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Google declares war against Alexa and Siri at CES 2018

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It’s an artificial intelligence showdown.

This year at CES, the world’s largest electronics trade show (running Jan. 9-12), thousands of companies will travel to Las Vegas to show off their newest products and build new partnerships. But this time around, one unusual exhibitor stands out from the rest: Google.

It’s the first time in many years that Google will have its own, large, standalone booth in the middle of the convention center. But the search giant has gone far beyond buying space on the showroom floor. It’s also commissioned several large advertisements around the city, including one you simply can’t miss. Read more…

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Crunch Report | Telegram and Instagram Are Being Restricted in Iran

Amazon Prime shipped 5 billion Items in 2017, SuperMeat gets $3 million in funding and Telegram and Instagram are being restricted in Iran. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

HQ Trivia Is Coming to Android | Crunch Report

HQ Trivia is coming to Android, Amazon Echo is the No. 1 best seller on the site and the founder of LeEco is ordered to return to China. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

AWS isn’t exiting China, but Amazon did sell physical assets to comply with Chinese law

aws logo Amazon has denied reports that it is withdrawing its AWS business from China, but the firm did admit that it has been forced to sell some physical assets to its local partner. The U.S. firm appeared to have exited the country after The Wall Street Journal and Reuters reported that Beijing Sinnet, the partner that operates AWS China, had notified investors of its acquisition of the… Read More

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Amazon drops David O. Russell show as Weinstein fallout continues

 Amazon said earlier this week that it was reviewing its options around the shows it was producing with The Weinstein Company. Now it looks like the company has made a decision and is moving to sever ties with TWC. One show, an untitled project from director David O. Russell, has been canceled entirely. Russell, along with stars Robert De Niro and Julianne Moore, released a statement saying… Read More

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Amazon says Whole Foods deal will close Monday

 It’s official…Amazon says its purchase of Whole Foods will close on Monday. According to the release, “the two companies will together pursue the vision of making Whole Foods Market’s high-quality, natural and organic food affordable for everyone. As a down payment on that vision, Whole Foods Market will offer lower prices starting Monday on a selection of… Read More

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Amazon's new Prime Now warehouse in Singapore is absolutely massive

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After years of preparation, Amazon has finally launched its same-day Prime Now delivery service in Singapore.

The service brings two-hour, and even one-hour deliveries, for tens of thousands of household items, from eggs and cold beer to diapers and detergent.

To achieve the rapid delivery times, Amazon’s opened its largest Prime Now warehouse to date, at 100,000 square feet of space near the Jurong district.

Image: VICTORIA HO/MASHABLE

The hotly anticipated launch lit up social media this week, as chatter grew about the service coming to rival local incumbents, as well as China’s Alibaba, which recently bought a presence here by scooping up Southeast Asia’s Lazada. Read more…

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Will Blue Apron’s rebound continue?

 Cooking kit delivery company Blue Apron traded up 3.5% on the stock market Monday, erasing some of the losses from its first two days as a public company. Shares closed at $9.67, which was still beneath last week’s $10 IPO price. This is in contrast to a lot of public debuts, where companies are typically in the green for the first day “pop.” It’s the subsequent days… Read More

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Will Blue Apron’s rebound continue?

 Cooking kit delivery company Blue Apron traded up 3.5% on the stock market Monday, erasing some of the losses from its first two days as a public company. Shares closed at $9.67, which was still beneath last week’s $10 IPO price. This is in contrast to a lot of public debuts, where companies are typically in the green for the first day “pop.” It’s the subsequent days… Read More

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The Amazon Echo now doubles as a home intercom system

 Amazon will officially release the Show in a few days, but in the meantime, the company is introducing a long-awaited intercom feature for existing Echo devices. The addition uses Drop-In, a teleconferencing feature introduced on the Show that lets close friends and family members call into one another’s device with little warning. I really didn’t like the feature when I tested… Read More

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In wake of Amazon/Whole Foods deal, Instacart has a challenging opportunity

 Yesterday, Amazon and Whole Foods ruined a perfectly slow news day on a Friday in June with the announcement that Amazon intends to buy Whole Foods for almost $14 billion.
The most obvious victim of the deal was Instacart, in which Whole Foods invested and with whom Whole Foods has a five-year contract.
But after talking to a few Instacart investors and other sources close to the company… Read More

