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PAKISTAN NEWS:
Huawei Knowledge Factory program launched in collaboration with Jazz:

Jazz, the leading telecommunications company in Pakistan, has announced a partnership with technology giant Huawei. The initiative titled “Huawei Knowledge Factory in collaboration with Jazz” will impart free-of-cost technology training to startups incubated at National Incubation Center (NIC) and Jazz employees. The announcement was made by Ahmed Bilal Masud, the Deputy CEO Huawei Pakistan Pvt. Limited, on the recent graduation ceremony of the 3rd and 4th cohorts at the NIC.

PTCL recognized at CEM Global Telecom Awards:

Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) has been recognized this year for implementing ‘Customer Happiness Index Framework’ at the 14th Annual Customer Experience Management (CEM) Awards held in London during Telecom Global Summit.Competing with international telecom global operators, PTCL stood runner-up after Telefonica in the ‘Best-in-Class Customer Engagement Tool’ category, where around twelve international telecom operators competed in different categories.

Fujifilm launches X100V photography focused street camera:

Fujifilm has launched the fifth entry in its X100 series under the moniker X100V. This upgraded camera comes with a new lens, a new sensor, a tilting rear LCD, and much more. The best part is, X100V borrows some of the premium features from the company’s high-end cameras like X-T3, X-T30, and X-Pro3, which makes it the best full-featured vacation or street photography camera.Just like its predecessors, the Fujifilm X100V maintains the retro, rangefinder aesthetic, and features a number of and host of dials and manual controls.

You can unlock your car with an iPhone soon:

Apple released the first beta of iOS 13.4, and according to 9to5Mac’s discovery, the new iOS comes with an unannounced feature that might let you unlock, lock, and start your car with your iPhone or Apple Watch. The iOS 13.4 beta comes with references to a “CarKey” API, which, according to the documentation, will live in your device’s Wallet app and will allow the users to hold their iPhone or Apple Watch near an NFC-compatible car to use their phone as a key. The key will most probably work like the Express Transit Cards and will not require the use Face ID to verify the CarKey’s interaction after the initial pairing.

Experts ask for a new strategy to tax imported mobile phones:

The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has received proposals to restore the facility of one duty-free handset in a calendar year under gift/personal baggage scheme and reduce tax slabs on all categories of mobile phones brought into the country to encourage penetration of smartphones. FBR has sought budget proposals for the next fiscal year and the telecom sector is also actively approaching the Board for consideration of viable tax proposals and policy changes in the telecom sector specifically to deal with the negative implications of the Device Identification, Registration & Blocking System (DIRBS).

Motorola Razr is nearly impossible to repair:

PBK reviews, an educational review channel of YouTube, recently uploaded a full teardown video of the 2019-launched Motorola Razr. Where the video shows the high-level engineering that went into the design, it also reveals that the smartphone is virtually impossible to repair.The reviewer starts by loosening up the plastic back and then moves on to heating up the lower half of the phone to cut it lose. It then comes off with the fingerprint sensor.

Smartphone shipments by Xiaomi, Huawei, Oppo & others to drop due to coronavirus:

Last week, Counterpoint predicted that Chinese OEMs would face a 30 percent decline in the shipments of smartphones due to the ongoing Coronavirus epidemic. Another report from Digitimes suggests similar statistics. According to the new report, even if the Chinese government manages to control the pandemic by the end of February 2020, it will still instill a 9 percent decline in the overall shipments of smartphones from Chinese manufacturers. According to Digitimes, consumer demand has also decreased significantly due to the coronavirus situation. Top OEMs like Huawei, Oppo, Vivo, and Xiaomi, were all set to sell off a significant chunk of smartphones during the Chinese New Year period but failed to do so. They are currently sitting on high inventory levels.

