The Feed will be a new weekly feature here on MIPRO Unfiltered. What is it? News and micro-commentary from this week in the tech industry that you were probably too busy to catch. We’ve all been there – trying to stay in the know, but real life has a way of interrupting. We hope this lets you catch up on a few things you might have missed.
- Apple has given a minor refresh to its MacBook Pro Retina models. Nutshell: new CPUs (still not Haswell, though – for that you’ll have to wait until 2015), 16 GB standard in high-end models, pricing adjusted down a little. Nice inter-macrocycle refresh, just in time for school. Link.
- Facebook is now requiring users to use its Facebook Messenger app if you want to send a message to another Facebook user. People are outraged by this (for some reason), but in the mega-competitive messaging space (think SnapChat, WhatsApp, etc.) your app has to be standalone and feature rich, not a bolt-on to your main service. Messaging is huge. (Side note: remember Tim Cook said ‘Messages’ is the most-used iOS app.) Link.
- Hilton goes high-tech: the company is investing $550 million to make sure you don’t need to visit the front desk to check in. You just go to your room, hit a button on your smartphone, and you’re in. Hilton would like to see this complete on a worldwide scale by 2016. Link.
- Microsoft’s Siri competitor, Cortana, now has the ability to use Foursquare location and local recommendation data. This makes sense, as MSFT invested $15M in Foursquare earlier this year. Link.
- In a bizarre twist of anti-piracy antics, London’s Police Department is buying ads on piracy websites telling users that stealing movies is illegal. I wonder if the London PD understands their money is funding the piracy sites. Link.
- Free wifi is great, right? Not so fast. If you want to scare yourself silly by learning just how easy it is for people and companies to track you (literally) and gather information about you and your habits, this is for you. 6 minutes well-invested, in my opinion. If it appears too good to be true, it probably is comes to mind. Link.
- Amazon now has a section of their store that has about 200 items that are 3D printed on-demand when you buy them. The future is getting closer everyday. Link.
- Automattic, the company behind the mega-popular CMS engine WordPress, has created an app that more or less clones Instagram, called Selfies. Available on Android only, I guess the only remaining question is why, everyone has been going crazy and getting instant Instagram followers since then. Link.
Thanks for reading this week, everyone. See you Monday.