Google fined 2.42 BN Euros
Google has just been fined by the European Commission for antitrust violations regarding its Google Shopping service. It is definitely the
largest antitrust case in Europe within the last decade.
Since Googleís revenue for 2016 was about 79 BN Euros, the fine will diminish the companyís profits by about 3%.
competitorsí shopping services werenít given proper exposure, because of several tweaks in Googleís search algorithm, which didnít
apply to the Google Shopping service as well.
This explains why most of the competing shopping services were only showing up on the 3rd or 4th search results pages, being much
less visible. This is an illegal procedure, according to the EU antitrust rules.
Google must make the required changes to its search algorithm within the following 3 months; otherwise, it will have to pay additional
penalties that can reach up to 5% from the average turnover of its parent company Alphabet. The company is considering an appeal.
Infrared beams will replace Wi-Fi
By the looks of it, the 2.4 GHz band is here to stay, because the 5 GHz band isnít able to deliver a decent signal range. But the old band
is getting more and more crowded, as manufacturers release new gizmos (many IoT devices, for example) that utilize the 2.4 GHz band.
This means that, at least in theory, Wi-Fi speed is constantly decreasing!
There are various solutions which are supposed to extend Wi-Fi signal range, and some of them work OK. People who want to carry their
New versions of the 802.11b protocol are released each year, having the same goal: Wi-Fi speed improvements. But if we are honest, we
This may be the perfect solution for businesses, but it leaves mobile devices out of the equation. We could use Wi-Fi mesh devices and
get over some of the limitations, but isnít there a better solution?
Joanne Oh, a researcher at Eindhoven University of Technology, thinks that she has found the perfect solution: Wi-Fi networks based on
infrared light. According to her, a few infrared emitting light sources can provide enough bandwidth even for the most data-hungry
Her experiment is in its early stages, but the results are very promising: data transfer speed has reached 43 Gbps over a distance of 2.5
meters. Thatís 33 times faster than the results that can be achieved with the fastest, currently available Wi-Fi chips.
It looks like this new version of Li-Fi can provide great results, and it may be the perfect alternative to the more and more crowded 2.4
Lego launches social network for kids
Lego A/S, the Danish family-owned company based in Billund Denmark, has launched a safe social network for kids. In fact, Lego Life is an
app that can run on iOs and Android devices. Itís like Instagram for kids, if you will.
Children can show off their creations and can comment on other peopleís creations. To keep things 100% safe, text comments arenít
allowed. However, kids can use emoji, stickers or predefined replies to express their positive emotions and responses.
No personal information is required, and the app doesnít track its users. Even account names are randomly generated. More than that,
Legoís employees are constantly monitoring the posted information, filtering any inappropriate content. The ads in the app will only
advertise Lego products.
The (letís call it) social network is just in its infancy, according to its maker. Children will be able to play all sorts of games using Lego
Life in the near future.
Uber adds self-driving Mercedes-Benz cars to its fleet
highlights Uberís goal of building one of the largest fleets of self-driving cars in the world.
When it comes to making cars, Uber doesnít have any experience; its CEO has honestly admitted that in a recent blog post. However,
Uber has got an AI division that has created several successful autonomous driving projects. The deal with Stuttgart-based Daimler is
important, because it allows Uber to benefit from the automakerís car making experience.
The company has made a similar deal with Volvo a while ago. The transaction, valued at 263 million Euros, has offered Uber and Volvo the
opportunity of developing self-driving cars together. The resulting Volvo cars have been equipped with autonomous driving technologies
developed by Uber, and have become Uberís property.
The deal with Daimler is different, though; this time, Uber will only benefit from adding Mercedes-Benz cars to its fleet. However, this
means that sometime soon, an autonomous Mercedes vehicle could pick up a Uber passenger.
The financial terms of the Uber/Daimler agreement havenít been made available to the public yet.