Facebook is currently testing a new feature that could help users to regain access to account by using their face to verify identity, if perhaps they get locked out of their Facebook account by a hacker.

It's also useful, in a situation that a user is in a place where they can’t receive SMS/Call via two-factor authentication, like on a plane.

Initially leaked by Social media researcher Devesh Logendran, who sent a screenshot of the feature to TNW’s Matt Navarra. The Face ID is another step, alongside two-factor authentication, as the feature could prove reliably helpful to users and isn’t fooled by hackers.

While Facebook has attempted a number of different approaches to help users get back into a locked account in the past, such as requiring you to identify photos of your friends to prove identity, which has witnessed backlash from its users.

Albeit, therefore are potential privacy concerns, as any biometric data can give reveal much about a person, but many users may be willing to avail it, if that's a means to get back their Facebook account.

Facebook testing Account Unlock using facial recognition

Mozilla has been hard at work on a couple of projects which they are now finally building into their latest browser release, starting with Quantum, an offshoot of Mozilla’s experimental Servo browser engine.

While Servo wasn't intended to be released as a standalone, but basically as the incubation chamber for the future Firefox.

Servo engine is written in Rust, a programming language developed by Mozilla, which enable Firefox to take full advantage of multiple CPU cores — especially when it comes to its CSS engine, which plays a major role in how fast a web page is rendered.

The Firefox browser version 57 is the most important Firefox release in years, culminating years of improvements on many of the pieces that allow the browser to work smoothly.

Mozilla dubbed this release “Firefox Quantum” as it uses far less memory (and perhaps much lesser than Chrome), with new interface that focuses on simplicity and speed. It also features a built-in screenshot tool and a distraction-free reading mode.

Firefox users can still modify the interface as they wish, and the interface equally look good on high-DPI screens and work on laptops with touchscreens.

Firefox 57 is scheduled to launch on November 14, however you can give it a spin with all the new features in the current beta now available for download.

Here's why Firefox browser deserves a try!

Uber, the taxi-hailing company has added support for the deaf and hard of hearing drivers, which according to the company handle millions of trip requests. The feature serves as additional help for those with hearing impairments, and a handy tool that could build on top of what the company already have in place for its hearing impaired drivers.

The feature brings a card in the feed of the rider app when they’re paired up with a deaf or hard of hearing driver, which will allow them an option to learn some basic words and phrases in American Sign Language (ASL).

Riders will see a special card in the Uber feed. Once they tap it, they'll be taken to a page where they can select the basics, like "Hello" and "Thank You," or spell out their name. They'll then be given a GIF with the word(s) in ASL. That way, they can better communicate with their Deaf or Hard of Hearing driver, because signing "Thank You" or "Hello" in ASL can go a long way.

While the rider can choose from basic greeting like “Hello” and “Thank you,” or learn the letters to spell out their name so they can confirm it to the driver.

This nifty feature is coming on the heels of the launch of the new in-app messaging system that will eliminate the need for riders and drivers to share their phone numbers to get in touch.

It underscores Uber's effort to serve as a complete utility app which allow riders and drivers alike to stay ahead of the physical handicaps; which the in-app aid for its hearing impaired drivers invariable represents.

Uber Riders can now get lesson on basic Sign Language via the app

Facebook owned Instagram has witnessed a boom in international followership, which since acquisition, Instagram has seen its users' stats soar to over 700 million monthly active users globally.

And this numbers, it usurped from Snapchat - its closest rival, whose growth starting from Q4 2015, slowed to 13.8 percent, 14 percent in Q1 2016 and 17.2 percent in Q2 2016 to reach 143 daily active users.

Snap, the parent company of Snapchat, teamed up with Google to host the #MyFutureMe contest, a coding competition inviting young people to create a new filter for Snapchat.

As part of Google’s Made With Code program, the initiative is an attempt to integrate pop culture into computer science, making it essentially a youth-friendly experience.

While Snap has sought to stay one step ahead of Instagram in terms of new features; the partnership with Google as a complete coding activity is aimed to help build Snapchat Geofilter that expresses the vision for the future.

With Instagram encroachment on Snap’s international youth markets, and copying its best features, it has potentially sidelined Snapchat. But making coding applicable to where teenagers spend most of their time, is perhaps the best way to ignite their interest.

The close bond between Snap and Google, however could have stemmed from the fact that Snap has a five-year $2 billion deal to host its services on Google's cloud; albeit perhaps there are rumors about Google trying to snap up Snap.

Facebook has something to worry as the cozy relationship between Google and Snap rolls on, given the proven Google effect!

Should Facebook be worried about Snap's romance with Google?

Twitter is reportedly testing a change on the length of tweets from 140 to 280 characters; according to the social network, the longer 280 characters will be available in select languages, including English, for users to share their thoughts without the usual limit.

While Twitter had earlier made the shirking of 140-character limit easier with a tweak via its latest Android app, to allow users to write out a tweetstorm broken into separate tweets.

Which calls to point that Twitter’s character limit is rather a holdover, as from the early days when tweets were sent as texts, which were limited to 160 characters.

