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Insider says PS5 has serious performance problems
PS5 release date
  • Sony hosted a PS5 deep dive in March to discuss the system architecture of the next-gen console.
  • We learned about many of the most important specifications of the PS5, but we didn't get to see the console in action or the actual hardware itself.
  • An industry source claims the reason Sony is taking so long to fully reveal the PS5 is that the hardware has a high failure rate and a release date delay is inevitable.
  • Visit BGR's homepage for more stories.

The longer Sony waits to fully unveil the PlayStation 5, the more concerned its fans are going to become. Obviously, Sony is under no obligation to show us what the PS5 looks like or how it works, but none of us expected to wake up on April 3rd knowing as little as we do about the next-gen console.

There are a number of possible explanations. The most plausible is that Sony decided months ago that the full reveal would be better suited for later in the year. There's also a chance that the coronavirus pandemic forced Sony to adjust its rollout of information on the fly. But as weeks go by without any news from Sony (save for a repurposed GDC talk in March), some have started to wonder if the reason that we know so little about the PS5 is that development isn't progressing as smoothly as expected. And now reports saying as much are popping up online.

Continue reading...

Today's Top Deals

  1. DIY coronavirus face masks: Key supplies back in stock at Amazon
  2. Incredible robot that mows your lawn is down to its lowest price at Amazon
  3. Today’s best deals: Rare AirPods Pro deal, free Amazon Music Unlimited, $25 Fire TV Stick 4K, $5 smart plugs, more

Trending Right Now:

  1. Doctors found a coronavirus patient who was contagious for 49 days
  2. Doctors have discovered unusual new coronavirus symptoms
  3. Apple just accidentally leaked its imminent iPhone 9 release

Insider says PS5 has serious performance problems originally appeared on BGR.com on Fri, 3 Apr 2020 at 12:08:57 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.


Incredible robot that mows your lawn is down to its lowest price at Amazon
Robot Lawn Mower Price
  • Robot lawnmowers work in much the same way as robot vacuum cleaners, offering automatic and autonomous mowing so that you don't have to worry about mowing your lawn anymore.
  • Right now, Amazon is offering a deal on the excellent WORX WR140 Landroid M 20V Cordless Robotic Lawnmower that slashes the top-rated robot mower to its lowest price ever.
  • WORX's Landroid M is one of the best models available right now, and it mows up to 1/4 acre at a time completely autonomously.
  • Visit BGR's homepage for more stories.

Robot vacuum cleaners like the popular models from iRobot's Roomba brand are fantastic. Whether you get a lower-cost model like the Roomba 675 or a top-of-the-line Roomba i7+ that can actually empty its dust bin on its own (it's $200 off right now on Amazon), you're going to change your life. In any areas of your home where your robot vacuum is set up, you never have to worry about vacuuming the floor on a regular basis because you'll have a robot to take care of it for you. Now, imagine you could say the same thing about the grass in your yard.

You can. The WORX WR140 Landroid M 20V Cordless Robotic Lawnmower is one of the hottest robot mowers out there right now, and it just dropped to its lowest price yet on Amazon. This model is fully automated so it can cut lawns up to 1/4 of an acre in size all on its own. It's very easy to set up thanks to detailed instructions, so you can clearly define the complete area where you want the Landroid M to mow. Plus, it has an obstacle avoidance feature that lets it move around any unforeseen objects.

WORX's Landroid M can work its way around boxes, flower beds, gazebos, sheds, and anything else you might have in your yard, and you'll never have to worry about mowing the lawn or paying a landscaper again. Head over to Amazon right now and you'll save more than $150 on this awesome gadget.

WORX WR140 Landroid M 20V Cordless Robotic Lawnmower, Orange: $849.15

Here are the key details that WORX laid out on Amazon's product page:

  • [FULLY AUTOMATED] The Landroid M cuts lawns up to ¼ acre all by itself. Just set the charging base, lay down the boundary wire, measure your lawn with the app, and let it mow
  • [WI-FI & APP CONTROLLED] There are many things you can do from the Landroid app: measure your lawn, check mowing progress, keep software up to date, update your mowing schedule and more
  • [NAVIGATES NARROW PATHS] Patented AIA technology allows Landroid to navigate narrow passageways too difficult for ordinary robotic mowers
  • [CUSTOMIZED MOWING SCHDULES] Have Landroid mow every day, every other day, it can even recommend an auto-schedule based on your yard’s size and conditions
  • [TACKLES OBSTACLES] If Landroid encounters obstacles it will bump them and back away, or you can exclude areas of your lawn that you don’t want Landroid to mow. Landroid can also tackle slopes in your yard up to 20°
  • [RAIN SENSOR & CUT TO EDGE] When Landroid detects rain, it returns to the charger to wait until the lawn is dry. Even though its body is rain-resistant, it knows better than to cut wet grass
  • [DO IT ALL WITH THE SAME BATTERY] Do it all with WORX Power Share, the only cordless tool platform that uses the same battery to power 20V and 40V tools

WORX WR140 Landroid M 20V Cordless Robotic Lawnmower, Orange: $849.15

All of today's top deals

Apple AirPods Pro: $234.98

Apple AirPods with Charging Case: $129.98

Apple AirPods with Wireless Charging Case: $169.00

WORX WR140 Landroid M 20V Cordless Robotic Lawnmower, Orange: $849.15

Get 3 Months of Amazon Music Unlimited For Free: FREE

Fire TV Stick 4K streaming device with Alexa built in, Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, includes the Ale…: $24.99 (use code 4KFIRETV)

Fire TV Stick 4K streaming device with Alexa built in, Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, includes the Ale…: Buy two, get a $20 Amazon credit

Aerostar Home Max 12x12x1 MERV 13 Pleated Air Filter Made in the USA Captures Virus Particles,…: $32.52

Breathe Naturally Universal 16x48 Cut-to-Fit Activated Carbon Filter (4 Pack) Charcoal Air Filt…: $29.99

DEPSTECH Wireless Endoscope, IP67 Waterproof WiFi Borescope Inspection 2.0 Megapixels HD Snake…: $28.79 (use code GSD8NBF2 by 4/5)

DEPSTECH Wireless Endoscope, 5.0MP Ultra-Thin HD Borescope, Zoomable Snake Inspection Camera wi…: $49.49 (use code EFJCW8W8 by 4/5)

Högtalare - The Most Dynamic Wireless HiFi Speaker, Great Hi-Fi Sound, IKEA Compatible (Blue B…: $349.00

Smart Plug Work with Alexa and Google Home, TanTan Smart Outlet Mini Wifi Plug, Only Support 2.…: $20.99 ($5.25 each) (use code 302LHN3C by 4/5)

Sony WH-1000XM3 Wireless Noise Canceling Over Ear Headphones with Voice Assistant, Black (WH-10…: $298.00

[Stay Strong, USA]6.5Qt Pressure Cooker and Air Fryer Combos, Steamer Cooker, 1500W Pressure, A…: $151.99 (use code 7GLLX3JP)

iRobot Roomba 675 Robot Vacuum-Wi-Fi Connectivity, Works with Alexa, Good for Pet Hair, Carpets…: $269.00

iRobot Roomba i7+ (7550) Robot Vacuum with Automatic Dirt Disposal-Empties Itself, Wi-Fi Connec…: $799.00

Today's Top Deals

  1. DIY coronavirus face masks: Key supplies back in stock at Amazon
  2. Incredible robot that mows your lawn is down to its lowest price at Amazon
  3. Today’s best deals: Rare AirPods Pro deal, free Amazon Music Unlimited, $25 Fire TV Stick 4K, $5 smart plugs, more

Trending Right Now:

  1. Doctors found a coronavirus patient who was contagious for 49 days
  2. Doctors have discovered unusual new coronavirus symptoms
  3. Apple just accidentally leaked its imminent iPhone 9 release

Incredible robot that mows your lawn is down to its lowest price at Amazon originally appeared on BGR.com on Fri, 3 Apr 2020 at 11:33:05 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.


Google’s creepiest Maps feature can help stop the coronavirus
Coronavirus NYC Update
  • Google released a new mapping resource that can help slow the spread of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
  • The new Community Mobile Reports show anonymized location data that can help authorities understand whether social distancing measures are being taken.
  • Google collects the data from phones just like it does for Google Maps, but it says it won't reveal any identifying info to authorities.
  • Visit BGR's homepage for more stories.

Google came under fire a few years ago for collecting user data from phones even when users thought that wasn't happening. Since then, Google took several steps to ensure that users have more control over their location data. You can delete your data from Google's servers manually or automatically and even use Google Maps anonymously. Android 10 also guards your location data better than ever. Yet Google still can identify you in a crowd, as we've seen just recently when a biker became the prime suspect in a burglary because of his training-related location data. On the other hand, the massive amount of location data that Google collects helps it improve popular services like Google Maps that depend on location information.

But if there ever was a time when Google's location tracking abilities could come in handy, it's now. The novel coronavirus pandemic can only be fought with strict social distancing measures. Flattening the curve is the main goal of most governments around the world, and that can only be done if most of the population complies with directives to stay at home. And Google is now ready to harness its location data to alert local governments if their social distancing orders are not being followed.

