Items tagged with NASDAQ: AMZN

Product makers have complained for ages of knock-off products ruining their sales, and not to mention their reputation. To some, it's become almost infuriating how lackadaisically Amazon handles the problem; if at all. If you're a regular consumer, the problem might be hard to appreciate, but one company, Elevation Lab, reveals a true taste of how bad the problem has become. Elevation Labs makes a product called the Anchor, which is a molded piece of silicone that affixes to the bottom of a desk, thereby creating a new place to store your two pairs of headphones. In the grand scheme, a product like this isn't complicated to make, and that of course means that there are copycats lurking in the... Read more...
Christmas means a lot of things to a lot of people, and for many, large family gatherings are a bit part of the holidays. Inevitably, large gatherings do have one caveat, though: finding a crowd-please song list for all to enjoy. Leave it to Amazon to give us another option - as long as you've added Alexa as a member to your family, that is. With any one of its supported Echo devices, Alexa can be taught a couple of new skills to make this Christmas a little more hands-off, and perhaps a little more enjoyable at the same time. We'd recommend you begin coming up with an excuse now to tell that one person who swears they're an undiscovered DJ. After all, who could compete with the mighty Alexa?... Read more...
If you already find yourself glued to Apple's Siri assistant, then you may be glad to learn that it's only going to become an even bigger part of your life going forward. That is, as long as assumptions are correct with regards to the latest shuffling around of executive responsibilities at Apple. Since 2012, Apple's Senior VP of software and services Eddy Cue has been overlooking Siri. Cue has a long history with Apple, and much success to gloat about. He's played an important role in securing streaming deals with content companies, and if that's not enough of a job in itself, he also oversees iCloud. In a subtle change made to the biography pages at Apple's website, we learn that the company's... Read more...
HTC's flagship U11 smartphone offers a lot of perks, but if you're an Amazon Alexa fan, you could very well find yourself loving the device even more thanks to the AI's introduction. This isn't a mere Amazon app found on the device, but an officially supported implementation from HTC. Whereas on other non-Amazon Android devices, saying "Alexa" would yield no results, the situation is different on the HTC U11. Just as you can use your Amazon Echo to use Alexa, you can talk to your U11 to play music, hear the daily news, and of course, shop from Amazon's online store. There are caveats, though, such as all responses being in voice form, and not being able to set an alarm. At the moment, the... Read more...
If you read HotHardware, and judging by your eyes reading this text, you do, you're probably well versed enough in tech to have no problem setting up your new digital devices. We're not just talking about simple things like televisions, but anything relating to the booming IoT industry: digital assistants, thermostats, power monitoring, and so on and so forth. It might be hard to appreciate sometimes, but much of the world is not as well versed in tech as diehard enthusiasts, so what might seem simple to you might look outright baffling to someone not immersed in tech all day. It appears Amazon knows this reality well, as it's hiring its own in-house experts to aide those who don't mind shelling... Read more...
Amazon just announced that it will be slowly shutting down its Underground Actually Free program. Official support for the program will end in 2019. The Amazon Underground app initially launched in 2015 and allowed developers to give away their software for free. Amazon then reimbursed the developers depending on how long users spent within the app. Many of the apps were listed as “actually free” and included everything from the initial download to in-app purchases. The program was regarded as a interesting way to test new ideas and expand Amazon’s limited app offerings. Although the app is closing, developers and fans are not completely out of luck. Developers will be able to create... Read more...
You don't need to look very far to see examples of how machine- and deep-learning could enrich our lives. You might be surprised, given how often we hear about deep-learning nowadays, that most companies have only been utilizing the technology to a notable degree for the past couple of years - including Amazon. Despite that, we've seen some amazing things accomplished in a relatively short time. With Amazon specifically, we've seen the company sell the fruits of its deep-learning labor to those who need reliable predictive services, use it to improve its product reviews sections, and of course, improve the usefulness of its Alexa AI, found in products like Amazon Echo. Today, Amazon is... Read more...
