That being said, Apple and Microsoft reached a record $1.5 trillion :: Business :: RBC

Against the background of General decline in the share of high-tech companies continue to grow in price

Photo: Sean Gallup / Getty Images

Apple and Microsoft were the first companies whose market capitalization reached $1.5 trillion. It happened during regular trading on NASDAQ. The cost shares of Apple rose to $352, Microsoft — to $196.

Increased capitalization and other tech giants. From Amazon, it reached $1.3 trillion, the Alphabet (owned by Google) is $1 trillion.

As noted Barrons’s, the growth record of the shares of these four companies is on the background of decrease of main indexes. Thus, the index S&P 500 fell 0.5% and the Dow Jones 1%.

The publication indicates that the growth of Apple stock and Microsoft contributed to the crisis associated with the spread of coronavirus infection and protests in the United States. Paper high-tech companies are considered by investors as safe enough from the point of view of preservation of funds.

The company has benefited from the spread of coronavirus. Amazon benefited from the closure of convenience stores and the spread of electronic Commerce, Microsoft technologies needed for the transfer of workers to udalenku, and Alphabet made a fortune in advertising. As for Apple, the enthusiasm of investors is associated including with the upcoming release of iPhone 5G.

MacRumors also notes that Apple have actively practiced a buyback of its shares, which contributed to the increase in the value of securities of the company.

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Glazyev noticed once a century the state of resonance :: Business :: RBC

As for the institutional revolution, to date, management systems in China and India have proven effective, Glazyev said. It is these countries that can become centers of a new world order, the economist believes. Glazyev noted that there is a combination of strategic planning, state control of finances, as well as market competition and private enterprise. The authorities at the same time support business, provide stable prices for energy and transport services, and also invest in infrastructure, he explained.

Glazyev is sure that state-wide planning in such systems is aimed at increasing people’s well-being. However, it is not prescriptive, since companies work with the state on a contractual basis. “The state provides guidance and determines incentives,” Glazyev explained.


Coronavirus pandemic. The most relevant on April 16

Due to the crisis in connection with the spread of the coronavirus epidemic, we can expect a sharp change in the world order and social structure in a number of countries. spoke In an interview with RBC, the dean of the Faculty of Economics of Moscow State University and the founder of the Institute of National Projects, Alexander Auzan. According to him, the pandemic caused by the crisis can lead to increased state capitalism and reduced competition.

Auzan noted that these trends may be especially dangerous for Russia, where state capitalism has been actively developing since 2014. “But now, in a crisis, this can become extremely numb, these structures of state capitalism can turn out to be very strong and insurmountable in the future,” the economist said.

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Source: JHU, federal and regional anti-virus operations

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Chinese tech companies resume launches, lead 5G

The machinery of the world’s factory has restarted. Now that the coronavirus is slowing down the rest of the world, China is resuming industrial activity after a hiatus of almost two months. And a sector draws attention to the speed with which it seems to have recovered: that of technology. Despite the international markets faltering because most consumers are confined to their homes, the Asian giant’s major electronics brands have stepped on the gas and rush into terrifying 2020 with bewildering optimism.

It is underpinned by the good results obtained during the past year and presented this week. The star has certainly been Huawei, who, despite the United States veto that has weighed down their numbers, managed to sell 240 million mobile phones worldwide. Its income grew by 19.1% and, although profits slowed down, they increased by 5.6%. This year, they recognize in Huawei, “It will be the most complicated in history” Because the war that Donald Trump has declared to the company will have to add the impact that the coronavirus will have on global consumption. However, he is confident in finding alternative providers to stay afloat.

Xiaomi is more optimistic and believes that the world will recover in the first half of the year and that the Electronics consumption will take a run from May. Not surprisingly, its chief financial officer, Shou Zi Chew, said that sales in China – the world’s leading mobile market – are already above 80% of normal volume, and that the damage will be limited exclusively to the first quarter. According to analysts mentioned by Reuters, between January and March revenue has plummeted 40%.

The ‘Made in China’ wants to get rid of the cheap label and the big brands flirt with thousand-euro phones

What all Chinese brands agree on is that Its comparative advantage is in 5G technology. And in that the fact of having resumed the activity before the rest of the world can be an advantage in the development of new products for the coming telecommunications revolution. This explains why, despite the current situation, the major manufacturers of the second world power have continued with the launches they had planned for the Mobile World Congress canceled in Barcelona.

