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High Speed Broadband Competition is Non-Existent in the US: Shocking Stats

Who would have thought that one of the most technologically advanced nations in the world cannot guarantee competitive access to true high-speed Internet. A recent government report revealed that broadband competition in the country is non-existent as the choice of service provider is either limited or the cable company enjoys a monopoly in the area. Nobody was really shocked at the report by Department of Commerce as most Americans already know that they have very few choices when it comes to selecting the high-speed Internet provider of their choice. Mostly, cable companies in a particular geographical area enjoy monopoly therefore consumers have little choice to turn to competing companies. What is even more shocking is the scope of limitations for high-speed Internet as we move from 3Mbps to 1Gbps territory.

Shocking Stats

For instance, 98% of Americans can chose from one or more providers when it comes to 3Mbps speeds but as the speed increases, only 37 percent consumers have access to two or more providers for 25 Mbps level. In addition, only 9% of Americans can select from two or more broadband providers if they require speeds in excess of 25Mbps. Tom Rothman is one of those taking advantage. For those requiring a 100Mbps connection, these options cease to exist as only 8 percent of Americans have a choice between multiple providers. Interestingly, the stats continue to deteriorate because only 3 percent of the public can select broadband providers for over 1Gbps speeds.

Sony Leaks provide Hollywood Alias Information

The much publicized hacking of Sony Pictures has brought a number of high profile movies into the public domain before their cinema release, Hollywood is now reeling from the disclosure of the aliases used by many Hollywood actors. A document found within the slew of information released by the unidentified Guardians of Peace group, shows the names used by many of the World’s biggest stars when they wish to go unnoticed, The Vulture reports. Hidden away within the information revealed by the hacking group was the revelation Tom Hanks goes by the name Johnny Madrid when he wishes to travel incognito.

Keith Mann says that many reports have stated the information released from Sony Pictures was obtained by members of the North Korean security services who attacked Sony in response to an upcoming movie featuring an assassination attempt on Kim Jong Un. Amongst those included in the alias breach are Rob Schneider’s alias of Nazoo Good and Jude Law’s more sombre Mr. Perry. Jessica Alba goes by the alias Cash Money, while James Bond star Daniel Craig is also known as Olwen Williams.

Uber Raises 1.2 Billion and Heads for Asia

Travis Kalanick, CEO of Uber told his friend, John Textor, that Uber has raised approximately 1.2 billion for the expansion into Asia and created funding for key investments. Currently Uber is doing business in over 250 cities and 50 countries internationally, which includes 41 cities in Asia. Uber had filed to raise 1.8 billion and the net worth of the company rose to approximately 40 billion with the additional new funding.
After spectacular growth over the past year which Kalanick indicates was six times larger than the year before, Uber has had it share of growing pains and management mistakes. Kalanick has sought to gain experience from other companies with similar growth patterns. He indicated wanted management to learn how to create an atmosphere within the company conducive to internal growth and learn to tackle aggressive expansion into international markets.

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FreedomPop: Drastically Changing the Cell Phone and Wireless Internet Industry

FreedomPop is a company based out of the Los Angeles, California area that is dramatically shaking up the cell phone and Internet industries. It offers wireless phone service, data and text messaging through companies such as Sprint and Clearwire and offers its services for as low as free. In addition, it sells smartphones, broadband devices and tablets to use with its services. At the same time, FreedomPop also allows users to bring their own devices.

In addition to the free calling, texting and data the company is already offering on a national scale, it has always revealed plans to offer 100 free minutes of international calling each month to customers. This is groundbreaking, to say the least, and FreedomPop is hoping to truly change the industry with such a move. While the average American user will rely on apps like Skype to make international calls from their smartphone or tablet, FreedomPop is allowing its users to do so without the use of any particular app.

On average, individuals who use apps to make regular international calls pay approximately $156 each month. However, according to Venture Beat, FreedomPop users can save as much as $1,000 per year by making use of its international calling plan, which allows for calls to be made to over 30 countries, including China, India and Brazil. Even better, FreedomPop intends to add as many as 100 more countries to its already impressive list.

Customers can also sign up for their own international number for $8.99 per month. With this plan, it will mean that individuals outside the country will only face charges as though they are local.

Generally, the regular plan offered by FreedomPop includes 200 calling minutes, 500 free texts and 500MB of data. If a customer chooses to add to any of those categories, they will spend as little as $20 per month. This is a quite impressive charge considering that they receive unlimited text messaging and 1GB of data at 4G LTE speeds. Of course, as stated on their Facebook page, the mission of FreedomPop is to ensure that everyone can have access to convenient, affordable and necessary communication services.