Anyone who owns an Amazon Alexa-powered device can usually tell you that it's quite useful to keep around, which is why they bought it in the first place. However, with "smart" IoT devices, there's always a chance that something will go awry, and we're not just talking about the usual device lockups or software quirks. One family found this out the hard way. If parents find Alexa so charming and fun to talk to, it's a sure thing that the evolving mind of a toddler will as well. The problem is that a toddler's speech is ever-evolving, and words they do end up uttering with any kind of clarity could sound different from what they're actually trying to say. When these parents let their child talk... Read more...
Do you need to move a lot of data? To be clear: we're talking lots of data. Sure, that 64 TB NAS box might seem meaty, but that's paltry compared to the kind of data we're talking about. Think 100,000 TB, aka 100 PB. It's almost hard to wrap our heads around that kind of storage, but that's the amount Amazon says it can move with ease via its new Snowmobile service. In essence, Snowmobile comes to us in the form of a pure-white 18-wheeler that's used to bring your data from point A to point B. Amazon says that Snowmobile will show up at your door after a quick assessment and then work with you to connect the truck's internal storage to yours, and then begin milking it until everything is transferred.... Read more...
Are you dying to dive into the drama of Westeros or find a new favorite movie? Well, Amazon has a deal for you! Amazon Prime customers can now add HBO and Cinemax packages to their streaming video service. Sofia Chang, Executive Vice President, Worldwide Digital Distribution and Home Entertainment, HBO, remarked, “For years now, Amazon has demonstrated an incomparable capability for bringing customers exactly what they want, in all the ways they want it. We have a very successful partnership with this great company that continues to evolve. We share the goal of providing Amazon customers more ways to access all of the high-quality HBO and Cinemax programming they’ve been asking for.” The... Read more...
Have you ever wanted to upload photos or videos of a special event like a wedding, but did not have enough storage or their ability to share with all of your family and friends? Amazon just introduced several new features to the Prime Photo service to help users share all of their memories. David Nenke, Director of Prime Photos, remarked, “Prime members love the benefit of unlimited photo storage but often struggle to collect and organize photos across multiple devices and accounts into a single, shareable archive. We launched the Family Vault to make it easy for family members to safely store and share all their favorite moments.” Amazon Prime members in the United States can now invite up to... Read more...
If you're a big fan of Amazon's Dash buttons, prepare to be floored: the company has just added 50 new buttons to its portfolio. For some, most of their shopping list could be ordered through these buttons - unless of course those orders include Mrs. Dash spices, which ironically don't have their own button. It's impossible to say that Amazon has catered to a certain audience with its 50 new Dash buttons, because really, they're all over the place. Want soup? No problem! Eat too much garlic and need to freshen up the place? Might as well pick up some air freshener, and not to mention some Tide to get the smell out of your clothes! But was your breath so bad that you caused your feline friend... Read more...
Amazon's AI assistant Alexa can help you get a lot accomplished with nothing more than your voice, but it does have its limits. What if you wanted to know what happened on a show that already aired, for example? Or, for that matter, an episode that hasn't even aired yet? It might prove a bit complicated if the proper APIs aren't in place. Fortunately though, Syfy fans won't have to worry about that limitation for much longer. On its website, Syfy says that it's been working with Amazon to offer an extension that lets fans get quick information about the network and its programming. The company says that this is a creation to come out of its "Syfy Labs", and it's robust enough to understand queries... Read more...
While it's not uncommon for consumers to want to upgrade their smartphones each and every year, the market is learning more and more that tablets don't enjoy the same kind of uptake. IDC's latest report highlights this well, as it shows a 14.7% year-over-year decline in tablet shipments. That puts the total at 39.6 million shipped, and includes both standard "slate" and detachable form-factors. With these results, it's clear that there is not as much demand for tablets as there once was, but things could change in the future as more and more users are ditching their desktops to become more mobile. In time, we might see detachable 2-in-1 tablet hybrids become "the new PC", as these devices... Read more...
We're a mere 20 days away from the grandest gift-giving day of the year, and etailers everywhere are ready to embrace the glorious pain that's going to hit them as we inch ever-closer. There's no better example of an etailer having to withstand an incredible workload quite like Amazon. Its infrastructure has to be finely-tuned and efficient in order to not collapse, so on occasion, it makes changes that could help ease the overall load. This year, it's not just a change being made, but a major one. For the first time, Amazon will be rolling out a fleet of "thousands" of its own trailers, complete with Amazon Prime branding on the side, that it will deploy all across the US. It's important to... Read more...