The expansion became necessary as it realized the 140-character limit impacted more heavily on those tweeting in some select languages — like English, Spanish, Portuguese or French — as compared with others, like Japanese, Korean and Chinese.

The feature will initially be made available to a small group of users, as Twitter intends to collect data on how the test goes before rolling out the change to all.

Twitter expanding beyond 140-character limit per tweet

Twitter has unveiled its live video service starting with 16 different shows it planned to stream in 2017, which include shows from news outlets like BuzzFeed and entertainment publishers like LiveNation.

While the company had pitched the service to advertisers, as most of the shows require an advertiser commitment to help cover the production costs, the advertisers had shown interest.

And with Twitter haven secured ad commitments for the 16 shows, they’re about now given the green light to go ahead with the productions.

The company’s focus is on live video shows, though it isn't a TV network, but TV networks produces everything, which is referred to as the upfronts, as to the upfront commitment advertisers make to the shows.

Albeit the digital version is called the newfronts, following the fact that digital companies pitches show at the newfronts that never gets any backing, and thus never gets created.

It remains unclear how much video advertising Twitter and its partners have sold for each show, but the good news is that they’ve chosen to stream anyways.

Twitter making headways with its push into Live video shows

If you think that younger people watch less TV than they used to nowadays, you have to rethink; as they still watch a lot of it - but hoping on it right from the convenience of their smartphone. And why does it matter to advertisers, which spends the majority of their dollars on TV, even as they spend on Amazon, Facebook and Google Ads too?

The ads dollar sharing ratio — for every $51 ad dollars that's spent on TV has a corresponding $49 spent online — has led to serious leadership jostling amongst the large tech companies.

While Facebook generated over $26 billion in ad dollars last year and is currently growing that business at a rate of 49 percent this year, it still wants more.

It plans to spend about $1 billion to develop original shows that in most cases look a lot like those on TV.

The incursion towards professionally produced TV content also explains why Amazon beat out Google by agreeing to pay the NFL $50 million for the right to stream 10 Thursday night games.

Though, Amazon isn't hellbent on direct advertising like Google, but still advertising is among its fastest growing businesses, and retaining customers is a key part of offering enticing contents people like to watch.

Google on its part, plans to spend at least $200 million to produce 40 original shows for YouTube.

And as the original platform for online video, YouTube’s main focus has been user-generated contents, which may one day usurp the place of traditional TV, even as the industry is currently witnessing a disruption in terms of streaming subscriptions.

How Facebook, Google and Amazon are jostling for leadership in original contents TV streaming

Snapchat filters for funerals, as morbid as that may sound, are beginning to pop up and the idea of using the smartphone app to take selfies isn't quite against rights for funeral respects.

The geofilters can actually serve as another way for people to pay their respects to the deceased.

While the majority of orders for geofilters are for birthdays and weddings, less than 1 percent are for funerals, according to analysts. As the cartoonized character of a deceased friends or family members can also be seen as tributes.

And for a payment of just between $60 and $120, you can get a funeral geofilter made, perhaps will help put an end to the rather 'sad funeral' in which everybody is wearing black which isn't as common these days.

If you can afford to pay a little extra, you can also get a little caricature of the deceased on the geofilter.

Selfies have so permeated modern day culture that they've even spread to moments of grief. As such the filter to represent the deceased is special, because it's theirs, even if it's a funeral.

These funeral selfies aren't any different from the good-old Victorian death photos.

In the mid-1800s, families would take photos with a deceased loved one, propped up to look like they're still alive. The idea was to recapture a person's last impression in their final moments.

Nowadays, with the help of technology shaping how we interact with the world, and the growth of social media purportedly weaned on the dearth of decorum at funerals, may perhaps mean an uptick in using social media to re-imagine memories at funerals.

How Snapchat Geofilters can actually serve as ways to pay respect to the deceased

Following the huge success recorded with the augmented reality game debutant, Pokémon Go, Niantic Labs, the parent company has gone ahead to release a new app called Pokémon Playhouse, bringing Pikachu and friends to preschoolers.

But unlike Pokémon Go, the Playhouse game is not about capturing Pokémon, battling or raids, rather it’s focused on activities appropriate for kiddies within ages 3 to 5 years.

While most of the activities are reminiscent of the stuff you’d expect in other childrens’ apps, like Toca Boca or Furby, youngsters can as well solve simple puzzles or listen to stories.

They can also take care of their Pokémon in a ‘Pokémon Grooming’ activity, or look for Pokémon in the night sky in the ‘Search the Stars’ feature. And includes other things like starting a band with Pokémon, feeding them, or taking them to an interactive park.

The game will include “never-before-seen expressions of Pokémon” such as Pikachu, Bulbasaur, Litten, and Snorlax, according to the company.

And it advances as the youngsters continue to play, completing the various in-app activities; or get closer to hatching eggs that feature new Pokémon to add their collection, with over 50 Pokémon included in the game.

Pokémon Playhouse won’t have kids begging money for in-app purchases, as all its content is free and the game itself is a free download.