In front of Apple and Samsung

And his proposals undoubtedly mark a turning point. Above all, in the mobile phone sector, where the main brands display technological advances to justify a notable price increase. The ‘Made in China’ wants to get rid of the label of cheap and new Flagships are already flirting shamelessly with the psychological barrier of 1,000 euros, which seemed reserved for the most exclusive devices from Apple and Samsung.

Huawei, which had already exceeded that figure before, does it again with the new P40 Pro. But the surprise came from Xiaomi, which launched its first model in the Mi range – the Mi 10 Pro – at 999 euros. It is an important leap considering that, last year, its terminals did not exceed 700 euros. “You have to finish with the idea that Chinese technology is cheaper, because, in reality, it is offering advances far superior to those of brands from other countries that increase the price just because of the prestige of its name,” says an employee. from Xiaomi who asks to remain anonymous. “5G may be the technology that demonstrates the power of China, who has stopped going in tow to take the initiative », sentence. And the battle he has waged against the coronavirus serves to cement that perception.

OPPO is of the same opinion. And, to demonstrate it, it has launched another phone that exceeds a thousand euros: the Find X2 Pro not only includes the largest optical zoom on the market in its triple main camera but also a fast charge of 65 watts that surpasses that of any other competitor – the battery charges in just over 35 minutes – and a 120Hz screen. that the iPhone doesn’t even dream about yet. Logically, too It incorporates the 5G bands that the Californian company continues to turn its back on. “Chinese brands are investing large sums in R&D and this is evident, for example, in our battery technology, which is the most advanced in the world,” a representative of the brand told this newspaper during a visit to the factory. last year.

Even more discreet companies like Nubia – cut off from ZTE, also vetoed by the US – have made progress that, although it may seem small, is increasing the advantage of Chinese manufactures over those of the rest of the world. Proves it Red Magic, one of the first mobiles for 5G gamers which mounts a 144hz screen. –The first mass-produced–, a sophisticated liquid cooling system with graphite plates, and a fast charge of 55W. In comparison, the iPhone is 18W. “All these innovations will be noticed in the price,” says the OPPO representative.

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New Ford Kuga: more efficient and technological

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The new and sophisticated Ford Kuga, the most electrified model in Ford history, features a new exterior design, with proportions wider than its predecessor, which offer a improved feeling of spaciousness and comfort. Its more aerodynamic silhouette incorporates a longer wheelbase, which creates a greater presence on the road, which benefits driving and stability; It also has a longer hood, a wider angle to the rear windshield and a lower roof line. The result is one more appearance energetic, agile and powerful never.

The stylish Kuga Titanium, the sporty Kuga ST-Line and the exclusive ST Line X are available with an advanced range of hybrid engines for segment leading fuel efficiency, with an average efficiency improvement of up to 28% under conditions similar compared to the outgoing model. In fact, Ford promised to offer an electrified version of each of the passenger cars it sells in Europe, and will expand its range of electrified models up to 18 between now and the end of 2021. The new Kuga is the first available Ford vehicle with plug-in hybrid, mild hybrid and fully hybrid technology.

The new Kuga PHEV It offers the autonomy of a traditional combustion engine along with the efficiency and refinement of an electric motor. The power divider architecture combines an Atkinson four-cylinder 2.5-liter gasoline engine, an electric motor and generator, and a 14.4 kWh lithium-ion battery to produce 225 hp. The new Kuga Plug-In Hybrid offers a fully electric driving range of 56 km WLTP.

The battery can be charged using a charging port mounted on the front bumper, and is automatically reset on the move using regenerative charging technology that captures the kinetic energy normally lost during braking. Fully charging the battery from an external 230 volt power supply will take less than 6 hours.

Drivers can choose when and how to use battery power by activating EV Auto, EV Now, EV Later, and EV Charge modes. When the battery reaches its lowest state of charge, the Kuga automatically switches to EV Auto mode, which supplements the power of the gasoline engine with the assistance of the electric motor using recaptured energy to optimize fuel efficiency.