Continue reading...

Today's Top Deals

  1. DIY coronavirus face masks: Key supplies back in stock at Amazon
  2. Incredible robot that mows your lawn is down to its lowest price at Amazon
  3. Today’s best deals: Rare AirPods Pro deal, free Amazon Music Unlimited, $25 Fire TV Stick 4K, $5 smart plugs, more

Trending Right Now:

  1. Doctors found a coronavirus patient who was contagious for 49 days
  2. Doctors have discovered unusual new coronavirus symptoms
  3. Apple just accidentally leaked its imminent iPhone 9 release

Google’s creepiest Maps feature can help stop the coronavirus originally appeared on BGR.com on Fri, 3 Apr 2020 at 10:58:26 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.


Today’s best deals: Rare AirPods Pro deal, free Amazon Music Unlimited, $25 Fire TV Stick 4K, $5 smart plugs, more
Amazon Deals

There's only one last daily deals roundup for you to enjoy before the weekend arrives, so we made sure that Friday's list is the best one of the week. Highlights include a rare deal that slashes AirPods Pro to the lowest price ever, AirPods 2 also at an all-time low, Amazon's best-selling Fire TV Stick 4K at Black Friday's price of just $24.99 for a select few lucky customers (here are all the details) or a $20 Amazon credit when you buy and activate two Fire TV Stick 4K streaming media players, DIY coronavirus face mask supplies back in stock on Amazon like MERV 13 filters and activated carbon pads (see how to make DIY coronavirus face masks), a crazy new Hi-Fi speaker fits perfectly in Ikea's most popular bookshelf, an unbelievable robot lawnmower at its lowest price yet, the crazy wireless camera that lets your iPhone or Android see anywhere for just $28.79 with coupon code GSD8NBF2, 3 months of Amazon Music Unlimited for free for new subscribers, popular Alexa and Google-enabled mini smart plugs for $5.25 apiece with coupon code 302LHN3C, discounts on the two most popular Roomba robot vacuum models we've covered so far this year, and more. Check out all of Friday's top deals down below.

Apple AirPods Pro: $234.98

Apple AirPods with Charging Case: $129.98

Apple AirPods with Wireless Charging Case: $169.00

WORX WR140 Landroid M 20V Cordless Robotic Lawnmower, Orange: $849.15

Get 3 Months of Amazon Music Unlimited For Free: FREE

Fire TV Stick 4K streaming device with Alexa built in, Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, includes the Ale…: $24.99 (use code 4KFIRETV)

Fire TV Stick 4K streaming device with Alexa built in, Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, includes the Ale…: Buy two, get a $20 Amazon credit

Aerostar Home Max 12x12x1 MERV 13 Pleated Air Filter Made in the USA Captures Virus Particles,…: $32.52

Breathe Naturally Universal 16x48 Cut-to-Fit Activated Carbon Filter (4 Pack) Charcoal Air Filt…: $29.99

DEPSTECH Wireless Endoscope, IP67 Waterproof WiFi Borescope Inspection 2.0 Megapixels HD Snake…: $28.79 (use code GSD8NBF2 by 4/5)

DEPSTECH Wireless Endoscope, 5.0MP Ultra-Thin HD Borescope, Zoomable Snake Inspection Camera wi…: $49.49 (use code EFJCW8W8 by 4/5)

Högtalare - The Most Dynamic Wireless HiFi Speaker, Great Hi-Fi Sound, IKEA Compatible (Blue B…: $349.00

Smart Plug Work with Alexa and Google Home, TanTan Smart Outlet Mini Wifi Plug, Only Support 2.…: $20.99 ($5.25 each) (use code 302LHN3C by 4/5)

Sony WH-1000XM3 Wireless Noise Canceling Over Ear Headphones with Voice Assistant, Black (WH-10…: $298.00

[Stay Strong, USA]6.5Qt Pressure Cooker and Air Fryer Combos, Steamer Cooker, 1500W Pressure, A…: $151.99 (use code 7GLLX3JP)

iRobot Roomba 675 Robot Vacuum-Wi-Fi Connectivity, Works with Alexa, Good for Pet Hair, Carpets…: $269.00

iRobot Roomba i7+ (7550) Robot Vacuum with Automatic Dirt Disposal-Empties Itself, Wi-Fi Connec…: $799.00

Today's Top Deals

  1. DIY coronavirus face masks: Key supplies back in stock at Amazon
  2. Incredible robot that mows your lawn is down to its lowest price at Amazon
  3. Today’s best deals: Rare AirPods Pro deal, free Amazon Music Unlimited, $25 Fire TV Stick 4K, $5 smart plugs, more

Trending Right Now:

  1. Doctors found a coronavirus patient who was contagious for 49 days
  2. Doctors have discovered unusual new coronavirus symptoms
  3. Apple just accidentally leaked its imminent iPhone 9 release

Today’s best deals: Rare AirPods Pro deal, free Amazon Music Unlimited, $25 Fire TV Stick 4K, $5 smart plugs, more originally appeared on BGR.com on Fri, 3 Apr 2020 at 10:29:41 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.


What to do if you think you have coronavirus
What To Do If You Have Coronavirus
  • Confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus have now surpassed 1 million globally, including more than 250,000 COVID-19 cases in the United States alone.
  • In the US in particular, there are no signs that the new coronavirus outbreak is slowing down.
  • Even if you're as careful as possible, there is still a possibility that you can contract the potentially deadly disease, and you should know what to do if you think you might be infected.
  • Visit BGR's homepage for more stories.

You know you should be staying home at all times unless you absolutely need to go out. You know that when you do go out, you should practice social distancing. You know you should avoid touching your face at all costs anytime you're out, and you know you need to wash your hands thoroughly anytime you touch a surface in a public space. You also know how to make your own DIY face masks so you can give yourself a little extra protection without buying the surgical masks or N95 masks that doctors, nurses, first responders, and other people on the front lines need so desperately. You know all this, and yet there is nothing you can do to remove any and all possibility that you'll be exposed to the novel coronavirus and become infected with COVID-19. Unless you live in a bubble with a few months' worth of food and supplies, there is a chance that you'll contract COVID-19.

With that in mind, everyone should be aware of early symptoms to look for. While many COVID-19 symptoms are similar to the common flu or an upper respiratory infection, there are a few common indicators that it might be a novel coronavirus infection instead. Most people experience a fever and a dry cough, but difficulty breathing is also a telltale symptom. It's also one of the more severe symptoms of COVID-19, so you should contact your doctor immediately. In some cases though, there are signs that appear long before any respiratory issues — if you lose your sense of taste or smell or if you experience unusual dizziness or confusion, contact your doctor right away. But what else should you do? Thankfully, the CDC has a comprehensive guide that will walk you through everything you need to do if you think you might have COVID-19.

Continue reading...

Today's Top Deals

  1. DIY coronavirus face masks: Key supplies back in stock at Amazon
  2. Incredible robot that mows your lawn is down to its lowest price at Amazon
  3. Today’s best deals: Rare AirPods Pro deal, free Amazon Music Unlimited, $25 Fire TV Stick 4K, $5 smart plugs, more

Trending Right Now:

  1. Doctors found a coronavirus patient who was contagious for 49 days
  2. Doctors have discovered unusual new coronavirus symptoms
  3. Apple just accidentally leaked its imminent iPhone 9 release

What to do if you think you have coronavirus originally appeared on BGR.com on Fri, 3 Apr 2020 at 10:00:34 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.


Oops! Amazon forgot to end its best deal of the day from yesterday
Amazon Music Unlimited Free
  • Yesterday, Amazon ran a special 1-day deal that gave new subscribers the opportunity to get 3 months of Amazon Music Unlimited for free.
  • It was the best deal the site has ever run on Amazon Music Unlimited — last year on Black Friday, Amazon offered the same 3-month package for $0.99.
  • Someone at Amazon forgot to end the deal, which means it's still available on Friday for anyone who wants unlimited access to millions of songs for free.
  • Visit BGR's homepage for more stories.

Amazon has a lot going on right now, so it's understandable if some things slip through the cracks. The company has completely shifted its focus and moved away from delivering most nonessential products. Instead, it's utilizing the resources it freed up to deliver essentials like N95 face masks and hand sanitizer to hospitals and government agencies. This change will last a couple more weeks, and then the company will go back to filling all orders as quickly as it can, just like normal. In the meantime, good deals are a bit harder than normal to come by.

Of course, delivery logistics don't apply to deals on digital goods and services, which is why yesterday's big deal of the day was so great. For one day only, Amazon offered new subscribers 3 months of access to Amazon Music Unlimited totally free. For those unaware, Amazon Music Unlimited, or AMU for short, is a streaming music service just like Spotify or Apple Music. It gives you unlimited access to stream all the music you love from all your favorite bands and artists, and it's available on all platforms, from computers and tablets to TVs and of course mobile devices that run iOS or Android. It also has great integration with Amazon's Alexa-enabled smart speakers and Alexa devices from other brands. Just say something like "Alexa, play the new Weeknd album" and Alexa will immediately begin streaming.