Xiaomi Mi 10 will be the first phone to feature LPDDR5 RAM:

American chipmaker Micron has announced that they have started mass production for the world’s first low power LPDDR5 DRAM chip and that it should be available in high-end smartphones very soon. The announcement also confirms that the Xiaomi Mi 10 and the Galaxy S20 will be the first devices to feature this technology. LPDDR5 DRAM technology is twice as fast as the previous generation (LPDDR4) and is 20% faster than LPDDR4x, both of which are currently used in smartphones. LDDR5 also enables up to 12GB RAM capacity, a transmission rate of up to 6.4GBps, and 50% faster data access speeds.The chip’s low power state consumes 20% less power and since it needs less time to process data, it also helps save battery life by an additional 5 to 10%.

 

INTERNATIONAL NEWS:
Self-driving delivery van ditches ‘human controls’:

The first self-driving vehicle designed without basic human controls such as steering wheels, pedals or side view mirrors has been granted permission to test on US roads. Nuro, the company behind the design, makes autonomous delivery vans. The vehicle is Nuro’s second generation of its vehicles, which it is calling R2 and will be tested in Houston, Texas.This is the first exemption to a rule requiring vehicles to have controls for human operators.Most of the rules for testing vehicles require features that allow a driver to safely take control of them.

Uber sees path to profit despite $1.1bn loss:

Uber’s business continues to grow, but so do its losses. The firm lost $1.1bn (£851m) in the last three months of 2019, even as revenue jumped 37% to $4bn and the number of trips made on its platform rose by 28%.Spending to expand its Uber Eats food delivery business hurt the firm’s bottom line. Uber boss Dara Khosrowshahi said he was “gratified” with the progress the firm is making toward profitability.Adjusted for items such as taxes, the core “ride” part of the business turned a profit in the last three months of last year.

Xbox says Nintendo and Sony no longer main rivals:

Microsoft no longer sees PlayStation-maker Sony and Nintendo as the biggest competition for its Xbox platform.Phil Spencer, Microsoft’s head of gaming, said he now considered Amazon and Google as his top rivals because of their cloud-computing infrastructure.Cloud gaming tackles some common frustrations experienced by players but introduces some issues of its own. But Mr Spencer said his “traditional” rivals Nintendo and Sony were out of step with the future of gaming.

NSPCC urges Facebook to stop encryption plans:

Child-protection organisations say Facebook’s decision to strongly encrypt messages will give offenders a place to hide.The company is moving ahead with plans to implement the measure on Facebook Messenger and Instagram Direct. But more than 100 organisations, led by the NSPCC, have signed an open letter warning the plans will undermine efforts to catch abusers. Home Secretary Priti Patel said she “fully supported” the move.In a statement to the BBC, she said: “Tech companies like Facebook have a vital responsibility to balance privacy with the safety of vulnerable children.”

Russian disinformation ‘ongoing problem’ says FBI chief:

Russia is still interfering in US politics, according to FBI director Christopher Wray.He was answering questions about online disinformation at a US House judiciary committee hearing.”We are seeing, and have never stopped seeing, efforts to engage in malign foreign influence by the Russians,” he told lawmakers.China is also using disinformation campaigns to shift government policy and public opinion, he said. “Other countries, like China for example, have very active foreign malign influence efforts in this country,” he said.

Microsoft fixes Windows 10 search bar fault:

Microsoft has fixed a glitch in Windows 10 that meant one of the operating system’s core features stopped working. Dozens posted on social media that Windows Search had stopped working for them on Wednesday morning. Users said that when they used the desktop search tool it brought up a blank box rather than related results.Hours after it was first reported, the company said it “resolved” the problem for most users but some may need to restart their computers.”This issue has been resolved for most users and in some cases you may need to reboot your machine,” it said.The Windows 10 operating system has 800 million users worldwide. Microsoft did not say how many users were impacted by the problem.

Uber self-driving cars allowed back on California roads:

Ride-hailing firm Uber has been issued a permit by the Department of Motor Vehicles in California to test self-driving cars on public roads. It comes nearly two years after one of Uber’s self-driving cars was involved in a fatal crash in Arizona.Uber scaled back its autonomous car operations following the incident.Receiving a permit in California – which has granted permits to 65 other transport firms – is the latest step in Uber’s revival of the programme. California allows companies to test self-driving technology with a backup driver in the car.Before the fatal crash, Uber’s self-driving cars were being tested in four locations in North America – Phoenix, Pittsburgh, San Francisco and Toronto.