In the case of Kuga EcoBlue Hybrid Upgrades Ford’s 150 bhp 2.0-liter EcoBlue diesel engine for increased fuel efficiency. Mild Hybrid technology employs an integrated generator / strap starter (BISG) that replaces the standard alternator, allowing energy recovery and storage during vehicle decelerations, and charging from an air-cooled 48-volt Li-ion battery . The BISG also acts as a motor, using the stored energy to provide electrical torque assistance to the motor under normal driving and acceleration conditions, as well as to operate the vehicle’s electrical auxiliaries.

Also from the month of September the Kuga Hybrid will arrive, which uses a fully hybrid, self-charging engine that allows for fully electric driving and combines a 2.5-liter Atkinson gasoline engine, an electric motor, a generator, a lithium-ion battery and an automatic transmission with a power splitter developed by Ford .

Likewise, new Kuga users can also choose between a advanced range of engines gasoline Ford EcoBoost, 120, 150 and 190 hp, and Ford EcoBlue diesel, 120 hp, improved. Engines use the Auto Start-Stop system as standard to reduce running costs, and transmissions include a six-speed manual gear shift and a new eight-speed automatic system.

Comfort, spaciousness and flexibility

Comfort, space, flexibility and connectivity are the key to the Kuga’s most rewarding driving experience. The space for both the driver and co-pilot, as well as for the other occupants, is greater, in addition, the option of having heated rear seats. Also the entire second row of seats can be moved back to get the best rear legroom in its class with 1,035mm, or forward to increase the boot space to 645 liters, making it the best boot in its segment. A remote unlocking function makes folding the second row easy.

The boot also has a reversible mat with high-quality velor, and a durable and robust rubber surface on the other side to prevent wet or muddy sports gear from dirtying the interior. Even Ford’s hands-free tailgate technology allows access to the trunk space even with your arms occupied, using a simple kicking motion under the rear bumper. Ford engineers have also provided a solution to the challenge of where to place the trunk lid once removed: it now fits perfectly under the new flexible charge and easier to remove.

For the first time, the Kuga is available with FordPass Connect integrated modem technology that turns the vehicle into a mobile WiFi access point with connectivity for up to 10 devices. In addition to helping drivers plan faster and less stressful trips with real-time traffic updates or Live Traffic for the navigation system and allowing occupants to enjoy streaming services on the go, FordPass Connect enables a wide range of practical functions that allow a better user experience through the FordPass mobile app.

Technologies that inspire confidence

The new Kuga offers even more comfort and driver assistance functions, and includes a built-in FordPass Connect modem, which helps users manage their Kuga remotely through the FordPass smartphone app. The new Kuga is also equipped with a wireless charger and Ford’s latest generation SYNC 3 infotainment system with an 8-inch center touchscreen. The B&O Premium sound system produces a high-quality audio experience, and the industry-leading new 24-bit 12.3-inch “true color” digital instrument panel makes it highly intuitive and easy to read.

The new driving aid technologies Like Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop & Go function, Speed ​​Sign Recognition and Lane Keeping, they help drivers navigate intermittent and road traffic more confidently than ever, while predictive cornering illumination helps drivers to drive more precisely in the dark. Head-up display technology helps drivers keep their eyes on the road, and Active Park Assist 2 enables fully automated parking maneuvers at the touch of a button.

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Spanish technological altruism to face the coronavirus | Innovation

The exceptional nature imposed by the coronavirus has brought out altruism in much of the Spanish technology sector. Large companies, SMEs and startups offer their knowledge and services free of charge to combat the pandemic as much as possible. Whether it’s to reduce healthcare collapse, improve connectivity, or contribute to digital literacy. Each one from his position within the sector. These are some examples of what is already underway in Spain.





Help to mitigate sanitary collapse and locate virus outbreaks

Hocelot has put at the service of any citizen a website called coronavirus.org, with which to mitigate the collapse facing part of the Spanish health system and locate the different foci of the coronavirus. In the same way that the telephone service enabled by each Community, this initiative replicates the questions and we should only click on the answers that it provides us about the symptoms or contact with other people. In the end, it generates a user, for whom we will decide a password with a view to following each case, and determines if there is contagion or not. “We have programmed it in just 24 hours and it will be constantly evolving in terms of features or other options,” explains Antonio Camacho, CEO of Hocelot.