Here's the thing: someone messed up at Amazon. That crazy deal was supposed to be available for one day only, but someone forgot to end it! That means if you're a new subscriber, you can head over to Amazon's site right now and you'll still be able to sign up for Amazon Music Unlimited without paying a dime for three months. That's right, it's totally FREE! All of Amazon's promotions like this in the past cost $0.99 for 3 months of access, so this deal is even better than the one Amazon offered last year on Black Friday.

There's also one more bonus you should consider. If you decide to continue subscribing to Amazon Music Unlimited after the 3 free months are up, you'll pay $7.99 per month after that. That's cheaper than both Spotify and Apple Music, and you get access to all the same songs with the same quality. Why would you pay more for the same music? There's no telling when someone at Amazon will realize he or she forgot to end this awesome deal, so definitely take advantage while you still can.

Get 3 Months of Amazon Music Unlimited For Free: FREE

Here are the terms and conditions for this deal, from the Amazon Music Unlimited page:

This 3-month free trial offer of a monthly Amazon Music Unlimited Individual Plan is a limited time offer and is available only to new subscribers to Amazon Music Unlimited. After the promotional trial, your subscription will automatically continue at the monthly price of $9.99 ($7.99 for Prime members) plus applicable tax until you cancel. This offer cannot be combined with any other offer. Digital content and services may only be available to customers located in the U.S. and are subject to the terms and conditions of Amazon.com Services LLC. Offer limited to one per customer and account. Amazon reserves the right to modify or cancel the offer at any time. Offer is non-transferable and may not be resold. If you violate any of these terms, the offer will be invalid.

Get 3 Months of Amazon Music Unlimited For Free: FREE

All of today's top deals

Apple AirPods Pro: $234.98

Apple AirPods with Charging Case: $129.98

Apple AirPods with Wireless Charging Case: $169.00

WORX WR140 Landroid M 20V Cordless Robotic Lawnmower, Orange: $849.15

Get 3 Months of Amazon Music Unlimited For Free: FREE

Fire TV Stick 4K streaming device with Alexa built in, Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, includes the Ale…: $24.99 (use code 4KFIRETV)

Fire TV Stick 4K streaming device with Alexa built in, Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, includes the Ale…: Buy two, get a $20 Amazon credit

Aerostar Home Max 12x12x1 MERV 13 Pleated Air Filter Made in the USA Captures Virus Particles,…: $32.52

Breathe Naturally Universal 16x48 Cut-to-Fit Activated Carbon Filter (4 Pack) Charcoal Air Filt…: $29.99

DEPSTECH Wireless Endoscope, IP67 Waterproof WiFi Borescope Inspection 2.0 Megapixels HD Snake…: $28.79 (use code GSD8NBF2 by 4/5)

DEPSTECH Wireless Endoscope, 5.0MP Ultra-Thin HD Borescope, Zoomable Snake Inspection Camera wi…: $49.49 (use code EFJCW8W8 by 4/5)

Högtalare - The Most Dynamic Wireless HiFi Speaker, Great Hi-Fi Sound, IKEA Compatible (Blue B…: $349.00

Smart Plug Work with Alexa and Google Home, TanTan Smart Outlet Mini Wifi Plug, Only Support 2.…: $20.99 ($5.25 each) (use code 302LHN3C by 4/5)

Sony WH-1000XM3 Wireless Noise Canceling Over Ear Headphones with Voice Assistant, Black (WH-10…: $298.00

[Stay Strong, USA]6.5Qt Pressure Cooker and Air Fryer Combos, Steamer Cooker, 1500W Pressure, A…: $151.99 (use code 7GLLX3JP)

iRobot Roomba 675 Robot Vacuum-Wi-Fi Connectivity, Works with Alexa, Good for Pet Hair, Carpets…: $269.00

iRobot Roomba i7+ (7550) Robot Vacuum with Automatic Dirt Disposal-Empties Itself, Wi-Fi Connec…: $799.00

Today's Top Deals

  1. DIY coronavirus face masks: Key supplies back in stock at Amazon
  2. Incredible robot that mows your lawn is down to its lowest price at Amazon
  3. Today’s best deals: Rare AirPods Pro deal, free Amazon Music Unlimited, $25 Fire TV Stick 4K, $5 smart plugs, more

Trending Right Now:

  1. Doctors found a coronavirus patient who was contagious for 49 days
  2. Doctors have discovered unusual new coronavirus symptoms
  3. Apple just accidentally leaked its imminent iPhone 9 release

Oops! Amazon forgot to end its best deal of the day from yesterday originally appeared on BGR.com on Fri, 3 Apr 2020 at 09:31:33 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.


Crazy Amazon deal drops the Fire TV Stick 4K to its lowest price ever
Fire TV Stick 4K Vs Fire TV Stick
  • Amazon's Fire TV Stick is one of the best values in streaming medial players at just $40, but Amazon is running even better deals on the upgraded model.
  • If you're one of a select few people who get lucky, you can buy a Fire TV Stick 4K right now for just $24.99 using the coupon code 4KFIRETV.
  • Many people won't be eligible for that deal, but Amazon also has another bargain most people don't know about that gets you a $20 Amazon credit when you buy two Fire TV Stick 4K media players.
  • Visit BGR's homepage for more stories.

Head over to Amazon right now and purchase a Fire TV Stick, and you'll pay $40 for the popular streaming media player. At that price, it's a tremendous value. The device offers a wonderful interface, Alexa control, and access to every single streaming service you can imagine. It's a fantastic value indeed, but you absolutely shouldn't buy one right now. Why not? Because Amazon has a pair of hidden deals on the even better model that you need to take advantage of... if you can.

If you're one of the lucky people Amazon selects using unknown criteria, you can slash the price of the $50 Fire TV Stick 4K down to just $24.99, which is an all-time low that matches Amazon's Prime Day deal from last year. The problem, as we mentioned, is that not everyone is eligible for this deal. Head to the Fire TV Stick 4K page on Amazon's and you might see a note under the $49.99 price that looks like this:

Even if you don't see it though, you should still try the special coupon code because last time this deal popped up, many of our readers said that it worked for them even though they didn't see that note. Add a Fire TV Stick 4K to your cart and use the promo code 4KFIRETV at checkout — the price drop to $24.99 If you're eligible for the deal.

Fire TV Stick 4K streaming device with Alexa built in, Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, includes the Ale…: $24.99 (use code 4KFIRETV)

You can read the blurb from Amazon's terms and conditions page right here:

This is a limited time offer. Qualifying customers only. Amazon reserves the right to modify or cancel the offer at any time. Offer good while supplies last. Offer only applies to Fire TV Stick 4K with Alexa Voice Remote, streaming media player sold by Amazon Digital Services LLC. Shipping charges and taxes may apply to discounted items. Offer limited to one per customer and account. Offer is non-transferable, may not be resold, and may not be combined with other offers. To redeem this offer, please enter the promo code during checkout. Promotional code valid until 11:59 p.m. (PT) December 31, 2020. If any of the products related to this offer are returned, your refund will equal the amount you paid for the product, subject to applicable refund policies.

Fire TV Stick 4K streaming device with Alexa built in, Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, includes the Ale…: $24.99 (use code 4KFIRETV)

If the price didn't budge, you're unfortunately out of luck... sort of. There's actually another killer deal on this model that anyone can take advantage of! Buy two Fire TV Stick 4K players and you'll get a $20 Amazon credit when you receive and activate them. That basically drops the Fire TV Stick 4K to the same price as the entry-level Fire TV Stick!

Here are the terms and conditions for that separate deal that's available to anyone:

This is a limited time offer. Offer is only valid for eligible customers located and with a billing address in the United States who purchase two Fire TV Stick 4K devices between 9:00 p.m. (PT) March 28, 2020 and 11:59 p.m. (PT) April 11, 2020 and activate at least one such eligible device by 11:59 p.m. (PT) April 25, 2020. Offer only applies to eligible products sold by Amazon.com (look for "sold by Amazon.com" on the product detail page). Offer good while supplies last. Products sold by third-party sellers or other Amazon entities will not qualify for this offer, even if "fulfilled by Amazon.com" or "Prime Eligible". Shipping charges and taxes may apply to the full value of discounted and free promotional items. Items must be purchased in a single order and shipped at the same speed to a single address. Offer limited to one per customer and account. Offer may not be combined with other offers. The maximum benefit you may receive from this offer is a $20 promotional credit. The $20 promotional credit will be automatically applied to your Amazon account after device activation. Promotional credit must be redeemed by 11:59 p.m. (PT) May 25, 2020. The promotional credit may only be used once and cannot be combined with other offers. Digital content and services may only be available to customers located and with billing addresses in the U.S. and are subject to the terms and conditions of Amazon Digital Services LLC. Amazon reserves the right to modify or cancel the offer at any time. Offer is non-transferable and may not be resold. Offer discount will be allocated proportionally among all promotional items in your order. If any of the products or content related to this offer are returned, your refund will equal the amount you paid for the product or content, subject to applicable refund policies. If you violate any of these terms, the offer will be invalid. Unless an Amazon Gift Card is the stated benefit of the promotion, promotional codes (including those placed directly in accounts) may not be redeemed for Amazon Gift Cards.