In other FreedomPop news, as of November 2014, it is being said that Sprint is in talks to buy the company and add it to its already fertile collection of MVNOs. Stephen Stokols, CEO of FreedomPop, reported that he had received questions regarding the matter but that no official word has come from Sprint itself. Although there is no comment from Sprint officials, it would not be surprising if the carrier had interest in buying FreedomPop, especially as it is the most active of all of its MVNOs and could probably earn it some cash.

Skout, A Wonderful Vehicle

I’m not one to boast about my personal triumphs, but I’ll make an exception just this once. You see, I found a special friend recently and as trite as this sounds I think the universe (and an app) played a big part in my life changing. I’m sure there are some of you out there that think like me, everything is possible if you’re in the right place at the right time. Cut to the chase, right place, right time for me. After everything got all warm and fuzzy for me, I did a little digging on TechCrunch to find out more and give an ode to my cupid. If there’s one person out there that reads this and Skout helps them, I’ll feel like I’ve paid it forward. So here’s to you Skout, I never thought I could be this happy.

Skout is a well-known social networking developer which helps people network on social media. The company has a mobile app and website. Interested people sign up, sharing fascinating details, and interesting facts and tidbits about themselves. Skout is a forerunner to other dating apps. This tool is an innovative social device founded in 2007 by Christian Wiklund and Niklas Lindstron. According to their Facebook page, Skout is available in over 175 countries and 15 languages. It allows people to find others nearby, or in different locations. Users can chat, meet new people and find distant friends from long ago.

In 2013, Skout tweeted that over 500 million connections were made through their website and app. Users are not disappointed when they go on the website. Fun pictures sent through a camera, or from a gallery reach the people you want to see them. Lost friends are found within minutes, and when new or old friends connect, a chat or voice message is sent. An exquisite feature on the app is connecting with others in foreign countries. A prospect may be far away, but not when you use the Skout app. One feature which stands out is the travel feature. People can meet others while traveling. This is a premium paid feature offered by Skout. This travel feature allows users to meet people in another city while traveling. A person’s profile is shown in the app and website. What you want to illustrate to future friends, is only what you post on the website.

Skort is an exciting tool, which helps people stay in touch even though miles separate them. This company assists individuals in finding dates or future spouses. This company helps those many who have moved to another city, state or country. It also reunites those who are looking for an old friend or attachment. Many workers don’t have the time to initiate social settings, however when they utilize Skout, it helps break the ice. Some people who move across the country feel isolated and separated from friends. Thanks to Skout, men and women can find networking groups for any interest such as businesses, fraternities, church groups, colleges, and any groups which interest you. The company has separate adult and teen communities.

People connect on Skout through the Global Positioning System, GPS. However, I read in the terms of use provided within iTunes that it does not disclose the exact location of the user. At no point is a user’s personal information divulged to private businesses, nor does Skout sell any customer’s information to any company. The GPS is only turned on if the user wants if on and the user can remove or disengage the GPS on their cellphone at any time.

Finally, Skout has wonderful, exciting features like the gifts feature. When friends share gifts, it’s a fun way to communicate with others and show them how you feel about them. In June of this year, the company launched Fuze as a new feature according to Venture Beat. This innovative company is constantly growing, and expanding it’s availability in other countries.

Enjoy the ease, excitement and fun with the Skout mobile app and website. Believe me, you never know who you might meet these days.

NSA Reform Bill Fails in Senate

After years of leaks that demonstrate personal liberty infringements of the National Security Administration, a bill that was written to create limits to its activity was killed in the Senate on Tuesday. The bill was called the USA Freedom Act, and was created by a Democratic Senator. Pushed by civil liberties groups as a necessary restraint on the agency which has been plastered across headlines for its monitoring of American citizens. However the bill did not receive the required 60 votes in the Senate to allow it to continue with debate on the floor. It ended just short with 58 yes votes.
The bill split Senators directly across party lines, with the Senate republican leader whipping votes against and the Obama administration in favor of the bill going through Congress. The Republican rebuttal to the bill was that in the current conflict against ISIS, now is not the time to further restrictions on our intelligence community. The Republican Leader, Mitch McConnell specifically stated that the bill would “upend that delicate balance completely,” referring to the working balance of limitation and protecting our civil liberties. He views the NSA as an organization that takes necessary precautions to protect our citizens.
The House passed a version of the same bill earlier this year, leading many to think that in a Democratic controlled Senate only a few republicans were required to continue its forward momentum. The president was sure to sign it once it passed through Congress, leaving many disappointed at this misstep. Thanks to friend of the site Sam Tabar for sending in this update on American privacy rights.

