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(Reuters) – Twitter Inc (TWTR.N) on Thursday made it easier for users to identify political campaign ads and know who paid for them, as social media platforms faced the threat of U.S. regulation over the lack of disclosure on such spending.
The microblogging site launched ‘Ads Transparency Center’ to allow anyone to view ads that have been put on Twitter, with greater transparency about U.S. federal election campaign ads.
The tool follows Twitter’s recently launched political campaign ads policy and a similar move by Facebook Inc (FB.O), which started a searchable archive of U.S. political ads last month.
Facebook said on Thursday it would go even further by enabling users to see listings of all active ad campaigns, whether the advertiser is political in nature or not. Users can also view a log of name changes to a Facebook page.
The features should help people spot misuse of Facebook, it added.
Twitter’s ads center gives users access to details such as demographic targeting data for the ads from U.S. political advertisers, along with billing information, ad spending, and impression data per Tweet.
“We are making it clearer than ever who is advertising U.S. federal political campaign content on Twitter,” Twitter said in a blog post.
The transparency center will include all advertisers on Twitter globally, but at this stage only U.S. federal election campaign ads that fall under its new policy will be shown.
Google has vowed to launch a similar transparency center for political ads on its services this summer. It declined to share additional details this week.
Reporting by Sonam Rai in Bengaluru and Paresh Dave in San Francisco; Editing by Bernard Orr and Richard Chang
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp (7203.T) plans to start selling U.S. vehicles that can talk to each other using short-range wireless technology in 2021, the Japanese automaker said on Monday, potentially preventing thousands of accidents annually.
The U.S. Transportation Department must decide whether to adopt a pending proposal that would require all future vehicles to have the advanced technology.
Toyota hopes to adopt the dedicated short-range communications systems in the United States across most of its lineup by the mid-2020s. Toyota said it hopes that by announcing its plans, other automakers will follow suit.
The Obama administration in December 2016 proposed requiring the technology and giving automakers at least four years to comply. The proposal requires automakers to ensure all vehicles “speak the same language through a standard technology.”
Automakers were granted a block of spectrum in 1999 in the 5.9 GHz band for “vehicle-to-vehicle” and “vehicle to infrastructure” communications and have studied the technology for more than a decade, but it has gone largely unused. Some in Congress and at the Federal Communications Commission think it should be opened to other uses.
In 2017, General Motors Co (GM.N) began offering vehicle-to-vehicle technologies on its Cadillac CTS model, but it is currently the only commercially available vehicle with the system.Talking vehicles, which have been tested in pilot projects and by U.S. carmakers for more than a decade, use dedicated short-range communications to transmit data up to 300 meters, including location, direction and speed, to nearby vehicles.
The data is broadcast up to 10 times per second to nearby vehicles, which can identify risks and provide warnings to avoid imminent crashes, especially at intersections.
Toyota has deployed the technology in Japan to more than 100,000 vehicles since 2015.
The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said last year the regulation could eventually cost between $ 135 and $ 300 per new vehicle, or up to $ 5 billion annually but could prevent up to 600,000 crashes and reduce costs by $ 71 billion annually when fully deployed.
NHTSA said last year it has “not made any final decision” on requiring the technology, but no decision is expected before December.
Last year, major automakers, state regulators and others urged U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao to finalize standards for the technology and protect the spectrum that has been reserved, saying there is a need to expand deployment and uses of the traffic safety technology.
Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe
NEW DELHI (Reuters) – Indian ride-hailing firm Ola, backed by Japan’s SoftBank Group will launch 10,000 electric three-wheelers in the country over the next 12 months as part of a broader electrification plan, the company said in a statement on Monday.
The move is part of a broader push by Ola to launch 1 million electric vehicles on its platform by 2021, it said in the statement, adding that it will work with various state governments, vehicle manufacturers and battery companies to meet its target.
Reporting by Aditi Shah; Editing by Swati Bhat
(Reuters) – AT&T Inc, the No. 2 U.S. wireless carrier, said it would launch fifth-generation (5G) mobile network service in a dozen cities in the United States by late 2018, after international wireless standards for the network were finalised last month.
The 5G technology is expected to provide higher speed and response times than 4G networks used today.
Reporting by Rama Venkat Raman in Bengaluru; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri
BEIJING (Reuters) – China Citic Bank Corp (601998.SS) and search engine giant Baidu Inc (BIDU.O) launched on Saturday a direct banking joint venture, dubbed AiBank, to capitalize on China’s rapidly growing fintech sector.
AiBank is one among several tie-ups between an internet firm and a lender in China’s booming online finance market where technology gurus like Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (BABA.N) and Tencent Holdings Ltd (0700.HK) have already set up their own finance arms to offer a range of financial products including payment, wealth management and micro loans.
A direct bank offers services over the internet instead of through physical branches.
AiBank will focus on lending to individuals and small businesses while leveraging big data and artificial intelligence to build new risk control models, Li Rudong, president of the new bank said at a launch event in Beijing.
Li said 60 percent of the new bank’s employees will be technology staff.
“AiBank is the future of intelligent finance…It is an institution that understands customers best and understands finance best,” said Baidu Chief Operating Officer Lu Qi.
Mid-tier lender Citic Bank owns 70 percent of the joint venture, while Baidu controls the remaining 30 percent. The direct bank has a registered capital of 2 billion yuan.
China’s banking regulator approved the establishment of AiBank earlier this year.
Reporting by Shu Zhang and Elias Glenn; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman
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The International Space Station is getting some more supplies.
Aerospace company Orbital ATK said Friday that it plans to launch a rocket on Saturday that will help carry cargo to the International Space Station.
