According to a new report by SensorTower analytics, TikTok has managed quite a remarkable feat, surpassing the 1.5 billion downloads mark and claiming the third spot in the most downloaded non-gaming category for 2019. The Chinese social media app managed to break through Facebook’s hegemony in the top charts on both the App Store and Google Play and only trails WhatsApp and Messenger while surpassing long-standing titans like Facebook and Instagram.
What’s even more remarkable is that TikTok was launched just three years ago in 2016. The data shows that in Q3 2019 alone, the app managed a combined 176.5 million downloads across Android and iOS which doesn’t take into account the downloads from third-party app stores in China where TikTok is very popular.
What started off as a casual comment by Elon Musk in 2012 about wanting to build a truck has evolved into what you see here, Tesla’s
first production pickup truck. Called the Cybertruck (or “Cybrtrk” if
you’re of the dark trench coat persuasion), it’s built to fulfill a lot
of familiar tasks but, beyond that, is anything but familiar.
Let’s start with the basic stuff. The Cybertruck is 231.7 inches long, 79.8 inches wide and 75.0 inches tall, with seating for six. Let’s compare that to the Ford F-150, which measures between 209 and 250 inches long, 80 and 86 inches wide and between 75 and 78.5 inches tall. That puts it in pretty much the same company as every other pickup out there.
A new study using sophisticated brain scans found an association between screen use and the development of young children’s brains, especially in areas related to language development, reinforcing the messages about minimizing screen time for preschoolers.
Let’s start with full disclosure: I know some of the authors of the research, which was published Monday in JAMA Pediatrics. The lead author is Dr. John S. Hutton, the director of the Reading and Literacy Discovery Center at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. I wrote about some of his research a few years ago, when he looked at how young children’s brains react to hearing stories, and have even collaborated with him in writing about children and reading, one of my favorite topics (the world of pediatricians obsessed with picture books is small and closely, well, networked).
Google is gathering detailed health record information from millions of Americans — and it has not informed patients or doctors, The Wall Street Journal reports. According to WSJ, St. Louis-based Ascension, the second-largest health system in the US, is sharing lab results, diagnoses and hospitalization records, as well as health histories complete with patient names and dates of birth, with Google.
The effort has been dubbed “Project Nightingale,” and a person familiar with the matter told WSJ that at least 150 Google employees have access to data on tens of millions of patients. Google is reportedly using the data to design new, AI-driven software.
iPhone owners, beware. It appears Facebook might be actively using your camera without your knowledge while you’re scrolling your feed.
The issue has come to light after a user going by the name Joshua Maddux took to Twitter to report the unusual behavior, which occurs in the Facebook app for iOS. In footage he shared, you can see his camera actively working in the background as he scrolls through his feed.
The problem becomes evident due to a bug that shows the camera feed in a tiny sliver on the left side of your screen, when you open a photo in the app and swipe down. TNW has since been able to independently reproduce the issue.
Samsung knows a thing or two about memory technology and the company always puts that expertise to good use. It announced at the annual Samsung Tech Day event today that the mass production of the industry’s first 12GB LPDDR4X-based uMCP has now begun.
What that means in English is that Samsung has now made it possible for mid-range smartphones to have more than 10GB of RAM. That’s going to provide a significant improvement in user experience for customers who don’t get a flagship device.
This will be a game-changer for mid-range smartphones
The uMCP or UFS-based multichip package utilizes Samsung’s 24-gigabit (Gb) LPDDR4X chips. This allows Samsung to offer the highest mobile RAM capacity of 12GB for both flagship and mid-range devices. This is made possible by combining four 24Gb LPDDR4X chips with an ultra-fast eUFS 3.0 NAND storage into one single package. So it breaks through the existing 8GB package limit and allows for 10+ GB RAM to be put in mid-range devices.
I’ve opened and closed foldable phones hundreds of times by now. But even after reviewing the Galaxy Fold (twice), playing with Huawei’s Mate X and bending slim concept designs, nothing has prepared me for TCL’s prototype dual-hinged phone, which folds in three parts and opens into a huge, 10-inch tablet.
The most remarkable thing about TCL’s phone is that the hinges themselves move in different directions. The DragonHinge fold in, like a book, or like the Galaxy Fold, while the Butterfly Hinge folds the opposite way.
The two hinges create a zigzag shape as you open and close the device, a silhouette in Z. It looks like an accordion. Or a taco holder. And I have to get my greedy hands on it to give it a fold, one panel at a time: Open. Folded over once. Completely folded up into a triple-stacked sandwich so that the exposed panel becomes the TCL phone’s “outer” screen. With this design, a single uninterrupted screen does it all.
Google is standing by its claim that it’s achieved quantum supremacy — marking a major milestone in computing research. The company first made the claim back in September, and while disputed by competitors, Google’s research paper has now been published in the scientific journal Nature.
Quantum supremacy is a big deal, because it encapsulates the ability of quantum computers to solve problems that current technology couldn’t even begin to attempt. Google’s paper explains how its 53-bit quantum computer — named Sycamore — took just 200 seconds to perform a calculation that would have taken the world’s fastest supercomputer 10,000 years.
In theory, this capability opens a lot of doors to future technologies, such as designing better batteries and medicine, or minimizing emissions from farming chemicals. It could also help to advance existing technologies such as machine learning. However, Sycamore’s feat has almost no practical use at this stage — it was designed simply to show that a quantum computer could perform as expected.
Honor announced the Band 5i a couple of days ago, and now its parent company Huawei also unveiled a fitness tracker, dubbed Band 4, which is essentially a re-branded Band 5i with a pill-shaped button.
The Huawei Band 4 sports a 0.96″ 2.5D TFT color screen having a resolution of 160×80 pixels. It shows information like time and date, fitness data, and app notifications.
Huawei Band 4 arrives with a color display and USB-A charging port
The Band 4 comes with heart rate and sleep monitoring, and it can track different activities like walking, running and cycling.
The fitness tracker is water-resistant up to 50 meters and can sync with devices running Android 4.4 and iOS 9.0 and above. It comes with Bluetooth 4.2 for connectivity but has NFC missing.
The Honor Band 4 is offered in three colors – Graphite Black, Sakura Pink, and Amber Sunrise. It packs a 91 mAh battery which Huawei claims can offer 7-9 days of power autonomy. The fitness tracker comes with a USB-A connector, meaning you can plug it to the regular USB-A port for hassle-free charging.
Apple CEO Tim Cook had some choice words when asked about Facebook’s controversial blockchain project Libra, with the chief executive openly characterizing the company’s plans to launch a cryptocurrency as a blatant power grab. Speaking with the French newspaper Les Echos, Cook shot down any notion that Apple might be considering launching a digital currency of its own, given its recent investments in digital wallets, mobile payments, and consumer credit with the new Goldman Sachs-backed Apple Card.
“No. I really think that a currency should stay in the hands of countries. I’m not comfortable with the idea of a private group setting up a competing currency,” Cook told the publication in an interview published today. “A private company shouldn’t be looking to gain power this way.”
Cook’s comments were published just prior to PayPal announcing today that it was backing out of the Libra Association, the 28-member nonprofit group (of which Facebook is a part) that was formed to oversee the currency’s creation and the technical, financial, and regulatory hurdles it faces. The two events are unrelated, but PayPal’s withdrawal and its aftereffects will no doubt deal a significant blow to Libra’s ongoing development and the prospects of its regulatory approval.