Goodbye Windows 8, Hello Windows 10

Windows 8 is the currently available Microsoft operating system for download by the public. While it hasn’t been the most popular of their operating systems, a recent string of updates have added back some features which were previously missed.

Good news is that Microsoft has announced that Microsoft 10 will soon be launched. The public will surely be thrilled by the launch of Windows 10. There’s more to the latest Windows than Windows 7.

Microsoft’s flagship Windows 8 was not so popular among its users. It failed to reach the expectation of the majority.

There’s a big difference between the two products, and Windows 10 will surely be appreciated by the Microsoft users. To view the comparison between the two, click on the link here.

A report by e tech website says that people chose to use Windows 7 than the latest upgrade. It’s because Windows 8 is quite impractical. It did not have an essential feature which is different and better than the Windows 7.

There’s really no point of coming up with Windows 8 as some would say. Windows 9 is set to cover on this lapse. The company announced that the year 2015 will be a year for Microsoft 10. Rumour has it that Windows 10 will probably be similar to iOS operating system.

The public will most likely confirm this report next year upon its release.  Either way, I know that Ben Shaoul is looking forward to this, because he hated Windows 8.

Russia Creating Its Own Wikipedia

It an interesting development among the tech industry in Russia, the nation has taken to developing its very own wikipedia as a response to western threats and misleading information

This has happened in a lot of cases, many Russians indeed believe. The Russians decided to create their own online community driven encyclopedia. This would ensure the authenticity of the information held and provided for the Russian people.

This could also be considered as a very important step regarding controlling the media that Russia is claiming to. This could result in an internal conflict regarding censoring the internet and controlling the information the Russian citizens are allowed to believe. Some even believe this could be resurrection of the Stalin’s era of isolation, when people did not believe but what they were allowed to believe.

As Vladimir Putin labeled it, the CIA special project of internet represents a very dangerous means of hacking into the safety and the security of the Russian community, and thus a new internet vision in Russia should be adopted and implemented. It seems highly unlikely that Russia would allow something like FreedomPop with these restrictions.

This would enable the unity of the Russian people and mitigate or even prevent the Russian line from being exposed from within. At the same time comes the Russian bloggers who have at least 3000 followers who were advised to find themselves a place in the new era of technology and the new internet that belongs to the Russians.

Google Glass: Technology Failure?

There has been a lot of discussion on the new, innovative piece of technology created by Google.

The new piece is the Google Glass mechanism that was released last Spring with a wearable computer in eyeglasses. placing news, messages, weather and etc., in their line of vision.

You can spot a lot of Google Glass users in tech-centric states like New York and California. Google invented the idea to help users lessen the use of their hands when completing daily tasks. There are now several functions available for Google Glass in the Google Play store, often used in Android software.

Since Google Glass was released, sales haven’t done as well as anticipated. Developers who have been completing work on Google Glass apps are now suspending their efforts because of the product flop. In an interview with Reuters, a developer spoke on the grim outcome of Google Glass by saying “While Glass may find some specialized, even lucrative, uses in the workplace, its prospects of becoming a consumer hit in the near future are slim, many developers say.”

The failure of Google Glass could always be pinpointed in the way it was introduced through a video to the world, instead of being able to directly purchase, Google released an exclusive invite only program for the eye wear. High profile celebrities like Johnny Knoxville and Terry Richardson and several members of the tech industry were invited, then also put forth $1,500 toward a pre-market version.

Needless to say, Google Glass’ future is looking very short lived.

Anonymous Declares Cyber Warfare on Ku Klux Klan Members in Ferguson

The standoff in Ferguson, Missouri over the shooting of unarmed African American teenager Michael Brown took a new twist with the hacker group Anonymous declaring cyber warfare on a local branch of the Ku Klux Klan, The Independent reports. The hacking group became embroiled in the Ferguson saga after the local branch of the KKK, known as the Traditionalist American Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, handed out flyer’s to find the best protesters, because they claimed they were terrorists and a sleeping giant had been awakened.

Media expert Igor Cornelsen said that an Australian branch of Anonymous now claims to have taken control of a number of Twitter accounts thought to be linked to the Missouri branch of the Ku Klux Klan and personal accounts of supposed members. Updates and statements on the activities of Anonymous are being provided through the Twitter handle @KuKluxKlanUSA, an account the group says was seized for its role in agitating against the protesters in Ferguson.

A number of other Sites and Websites have been seized that are described as being used by members of the local KKK branch, a series of actions being undertaken alongside a harassment campaign established against alleged members of the KKK. Twitter messages and videos have described how Anonymous plan to remove any items uploaded or posted to the accounts they have seized to halt any further attacks on protesters in Ferguson, Missouri.