Fire TV Stick 4K streaming device with Alexa built in, Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, includes the Ale…: Buy two, get a $20 Amazon credit

All of today's top deals

Apple AirPods Pro: $234.98

Apple AirPods with Charging Case: $129.98

Apple AirPods with Wireless Charging Case: $169.00

WORX WR140 Landroid M 20V Cordless Robotic Lawnmower, Orange: $849.15

Get 3 Months of Amazon Music Unlimited For Free: FREE

Fire TV Stick 4K streaming device with Alexa built in, Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, includes the Ale…: $24.99 (use code 4KFIRETV)

Fire TV Stick 4K streaming device with Alexa built in, Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, includes the Ale…: Buy two, get a $20 Amazon credit

Aerostar Home Max 12x12x1 MERV 13 Pleated Air Filter Made in the USA Captures Virus Particles,…: $32.52

Breathe Naturally Universal 16x48 Cut-to-Fit Activated Carbon Filter (4 Pack) Charcoal Air Filt…: $29.99

DEPSTECH Wireless Endoscope, IP67 Waterproof WiFi Borescope Inspection 2.0 Megapixels HD Snake…: $28.79 (use code GSD8NBF2 by 4/5)

DEPSTECH Wireless Endoscope, 5.0MP Ultra-Thin HD Borescope, Zoomable Snake Inspection Camera wi…: $49.49 (use code EFJCW8W8 by 4/5)

Högtalare - The Most Dynamic Wireless HiFi Speaker, Great Hi-Fi Sound, IKEA Compatible (Blue B…: $349.00

Smart Plug Work with Alexa and Google Home, TanTan Smart Outlet Mini Wifi Plug, Only Support 2.…: $20.99 ($5.25 each) (use code 302LHN3C by 4/5)

Sony WH-1000XM3 Wireless Noise Canceling Over Ear Headphones with Voice Assistant, Black (WH-10…: $298.00

[Stay Strong, USA]6.5Qt Pressure Cooker and Air Fryer Combos, Steamer Cooker, 1500W Pressure, A…: $151.99 (use code 7GLLX3JP)

iRobot Roomba 675 Robot Vacuum-Wi-Fi Connectivity, Works with Alexa, Good for Pet Hair, Carpets…: $269.00

iRobot Roomba i7+ (7550) Robot Vacuum with Automatic Dirt Disposal-Empties Itself, Wi-Fi Connec…: $799.00

Today's Top Deals

  1. DIY coronavirus face masks: Key supplies back in stock at Amazon
  2. Incredible robot that mows your lawn is down to its lowest price at Amazon
  3. Today’s best deals: Rare AirPods Pro deal, free Amazon Music Unlimited, $25 Fire TV Stick 4K, $5 smart plugs, more

Trending Right Now:

  1. Doctors found a coronavirus patient who was contagious for 49 days
  2. Doctors have discovered unusual new coronavirus symptoms
  3. Apple just accidentally leaked its imminent iPhone 9 release

Crazy Amazon deal drops the Fire TV Stick 4K to its lowest price ever originally appeared on BGR.com on Fri, 3 Apr 2020 at 09:02:30 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.


Apple retail stores will remain closed until early May as coronavirus continues to spread
Apple Stores
  • Apple retail stores will remain closed until early May according to a new memo sent to store employees.
  • Apple was initially planning to re-open its retail stores in early April, but ongoing coronavirus concerns forced Apple to adjust its timeline.
  • When Apple stores do re-open, it will be on a store-by-store basis. Stores in some large cities may remain closed well into June.
  • Visit BGR’s homepage for more stories.

Apple on Thursday told employees that its retail stores will remain closed until early May, according to a report from Bloomberg. The message was conveyed to staff members via a memo from Deirdre O’Brien, the company’s senior VP of Retail. Apple first closed all of its worldwide retail stores outside of China on March 13.

Though Apple, as recently as last week, was planning to re-open some retail store locations in early April, the ongoing impact of the coronavirus prompted company executives to re-consider. Despite concerted efforts from medical and health professionals, and despite the fact that much of the United States remains quarantined, the reality is that the coronavirus is still spreading week by week. Incidentally, the number of coronavirus cases worldwide surpassed 1 million yesterday.

Continue reading...

Today's Top Deals

  1. DIY coronavirus face masks: Key supplies back in stock at Amazon
  2. Incredible robot that mows your lawn is down to its lowest price at Amazon
  3. Today’s best deals: Rare AirPods Pro deal, free Amazon Music Unlimited, $25 Fire TV Stick 4K, $5 smart plugs, more

Trending Right Now:

  1. Doctors found a coronavirus patient who was contagious for 49 days
  2. Doctors have discovered unusual new coronavirus symptoms
  3. Apple just accidentally leaked its imminent iPhone 9 release

Apple retail stores will remain closed until early May as coronavirus continues to spread originally appeared on BGR.com on Fri, 3 Apr 2020 at 08:29:09 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.


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  TechNewsWorld Show All 
How to Turn an Old Android Device Into a Cool, Useful Gadget
What do you do with your old Android phones or tablets? That question usually prompts three tired answers. You might trade them in for a new purchase. Or you could resell them on eBay. Probably, though, you will just stuff them in a drawer as emergency backups. Better options exist, however, that would let you continue to get value from your aging devices. For example, you could download Google maps to create a dedicated in-car GPS navigator, or you could turn them into webcams.

Fast Coronavirus Test Gets Emergency FDA Approval
Abbott will deliver 50,000 COVID-19 tests per day to healthcare workers, starting Wednesday, using its modified ID NOW testing process. Bringing rapid coronavirus testing capacity to the medical front lines is crucial in the battle to flatten the rising death and infection curve worldwide. The FDA issued emergency authorization for the point-of-care test, clearing the way for widespread use of the system, which provides positive results in just 5 minutes and negative results in 13 minutes.

Living in the COVID-19 World: TV Hosts Struggle at Home
Being stuck at home gives us all way too much time to think, and many of us are burning through online content very rapidly. One of the things that's become painfully apparent is that TV shows that used to have live audiences -- like The Daily Show and Last Week Tonight -- have become almost unwatchable. In the context of the COVID-19 virus and our sudden need to view events remotely, coming up with ways to make audiences feel engaged has never been more critical. With today's technology, why not create virtual audiences?

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Coronavirus Threat Sparks Revolt at Amazon, Whole Foods, Instacart
Amazon has promised to check temperatures and provide surgical masks for workers at its fulfillment centers and Whole Foods grocery stores starting next week. Instacart workers have not received similar promises. The news came in the midst of brewing turmoil among employees. Some full-time and contract workers at Whole Foods, Amazon and Instacart walked out or called in sick on Monday and Tuesday, ramping up their fight for protection from coronavirus infection. The UFCW issued a statement in support of the workers' demands.

Zoom's Soaring Popularity Is a Double-Edged Sword
As the coronavirus pandemic worsened in the U.S., Zoom offered free access to its videoconferencing platform and demand skyrocketed. "Zoom has quickly become the de facto for teleconferencing during the COVID-19 pandemic," said James McQuiggan, security awareness advocate at KnowBe4. "A lot of organizations are using it to keep in contact with their employees." Since entering the spotlight, Zoom has drawn heavy criticism for its privacy practices. Zoom's iOS app, created with Facebook's SDK, shared analytics data without informing users.

Risk Assessment: Buttress Account Security and Foil Fraudsters
Under ordinary circumstances, the average consumer can order a latte on the way to the coffee shop, book a last-minute trip to the coast, and come home to find groceries delivered -- all with the click of a button. What makes these transactions so smooth and effortless? It starts with account creation. Consumers increasingly are willing to create accounts with sites they interact with regularly. In fact, the average U.S. email address is associated with 130 different accounts. There are many benefits to consumers for having these accounts.

Trying Times for Employee Engagement
With so many people working remotely, many businesses need extra ways to communicate with the rank and file, and this might present a prime opportunity to try new things. We make a big deal of engaging the customer, and in most CRM circles engagement outranks simple customer experience. Authorities like Paul Greenberg have made a crusade of engaging customers -- and rightly so. An engaged customer is far more likely to have a positive impression of a brand or company than one who merely had a good experience.

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PHOTOS: Fluorescent turtle embryo wins forty-fifth annual Nikon Small World Competition

PHOTOS: Fluorescent turtle embryo wins forty-fifth annual Nikon Small World CompetitionThe winners of the 45th annual competition showcase a spectacular blend of science and artistry under the microscope.



7 tax scams to watch out for this year

7 tax scams to watch out for this yearIn case wringing your hands over the tax man weren’t enough, criminals are out there trying to swipe your hard-earned cash and personal information from right under your nose.