The initiative has the collaboration of Google to build maps of the outbreaks. To avoid violating our privacy, the website asks us to enter the postal code and the name of the street where we live. All this information contributes both to delimiting by neighborhoods and streets and to quantifying the incidents collected with greater precision. “We believe that we can add value and efficiency to control knowing how the virus moves. We want to help from the knowledge of the data and the analytics ”, he adds. Despite being at the beginning of the road, the Ministry of Health, several regional Councils and hospitals have shown their willingness to work together.





Connectivity against loneliness

The elderly are one of the groups at great risk before COVID-19, but it is not their only problem. Loneliness, which affects two million Spaniards over 65 years old, according to data from the National Institute of Statistics, also impacts them. The Fundación Telefónica has put their digital volunteers at the service of this part of society. As Carlos Palacios, global manager of the Fundación Telefónica volunteer program, explains, they use telematic resources, such as videoconferences and chats, to be close to these people. “It is our way of avoiding any risk of contagion. If the case arises, for example, if they suffer from the symptoms, we can also refer them to the pertinent responsible parties, ”he maintains.

But this digital volunteering affects more areas, especially after the exceptional measures approved by the Administrations and companies. They have digital literacy programs and online training for people with disabilities, children and anyone who requires it. With these initiatives, social entities can build better web pages or SMEs develop their day-to-day life under the new conditions of teleworking. “We intend to bring technology to people in vulnerable situations. These tools can be a great ally, especially for this current time, “he says.





Education at the forefront

Distance education has come almost suddenly to the lives of all students and teachers with the closure of educational centers. The startup Tutellus, with more than 160,000 courses and over two million students, knows this field perfectly. However, his latest proposal is that anyone learn at no cost about the coronavirus. Miguel Caballero, CEO of Tutellus, acknowledges that, in just over 48 hours, they have opened a training line on COVID-19. “Right now we only have a free basic course on preventive medicine and taught by Dr. Juan Luis Mosqueda, an infection specialist; although during the next one we will create two or three more on other subjects, such as basic health care or diagnosis ”, he concludes.

The material available to students is distributed on video, enriched with infographics and texts. Within the platform, to solve the doubts that arise during learning, there are forums and spaces for questions and answers. The students themselves can help each other or turn to whoever teaches the syllabus. In the specific case of the only one available at the moment, the startup says that we will learn about the origin and development of the virus, how it is being spread and what are the ways to combat it.

Lingokids, the Spanish company specialized in learning English for children from 2 to 8 years old, has made available to Spanish schools (aimed at nursery and primary courses), for free, an English course through its mobile application , especially for those educational centers that do not have a digital platform with which to maintain the continuity of their students’ classes from home. A useful tool, as an educational complement in the subject of English for schools in small municipalities.

Bilbao is the startup Kietoparao, and behind it is a group of 4 mothers from the area in their particular fight against digital dependence on their own children. It arises as a need to find a solution to “be able to have a quiet drink in a bar or eat in a restaurant without having to fight with the children and without resorting to the mobile or the tablet.”

In their battle for the responsible use of technology, they encourage them to carry out playful activities of a lifetime, in the form of educational game kits for the little ones to learn and have fun anywhere.

María Fernandez, co-founder of Kietoparao, says that her project goes far beyond selling kits to always carry around: “It is about raising awareness and educating on the importance of reducing screen hours. When we found out that our neighbors in Vitoria had to close the schools, we decided to give away a downloadable package. ” It is a free brochure with 18 pages and 21 games for children to be entertained for the next 15 days and although she confesses that they understand that one of the options for parents these days is television, for them, it is not the only one. The alternative is available through your Blog since last Wednesday.

Luz Rello is a researcher, linguist, computational doctor and founder of Change Dyslexia, a social institution from which DytectiveU was born, the first online tool to combat this disease, with access to a screening test that allows you to detect if you are at risk of having reading-writing difficulties, in just 15 minutes. Scientifically validated, DytectiveU improves reading and writing skills through 42,000 personalized games based on 24 skills aimed at both weaknesses and cognitive strengths.

“May these days be used to improve our learning difficulties and get something positive out of all this. Our online platform, with exercises to improve reading and writing, will be free for the next 15 days, ”says Luz Rello.