Pokémon Playhouse debut with Pikachu and friends for preschoolers

Google is making Nvidia K80 GPUs generally available, as well as support for Nvidia P100 GPUs in Beta along with a new sustained pricing model. While the launch of Nvidia GPUs support on Google Cloud Platform (GCP), means another performance boost with Cloud GPUs which is capable of accelerating workloads including machine learning training and inference, among other enhancements.

Other high performance compute use cases include: geophysical data processing, simulation, seismic analysis, molecular modeling, and genomics.

As regards machine learning workloads, having access to GPUs in the cloud provides flexibility to pay for what is used with by the minute pricing, and the sustained pricing model means if you end up running the GPUs for a sustained period of time, you'd get up to a 30 percent discount, depending on the usage.

And all of the GPUs can take advantage of sustained use discounts (which requires no lock-in or upfront minimum fee commitments), which automatically lower the price of your virtual machines when you use them to run sustained workloads.

Google claims that this approach could provide bare metal kind of performance, and based on the Pascal GPU architecture, you can increase throughput with fewer instances while minimizing costs as compared to traditional solutions.

The company is offering the flexibility to run GPU workloads in virtual machines or containers and will be delivering the service in four global locations. To get started, visit the GPU site to learn more about how your organization can benefit from Cloud GPUs and Compute Engine.

Google brings Cloud GPUs support to its Cloud platforms

While both Facebook and Google have made a kill in advertising, Pinterest like the other companies also makes money from advertising; but now it thinks it can make even more money if it gives advertisers better targeting to reach the right people.

The company announced the “Taste Graph,” which is a collection of 5,000 user interests that advertisers will leverage to reach specific niche audiences.

The Taste Graph list is quite expansive, and includes some niche interests like “vegetarian barbecue,” “desk yoga” and “email newsletter design” according to the company.

It is built on artificial intelligence, proving what’s possible to achieve by developing cutting edge algorithms. Albeit, the Taste Graph has been around for a while and has historically been used for organic content.

John Milinovich, Pinterest product manager said the Taste Graph kind of niche targeting leads to better performance, and ultimately cheaper ads; adding that all of Pinterest’s 5,000 user interests will be approved by human.

Pinterest is estimating revenue of over $500 million this year, and the targeted advertising to reach more people that are looking for a specific niche item remains the primary differential.

Pinterest thinks better targeting means more money from Advertisers

Facebook is reportedly rolling out a new feature to its main navigation menu on the mobile app that includes link to Instagram account, making it easier for users to access their Instagram profile directly from within the Facebook app.

The new addition appears below the link to your personal profile in Facebook’s app, right above the links to Facebook Pages you may manage.

Albeit, the feature isn't a major change as it only allow Facebook to launch the Instagram app on your phone, taking you to Instagram’s main feed without navigating away, just as it would if you had launched the app.

It's invariably a way to help users stay in touch with their friends on Facebook and Instagram at the same time.

And users on Instagram will also appear active to their friends on Facebook, which will help position Instagram as one of the top mobile app, especially as regards app installs and usage share.

Facebook currently ranked as the number one app in terms of monthly visitors in the U.S., and it's among the top 10 apps in terms of mobile penetration worldwide.

The new feature is still rolling out to users on iOS and Android, and may not have reached all Facebook users at the time of this post, however if you’re not on Instagram, perhaps no change will happen.

Facebook brings access to Instagram profile right within the mobile app

Instagram's focus on growing international followership, instead of just targeting people in developed nations with faster internet connection and bigger bank balances, may have already started to yield favorable results.

Since Facebook acquisition, Instagram has seen its users' stats soar to about 700 million monthly active users globally.

Albeit, Snapchat is touted as favored by youth demography, but competition from Instagram is making it harder for Snap to gain foothold in the matured age groups.

While Snapchat grew quickly from its early days, hitting its stride in late 2015 and early 2016, but starting from Q4 2015, growth slowed to 13.8 percent, 14 percent in Q1 2016 and 17.2 percent in Q2 2016 to reach 143 daily active users.

Analytics companies have marked Snapchat low in view counts between 15 percent and 40 percent, even as more users began to shift to Instagram.

With Jumpshot's big data and advanced marketing analytics which tracks anonymized data from 100 million global users across different platforms, Snapchat scored 38.5 percent of new signups globally compared with Instagram’s 61.5 percent in August.

Though, Snap has sought to stay one step ahead of Instagram in terms of new features; created more “Shows” with television networks for its Discover section, and rolled out a Stories Search feature for viewing publicly submitted posts about some topics, among other innovative features, it's still struggling with growth.

Now the question is whether Snapchat can survive Facebook’s onslaught, with the tech giant encroachment on Snap’s best features in its international markets, which has potentially sidelined Snapchat.

How Instagram is gradually encroaching on Snapchat usage share

Twitter was enmeshed in a rather algorithmic fiasco that allowed advertisers to target users with derogatory sobriquet, with ad campaigns using such derogatory terms potentially reaching millions of users on the network.

While the social media company claims the algorithm that allowed campaigns to target millions of people based on derogatory terms was a bug.

Albeit, Twitter’s ad platform allow advertisers to choose via what it calls “audience features” when creating an advertising campaign to target any keyword, the company does not reveal the audience size, particularly for terms with two or more words.

