally, or you can close the phone to the degree that part of one side sticks out more than the other.

The design also envisions the user being able to fold the device such that the screen could be on either the inside or outside, depending on preference.

To be fair, Samsung is not the only manufacturer that has seen its optimistic forecast about a foldable phone release have to be re-thought recently. Huawei, as we and others have reported in recent days, has likewise delayed the launch of the Mate X. We’ll see if Samsung sticks to its new release timetable of September for the launch, finally, of the Galaxy Fold — which has enjoyed quite a bumpy ride so far, to say the least.