#443 January 08, 2016 – Passenger Drones Take to the Air @ CES 2016

This week’s headline story: Passenger Drones Take to the Air @ CES 2016

ehangThe Consumer Electronics Show was held in Las Vegas this week, and one of the most sensational exhibits was the EHang 184, the first fully electric autonomous aerial vehicle capable of carrying one passenger up to 220 pounds over short distances. It is propelled by eight rotors that fold up for easy parking. It stands5 feet tall, weighs 440 pounds and flies at 62 MPH for roughly 23 minutes. The drone has over 100 successful test flights, but might take a while to find approval with the FAA.

Other Headline News…

  • FCC Says Internet Speeds Three Times Faster than in 2011 [NewsFactor]
    The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) shas released its latest Measuring Broadband America report. The report shows that speed offerings to the typical consumer are rising rapidly. What’s more, broadband service providers are still delivering on the need for speed — sometimes even surpassing advertised promises. According to the FCC’s stats, maximum advertised speeds increased from 37.2 Mbps in September 2013 to 72 Mbps in September 2014 when averaged across all ISPs that participated in the survey — an increase of 94 percent.

in Information Security News…

  • Uber Pays $20,000 Fine for Not Reporting Data Breach [NewsFactor]
    The New York Attorney General’s office has imposed a $20,000 fine on ride-hailing app company Uber for failing to offer timely notice of a data breach. Uber has been under investigation by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman since 2014, when there was some concern over how Uber collected, maintained and disclosed the personal information of its customers after reports emerged that Uber was displaying rider information in an aerial view, internally known as God’s view. If that wasn’t enough to cause concern over rider privacy, Uber waited nearly six months to report a data breach. Last February, Uber finally told officials that an “unauthorized third-party” had accessed driver names and driver license numbers beginning as far back as September 2014. The company has agreed to make some serious security moves to show good faith.

and in Tech Industry news…

  • AT&T Says Goodbye to 2-Year Phone Contracts [NewsFactor]
    AT&T is doing away with 2-yr contracts for good. As of next week, AT&T customers who want new cellphones will have to update their devices by paying the full retail prices upfront or through monthly installment plans.
  • Facebook’s $599 Oculus Rift VR System To Ship in March [NewsFactor]
    Oculus Rift Gets a Price Tag: $599 [MIT Tech Review]
    The long-awaited Oculus Rift virtual reality system is now available for pre-ordering and is due to start shipping to customers on March 28. The system’s price is: $599. Purchased by Facebook for $2 billion in 2014, Oculus has been developing both the Rift and another virtual-reality device, the Gear VR, which works with several kinds of Samsung smartphones. The Oculus Rift system includes a headset with built-in headphones as well as a microphone, a sensor, an Oculus Remote an Xbox One controller and a game or two. Oculus Studios will roll out over 20 games for the device this year, including a version of the music game Rock Band.
  • Segway Unveils Transforming Robot You Can Ride [NewsFactor]
    Segway introduced an autonomous robot called the Segway Advanced Personal Robot at CES 2016. The new robot looks more like an average hoverboard than a Segway. In fact, the base model is just a robotic head attached to the center pole of the hoverboard. The company said the new device was “a Segway that sees the world and a robot that gives you a ride.”
  • Apple Acquires Emotion-Aware AI Startup Emotient [NewsFactor]
    Apple has aquired AI company Emotient, a startup whose technology analyzes people’s faces to assess their emotions. The company isn’t commenting on its plans for the AI technology.

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