Twitter also suggests what it calls “follower look-alike” accounts, explaining: “Target people with interests similar to an account's followers.

The automated feature keyword targeting allows advertisers to reach users based on keywords in their search queries, recent Tweets, and engagements on the network.

But Twitter maintains that it prohibits "the promotion of hate speech globally saying its ad policy includes race, ethnicity, and national origin, and tells marketers: "You are responsible for all your promoted content on Twitter."

Notwithstanding, the company has been urged to implement more proactive human oversight to their algorithms, especially to filter inappropriate and hateful speeches.

How Twitter Algorithmic fiasco targets racial and derogatory sobriquet

Inflatables are objects that can be inflated with gas, usually with air; while its advantage is that it can be stored in a small space when not inflated. Inflatable-zone.com is a leading manufacturer of inflatable products including bubble soccer, zorb ball, inflatable slide, inflatable bouncer, water game equipment, etc.

With large stock of inflatable products on the website, it is rather more convenient to buy it online than in store, or buy it for sale and rent it for the cheaper budget.

The key advantage of inflatables is that it can be stored in a small space when not inflated, since inflatables depend on the presence of a gas to maintain their size and shape.

And as function fulfillment per mass used compared with non-inflatable strategies is a key differential, inflatables have replaced the plastic blow-molded yard decorations used as Christmas décor at many U.S. homes, and are also now used as Halloween décor and for other occasions as well.

Inflatables for Fun!

Zorbing is the recreation or sport of rolling downhill inside an orb, generally made of inflated transparent plastic, and can also be carried out on water along with water slide, provided the orb is inflated properly and sealed once the rider is inside.

While many orbs have straps to hold the rider in place, others leave the rider free to walk the orb around or be tossed about freely by the rolling motion. Inflatable-zone.com offers most amazing Zorb balls and Zorb tracker which affords the safest and injury-free experience for newbie riders.

Decorative inflatables

Inflatables which comes in various sizes and shapes have ultimately replaced the plastic blow-molded yard decorations, been made of synthetic fabric of different colors sewn together in assorted patterns.

They are made in many popular characters, including Santa Claus and snowmen for Christmas, and ghosts and jack-o-lanterns for Halloween.

There are also inflatable snow globes which blow tiny styrofoam beads around on the inside, the blower's air jet picking them up and through a tube to the top, where they fall down inside the clear vinyl front.

With airtrack, inflatable spars, inflatable wings, and tensairity-enhanced inflatable bladders providing a means to structure practical objects. Whatever may be your requirements, Inflatable-zone.com has got spectacular stockpile of the most creative inflatables to cater for your various needs.

Inflatable-zone.com offers Zorb Ball, Bouncer and more Inflatables cheaper online

Safari, Apple's browser has implemented what is called Intelligent Tracking Prevention, and with a couple of other enhancements that Apple is using to try to cut back down on users' tracking. Though, it does not block ads or interfere with legitimate tracking on the sites that people actually click on or visit.

While Apple's limiting of the use of cookies for ad retargeting to 24 hours, and deleting of site’s cookies entirely if you don’t visit for 30 days, are other approaches that limits how web visitors can be tracked by online advertisers.

Apple's Safari is perhaps the first major browser to block third-party cookies by default and implement Intelligent Tracking Prevention.

Albeit, some advertising groups which includes the American Association of Advertising Industries in an open letter has criticized Apple’s strategy as “opaque and arbitrary”; describing the heavy-handed approach as bad for consumer choice and ad-supported online contents.

Apple, however remains adamant with its plans, which it defended as the right approach for consumer privacy.

According to the company, Ad tracking technology has become so pervasive, that it is now possible for ad tracking companies to recreate a person’s entire web browsing history.

And this information is collected without permission and is used for ad re-targeting, which is how ads follow people around the Internet. But, with the Intelligent Tracking Prevention feature, cookies and other data used for this cross-site tracking will be detected and eliminated, and thus help keep a person’s browsing history private.

Apple limits how Web visitors using Safari is Tracked by Advertisers

Getting the good old-fashioned smiley emoji is an easy way to add fun to your messaging, and that’s the whole point of emoji, after all! While there inroad into mobile messaging via apps is epochal, desktop application have been wanting; but now, with Windows 10 and the Fall Creators Update, a new emoji keyboard will make adding emoji pretty dead easy.

As annoying as the present state of emoji for Windows 10 is, Microsoft has never really gotten it off the ground, even with the On-Screen Keyboard, which actually is an accessibility app that you can launch whenever you boot Windows.

While the On-Screen keyboard isn't an emoji app, trying to type a smiley simply types in text: a colon and a closed parentheses symbol.

Albeit, the fact that Microsoft can allow emoji in some on-screen keyboard, but certainly not available for all the on-screen keyboards is rather disheartening.

Microsoft with the Fall Creators Update has sort to resolve the issue, and once the Update drops, users can launch the emoji keyboard within Windows 10: either using the WIN + . (the period punctuation mark) key, or the WIN + ; (semi-colon) key.

It allows you to navigate the various “tabs” or categories of emoji via the Tab key, and touch or mouse to the one you’d like, or by using the arrow keys.