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Crunch Report | Amazon Bids to Buy Whole Foods for $13.7 Billion

Amazon bids to buy Whole Foods for $13.7 billion, Walmart buys Bonobos for $310 million, Mobike, a ride-sharing company in China, raises $600 million. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

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SNL just came up with a hilarious version of Alexa designed for senior citizens

 While the White House was definitely the focus of tonight’s episode of Saturday Night Live, the show managed to fit in a great sketch on Amazon’s Alexa. The sketch was an advertisement for a (faux) device called Alexa Silver, touted as the only smart speaker built specifically for “the greatest generation“.
The device’s main feature? It’s super loud and… Read More

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Crunch Report | Rumors: Amazon’s New Echo Device

The U.S. Department of Justice has opened an investigation into Uber’s use of Greyballing, we get the first look at the rumored Amazon Echo device and Facebook shuts down its VR filmmaking division. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

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Lazada, Uber and Netflix team up ahead of Amazon’s expected entry into Southeast Asia

 Amazon isn’t in Southeast Asia yet — the e-commerce giant pushed back plans to enter early this year — but that isn’t stopping future rival Lazada teaming up with a range of companies to offer an Amazon Prime-style membership package in advance of the U.S. e-commerce giant’s arrival. Lazada, the e-commerce firm that is majority owned by China’s Alibaba,… Read More

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Amazon launches Fire TV Stick in India

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Now that Amazon has put its content catalog in place for Prime Video users in India, the company is ready to expand its ecosystem.

On Wednesday, the company announced that it is bringing the Fire TV Stick to India, only the fifth market for the miniature streaming device.

The company is offering the Fire TV Stick at a price point of Rs 3,999 ($60), with Prime subscribers getting an additional $7.5 discount. 

The Chromecast rival, the Fire TV Stick, offers a range of additional services including built-in apps. Amazon says users can find entertainment apps such as EROS TV, Netflix, Gaana on the device.  Read more…

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Crunch Report | YouTube now blocking ads on low-view channels

YouTube is now blocking ads on channels with less than 10,000 views, Amazon pulls Diapers.com and other Quidsi apps and Spotify’s invisible IPO. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

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Retail chains are floundering and it's not because of Amazon

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Is Amazon really the killer everyone says it is?

More retailers are on the brink of death than any time since the Great Recession, according to ratings firm Moody’s. Hundreds of department stores are closing, and once-chic clothing brands are barely treading water — or, in the case of American Apparel and The Limited, recently departed.

In that kind of atmosphere, it’s easy to point a finger at the 800-pound gorilla — the one with a history of eating bookstores for breakfast (and now, ironically, building its own).

Amazon has a stranglehold on the e-commerce market, and there’s no doubt it’s draining a growing portion of real-world sales as consumers take their shopping online.  Read more…

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Retail chains are floundering and it's not because of Amazon

TwitterFacebook

Is Amazon really the killer everyone says it is?

More retailers are on the brink of death than any time since the Great Recession, according to ratings firm Moody’s. Hundreds of department stores are closing, and once-chic clothing brands are barely treading water — or, in the case of American Apparel and The Limited, recently departed.

In that kind of atmosphere, it’s easy to point a finger at the 800-pound gorilla — the one with a history of eating bookstores for breakfast (and now, ironically, building its own).

Amazon has a stranglehold on the e-commerce market, and there’s no doubt it’s draining a growing portion of real-world sales as consumers take their shopping online.  Read more…

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Forget Facebook and Google: The ad world thinks this tech giant is 'terrifying'

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The mad men and women of the ad industry have plenty of reasons to toss and turn at night.

Money is increasingly trickling from television commercials to digital media — a market that Facebook and Google currently have in a duopolistic chokehold. Inter-agency competition is at a fever pitchUnconventional upstarts are eating their lunch. If Don Draper were around today, there’s a good chance he’d work at Facebook.

But it’s not internet advertising giants that keep the industry’s top chief up at night. Nor is it his three-month-old daughter.

It’s…Amazon?