Printers to the rescue

Fearing the absence of medical supplies, the Cotec Foundation has put on the table an initiative to study how to create artificial respirators with 3D printers. The initiative, previously promoted internationally and known as the Open Source Ventilator Project, has the technical support of Tecnalia. The uncertain path that it will travel emerged this Friday from a WhatsApp group in which thirty doctors, engineers, entrepreneurs and makers have exchanged opinions with the idea of ​​finding cheap and quick solutions to patient ventilation, an indispensable asset in any intensive care unit to care for the most critically infected.

As the CEO of the Foundation, Jorge Barrero, has tweeted, the aim is to offer open source plans on simpler devices, so they would manufacture more quickly and in a distributed way with the help of 3D printing. “We are not looking for high technology, but the opposite. Basic systems, perhaps forgotten … similar to the first respirators perhaps or solutions that add devices of another use, to the MacGyver. Something simple and quick to produce for less serious cases that require help ”, has written on his Twitter account. In the absence of completing the project, the result is a specific piece as well as a more complex apparatus, such as that of hospitals.

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The challenge of technological training for education

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According to the latest data published by the INE 1, in Spain the number of people graduated in science, mathematics, computer science, engineering, industry and construction in the EU per year amounted to 39,500. Of these, 28,100 were men and 11,400 women. This is a problem that should be addressed from the base.

Pending the imminent decision of the Council of Ministers on the proposal of the educational reform presented by the Minister of Education and Vocational Training, Isabel Celaá, the ICT sector is still waiting for a text that contemplates the need to promote the training of digital professionals from the classroom .

In this sense, one of the transversal axes that the proposal of the educational reform seeks is the one called «digital education and competence learning». The new text insists on the need to take into account the digital change that is taking place in our societies and that affects the educational activity. With this objective, attention to the development of the students’ digital competence is included in all educational stages, both through specific contents and in a transversal perspective.

In this way, training or digital rights must be strongly linked to other social policies such as equality, health, diversity and employment. But what are really the needs and deficiencies in education for one of the sectors with the highest demand for qualified professionals? Academic institutions do not maintain the pace of change to offer an updated curriculum that minimizes the gap between the real needs of the industry and the skills acquired during the training stage.

The current education system, and the laws that support it, should include competencies and digital knowledge that are present in the different educational stages. Once aware of this the following question arises: why once equipped with these tools does this gap still exist when it comes to accessing university or higher studies related to STEM?

Given the above, that the centennials are digital natives and the subsequent generation, boys and girls have the same level of access and use of ICT, and that this is fully standardized, the focus should be on: what makes them More guys who decide to focus their professional career towards the ICT sector? This leads us to resort to the generalized gender stereotypes in which they classify professions or studies according to presumably male or female abilities.

It would be necessary to break the built bias and, above all, be aware that it exists in order to act accordingly and deconstruct it, based on the fact that no 1 Data from the National Statistics Institute of 2016 2 Draft Organic Law amending the Organic Law 2/2006, of May 3, of Education (Lomloe). It is stereotypes that guide us on this path. But we are guided by personal abilities.

As a woman in a sector like ours, so masculinized, and mother, I would like my daughter to have an equal training system that would allow her to exploit her professional and social and technical capacities to the fullest. And thus being able to decide their profession, without a structural bias, because STEMs are not a matter of gender.

Cristina Piguillem,Cristina Piguillem,

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Amazon tries to curb speculation with the price of masks | Technology

The outbreak of the coronavirus outside China has triggered the sale of medical devices in Spain, where the demand for masks has increased by 10,000% compared to January last year, according to the latest data from the Federation of Pharmaceutical Distributors (Fedifar). This has made pharmacies run out of stock and users turn to the Internet to get them. Some merchants who use Amazon to sell their products have taken advantage of the situation to increase the prices of masks and disinfectant gels, the most requested items. In response, the company is tracking its website “on an ongoing basis” identifying the merchants who put these oversized amounts.

“Commercial partners put their own prices in our store,” an Amazon spokesman tells EL PAÍS. But even so, they must conform to the fair price policy established by the company. “We are actively tracking our website and will withdraw offers that violate any of our policies.” This action is a response to the escalation of prices that have been observed in hygiene products in recent days due to increased demand. This Wednesday, the best selling in the health and personal care section of Amazon Spain was a hand sanitizer gel and several packs of disposable masks. Different types of these hygiene products, together with thermometers and antiseptic wipes, are among the 20 items most requested by customers.