Orbital’s Antares rocket is expected to launch at 7:37 am ET from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Wallops Island, Va. It will be Orbital’s eighth cargo-delivery mission to the International Space Station as part of the company’s contract with NASA.
The rocket will send aloft the cargo-carrying Cygnus spacecraft, which is expected to reach the space station on Nov. 13. The spacecraft will bring 7,400 pounds of supplies and scientific equipment, including a high-school student science experiment for studying how peanut plants grow in space.
— Orbital ATK (@OrbitalATK) November 10, 2017
The Cygnus spacecraft will remain at the International Space Station for one month, during which the cargo will help researchers conduct studies on how space’s microgravity affects the E.coli bacteria’s resistance to antibiotics. Another research experiment will test new technologies to allow for faster communications between people in space and on earth, according to NASA.
After debarking from the space station in December, the Cygnus spacecraft will burn up in Earth’s atmosphere, thus disposing of several tons of trash, NASA said.
People can watch a live broadcast of the rocket launch from NASA’s online video streaming website.
Orbital isn’t the only aerospace company helping NASA send cargo to the International Space Station. The Elon Musk-led SpaceX also has a NASA contract, and in August, it launched a Falcon 9 rocket to help bring 6,400 pounds of equipment, including a Hewlett Packard Enterprise hpe supercomputer, to the space station.
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WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A coalition of supporters of self-driving cars said on Tuesday that it will run ads this week in social media and Washington newspapers, in an effort to convince the U.S. Congress to adopt sweeping legislation to boost the nascent industry.
The ads are being placed by the Coalition for Future Mobility, which was formed in July by trade groups representing major automakers, along with other advocates for self-driving cars, as Congress began serious consideration of bills relating to autonomous vehicles.
They want the Senate to pass a bill that would speed up the use of self-driving cars by easing safety regulations, and bar states from blocking such vehicles. The House of Representatives has already unanimously approved a bill.
The Senate is considering a similar draft measure, but is divided over whether to include large commercial trucks, a dispute that could prevent the bill from winning approval this year.
The House measure, which only applies to vehicles under 10,000 pounds (4,536 kg), would allow automakers to obtain exemptions to deploy up to 25,000 vehicles without meeting existing auto safety standards in the first year. The cap would rise over three years to 100,000 vehicles annually.
As part of the campaign, major automakers will be contacting their employees and retirees, asking them to reach out to their members of Congress, a spokeswoman for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers said.
The coalition launched a website and will use targeted Facebook advertising, focusing on groups who could benefit from autonomous vehicles, such as disabled veterans.
One of the print ads seen by Reuters features a man dressed in military fatigues sitting in a wheelchair. The ad says: “He fought for our freedom. Let’s give him back his.” That “will only become a reality if Congress acts,” the ad says.
The coalition includes trade groups representing automakers General Motors Co, Toyota Motor Corp and Volkswagen AG (VOWG_p.DE), as well as organizations including ride sharing firm Lyft Inc, the Telecommunications Industry Association, the American Council of the Blind and a drone industry group.
Senate aides have been negotiating in recent days but have not reached agreement. A Senate panel could take up the issue at an Oct. 4 hearing, aides say.
Auto industry leaders say 3 million commercial truck jobs could eventually be at risk if self-driving vehicles replaced human drivers.
Self-driving proponents say 94 percent of U.S. car crashes are the result of human error and argue self-driving cars could dramatically cut the 35,000 annual road deaths.
Reporting by David Shepardson, Editing by Rosalba O’Brien
(Reuters) – Wearable device maker Fitbit Inc (FIT.N) on Monday launched its newest device, the Ionic smartwatch, with features ranging from fitness tracking to contactless payment, as it gears up to compete with rivals such as Apple Inc (AAPL.O).
Once the market leader in wearables, Fitbit has recently struggled due to fierce competition and had earlier blamed a shift among consumers toward feature-rich devices and smartwatches for its revenue decline.
Ionic smartwatches will feature GPS, heart rate tracking, water resistance up to 50 meters, Fitbit Pay, on-board music, multiple clock faces and a battery that will last more than 4 days, the company said in a statement.
“Over the coming months you will be able to add eligible American Express cards, as well as Mastercard and Visa credit and debit cards from top issuing banks in over 10 markets across the globe,” Fitbit said.
The watch also has a new sensor technology — relative SpO2 sensor — for estimating oxygen levels in the blood that have the potential to track sleep apnea among others.
With a price tag of $ 299.95, Ionic is priced above Apple Watch’s starting price of $ 269.
“Fitbit can take some market share from Apple by appealing to those who are more focused on fitness, however, we do not expect this to be a significant share of Apple’s overall smartwatch sales,” Wedbush Securities analyst Alicia Reese said.
Ionic will be available for pre-sale from Monday on Fitbit’s website and at some online retailers from Tuesday, the company said in a statement.
The company on Monday also launched Aria 2 smart scale and Flyer wireless headphones.
Shares of Fitbit – known for its colorful wristbands that monitor heartrate, track sleeping patterns, count steps and calories – were up 5.9 percent at $ 6.07 on the New York Stock Exchange.
Additional reporting by Aishwarya Venugopal in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta
SpaceX believes that the explosion of a Falcon 9 rocket earlier this month was caused by a breach of the helium system within the second stage of the rocket. The company may start launching again as early as November of this year.
HUEMOVIES is leveraging technology to help change the narrative around underrepresented independent filmmakers.
(PRWeb September 02, 2016)
Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2016/09/prweb13654683.htm