In October, we learned that Amazon is willing to do whatever it takes to help its video service succeed, even if it means disallowing the sales of competing products on its marketplace. If that wasn't enough proof that the company has grand ambitions, a rumor popped-up last week which suggests that the company will soon be partnering with third-party providers to beef up its library with more high-quality content. Of course, it's also hard to ignore that Amazon will soon be home to the three former Top Gear hosts, which could prove to be a major boon in itself. It now appears that the company is ready to thaw its rather chilly relationship with Apple by... Read more...
If your wallet has thus far survived the barrage of awesome deals floating around the Web, you might want to pay attention to some great discounts Amazon is offering on its own gear. For starters, the company's Echo has had $30 slashed off of its price, to settle in at $149. If you're not familiar with what this very unique device can do, you'd do well to check out our in-depth look, or sit back and watch as our own Dave Altavilla puts it to a great test. Speaking of sitting back and watching something, Amazon has also dropped the price of its Fire Stick from $40 to $25. Similarly, it's cut the price of it's already extremely affordable Fire tablet from $50 to $35. While this is an ad-supported... Read more...
It's been suggested that Amazon's Prime Video service is one of the most popular in the US, falling short only to Netflix, and given some of the company's moves in recent months, it's clear as day that it wants to make sure it's not going to remain in the #2 spot forever. This past summer, Amazon blew our socks off with the announcement that the three Top Gear legends - Jeremy Clarkson, James May, and Richard Hammond - would be coming to Prime Video. It cost the company a pretty penny, too: upwards of $250 million USD. Fueling its desire to become the top video service, the company just last month yanked competing streamer devices from its digital shelves, including the Apple TV and Google Chromecast.... Read more...
Rarely does a day pass when we don't write news about something that should reaffirm your belief that security is something to be taken seriously. Whether it's an online game, a retailer, or a bank, we've seen time and time again that no security put in place is bulletproof. That means that we need to do everything we can to at least give ourselves the best defense. In recent years, two-factor authentication has really taken off, and for good reason. What it does is render a password alone useless, something extremely useful if that's all of the information an "attacker" has to exploit. With two-factor authentication, when the correct password is entered, the service will send you a text message,... Read more...
Where major video game releases are concerned, it's not usually too hard for the mega-fan to be able to find cool merchandise on the side to help complement the game. We're talking figurines, books, posters, and what-have-you. Or, in the case of the ultra-hyped Fallout 4, it could have beer! Oh, this one speaks to us. "Fallout Beer" is the result of a partnership between Bethesda and Carlsberg UK, and is inspired by both the series itself, and in particular Vault-Tec Industries. It's a pilsner, which is sure to go down smoothly during a marathon gaming session, and at 4% ABV, it's not likely to make you fall asleep during that marathon. As you'd probably guess, though, such a unique brew does... Read more...
In recent years, Etsy hasn't just become a popular marketplace for people to sell their homemade goods; it's become the leader. While anyone could use other marketplaces, such as eBay, to pawn their wares, they don't feel quite as personable, and are certainly not as well designed around such a space. So it's interesting to learn that Etsy has existed for ten years, but only in recent years has become so de facto. This is something that it seems Amazon has finally caught onto. In its latest announcement, it's debuting Homemade at Amazon, a new marketplace that will let consumers browse handmade items from sellers in over 60 countries. That's some impressive reach, and likewise, Amazon offers... Read more...
As consumers, the sheer number of different codecs available for a given media type can be downright frustrating. There's a reason a multitude of devices exist that help transcode streams to be playable on another device - there's been a lack of a standard, so we have no choice but to bend over backwards and jump through hurdles in order to make sure our media works on any device. This reality is also frustrating for companies - those that have to open their wallets for licensing. We're long overdue for a real standard, one that doesn't have licensing costs and one that most people can agree on. With the Alliance for Open Media, that's just what we're in for. To make sure the best codecs are... Read more...
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