As a consequence, prices have increased. A package of 100 generic disposable masks went from 3.95 euros on Saturday to 149 euros on Tuesday, according to data from Keepa, a company that tracks prices on Amazon. The increase coincides with the detection of new cases of coronavirus in Spain, although this type of protection is not useful to prevent infection. This Wednesday had dropped to 35 euros. FFP2 protection masks, unlike disposable ones, prevent small particles in the air and are used more frequently to protect against virus transmission. The price of a pack of 5 has gone from costing 15 euros to 99 in just three days. The increase has coincided with the arrival of the coronavirus in Italy.


Amazon coronavirus mask



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Variation of the price of disposable masks according to Keepa. Click on the photo to enlarge it.

Health authorities are not recommending the use of masks and emphasize much more effective measures, such as careful handwashing with soap and water.

Price control

More than half of the items available on Amazon are put up for sale through merchants who use the platform to sell their products. It is in these items sold by third parties where price escalations have been seen in recent days. To prevent these businesses from taking advantage of emergency situations, the company sets a fair price based on the amounts of those same products in previous weeks and even on what they cost on websites outside Amazon.

The giant is tracking its website to detect that the items conform to its policy and alert merchants when it is not. If these sellers keep increasing their prices, some of the consequences include the offer being withdrawn, suspending the shipping option or, in case of recidivism, temporarily or permanently suspending the merchant’s selling privileges.

Buyers have complained on social networks about the high prices of supplies at Amazon. It has also been hotly debated among users in the company’s official sales forum during the past week. It is not the first time these complaints have occurred, it has also happened during other emergencies. When Hurricane Irma approached Florida in 2017, for example, the increase in bottled water prices caused a protest on-line. On that occasion, Amazon declared USA Today They were proceeding just like now: “We are actively monitoring our website and eliminating bottled water offers that substantially exceed the most recent average sales price.” It is a usual protocol in the company.

On Tuesday, Reuters reported that the authorities of Italy, country that so far suffers the largest outbreak of the disease in Europe, had opened an investigation on prices on-line which they defined as “insane” for medical supplies, although not to mention any specific website.

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this is how the epidemic is affecting technology

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More of eighty thousand infected. A death toll around 2,700 people. And a fairly high recovery rate: more than thirty thousand infected have recovered from the envy of the Covid-19, virus of Chinese origin that has become popular with the name of coronavirus.[[Graph prepared by Statista]

The fear of new cases, added to the action protocols to contain the epidemic, has infected the world economy. Also in the consumer technology sector where its devastating effects begin to be noticed in this quarter. The stoppage of part of the production threatens to reduce the number of shipments of new electronic products. Many of them manufactured in China, epicenter of the coronavirus.

There is a great fear that it will be a black period that takes its toll on your finances. It is a machinery that has become accustomed to never stopping. Any stumbling block can be devastating. According to estimates by TrendForce, the best-selling electronic device shipments, the «smartphones», will be reduced by 10.5%.

One of the companies that will most notice this uncertainty is Manzana, since many of its products are assembled in Chinese factories such as Foxconn or Pegatron. Both had to paralyze their production for several days but now they have returned to normal. There, in fact, according to analysts, a future iPhone more accessible than the latest models released in September.

The American firm has recently advanced that the coronavirus crisis will not comply with income forecasts of 67,000 million dollars for this quarter. Similarly, Microsoft has also warned through a release It does not expect to meet its quarterly revenue plans for the segment that includes Windows, the world’s most widespread computer operating system. “Although we see a strong demand from Windows online for our expectations and the supply chain is returning to normal operations, we are at a slower pace than expected,” the same sources add.

In the case of other productssuch as smart watches, consoles, televisions and computers, the fall can be between 4.5% and 16%. The different devices will, however, have a very different impact, as smart watches are expected to reduce their production by 16%, according to the report. Laptops, meanwhile, will see shipments reduced by 12.3%, while smart speakers, one of the categories that has grown the most in the last year, fell 12.1%.

It has also begun to wreak havoc with the electronic leisure industry. Just at its peak; the main companies of the sector, like Sony, prepare the jump to the new generation of desktop consoles, which will make its debut at the end of the year. This category expect to reduce your shipments in this quarter around 10.1%. Televisions will also experience a drop in their shipments, although less pronounced (4.5%). It is another important moment for the sector because this year a scheduled appointment is scheduled on fire in the calendar, the Olympic Games. Traditionally, a moment of loose sales.