Coronavirus hits Nintendo Switch supplies to Japan:

The coronavirus has hit supplies of Nintendo’s Switch console to its home market in Japan.The games giant’s chief executive, Shuntaro Furukawa, said last week that production in China of the device had been affected by the epidemic. But delays in shipments from China to Japan were now “unavoidable” Nintendo said on Friday. It was unclear if other markets would be disrupted.On Wednesday, carmaker Tesla warned of disruption to its China operations.Deliveries within China of Tesla’s Model 3 vehicle would be temporarily delayed, a company executive said, following an extended production shutdown. Shares in the company, which have risen sharply recently, sank 17%.

Climate change: Clean tech ‘won’t solve warming in time’:

Breakthrough technologies such as carbon capture and hydrogen cannot be relied on to help the UK meet its climate change targets, a report says. The government had hoped that both technologies would contribute to emissions reductions required by 2050. But the report’s authors say ministers should assume that neither carbon capture and storage (CCS) nor hydrogen will be running “at scale” by 2050. They say the government must start a debate on other, controversial steps.These actions, which they say would need to be implemented in the near-term, include cutting down on flying and eating red meat.

Coronavirus: LG pulls out of Mobile World Congress:

LG has pulled out of one of the world’s biggest tech shows citing fears over the spread of coronavirus. The South Korean tech firm has cancelled its appearance at Mobile World Congress (MWC), which is held every year in Barcelona.MWC opens on 24 Feb and is the world’s largest mobile-focused tech expo.China’s ZTE has also dropped plans for a press conference at the event due to the illness, but it will still host a stand. Separately, Sony has said coronavirus could negatively affect production in its factories, which make components for Apple and Huawei products.Telecommunications trade body the GSMA, MWC’s organisers, said of the virus: “There is minimal impact on the event thus far”. However, within hours, LG announced it was pulling out.

Apple patent explores crease-free folding phone:

Apple is exploring plans for a foldable version of the iPhone, according to a patent filed in the US. The design features an innovative hinge mechanism that would prevent creasing issues similar devices have suffered from.Movable flaps would prevent unsightly marks by keeping the device in a semi-curved state when shut.Huawei, Samsung and Lenovo were among those to release foldable devices in 2019, to varying levels of success.

“Apple has a long history of assessing technology and only jumping into the market when it feels a particular technology is mature enough or that it can use it in a way that makes a meaningful difference to its products,” said analyst Ben Wood.”There is little doubt Apple has probably been assessing flexible displays for years behind closed door and it comes as no surprise it is trying to do something different.”

Huawei global expert speaks out on Cybersecurity Barriers in Saudi Arabia:

Advocating for uniform standards that support cybersecurity risk mitigation, Huawei joined top government, business, and academic leaders in Saudi Arabia this week at the Global Cybersecurity Forum held in Riyadh. Andy Purdy, Huawei’s Chief Security Officer in the US, was in the Kingdom to stress the importance of a cooperative approach to cybersecurity risk mitigation in which governments, telecom service providers, and technology vendors collaborate on industry guidelines—those that protect consumers and which also harness the economic potential of digital transformation.

Rockstar Games founder Dan Houser leaves studio:

Co-founder of Rockstar Games, Dan Houser, is leaving the firm he started with his brother Sam in 1998.Mr Houser was a main creative force behind two of the firm’s biggest series, Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead. His departure comes after an “extended break”, Rockstar’s parent company Take-Two Interactive said. Rockstar’s series have often courted controversy, but are among the best-selling and most critically-acclaimed games of the past two decades. Mr Houser will officially depart in March, according to a notice Take-Two sent to US financial regulators. His brother Sam Houser will remain as the company’s president. Dan Houser was one of the lead writers for the Grand Theft Auto series, as well as Rockstar’s other hits, Bully and Red Dead Redemption. He also worked as a voice actor on some of the company’s projects.

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