Albeit, you can only enter one emoji at a time, after which the keyboard disappears. And the emoji keyboard isn’t a draggable window, either.

Developers are probably already coding in solutions to fix the issue regards any downside to Microsoft’s emoji window. But you'll have to wait till October 17, when the new emoji keyboard will drop with the Fall Creators Update.

Microsoft brings Emoji Keyboard command to Windows 10 via Creators Update

Snapchat brings two of its novelties, animated avatars called Bitmoji and augmented reality technology, to allow users create images in the real world through the app’s camera.

The new feature allow users to project their Bitmoji avatar into any environment through the app’s camera.

This latest update is perhaps giving the word “selfie” a new meaning, as using Snapchat to animate still images is even now much more possible with the augmented reality capabilities.

While the likes of Facebook and Instagram have been rolling out features that mimics Snapchat's most creative updates, such as face-distorting masks to usurp it, but the company keep growing in popularity.

Snap acquired Bitmoji, which it bought for $64 million almost 18 months ago; Bitmoji attaches the cartoonish likenesses to funny and cheesy phrases and then stamps them on images that can be shared across social media.

And with Facebook foray into augmented reality masks notwithstanding, none can create fun augmented reality masks like Snap. The new update is now live for iOS and Android users worldwide.

Snapchat's Bitmoji: AR Animated Cartoonish Avatars goes live

Google has introduced video as part of its mapping service, which would allow members of its Local Guides program to upload 30-second clips from their camera roll or shoot 10-second videos right from the Google Maps app.

The video review was expressly made available for Local Guides about two weeks ago, of which the company has commenced notifying them about the new feature.

While Google Maps already allow uploads, which hitherto had been only still images, the new video review feature is capable of capturing better scenarios and thus more descriptive in nature.

It’ll serve some really promotional purposes, especially for local businesses within the entertainment and design verticals, even as it presents a huge enabling for them on Google Maps.

Google is also allowing users to use their videos for personal reviews, albeit there are rules to adhere to, which equally apply to written reviews.

The feature is currently available for Android for now, and to upload/record videos, simply search for and select a place in Google Maps, scroll down and tap "add a photo", then hold the shutter button for up to 10 seconds to record a short video or Scroll down and tap “Add a photo”, then tap “Folder” and select a video to upload.

However, the videos on Google Maps can be viewed by all users on iOS, Android, or desktop.

Google Maps to feature Video reviews from Local Guides

Apple's iTunes was released in 2001, but over time it became increasingly bloated, for which the change to remove the App Store from the latest version of iTunes for MacOS and Windows was necessitated.

While the changes primarily is intended to return the iTunes to its original function as an entertainment app.

Apple has made significant changes to the latest version of iTunes for MacOS and Windows, and as the completely redesigned App Store is now exclusively tied to iOS 11 devices, may mean more traffic to the platform.

The updated iTunes is sleeker and perhaps with the App Store now gone, will bring U content to the Podcasts section, while Internet Radio will be placed in the music library sidebar.

And users who sync apps through the iTunes will need to re-download them onto their devices, while previously downloaded iOS apps for PC can be found in the Media folder, but if no longer available, you can still transfer it from PC to iOS devices via USB cable.

With the overhauled App Store, users will see rather larger videos and written content describing notable new releases instead of regular list of apps.

Apple, however, will still prefer users to open the App Store instead of a window in the iTunes, so the new App Store will not only have a new look but also a whole new approach to editorials.

Apple removes App Store from iTunes for MacOS and Windows

Apple in its ongoing event has announced a replacement for Touch ID; Face ID will allow you to unlock your iPhone by just looking at it. The Face ID also replaces Touch ID for Apple Pay and other apps that uses it to authenticate users, like banking apps.

The facial scan, according to Apple is so accurate that there’s only a 1 in 1,000,000 chance of another random person’s face being able to unlock your iPhone.

It uses a bevy of new hardware to capture this 3D facial map – a dot projector, tradition, front camera, flood illuminator and infrared camera.

While holding a photo up of someone can’t unlock their iPhone, neither would a face mask, which were used by Apple’s engineering teams to train the feature.

The Face ID feature will debut in the new iPhone X, without the iconic home button, since that’s where Apple put the fingerprint scanner in older iPhone.

Apple replaces Touch ID with Face ID for Apple Pay

Today, Apple will be holding a keynote at the new Steve Jobs Theater on Apple Campus, where it is expected to unveil the new iPhone models, and also the new Apple Watch; as well as Apple TV.

To watch the event as the company is streaming it live starting at 1300hrs in New York (1800hrs GMT), you’ll need to download the Apple Events app in the App Store if you have the current Apple TV.

While Apple will be pushing out the “Apple Events” channel to users with old Apple TVs, so that they can watch the event by simply turning on the device.

Otherwise, the event can also be watched from the Apple Events section on its website. Albeit, the video feed only works in Apple's Safari and Microsoft Edge; but supported on both macOS and Windows 10.

As anticipated, Apple is about to unveil the new iPhone, which perhaps may be different from old tradition as the company according to leaks will be unveiling not just one model, but three different models.