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The director of Tec de Lerdo is separated due to improper use of the public year

Gómez Palacio, Durango.- The director of the Tecnológico de ciudad Lerdo, Israel “N” was separated from his position due to the improper use of the public exercise, said the Anti-Corruption Prosecutor, Héctor García Rodríguez.

He said that the criminal judge decided to link this official to the process, attending to the complaints of teachers and the union of that campus.

“We of course reproach the conduct of the educational official after not complying with the requirements to hold the charge, all this provided and sanctioned in article 326 of the Criminal Code of the State of Durango and therefore shortly will be officially disabled so that later be subject to a conviction, ”said the prosecutor.

“Then, it has been linked to the process since last Monday, so the Public Prosecutor of this Prosecutor’s Office has already requested the measures of separation of office, as a precautionary measure, starting the criminal process and waiting for the sentence to end.”

On the other hand, García Rodríguez, who set up a table of complaints at the Lerdo city restaurant “Sabor a Mi”, showed a schedule from 9 in the morning to 3 in the afternoon.

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Do tech gossip spy on us? | Innovation

The object varies from one witness to another (it can be a trip or the purchase of a garden table), but the phenomenon is repeated: it is as if the smartphone listen to our conversations and then offer us publicity of those things we say we want. There are those who affirm, going further, that they even offer articles about which he has not even spoken: he has only imagined them. Espionage, say others, transcends what we write or say, and reaches our most intimate thoughts. Be careful what you think.

Do they really spy on us?

It is still difficult, for us to know, to read other people’s thoughts, but it is possible to know a lot about us through our interactions on the internet, our emails, our likes, of our searches. So much so that sometimes it may seem that they read our thoughts with hidden telepathic techniques. Companies, in fact, help themselves with the information that we leave as bread crumbs through sophisticated big data techniques to offer personalized advertising, which some users see as an advance (why see ads that do not interest us? ) and others as a true nightmare Orwellian.

But what about the lively conversations? Can you hear us? Digital espionage is not a trivial issue. How can they not spy on us, in fact, if they even hacked the smartphone of Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon and the richest man in the world? As the United Nations published in a report, the American tycoon received a message with a video in mp4 format. Shortly after opening it, his iPhone X began to emit data at unusual rates. The hackers had sneaked into the intimacies of the technological population using malicious software and could access their files and applications.

Companies are helped by the information that we leave as bread crumbs through sophisticated big data techniques to offer us personalized advertising,

Regarding the supposed ears of our simple mortal mobiles, and without the intervention of hackers: technically, listening to us is possible. Phones have microphones that applications can use, while speech recognition techniques based on artificial intelligence are increasingly powerful. “This discipline has hit a very important qualitative leap in the last decade thanks to the models of deep learning and the massive amount of data available to train the machines, ”explains Carlos D. Martínez, a researcher at the Polytechnic University of Valencia (UPV) specialized in the subject. The machines can distinguish our words and even give them an answer, as any user familiar with messaging applications (WhatsApp), word processors with dictation options or assistants such as Siri, Alexa or Google Assistant knows.

In fact, some users have the fly behind the ear because these applications are listening permanently. For example, the Google assistant is put on guard when you hear the formula Ok google. It is then and only then, says the company, when it is available to the user. But to listen to the formula on any occasion you have to be active all the time, which has generated suspicion. They were not completely misled: in July of last year we learned that Google heard what their users were talking about, as the company itself acknowledged. 0.2% of the conversations were attended by “language experts” with the excuse of improving the operation of the assistant, so that the program can better understand what humans say.




Electronic devices are a security breach.

This news raised alarms about the leakage of sensitive data due to the fact that the reviewers, who listen to some 5,000 conversations a week, were not part of the company, but were external workers, even underpaid. Google said the transcripts were not associated with user accounts and did not include background conversations that were not directed at their assistant. However, the Belgian television VRT NWS, which uncovered the scandal, found that of around a thousand voice fragments to which it had access, 153 were not authorized. Apple also apologized that summer for listening through its Siri application. The same happened with Alexa, from Amazon.