What the CIA thinks of your anti-virus program

What the CIA thinks of your anti-virus programPARIS (AP) — Peppering the 8,000 pages of purported Central Intelligence Agency hacking data released Tuesday by WikiLeaks are reviews of some of the world's most popular anti-virus products.



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A sequel to beloved indie game 'Rogue Legacy' is in the works
What at first seemed like a potential April Fool's joke has turned out to be real: almost seven years after the original came out, Cellar Door Games has confirmed it's working on a Rogue Legacy sequel. The indie studio didn't share a rele...

Engadget readers look back on the original iPad
Today is the tenth anniversary of the iPad, which means… you are probably not reading this post on an original iPad. After all, 10 years is a long time in the world of tech and you’ve probably moved on to bigger and better things by now, like the mos...

Google Fi temporarily increases data limits to 30GB per month
Like the major telecom providers, Google recognizes that people are spending more time on their phones during the coronavirus pandemic. To help meet that demand, Google Fi is doubling the data its customers can use before they are downgraded to 2G sp...

Weber Connect Smart Grilling Hub review: Backyard grillmaster training
WiFi-enabled pellet grills are a backyard luxury for aspiring pitmasters. They not only allow you to remotely monitor temperature, but to adjust settings from your phone. However, they're a significant investment, and not everyone is keen on usin...

Tribeca Film Festival is bringing its VR films to Oculus headsets
Just like pretty much every other event for the foreseeable future, the Tribeca Film Festival isn't taking place as it normally would after organizers postponed it from April. However, the festival is joining SXSW in making some of its programmin...

Lyft will provide free scooter rides to critical workers
Last week, Lyft announced that it would provide free bike rides for healthcare workers in New York City, Chicago, the Bay Area and Boston who are helping to keep the public safe during the coronavirus pandemic. The company is expanding its efforts to...

Get six months of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate for $40 at Newegg
If you play games with your Xbox One frequently, there's a good chance you already have Game Pass Ultimate. Now is an excellent opportunity to top up your subscription at an affordable price. Newegg is offering a total of six months of Xbox Game...

How Amazon turned Simon Stålenhag’s ‘Tales from the Loop’ into a TV show
Simon Stålenhag isn't a household name. But if you like robots and Scandinavian design, you've probably seen his work on the internet. The Swedish artist, musician and designer is known for producing images that combine rural or suburban life with fl...

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Audi RS3 Nardo edition goes faster, carves corners with more precision - Roadshow
A fixed RS sport suspension and a higher top speed make the Nardo edition the ultimate RS3.
Coronavirus field hospital opens at London Comic Con venue - CNET
NHS Nightingale at London ExCel is the first of several temporary hospitals being set up by the UK government to house COVID-19 patients.
WWE WrestleMania 2020: How to watch, start times, two day card and WWE Network - CNET
WrestleMania is a two-night event this year, taking place on Saturday and Sunday.
All the live stream concerts you can watch during the coronavirus shutdown (April 3) - CNET
Stream concerts of your favorite bands and musicians like Diplo, Brad Paisley, Trevor Noah, Linda Perry, Melissa Etheridge, Questlove and more. #couchtour
Best free games right now for Xbox, Stadia, PlayStation, PCs and Nintendo Switch - CNET
Uncharted 4 and Dirt Rally 2.0 are April's PlayStation Plus free games.
'iPhone SE' launching with 256GB, 4.7-in screen, and red, white and black colors, says report - CNET
Apple's 2020 iPhone SE will come with up to 256GB of storage and will be made available in red, white and black, according to a report.
Mazda's 100th anniversary bears tasteful special edition models - Roadshow
From the MX-5 Miata to the Mazda3, each take gorgeous cues from the 1960 R360 Coupe.
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A Hacker Has Wiped, Defaced More Than 15,000 Elasticsearch Servers
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Facebook Wanted NSO Spyware To Monitor Users, NSO CEO Claims
Facebook representatives approached controversial surveillance vendor NSO Group to try and buy a tool that could help Facebook better monitor a subset of its users, according to an extraordinary court filing from NSO in an ongoing

Google Is Publishing Location Data From 131 Countries To Show How Coronavirus Lockdowns Are Working
Google is using the location data it collects from billions of smartphones to show how people's movements have changed as governments around the world lock down cities and issue shelter in place orders to slow down the spread of t

Disney+ Launches in India For $20 a Year, Includes Shows From HBO, Showtime, and Live TV Channels
Disney+ has arrived in India through Hotstar, a popular on-demand video streamer the giant conglomerate picked up as part of the Fox deal. From a report: To court users in India, the largest open entertainment market in Asia, Disn

Scientists Develop AI That Can Turn Brain Activity Into Text
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Guardian: Writing in the journal Nature Neuroscience, [researchers from the University of California, San Francisco] reveal how they developed their system by recruiting four participan

Nikon Is Streaming Online Photography Courses For Free This Month
Nikon USA is offering 10 classes from the its online school for free during the month of April. Engadget reports: The courses range in length from 15 minutes to well over an hour, and all are taught by pro photographers and often

Modern Meteorology Was Born 60 Years Ago Today
"Sixty years ago on this date, April 1, a Thor-Able rocket launched a small satellite weighing 122.5kg into an orbit about 650km above the Earth's surface," writes Ars Technica's Eric Berger. "Effectively, this launch from Florida

'Call of Duty' Wins First Amendment Victory Over Use of Humvees
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Hollywood Reporter: Call of Duty maker Activision has prevailed in a closely watched trademark dispute brought by AM General, the government contractor for Humvees. On Tuesday, a New Yo


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Google data shines light on whether coronavirus lockdowns worldwide are working
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Mahindra scraps SsangYong investment plan due to COVID-19 crisis
India's Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd will not invest further in its struggling South Korean unit SsangYong Motor Co , the company said on Friday, as automakers try to save cash in an effort to ride out the coronavirus crisis.
Czech team use easily available parts to build prototype ventilator
A Czech team have built a ventilator using readily available parts and are planning to produce hundreds of the devices to treat seriously ill coronavirus patients.
Europe's north-south lockdown divide revealed by Google data
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SoftBank's Son tests state of emergency appetite via Twitter poll
SoftBank Group Corp founder and CEO Masayoshi Son on Friday began polling his Twitter followers over whether a state of emergency should be declared, as the number of people in Tokyo infected with the coronavirus continues to ris
Factbox: Google location data shows slump in trips to malls, offices
Google on Thursday published reports for 131 countries showing whether visits to shops, parks and workplaces dropped in March, when many governments issued stay-at-home orders to rein in the spread of COVID-19.
3D printers forge face shields for fight against the coronavirus
Oscar Valera likes to use 3D printers to build an assortment of crafts, but he is now turning his hobby toward the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
Coronavirus threatens to knock South Korea off 5G leadership perch
South Korea is struggling to retain its lead in global next-generation 5G telecom services, as the coronavirus pandemic further cools sentiment of consumers whose interest in the technology has waned due to cost and quality concer
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Could wearables like Apple Watch, Fitbit fitness trackers help detect coronavirus?

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On coronavirus lockdown, gamers seek solace and community in video games

Coronavirus lockdowns and extended social distancing has more people playing video games to stay connected and pass the time.

      

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Password protect, share meeting IDs instead of links, take control of screen share, find and use Waiting Room feature for Zoom, the No. 1 video app

      

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Join prolific enterprise/SaaS seed investor Jonathan Lehr April 6 at 2pm EDT for a live conference call

It’s a tough fundraising environment out there, but one of the few glimmers of hope lies in the enterprise and SaaS markets. Critical customer problems + recurring revenues is probably where you want to be right now to weather out the storm that’s hitting the startup world these days.

That’s why we are excited to bring prolific enterprise seed investor Jonathan Lehr onto TechCrunch for a live conference call this coming Monday, April 6 at 2pm EDT.

For Extra Crunch members, the Zoom dial-in information is posted below. For TechCrunch readers, we will have a YouTube livestream ready to go to join.

Lehr is the co-founder and general partner of Work-Bench, one of the premier enterprise seed investors headquartered in New York City. The firm has invested in such notable startups as Tamr, Cockroach Labs, Backtrace, Socure, and x.ai.

In addition, he’s also the founder and showrunner of the wildly popular NY Enterprise Technology Meetup, where founders and customers come together monthly to talk shop about all things enterprise.

I’ll be hosting the call with my fellow Equity podcast partner Alex Wilhelm, and we and you are going to pepper Jon with all kinds of questions around what the seed stage looks like for enterprise startups these days. Is now the time to start a company in the space? How are the dynamics of seed investing changing? What verticals within enterprise are hottest today, and going to be hottest tomorrow? Plus, we will be moderating questions from the audience, so be prepared.

Join us!

Dial-in information


OctoML raises $15M to make optimizing ML models easier

OctoML, a startup founded by the team behind the Apache TVM machine learning compiler stack project, today announced it has raised a $15 million Series A round led by Amplify, with participation from Madrone Ventures, which led its $3.9 million seed round. The core idea behind OctoML and TVM is to use machine learning to optimize machine learning models so they can more efficiently run on different types of hardware.