Watch the live stream for Apple's iPhone keynote

While the iPhone’s local storage drive has pretty strong encryption, and without a passcode or a fingerprint, there’s no way anyone can get past the lockscreen, it’s still possible to get cloud data held on Apple servers.

Albeit, if it’s stored locally on your phone, it’s tough to get without your permission, as exemplified in the saga with FBI to crack into an iPhone belonging to Syed Farook, one of the attackers in the shooting at San Bernardino, California.

But, it’s possible to obtain the data held on Apple servers, or data associated with an app; making such the Achilles heel where thieves and forensics have turned to as the easiest access point.

And as it’s possible to initiate an automatic backup right from the computer, which can move all the phone’s data onto the computer, makes it digital forensics best maneuver.

Though, Apple had already beefed up the process for establishing a trusted device — with iOS 11, that system will get even more tougher. A new feature in iOS 11 will make that system a bit more harder to crack.

With iOS 11, you won’t be able to establish a pairing with only the fingerprint; you’ll require full passcode access, as if you were unlocking the phone after a hard reset.

And perhaps, it will present a serious challenge for investigators, who compel suspects on fingerprints in legal territory against the full passcode.

Even as backing up the phone to a trusted device is a huge part of modern forensics, it will be harder without the user’s permission with iOS 11, and given that the next iPhone will drop the TouchID feature, makes it all worthwhile.

Apple's clampdown on data theft deepens with iOS 11

Twitter may be tweaking a new enhancement for its shirking 140-character feature, tweetstorm; which spotted in its latest Android app allows user to write out a tweetstorm broken into separate tweets, and tweeted at a go.

Tweetstorm is a cheeky name for when someone spams your Twitter timeline with dozens of tweets, shirking the normal 140-character limit.

Twitter could be on its way to making expanded tweets more accessible to all users, which the tweetstorm impassioned and poorly edited rants couldn't possibly achieve.

The hidden feature was first spotted by Devesh Logendran, a Twitter user who broke the news of the feature to Matt Navarra, TNW’s Director of social media.

While tweetstorming is not just to tweet separately or reply the first tweet, but you must need to reply the previous tweet one at a time to build a tweetstorm. Now, whether the making of tweetstorm is good for the bulk of information and its consumption on Twitter remains to be seen.

Tweetstorms can actually contain a lot of useful information, as it serves an immediate means of communication.

Shirking of 140-character Twitter limit to get easier

Apple’s upcoming event next Tuesday has got tongues wagging, as the company is expected to unveil its new flagships, and with the latest operating system iOS 11 set to power the next generation of its products.

While iOS 11 firmware leak has confirmed some nifty features that could stick, coming to iPhone users (may be limited to top-of-the-range iPhone model), which includes: 3D emoji characters for iMessage, called Animoji.

The Animoji uses facial tracking, coupled with the user’s voice to create expressive animated messages. Also, there is an animated poo-moji, which perhaps may not go rather too well, as it portends an offensive stereotype.

According to the leaks, there's a bunch of rather oldschool-styled wallpapers — and for which Apple could to be getting nearer to recreating the ZX Spectrum logo.

And new camera-related feature purportedly coming to the premium iPhone model, which is a Portrait Lighting mode for creating dSLR-like shots using depth by simulating lighting effects. With support for Contour Light, Natural Light, Stage Light, Stage Light Mono, and Studio Light, which suggests the mode enhancement could be related to the flash.

The firmware also includes further references to a new iPhone screen design, first revealed in the release of firmware for Apple’s forthcoming HomePod Siri speaker back in July.

Starting with iPhone 8, Apple is expected to switch from LCD displays to OLED and there's ample evidence the OLED iPhone will feature a True Tone Display for white balancing like the iPad Pro lineup. And it also reveals a new face unlock feature, which is codenamed Pearl ID.

Get ready for Animated 3D emoji as revealed in iOS 11 firmware leak

Google will be replacing its cloud service, Drive with Backup and Sync, which apparently serves same purpose, but even more as it allows you to store photos, videos and documents from your PC in the same format on Google's cloud.

The details of the transition, according to Google is that come December 11, it will stop supporting Drive, with ultimate shut down scheduled for March 12, 2018.

For those, using Google Drive to synchronize files across PCs and phones, you've got just three months to install its replacement or risk losing your files.

While Google synchronize files you've stored on your desktop or your documents folders and make all your photos part of Google Photos, Backup and Sync is now the new home of all the files.

IT administrators who offer Google's G Suite productivity tools to employees have the option to use File Stream software, that allow organizations store files solely in the cloud, and stream it to laptops when working on it.

And every other user can install Backup and Sync right away to get the transition now, so that you won't be bothered by the demise.

Steps to safeguard files as Google replaces Drive with Backup and Sync

While Apple’s Developer Center had been a target in a three-day hacking spell back in 2013, this week’s issue isn't related to any security breach, rather was caused by a bug, according to the company.

The system anomaly that changed some developers’ addresses within Apple’s infrastructure to a location in Russia, raised some concerns seemingly in the pairing with Russian hackers.

Apple as a follow up, issued the note below to developers, explaining that an unspecified bug is to be blamed for the temporary issue, which impacted some of the developers.