Other ways to spy

In addition to these explicit listening, there are also examples in the Gray zone. This is the case of the LaLiga Professional Football application, which detected when groups of users met to watch a football match to connect the microphone and check if it was being seen on the television of a bar that did not have the necessary permits. So he could chase the establishment. LaLiga gave explanations, but was sanctioned with 250,000 euros by the Spanish Agency for Data Protection for lack of transparency. And that despite the fact that users had given their permission, perhaps unconsciously, for the application to do such a thing.

Other companies have alternative ways of meddling in our affairs. “It is necessary to be attentive to the permits that we give and the conditions that we accept in the applications, especially if they are unlikely,” says Eduardo Nieva, technical director for Spain and Portugal of the security company Check Point. “For example, if a flashlight app asks us for access to the microphone, geolocation or camera it is to be suspected.” Your suggestion is to uninstall unused applications and review permissions.

There are more sophisticated techniques than mere user deception. “We know that some secret services have ways of spying on specific people, such as senior officials, through their mobile phone,” explains Sergio de los Santos, director of the Innovation and Laboratory area of ​​Eleven Paths, the cybersecurity unit of Telefónica. An example could be the aforementioned case of Jeff Bezos. “For them, operating system vulnerabilities are used, which always exist,” he adds. Some spyware (spyware), such as Pegasus (for iOs), allowed, until discovered, to spy remotely through the program’s gaps. The Israeli company that developed it, NSO Group, declared that it was useful for governments to control “terrorism and crime”, but these are very subjective concepts and this type of technology can easily end up in bad hands.

How to avoid being spied on.

The user can take certain precautions
To avoid being spied on.

1. Review your applications and check that there is no suspect or unwanted.

2. Check the permits that we give to each of them: access to the camera or microphone, mainly.

3. A way to suspect If someone is spying on it, it is to observe if there is too much battery drain, too much terminal heating or too much data consumption. When several of these symptoms are combined, it can signal espionage.

4. There are programs and applications that presume to be safe: the DuckDuckGo search engine, the Signal messaging application, the Protonmail email, the CryptPad office or the Tor browser are some of those recommended by the Spanish Agency for Data Protection (AEPD).

5. Installing an antivirus It is, of course, totally indispensable.

Is named trojanize to the practice of taking control of a smartphone remotely, so that you can activate the microphone, camera or copy files. No device is 100% safe, and that awakens nightmares of science fiction. To obtain information on the commons of mortals there are other more subtle, more legal and some controversial methods. “We have sold our soul to large companies such as Google, Facebook or Amazon, who know what we are looking for, where we are physically, what we buy, what we see or the keywords of our emails,” explains De los Santos. In addition, our email has already become a way to identify us around the world and to register in different applications, as if it were a kind of digital ID.

What do my data matter?

Who cares about my data? Why do they encourage me so much to protect them? The most banal utility, and even useful, is to know our tastes to offer personalized advertising. But there are also dangers. “As in the case of Cambrigde Analytica, this massive information can be used to influence us politically, in our views and even in the sense of our vote. For example, showing us fake news according to our cognitive biases, ”explains De los Santos. Here the thing gets serious. When someone knows us better than ourselves, he is very capable of manipulating us. “Our data in the hands of a government or a dictatorship can be a very important political weapon,” says Nieva.

With the advent of the internet of things (IoT) the digital threat grows. “Attackers can exploit IoT devices in all the ways in which desktop computers and laptops explode today,” writes cybersecurity guru Bruce Schneier in his recent book Click here to kill them all (Today’s topics). It describes how all the devices around us are becoming a computer: the fridge, the toaster, the air conditioning … “So what we call exhibition area it is getting bigger and bigger and more and more vulnerable, ”explains Víctor Villagra, director of the master’s degree in Cybersecurity at the Polytechnic University of Madrid (UPM). “First they could only attack computers, then cheat people; Now you can access almost any device, ”he says.

In June 2019, the scandal jumped when hackers found a microphone in a low-cost kitchen robot called Monsieur Cuisine Connect that is sold in the Lidl supermarket chain. It was inactive and, according to the manufacturer, had been integrated into the product to activate it in future versions that will allow control through the voice. In spite of everything, it sounds disturbing: this robot has many functions: it bats, cooks, emulsifies, itches, it softens… but it spies? We will always have the doubt.

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