Amazon's Echo and other smart speakers do much more than you realize

Harman Kardon’s Invoke is Microsoft’s first true Amazon Echo competitor. When Amazon first debuted its Alexa-powered Echo smart speaker in 2014, expectations for the device were relatively high. More than two years later, the Echo’s success has spurred a new war of the tech titans: Companies including Apple (AAPL), Google (GOOG, GOOGL), Microsoft (MSFT), Samsung and a slew of their Chinese counterparts have either released their own smart speakers or will likely release them soon.

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Amazon's Echo and other smart speakers do much more than you realize

Control your Roomba with just your voice via this new Alexa integration

Everyone's favorite self-driving vacuum cleaner, the Roomba, just added an Amazon Alexa integration, allowing you to communicate with your cleaning assistant with nothing more than your voice.

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Control your Roomba with just your voice via this new Alexa integration

We noshed on Nougat, and Android 7.0 is Google’s sweetest update yet

It has been more than 5 months since Google dropped the first developer preview for Android Nougat. Now, it's officially here. We're periodically adding any new features we find, such as how Night mode is still accessible.

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We noshed on Nougat, and Android 7.0 is Google’s sweetest update yet

Jeff Bezos describes one change some Amazon employees hated

Amazon is one of the world's most powerful companies, and to keep it that way CEO Jeff Bezos ensures employees make important decisions as fast as possible.

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Jeff Bezos describes one change some Amazon employees hated

Pogue's Basics: How to forward a text message

In a previous “Pogue’s Basics� tip, I let you know that you could report cellphone text-message spam by forwarding it to 7726.

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Pogue's Basics: How to forward a text message

Exclusive: FBI probes FDIC hack linked to China’s military – sources

By Dustin Volz and Jason Lange WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The FBI is investigating how hackers infiltrated computers at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation for several years beginning in 2010 in a breach senior FDIC officials believe was sponsored by China's military, people with knowledge of the matter said. The security breach, in which hackers gained access to dozens of computers including the workstation for former FDIC Chairwoman Sheila Bair, has also been the target of a probe by a congressional committee. The FDIC is one of three federal agencies that regulate commercial banks in the United States.

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Exclusive: FBI probes FDIC hack linked to China’s military – sources

Amazon starts flexing muscle in new space: air cargo

It's one of 40 jets leased by Amazon.com Inc for a new cargo service to meet delivery demand from the retail giant's customers. Exclusive payload data reviewed by Reuters and interviews with airport officials around the country show that Prime Air planes are flying nearly full, but with lightweight loads, taking away valued business from FedEx Corp and United Parcel Service Inc. Expanding into transportation, from trucks to planes, is one of Amazon's most important endeavors as it strives to lure new customers with fast shipping while keeping costs under control.

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Amazon starts flexing muscle in new space: air cargo

Amazon challenges Apple and Spotify with new music streaming service

Amazon.com Inc on Wednesday launched a full-fledged music streaming service with subscriptions as low as $3.99 per month for owners of its Amazon Echo speaker, accelerating the industry trend toward more flexible pricing after years of sticking to $9.99 subscriptions. The new streaming service, called “Amazon Music Unlimited,” lets users access a vast catalog of songs on demand, similar to Spotify and Apple Music.

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Amazon challenges Apple and Spotify with new music streaming service

Amazon and Pandora set to launch new music streaming services: NY Times

(Reuters) – Amazon.com Inc and Pandora Media Inc are planning to launch new versions of their streaming music services in coming weeks, the New York Times reported on Sunday, citing several anonymous people with knowledge of the matter. Such a platform, priced at $10 a month, would compete with Spotify and Apple Inc's Apple Music. Amazon, meanwhile, is expected to reveal a platform with a large catalog of music for $10 per month or about half that amount for customers using its Echo voice-activated speakers, according to the Times.

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Amazon and Pandora set to launch new music streaming services: NY Times

Amazon’s new UK distribution center to create 500 jobs in 2017

Online retailer Amazon plans to create 500 new jobs when it opens another distribution center in northern England next year, it said on Friday. The new jobs are in addition to the 3,500 Amazon has announced it expects to create in Britain in 2016, spanning head office, research and development centres, customer service centres, a fashion photography studio, Amazon Web Services and distribution centres.

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Amazon’s new UK distribution center to create 500 jobs in 2017