Due to a bug in our account management application, your address information was temporarily displayed incorrectly in your account details on the Apple Developer website. The same incorrect address was displayed to all affected developers. The underlying code-level bug was quickly resolved and your address information now shows correctly. There was no security breach and at no time were the Apple Developer website, applications, or services compromised; nor were any of your Apple Developer membership details accessed by, shared with, or displayed to anyone.

Albeit, the incident prompted concern that it may have been triggered by an unforeseen involvement of a third party.

Apple claims that sensitive personal information were encrypted and inaccessible, but some developers' names, mailing addresses, and email addresses were leaked in the incident, even as the company battles to fix the bug.

Apple confirmed issue with its Developer Center is a bug; not a breach

YouTube unveiled the updated "Live" on Tuesday, with extra streaming capabilities on iOS devices to enable users moderate comments, and initiate fast stream with less buffering.

While the latest enhancements are more about live moments, and makes it possible for users to stream with less of a delay, according to Kurt Wilms, product lead for YouTube Live.

Even as more and more YouTubers (both celebrities and regular folks) experiment with livestreaming video via their smartphone, the company is making it simpler to stream from your iPhone and iPad.

Albeit, livestreaming is possible from certain apps via the YouTube Gaming app, but now the feature has come to the main YouTube app so users can use their phone's microphone and front-facing camera to add audio and video commentary to livestream.

And the new speed enhancement called ultra-low latency cuts down on lag so YouTubers can answer questions or get viewer response faster. It's a step forward in real-time interaction in watching live video, as it also ensures less of a delay between when you broadcast the video.

There are several new tools for chat moderation: To pause the chat by pressing and holding "alt/option" and a check for inappropriate messages for approval, along with a tool that share hidden user lists, which let moderators use the same hidden user lists for comments and live chat.

Also, the system offers AI capabilities, which you can chose to opt out, that learns over time whether you need to hold for a review.

How YouTube intend to simplify Livestreaming

WhatsApp has finally announced its Business app, which specifically targets big enterprises and will allow such businesses provide customers with useful information like flight times, delivery confirmations, among other notifications.

The company also announced its closed pilot program for verifying business accounts (with green checkmark) to distinguish them from personal accounts.

While the overriding objective is to help the company monetize its messaging app by charging large enterprise businesses for tools to better communicate with customers. WhatsApp will possibly charge businesses such as airlines and banks to have their customer service agents sending high volumes of messages to customers.

It could also offer artificial intelligence services to secure transactions, which will eliminate the need to manually verify customers, as the automated agents will be more effective at such jobs.

According to the company, it wants to facilitate “someone placing an order with a local bakery or looking at new styles from a clothing store” and “shopkeepers who use WhatsApp to stay in touch with hundreds of customers from a single smartphone”, plus offer “an easier way to respond to messages.”

WhatsApp’s Chief Operating Officer, Matt Idema had earlier chirped that “they do intend on charging businesses in the future, though don’t have the details of monetization figured out”.

WhatsApp for Business announced; targets big enterprises with extra features

For those not in the know, a cryptocurrency is simply a digital asset (also classified as a subset of alternative currencies and virtual currencies) that works as a medium of exchange, while cryptography is used to secure the transactions and to control the creation of additional units of the currency.

And the market for cryptocurrency became hugely profitable as a result of Bitcoin growth, been the first decentralized cryptocurrency, launched in 2009.

Now, after years of unprecedented appreciation, the market as a whole lost 20% in just two days as it crashes to $142 billion, down from a total market cap of about $180 billion last weekend.

While the crash is enough to make a noticeable dent on the all-time cryptocurrency market chart, it still leaves Bitcoin at double the price it was just four months ago.

But a quick glance at coinmarketcap.com shows how bad things have become, with Bitcoin down 16.5% over the last few days and Ethereum by 23.5%.

The drop is obviously as the result of Chinese government outlaw of ICOs, which had “seriously disrupted the economic and financial order” of cryptocurrency.

Chinese government ordered all ICOs to return funds to investors, which resulted uncertainty as to what will happen to the price of mainstay currencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum with smaller tokens received in ICOs re-converted.

Imagine waiting on the sidelines for months as the market appreciated, then putting your capital chunk into cryptocurrency 48 hours ago, and have it all sunk?

How Cryptocurrency market lost 20% in two days running

Alibaba is a Chinese e-commerce company that provides sales services via web portals, and not so recently, had entered the electronic payment ecosystem with its Alipay third-party mobile and online payment platform in February 2004.

Alipay's latest novelty is facial recognition technology that allows a customer to pay by simply flashing a smile, which is now live in Huangzhou, the company’s global HQ, where it is in trial with KFC.

The "Smile to Pay" service doesn’t require a smartphone, provided that the user has already signed up for the Alipay app and enabled facial recognition, as there's a 3D camera located at the point-of-sale to scan the customer’s face to verify their identity.

Albeit, there is an option for phone number verification for additional security.

It uses a technology called Face++ from Chinese startup Megvii, which capabilities, also includes the option to snap a selfie to pay.

Alibaba launched a cash-less store earlier this summer, which is operational in 10 neighborhood stores in Shanghai, while utilizing its mobile app to optimize the customer experience.