“There’s been quite a bit of progress in creating machine learning models,” OctoML CEO and University of Washington professor Luis Ceze told me. “But a lot of the pain has moved to once you have a model, how do you actually make good use of it in the edge and in the clouds?”

That’s where the TVM project comes in, which was launched by Ceze and his collaborators at the University of Washington’s Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science & Engineering. It’s now an Apache incubating project and because it’s seen quite a bit of usage and support from major companies like AWS, ARM, Facebook, Google, Intel, Microsoft, Nvidia, Xilinx and others, the team decided to form a commercial venture around it, which became OctoML. Today, even Amazon Alexa’s wake word detection is powered by TVM.

Ceze described TVM as a modern operating system for machine learning models. “A machine learning model is not code, it doesn’t have instructions, it has numbers that describe its statistical modeling,” he said. “There’s quite a few challenges in making it run efficiently on a given hardware platform because there’s literally billions and billions of ways in which you can map a model to specific hardware targets. Picking the right one that performs well is a significant task that typically requires human intuition.”

And that’s where OctoML and its “Octomizer” SaaS product, which it also announced, today come in. Users can upload their model to the service and it will automatically optimize, benchmark and package it for the hardware you specify and in the format you want. For more advanced users, there’s also the option to add the service’s API to their CI/CD pipelines. These optimized models run significantly faster because they can now fully leverage the hardware they run on, but what many businesses will maybe care about even more is that these more efficient models also cost them less to run in the cloud, or that they are able to use cheaper hardware with less performance to get the same results. For some use cases, TVM already results in 80x performance gains.

Currently, the OctoML team consists of about 20 engineers. With this new funding, the company plans to expand its team. Those hires will mostly be engineers, but Ceze also stressed that he wants to hire an evangelist, which makes sense, given the company’s open-source heritage. He also noted that while the Octomizer is a good start, the real goal here is to build a more fully featured MLOps platform. “OctoML’s mission is to build the world’s best platform that automates MLOps,” he said.


NASA details how it plans to establish a sustained human presence on the Moon

NASA’s Artemis program aims to bring humans back to the Moon, with the goal of staying there for good in the interest of pursuing additional science and exploration missions, including to Mars. But how will the agency actually make it possible for people to remain on the Moon for longer-term science missions? NASA has provided some more detail about its plans with a sustainability concept it released describing some core components of the infrastructure it plans to put in place on the lunar surface.

NASA’s plans focus on three key elements that would enable sustained presence and research work on the Moon’s surface, including:

A lunar terrain vehicle (LTV) that would be used by crew to get around on the Moon. Essentially, this is a rover but that is piloted instead of being robotic. This wouldn’t have an enclosed cockpit, so astronauts would be wearing full protective extra-vehicular activity (EVA) spacesuits while using it for short trips.

A habitable mobility platform, which would be a larger rover that is fully contained and pressurized, enabling longer trips further afield from the spacecraft landing site of up to 45 days at a time.

A lunar foundation surface habitat that could act as a more permanent, fixed location home for crew during shorter stays on the surface. this could house up to four astronauts at once, though the habitable mobility platform would be the primary active residence for surface missions, while the Gateway space station orbiting the Moon would be the main base of operations for crew not engaged in active surface exploration and science.

Like the International Space Station before it, the Gateway is designed to be scaled up over time, with new models attached to add more crew habitation capabilities, as well as additional work and experimentation space. This will be important as it becomes the jumping off point not just for Moon surface missions, but also as a way station for exploration of Mars and beyond.

NASA also says that robotic rovers will be a key component of its Moon infrastructure, to be used for purpose including gathering data and materials for research, as well as helping to spur along the development of production of key resources for sustained presence, like water, fuel and oxygen.

The agency also includes some details about its Mars plans, including how it will send a four-person crew to the Gateway for a “multi-month stay to simulate the outbound trip to Mars.” If it goes ahead as planned, this would be longest continuous human stay in deep space environs, and a key step in understanding how a human trip to Mars would work.

The full NASA “Plan for Sustained Lunar Exploration and Development” is available here for more granular detail on the broad outline listed above. Artemis and its timelines are bound to feel the impact of the global coronavirus crisis, but the goals of the program aren’t likely to change too much, even if the targets for accomplishing them do.


27 TV show recommendations from TechCrunch while you’re stuck at home

With shelter-in-place orders worldwide, it’s never been a better time to curl up on the couch and loss oneself in a TV show. That’s what we’re doing.

Some TechCrunch staffers are watching perennial favorites like The Wire or The West Wing or Gilmore Girls. Others are trying new shows like Devs or McMillions. The Covid-19 pandemic hit at the height of TV show production. There has never been so much good content available and now many of us are stuck at home with nothing but our TVs and Netflix.

We polled TechCrunch’s staff and what follows is an eclectic mix of viewing suggestions. And yes, most of us are watching Tiger King, too.


Netflix

Tiger King

“Most documentaries I watch are educational. I’m not sure what this one is, but it’s wildly entertaining. Stories like this are so crazy that they must be real.” Travis Bernard – Senior Director, Membership

“7-ep docu-series, that’s part big cat zoo doc and part dateline on steroids.” Jason Kopeck, Event Manager

“It’s so bad that it’s fun to watch. I just can’t believe people like this exist.” Safa Aliabadi, Sr. Event & Digital Advertising Partner

Dirty Money

“Docu-series about embezzlement and money related fraud.” Robin Julius, Lead Software Engineer

The West Wing

“It’s classic and still relevant in the global landscape.” Neesha Tembe, Startup Battlefield Editor

MST 3000

Srsly? The best cry-laugh hysterical comic viewing of trash movies.” Jeff Taylor, TechCrunch Partner Relations

Ozark

Jason Bateman drama/thriller about a big-city family displaced to middle of nowhere Missouri to launder money after a terrible run-in with the Cartel. Truly terrific.” Jordan Crook, Managing Editor

Compelling plot line and good character arcs.” Megan Rose Dickey, Senior Reporter

Gilmore Girls

“When the COVID-19 news won’t stop, sometimes you just need to fill your home with the fast-talking Gilmores to melt your cares away. I understand more quippy references on every rewatch and I also realize how smug an asshole that Luke Danes is.” Lucas Matney, Reporter

Broadchurch

Great for binge watching.”Safa Aliabadi, Sr. Event & Digital Advertising Partner

Valhalla Murders

“Iceland kills! Watch a great murder mystery through the lens of Icelandic values.” Jeff Taylor, TechCrunch Partner Relations


Hulu

Devs

“Tech + terror TV series from director Alex Garland (Ex Machina)” Sarah Perez, Senior Writer

Little Fires Everywhere

Enjoyed the book and now seeing it on film. Washington and Witherspoon are great.” Sarah Perez, Senior Writer

One Tree Hill

Truly terrible television that is 13/10 on the nostalgia scale.” Jordan Crook, Managing Editor

High Fidelity

Twist on the Nick Hornby novel set in Brooklyn Record store.” Ron, Writer

11.22.63

An adaption of Stephen King’s eponymous novel, 11.22.63 takes you back to the ’60s and adds a sci-fi spin to it. What if you could go back to 1960, spend three years there, find the killer of John F. Kennedy and prevent the assassination. Would the world be a different place?” Manish Singh, Writer

Breeders

Show about parenting with Martin Freeman.” Yashad Kulkarni, Executive Producer

Vanderpump Rules

“Reality show focusing on the lives of servers/friends that have all worked at SUR restaurant, spin-off from Real Housewives of BH (Lisa Vanderpump).” Jason Kopeck, Event Manager


HBO

High Maintenance

This show tells fantastic stories. Each episode focuses on a character loosely connected to an NYC-based weed dealer. It’s a fun episodical show with a lot of heart. This is a show to keep in your back pocket. Have an hour and need an easy break? High Maintenance.” Matt Burns, Managing Editor

McMillions

On one hand, this would have been a much better documentary than docu-series, there’s just not enough source material and its too reliant on modern day interviews. BUT the story is simply insane and the show does a great job of showing how FBI agents get creative to nail investigations.” Lucas Matney, Writer

The Wire

I always meant to watch it but never seemed to have the time. It’s realistic with the system as the villain, they hired local actors from the neighborhood.” Emma Comeau, Director of Events 

Okay, The Wire. It’s widely cited as the best TV show ever made and I’m not one to argue. At its basic level, the show follows the life of Baltimore-based drug dealers and the police detectives trying to take them down — but there’s so much more to it.” Matt Burns, Managing Editor

Westworld

The first two seasons were amazing, and so far the third season doesn’t disappoint. What better way to embrace a pandemic than an apocalyptic AI thriller?” Travis Bernard – Senior Director, Membership


Amazon Prime

Grantchester

Cozy ’50s murder mysteries starring a handsome, heavy-drinking vicar with PTSD. The murders are almost always more morally ambiguous than they first appear…” Devin Coldewey, Senior Editor