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Crunch Report | NBCUniversal Invests $500 Million in Snap

NBCUniversal invests $500 million in Snap, Jeff Bezos has plans for a Moon expedition, Uber plans to turn its app into a content marketplace and more Uber troubles. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

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Amazon shuts down its cable store, probably because ISPs are awful

amazon-cable-store Remember that time when Amazon decided it wanted to sell you internet service and cable TV? Well, that’s done now. Yep, Amazon’s “Cable Store” is no more. As you may recall, around a year ago, the online retailer launched a “cable store” website where it began reselling a variety of Comcast’s services, including its internet, TV and phone bundles. The… Read More

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Jeff Bezos wants Blue Origin to be the Amazon of the Moon

Fourth successful launch of the same New Shepard vehicle during test flights / Image courtesy of Blue Origin Not one to be left out, Amazon and Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos is also making plans to go to the Moon, just like fellow space magnate Elon Musk. Bezos’ plan, uncovered by The Washington Post via a draft proposal presented to NASA and Trump’s administration, outlines Blue Origin’s plan to create a cargo spacecraft destined for the Moon that would help it ferry supplies… Read More

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Amazon launches Chime, a video conferencing and communications service for business

Amazon corporate office building in Sunnyvale, California (Photo: Lisa Werner/Moment Mobile/Getty Images) Amazon has taken the wraps off of its own Skype competitor. Chime is a new video conferencing and communications from AWS that’s focused on business users. Beyond VoIP calling and video messaging, Chime includes virtual meetings, allowing users to host or join a remote meeting through the service. Pricing starts at $2.50 per user per month on the lowest end, with a higher tier plan… Read More

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Amazon hints at Prime sales in latest filing

amzn-feature Amazon Prime has driven growth for the e-commerce company for years now. But Amazon has traditionally been cagey about disclosing too many details regarding the popular service. In a 10-K filing summarizing performance throughout 2016, the business did something that drew the attention of Wall Street analysts. It designated a category entitled “retail subscription services”… Read More

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Crunch Report: Prince returns to Spotify

cr-thumb-2-10 Today’s Stories 

Prince returns to Spotify and Napster this weekend
WhatsApp now supports two-step authentication
Amazon’s Tap speaker gets a hands-free update in defiance of its name
Beats X bring Apple’s wireless headphone tech to a tethered form factor

Credits
Written and hosted by: Anthony Ha
Edited by: Joe Zolnoski
Filmed by: Matthew Mauro
Teleprompter: Tomas… Read More

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Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and other tech firms donated cash and services to Trump inauguration

Technology companies including Amazon, Google and Microsoft donated considerable amounts of both cash and technical services for the ceremonies and events around the inauguration and swearing in of President Donald Trump, according to reports making the internet rounds on Tuesday night.

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Crunch Report | Tech’s Rough Day on Wall Street

Travis Kalanick quits the Trump advisory board, Domino’s updates its Facebook Messenger bot in time for the Super Bowl, GoPro and Amazon have a rough day on Wall Street and Medium plans to monetize. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

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Crunch Report | Kickstarter Acquires Huzza

Kickstarter acquires video streaming company Huzza, Amazon is planning to build a $1.5 billion air cargo hub and MIT creates a robot with a soft touch. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

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Crunch Report | AppDynamics Acquired for $3.7 Billion

Cisco acquires AppDynamics for $3.7 billion, Facebook launches a Snapchat story clone in its app in Ireland, Amazon owns more of its shipping logistics, Apple isnt giving up on India, and Apple hires Dropcam co-founder Greg Duffy. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

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A month after delivery boy's murder, Flipkart launches new SOS feature

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Amazon’s India rival, Flipkart, has launched Project Nanjunda, a unique safety initiative for its delivery boys — the backbone of any ecommerce business.

Flipkart field execs, also known as Wishmasters, will now have access to an SOS button on their mobile app. It can work over a normal cellular network without data connectivity, thus making it more viable. Called the Nanjunda Button, it will trigger an alarm to the nearest hub-in-charge in case of an emergency, Flipkart said in a statement. 

The project has been named after the deceased Wishmaster, Nanjunda Swamy, who was murdered by a customer when he delivered the package as he wanted to buy a smartphone but didn’t have any money. In India, you can order an item online and pay for it at the time of delivery. Read more…

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