The company's believes to integrate elements from online and offline retail is evident in its ‘smile to pay’ system, which also provides a boost for its Alipay service.

Alipay ‘Smile to Pay’ Service in trial with KFC China

Microsoft announced at the IFA trade show in Berlin on Friday that Windows 10 Fall Creators Update will be launching on October 17, along with Mixed Reality headsets. While Windows Insiders have been testing the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update for months now, which according to Microsoft, is that it wants to iron out any issues for specific hardware configurations before making the upgrade available to PCs via Windows Update.

As the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update’s highlight feature isn’t software related, but rather hardware specific features.

It launches with Windows Mixed Reality headsets, after it was originally teased for this spring’s Windows 10 update. And as expected, HP, Dell, Lenovo, Asus, and Acer headsets will be making debut on October 17 alongside the update.

And it won't require complicated external cameras setup, as all will work with Windows Mixed Reality controllers.

While Valve announced that Steam VR will be coming to Windows Mixed Reality as well, which will be an accompanying software enhancement.

Albeit, it won’t be as epic as originally anticipated, as with cross-device features teased at Microsoft’s Windows 10 Fall Creators Update unveiling in May, highlighting app Timeline and cloud clipboard, which never made the final cut.

Microsoft fixes October 17 for Windows 10 Fall Creators Update

While the "Trending Searches" was first introduced on Android, lots of users were critical of the feature as many requested that Google should turn it off. But the company went ahead to add the "trending" widget in its iOS app; which now it has added those information right in the main section of the search app.

Similar to Twitter Trends, the "Trending Searches" feature shows searches that are trending in a user's location before they begin typing into the search field.

Albeit, iOS users can chose to opt-out of the service through a toggle on the Settings screen by tapping their account profile in the upper left of the Search interface.

Google, however claims that the feature is now smarter, and that users can get the answer they're searching for even before they finished typing in the question, as likely answers will be suggested to the user.

The Trends nonetheless aren't related to just what’s happening around you, as it does seem to be generally what is popular to Google searchers.

Google has differentiated the trending searches with blue, rounded ‘climbing arrow’ icons next to them, which makes these trends easier to spot from your own search history. And whenever a user start a search, a dropdown menu shows "Trending Searches" indicated by the blue jagged arrow icon next to them.

For whatever reason, if you need to know what everyone is searching for at any particular time, then you'd find the "trending searches" feature handy. The update is live now in the iOS App Store.

Finally, Trending Searches comes to Google's iOS app

While recurrent neural networks (RNNs) are at the core of the leading approaches to language understanding tasks such as machine translation, the Transformer outperforms the recurrent model on academic English to German and English to French translation benchmarks.

Transformer is a novel neural network architecture based on a self-attention mechanism believed to be particularly well-suited for language understanding, developed by Google.

It requires less computation to train and is a much better fit for modern machine learning hardware, speeding up training within an order of magnitude.

Google had detailed serious errors in the ways the tendency of translation models (both recurrent and convolutional) execute their work word by word, and its solution to it, in the Research blog post.

According to Google, the solution is what it called an attention mechanism built into its system, Transformer.

It matches each word against every other word in the sentence to see if any of them will affect the other in any key way, and as the translated sentence is being constructed, the attention mechanism compares each word.

Google’s approach is that it gives a logic view into the system, as Transformer gives each word a score in relation to every other word, so you can see what words it thinks are related.

And beyond computational performance and higher accuracy, another intriguing aspect of the Transformer is that it can visualize what other parts of a sentence the network attends to when processing or translating a given word.

What Google's Transformer brings to Machine Language Understanding

Google ambitious drive into set-top box may have received a major boost, as the software is popping up on new set-tops, such as Nvidia’s second-generation Shield TV, which definitely is the headliner. It is also running in the AirTV and provides over-the-air DVR solutions like Tablo Engine and Plex, among other convergence enabling.

Google has announced plans to integrate Google Assistant and overhaul the Android TV interface, and with several features it showed off at its I/O developers conference.

Albeit, there’s not been much evidence of new streaming boxes to run the latest software and whether existing ones like the Shield will get upgraded to Oreo anytime soon.

While Android 8.0 Oreo remains a major upgrade for Android TV, notwithstanding it’s missing some key features, it still manages to provide some stunning display with the Nexus Player, which is the only device that supports the new software.

And Google could as well bundle a USB TV tuner to showcase Android TV’s over-the-air channel integration to help put Android TV on the consumers' watch-list.

But, there’s little evidence that Google might back its set-top operating system with new hardware, as recent Google’s upcoming hardware plans didn’t include Android TV.

The company, however claims that the software is activated on about 500,000 devices per month, which isn't quite a mucked up result. And the platform enjoys an unusual beneficial relationship with Amazon’s Fire TV, which runs a modified version of Android.

As a result, apps that arrive on Amazon's Fire TV also tend to show up on set-tops running Android TV after sometime.

Certainly Android TV isn't going away anytime soon, if Google will start treating it the way it deserves.

Android TV: Will Android 8.0 Oreo ignite Google's drive for the set-top box?