Black Books

Who doesn’t want to watch an alcoholic, useless bastard run a used book store with his two friends? It’s good, it’s light, and if you drink heavily while watching no one can judge you.” Alex Wilhelm, Extra Crunch Writer

Father Ted

A bit like Firefly this doesn’t have enough seasons, but Father Ted is one of the funniest bits of TV I’ve ever seen. A must watch if you like to laugh.” Alex Wilhelm, Extra Crunch Writer

Case Histories

Dark adaptation of Kate Aktinson’s private detective character, Jackson Brodie.” Ron Miller, Senior Writer

George Carlin – Life is Worth Losing

George Carlin, nuff said.” Robin Julius, Lead Software Engineer


Showtime

The L Word

“It’s super queer and I’m queer so it’s great.” Megan Rose Dickey, Senior Reporter

Homeland

“Claire Danes and Mandy Patankin. Roller coaster, watch it from beginning on Prime. Damien Lewis is in it too.” Yashad Kulkarni, Executive Producer


YouTube

Mobile Suit Gundam 0079

“Before anime became notorious and full of problematic tropes, there were shows like this one that are plain excellent and just HAPPEN to have giant robots in them. The 49-episode show was condensed into 3 movies for the US market, which aren’t commercially available, but can still be found!” Devin Coldewey, Writer


Canal+

Le Bureau des Légendes (The Bureau)

Like everyone, I watch a ton of American TV shows. But Le Bureau des Légendes is by far the best written French TV show I’ve watched. It deserves one of top spots with my favorite American TV shows (Mad Men, The Sopranos…). Le BDL is an incredibly well-documented show on secret services, geopolitics and high-stake moral decisions.” Romain Dillet, Senior Writer


The pendulum will swing away from founder-friendly venture raises

Hello and welcome back to our regular morning look at private companies, public markets and the gray space in between.

This morning brought fresh economic bad news for the U.S. economy, with over 700,000 jobs lost in the latest report, despite the window of time measured not including some of March’s worst days, and the data itself not counting as many individuals as it might have; the unemployment rate still rose nearly a full point to 4.4%. The barometer generally expected to rise far higher in a month’s time.

Rising unemployment, markets in bear territory, shocking weekly unemployment claims, and some major states just starting lockdowns paint the picture of protracted downturn that has swamped our national and state-led economic response. Some help is coming, but individual payments are probably too small and too late. And a key program aimed at helping small businesses is rife with operational mistakes that will at least delay rollout.

It’s an economic catastrophe, and one that won’t lead to anything like a V-shaped recovery, the vaunted shape that everyone holding equities through the crisis was hoping for. We’re entering a prolonged slump. Precisely how bad isn’t yet known, yes, but it’s going to be bad, with unemployment staying elevated into 2021.

The impacts of the national economic slowdown are going to change the face of venture capital as we’ve come to know it during the last ten years. How so? Let’s talk about it.

After picking through some COVID-19-focused PitchBook data this morning, it’s clear that the era of founder-friendly venture terms is heading for a reset. Even more, recent economic and market data, TechCrunch research and select trends already in motion help paint a picture of a changed startup reality.

So this morning let’s talk about what is coming up for the world of upstart companies and risk embracing capital.


Valispace raises $2.4M to become the ‘Github for hardware’, joins fight against COVID-19

Hardware engineering is mostly document-based. A typical satellite might be described in several hundred thousand PDF documents, spreadsheets, simulation files and more; all potentially inconsistent between each other. This can lead to costly mistakes. NASA lost a $125 million Mars orbiter because one engineering team used metric units while another used English units, for instance.

Germany-HQ’d Valispace, which also has offices in Portugal, dubs itself as “Github for hardware”. In other words, it’s a collaboration platform for engineers, allowing them to develop better satellites, planes, rockets, nuclear fusion reactors, cars and medical devices, you name it. It’s a browser-based application, which stores engineering data and lets the users interconnect them through formulas. This means that when one value is changed, all other values are updated, simulations re-run and documentation rewritten automatically.

That last point is important in this pandemic era, where making and improving medical ventilators has become a huge global issue.

Indeed, the company is currently partnering with initiatives that develop open-source hardware solutions to the COVID-19 crisis. They are partnering with several initiatives that gather thousands of engineers working on the problem, most prominently the CoVent-19 Challenge and GrabCAD, as well as Helpful Engineering. Engineers working on ventilators can apply here for free accounts or email engineering-taskforce@valispace.com.

Valispace has now raised a Seed Extension funding round of €2.2M / $2.4M lead by JOIN Capital in Berlin and was joined by HCVC (Hardware Club), based in Paris.

The funding will be used to expand into new industries (e.g. medical devices, robotics) and expansion of the existing ones (aeronautics, space, automotive, energy). The company is addressing the Systems Engineering Tool market in Europe which is worth €7Billion, while the US market is at least as big. Its competitors include RHEA CDP4, Innoslate, JAMA and the largest player Status Quo.

Marco Witzmann, CEO of Valispace said: “Valispace has proven to help engineers across industries to develop better hardware. From drones to satellites, from small electronic boxes to entire nuclear fusion reactors. When modern companies like our customers have the choice, they chose an agile engineering approach with Valispace.”

Tobias Schirmer from JOIN Capital commented: “Browser-based collaboration has become a must for any modern hardware company, as the importance of communication across teams and offices increases.”

The company now counts BMW, Momentus, Commonwealth Fusion Systems and Airbus as customers.
Witzmann previously worked on Europe’s biggest Satellite Program (Meteosat Third Generation) as a Systems Engineer, while his Portugal-based co-founder Louise Lindblad (COO) worked at the European Space Agency, developing satellites and drones.

As satellite engineers, both were surprised that while the products they were working on were cutting edge, the tools to develop them seemed to be from the 80s. In 2016 they launched Valispace as a company, convincing Airbus to become one of their first customers.


In the wake of COVID-19, UK puts up £20M in grants to develop resilience tech for critical industries

Most of the world — despite the canaries in the coal mine — was unprepared to cope with the coronavirus outbreak that’s now besieging us. Now, work is starting to get underway both to help manage what is going on now and better prepare us in the future. In the latest development, the UK government today announced that it will issue £20 million ($24.5 million) in grants of up to £50,000 each to startups and other businesses that are developing tools to improve resilience for critical industries — in other words, those that need to keep moving when something cataclysmic like a pandemic hits.

You can start your application here. Unlike a lot of other government efforts, this one is aimed at a quick start: you need to be ready to kick of your project using the grant no later than June 2020, but earlier is okay, too.

Awarded through Innovate UK, which part of UK Research and Innovation (itself a division of the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy), the grants will be available to businesses of any size as long as they are UK-registered, and aim to cover a wide swathe of industries that form the core fabric of how society and the economy can continue to operate.

“The Covid-19 situation is not just a health emergency, but also one that effects the economy and society. With that in mind, Innovate UK has launched this rapid response competition today seeking smart ideas from innovators,” said Dr Ian Campbell Executive Chair, Innovate UK, in a statement. “These could be proposals to help the distribution of goods, educate children remotely, keep families digitally connected and even new ideas to stream music and entertainment. The UK needs a great national effort and Innovate UK is helping by unleashing the power of innovation for people and businesses in need.”

These include not just what are typically considered “critical” industries like healthcare and food production and distribution, but also those that are less tangible but equally important in keeping society running smoothly, like entertainment and wellbeing services:

  • community support services
  • couriers and delivery (rural and/or city based)
  • education and culture
  • entertainment (live entertainment, music, etc.)
  • financial services
  • food manufacture and processing
  • healthcare
  • hospitality
  • personal protection equipment
  • remote working
  • retail
  • social care
  • sport and recreation
  • transport
  • wellbeing

The idea is to introduce new technologies and processes that will support existing businesses and organizations, not use the funding to build new startups from scratch. Those getting the funding could already be businesses in these categories, or building tools to help companies that fall under these themes.

The grants were announced at a time where we are seeing a huge surge of companies step up to the challenge of helping communities and countries cope with COVID-19. That’s included not only those that already made medical supplies increase production, but a number of other businesses step in and try to help where they can, or recalibrate what they normally do to make their factories or other assets more useful. (For example, in the UK, Rolls Royce, Airbus and the Formula 1 team are all working on ventilators and other hospital equipment, a model of industry retooling that has been seen in many other countries, too.)

That trend is what helped to inspire this newest wave of non-equity grants.

“The response of researchers and businesses to the coronavirus outbreak have been remarkable,” said Science Minister Amanda Solloway in a statement. “This new investment will support the development of technologies that can help industries, communities and individuals adapt to new ways of working when situations like this, and other incidents, arise.”

The remit here is intentionally open-ended but will likely be shaped by some of the shortcomings and cracks that have been appearing in recent weeks while systems get severely stress-tested.

So, unsurprisingly, the sample innovations that UK Innovate cites appear to directly relate to that. They include things like technology to help respond to spikes in online consumer demand — every grocery service in the online and physical world has been overwhelmed by customer traffic, leading to sites crashing, people leaving stores disappointed at what they cannot find, and general panic. Or services for families to connect with and remotely monitor vulnerable relatives: while Zoom and the rest have seen huge surges in traffic, there are still too many people on the other side of the digital divide who cannot access or use these. And better education tools: again, there are thousands of edtech companies in the world, but in the UK at least, I wouldn’t say that the educational authorities had done even a small degree of disaster planning, leaving individual schools to scramble and figure out ways to keep teaching remotely that works for everyone (again not always easy with digital divides, safeguarding and other issues).

None of this can cure coronavirus or stop another pandemic from happening — there are plenty of others that are working very squarely on that now, too — but these are equally critical to get right to make sure that a health disaster doesn’t extend into a more permanent economic or societal one.

More information and applications are here.


Google is now publishing coronavirus mobility reports, feeding off users’ location history

Google is giving the world a clearer glimpse of exactly how much it knows about people everywhere — using the coronavirus crisis as an opportunity to repackage its persistent tracking of where users go and what they do as a public good in the midst of a pandemic.

In a blog post today, the tech giant announced the publication of what it’s branding COVID-19 Community Mobility Reports, an in-house analysis of the much more granular location data it maps and tracks to fuel its ad-targeting, product development and wider commercial strategy to showcase aggregated changes in population movements around the world.

The coronavirus pandemic has generated a worldwide scramble for tools and data to inform government responses. In the EU, for example, the European Commission has been leaning on telcos to hand over anonymized and aggregated location data to model the spread of COVID-19.

Google’s data dump looks intended to dangle a similar idea of public policy utility while providing an eyeball-grabbing public snapshot of mobility shifts via data pulled off of its global user-base.

In terms of actual utility for policymakers, Google’s suggestions are pretty vague. The reports could help government and public health officials “understand changes in essential trips that can shape recommendations on business hours or inform delivery service offerings,” it writes.

“Similarly, persistent visits to transportation hubs might indicate the need to add additional buses or trains in order to allow people who need to travel room to spread out for social distancing,” it goes on. “Ultimately, understanding not only whether people are traveling, but also trends in destinations, can help officials design guidance to protect public health and essential needs of communities.”

The location data Google is making public is similarly fuzzy — to avoid inviting a privacy storm — with the company writing it’s using “the same world-class anonymization technology that we use in our products every day,” as it puts it.

“For these reports, we use differential privacy, which adds artificial noise to our datasets enabling high quality results without identifying any individual person,” Google writes. “The insights are created with aggregated, anonymized sets of data from users who have turned on the Location History setting, which is off by default.”

“In Google Maps, we use aggregated, anonymized data showing how busy certain types of places are—helping identify when a local business tends to be the most crowded. We have heard from public health officials that this same type of aggregated, anonymized data could be helpful as they make critical decisions to combat COVID-19,” it adds, tacitly linking an existing offering in Google Maps to a coronavirus-busting cause.

The reports consist of per country, or per state, downloads (with 131 countries covered initially), further broken down into regions/counties — with Google offering an analysis of how community mobility has changed vs a baseline average before COVID-19 arrived to change everything.

So, for example, a March 29 report for the whole of the U.S. shows a 47 percent drop in retail and recreation activity vs the pre-CV period; a 22% drop in grocery & pharmacy; and a 19% drop in visits to parks and beaches, per Google’s data.

While the same date report for California shows a considerably greater drop in the latter (down 38% compared to the regional baseline); and slightly bigger decreases in both retail and recreation activity (down 50%) and grocery & pharmacy (-24%).

Google says it’s using “aggregated, anonymized data to chart movement trends over time by geography, across different high-level categories of places such as retail and recreation, groceries and pharmacies, parks, transit stations, workplaces, and residential.” The trends are displayed over several weeks, with the most recent information representing 48-to-72 hours prior, it adds.

The company says it’s not publishing the “absolute number of visits” as a privacy step, adding: “To protect people’s privacy, no personally identifiable information, like an individual’s location, contacts or movement, is made available at any point.”

Google’s location mobility report for Italy, which remains the European country hardest hit by the virus, illustrates the extent of the change from lockdown measures applied to the population — with retail & recreation dropping 94% vs Google’s baseline; grocery & pharmacy down 85%; and a 90% drop in trips to parks and beaches.

The same report shows an 87% drop in activity at transit stations; a 63% drop in activity at workplaces; and an increase of almost a quarter (24%) of activity in residential locations — as many Italians stay at home instead of commuting to work.

It’s a similar story in Spain — another country hard-hit by COVID-19. Though Google’s data for France suggests instructions to stay-at-home may not be being quite as keenly observed by its users there, with only an 18% increase in activity at residential locations and a 56% drop in activity at workplaces. (Perhaps because the pandemic has so far had a less severe impact on France, although numbers of confirmed cases and deaths continue to rise across the region.)

While policymakers have been scrambling for data and tools to inform their responses to COVID-19, privacy experts and civil liberties campaigners have rushed to voice concerns about the impacts of such data-fueled efforts on individual rights, while also querying the wider utility of some of this tracking.

Contacts tracing is another area where apps are fast being touted as a potential solution to get the West out of economically crushing population lockdowns — opening up the possibility of people’s mobile devices becoming a tool to enforce lockdowns, as has happened in China.

“Large-scale collection of personal data can quickly lead to mass surveillance,” is the succinct warning of a trio of academics from London’s Imperial College’s Computational Privacy Group, who have compiled their privacy concerns vis-a-vis COVID-19 contacts tracing apps into a set of eight questions app developers should be asking.

Discussing Google’s release of mobile location data for a COVID-19 cause, the head of the group, Yves-Alexandre de Montjoye, gave a general thumbs up to the steps it’s taken to shrink privacy risks. Although he also called for Google to provide more detail about the technical processes it’s using in order that external researchers can better assess the robustness of the claimed privacy protections. Such scrutiny is of pressing importance with so much coronavirus-related data grabbing going on right now, he argues.

“It is all aggregated; they normalize to a specific set of dates; they threshold when there are too few people and on top of this they add noise to make — according to them — the data differentially private. So from a pure anonymization perspective it’s good work,” de Montjoye told TechCrunch, discussing the technical side of Google’s release of location data. “Those are three of the big ‘levers’ that you can use to limit risk. And I think it’s well done.”

“But — especially in times like this when there’s a lot of people using data — I think what we would have liked is more details. There’s a lot of assumptions on thresholding, on how do you apply differential privacy, right?… What kind of assumptions are you making?” he added, querying how much noise Google is adding to the data, for example. “It would be good to have a bit more detail on how they applied [differential privacy]… Especially in times like this it is good to be… overly transparent.”

While Google’s mobility data release might appear to overlap in purpose with the Commission’s call for EU telco metadata for COVID-19 tracking, de Montjoye points out there are likely to be key differences based on the different data sources.

“It’s always a trade off between the two,” he says. “It’s basically telco data would probably be less fine-grained, because GPS is much more precise spatially and you might have more data points per person per day with GPS than what you get with mobile phone but on the other hand the carrier/telco data is much more representative — it’s not only smartphone, and it’s not only people who have latitude on, it’s everyone in the country, including non smartphone.”

There may be country specific questions that could be better addressed by working with a local carrier, he also suggested. (The Commission has said it’s intending to have one carrier per EU Member State providing anonymized and aggregated metadata.)

On the topical question of whether location data can ever be truly anonymized, de Montjoye — an expert in data reidentification — gave a “yes and no” response, arguing that original location data is “probably really, really hard to anonymize”.

“Can you process this data and make the aggregate results anonymous? Probably, probably, probably yes — it always depends. But then it also means that the original data exists… Then it’s mostly a question of the controls you have in place to ensure the process that leads to generating those aggregates does not contain privacy risks,” he added.

Perhaps a bigger question related to Google’s location data dump is around the issue of legal consent to be tracking people in the first place.

While the tech giant claims the data is based on opt-ins to location tracking the company was fined $57M by France’s data watchdog last year for a lack of transparency over how it uses people’s data.

Then, earlier this year, the Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC) — now the lead privacy regulator for Google in Europe — confirmed a formal probe of the company’s location tracking activity, following a 2018 complaint by EU consumers groups which accuses Google of using manipulative tactics in order to keep tracking web users’ locations for ad-targeting purposes.

“The issues raised within the concerns relate to the legality of Google’s processing of location data and the transparency surrounding that processing,” said the DPC in a statement in February, announcing the investigation.

The legal questions hanging over Google’s consent to track people likely explains the repeat references in its blog post to people choosing to opt in and having the ability to clear their Location History via settings. (“Users who have Location History turned on can choose to turn the setting off at any time from their Google Account, and can always delete Location History data directly from their Timeline,” it writes in one example.)

In addition to offering up coronavirus mobility porn reports — which Google specifies it will continue to do throughout the crisis — the company says it’s collaborating with “select epidemiologists working on COVID-19 with updates to an existing aggregate, anonymized dataset that can be used to better understand and forecast the pandemic.”

“Data of this type has helped researchers look into predicting epidemics, plan urban and transit infrastructure, and understand people’s mobility and responses to conflict and natural disasters,” it adds.


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